Designs that breathe and belong.
Mike Vail’s design agenda is to create spaces and buildings that maximize a site’s potential, minimize the impact on the earth, reflect his client’s budget and values and embody a sense of quality and craftsmanship that continues to enrich both individuals and the community.
Graduating with design honours from UNSW in 1994 and setting up his practice in 1997, Mike’s workflow for the past 20 years has been fully sustained by word of mouth from one client to the next.
Mike delights in working intimately with clients and with a community of professionals to create a seamless design process from conception to construction.
From Broome, WA in the far northwest, to Bicheno, Tasmania in the far southeast, across the breadth of Sydney and up to Armidale in Northern NSW, Mike’s work has spanned the gamut of scale and function across Australia.
His first 10 years in Surry Hills, working in partnership with exhibition designer Peter Card, focused on warehouse conversions, office fitouts, cafes, pubs, apartments and terraces as well as new homes and renovations.
Since moving his family and practice 10 years ago to the beautiful coastal region an hour south of Sydney, he has expanded his residential portfolio while his client base continues to broaden.
A youth spent in the tropical jungles of Malaysia, the rice paddies of Bangladesh and the villages of New Guinea, where his father was engaged in civil projects, have informed much of Mike’s design sensibilities: simple structures made from raw local materials, and integrated into the natural logic of the site.
His experiences in yacht design and sailing and his love of the bush have generated in Mike a sensitivity to the elemental conditions of site and to the aesthetic qualities of a landscape with respect to the fabric and form of each building.