Residential: Hamilton's smart lighting & blind controls set the scene in stunning Blue Lagoon property, Poole Harbour.
The Project: Located in one of the most desirable areas of the UK, Infinity is a contemporary waterside home situated on the Sandbanks Road, Poole, Dorset. The sustainable, open-plan property, which has been designed for sought-after inside/outside living, has direct views towards Brownsea Island and is on a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). This stunning piece of architecture was developed by Hi Homes to be as exquisite as its very special location.
The Brief: Hi Homes’ project brief outlined very specific criteria that it required from a lighting partner. It needed a smart control system that would span a multitude of lighting solutions, blinds, garage doors, electric gates, landscaped grounds and jetty. The system needed to control a large number of circuits individually while having the ability to personalise multiple lighting scenes for each room. Having undertaken much research into smart lighting control, the developer found that the majority of systems with pre-set lighting scenes were created by installers, with a change to the scene settings requiring a further visit from an engineer. However, the client specifically wanted the capability of changing these settings and scenes themselves at a whim’s notice and without the inconvenience and additional cost of installer call outs.
Aesthetically, each control plate needed to complement the contemporary design of the property while being durable and reliable. The plates also needed to control between eight to ten circuits and a minimum of four lighting scenes, with personalised labelling for clarity.
To ensure a seamless, cohesive look throughout the modern home, sockets that complemented the design of the light switches were required. These also needed to be tailored to requirements, incorporating functionality beyond a simple switched socket.
The final requirement was to integrate the lighting with leading home automation media control system, Control4, which would provide control for other elements of the home, including the heating and smart audio system.
The Solution: During the research process, Hi Homes came across Hamilton’s solutions. The contemporary design, touch activation and the ability to create bespoke sizes in its capacitive touch control plates made it the ideal choice. The developer arranged to meet with Hamilton’s team to discuss the property and its requirements. Julian Churchill, Smart Systems Manager at Hamilton Litestat, led the project and worked with colleague Steve Apsey, Systems Technical Support, to deliver a solution that met all the requirements and offered additional suggestions to ensure the best possible customer experience.
Hamilton’s Smart Lighting Control System was chosen for its flexibility in supporting projects of varying complexity. It can provide a simple plug-and-play pre-programmed installation, or additional levels of system functionality can be utilised and programmed to meet exacting requirements.
It can also incorporate control for other electrical circuits, with this property integrating the control of window blinds, garage doors and the electric front gates, as well as two switches enabled in turning the entire home on or off.
Following consultation with Hamilton on design and layout, Hi Homes undertook the internal and external electrical works with the Hamilton team supporting on the testing of lights, blind automation, garage door and gate functionality to ensure seamless functionality throughout the home.
Master control plates were strategically placed in key positions on each floor of the property, with every room also having zonal control plates for the utmost convenience. Hamilton supported the client in creating and setting lighting scenes. For the home’s master rooms, such as the main living room, the kitchen/dining/living area and bedrooms, four lighting scenes were created.
For other communal areas, two lighting scenes were set, such as hallways, landings and the garage. The Hamilton team also showed the client how to easily alter and set new lighting scenes, giving them the capability of making adaptions and changes without the need for an on-site engineer.
Alongside lighting control, Hamilton also incorporated blind control within the system. ( Above Picture: Left - Quarter Closed / Right - Fully Closed) The property is south-southwest facing, and as such direct sunlight enters the home from noon onwards. Although it makes it lovely and bright, sometimes this can be too much as the home has floor-to-ceiling glazing. Blind control means that the homeowners can simply adjust the blind settings to suit any time of day and let in just the amount of natural light they desire.
To control the circuits, Hi Homes chose Hamilton’s Linea Duo CFX frames in Satin Nickel with Black capacitive touch plates, which are a great aesthetic fit with the sleek, contemporary design of the house while being of exceptional quality, reliable, durable and easy to clean. The plates also offered control of the high number of circuits required, which Hi Homes hadn’t been able to source from competitor brands.
It was essential that the switches could be individually etched with personalised names for ease of use. To provide enough room for the detailed labelling required, Hamilton used a 16-circuit control plate and enlisted its bespoke design team to convert this to a 12-circuit control plate. This allowed for wider framing of the buttons and enough space for the descriptive text alongside each switch, making for easy control of all circuits and functionality in a stylish manner befitting of the property.
For a seamless look, complementary wiring accessories were installed throughout the home. Hamilton’s switch plates and sockets were selected in Hartland CFX and Sheer designs with a Satin Steel finish and black or white inserts, depending on the room décor. Many of these sockets were also bespoke, incorporating a 5A socket or USB charging functionality alongside a standard socket.
As well as the capacitive touch plates, the system can be controlled using the Hamilton App, which is available on both iOS and Android smart devices. At the swipe of a finger, the entire system can be controlled from any location – at home or even overseas.
In addition to the initial brief, extra functionality was added during the project. For security, if the burglar alarm is triggered, all the lights throughout the house and garden automatically turn on to ensure maximum visibility of any intruders.
Additionally, as a deterrent during holiday periods, a unit was incorporated in the system that records the home’s lighting habits over a two-week period and enables playback of this when the house isn’t occupied to simulate the family going about their regular routine.
The project’s final requirement was to integrate the Hamilton Smart Control System with the Control4 Media and Home Automation System. The Hamilton team worked closely with Control4 to achieve this with seamless results, and consequently has signed a third-party supplier agreement with Control4.
The Result: The client is delighted with the finished project, which exceeds the initial smart control brief and delivers remarkable functionality and an exquisite design finish.
“We are extremely happy with the Hamilton Smart Control System and the exceptional support and dedication that the team has provided and continues to provide with the development of the personalised system for our home,” says Andrew Watts, Director, Hi Homes. “Julian was extremely proactive, enthusiastic and creative. After numerous meetings and brain-storming we were able to achieve the functionality and a bespoke range of control plates that met our goals and expectations. Julian fully understood our brief and we were extremely delighted with the end result. The team’s technical knowledge and ability to meet our requirements was exceptional.”
The project has been stand-out not only for the client, but also for those within the industry. As a result, Hi Homes has been shortlisted as a finalist for the LABC South West Building Excellence Awards 2019 for The Best Individual New Home, with the winner to be announced on 24 May 2019.
“It’s so rewarding to receive such a glowing client testament praising our dedicated and meticulous team, along with the solutions we’ve worked so hard to develop,” says Gavin Williams, Head of Marketing at Hamilton Litestat. “This property is truly stunning and it’s an honour to have played a part in achieving such a high standard of functionality and quality finish. For it to be shortlisted for an award really is the icing on the cake of a truly remarkable project.”
Smart Controls System:
Smart Dimmer pack 1 - 20 circuits @ 600W (150W LEDs) 5x 3A Relays, plus 2x 2A Cross-over Relays for Blinds, plus an Ethernet Bridge
Smart Dimmer pack 2 - 24 circuits @ 600W (150W LEDs) 6x 3A Relays, plus 4x 2A Cross-over Relays for Blinds
Smart Dimmer pack 3 - 24 circuits @ 600W (150W LEDs) 6x 3A Relays, plus 4x 2A Cross-over Relays for Blinds
Control Plates: Linea Duo Vetro CFX – Black Glass/Satin Nickel Frames. All plates engraved to show circuit control locations.
Plates installed include:
Master Control 1: Kitchen/Living/Dining, Bedroom 1 & 2, Living Room (2nd Floor) - LD CPT4S+8C – 4 scene recall + 8 circuit control
Master Control 2: Kitchen/Living/Dining - LD CPT12C – 12 circuit control
Master Control 3: Entrance - LD CPT2S+10C – 2 scene recall + 10 circuit control
Zonal Control 1: Landing 1st & 2nd Floor, Master Dressing Room, Hallway A, Garage - LD CPT2S+6C – 2 scene recall + 6 circuit control
Zonal Control 2: Guest Room, Utility, Bedroom 4 - LD CPT4S+4C – 4 scene recall + 4 circuit control
Zonal Control 3: Hallway B, Study/Office - LD CPT3S+5C – 3 scene recall + 5 circuit control
Additional System Integration: Control4 Home Automation
Additional Wiring Accessories: Hartland CFX and Sheer Floor Plates in Satin Steel with black/white inserts.