Overlooking Werri Beach on Australia’s New South Wales coast, the Bunker House was built as a dream vacation home for the owners. Featuring a design inspired by mid-century architecture and local history, the three-level residence resembles a concrete bunker with its sharp lines, floor-to-ceiling windows, matte black accents and concrete walls.
Amenities include seven bedrooms, nine bathrooms, pool, steam room, gym, large outdoor deck and barbecue, and the latest smart home technologies – anchored by a customized RTI control system.
Installed by local integrator Ryelec, the high-tech systems include Denon HEOS distributed audio and two Denon AVRs; Clipsal C-Bus lighting control; DoorBird video door intercoms; Elk security; Hikvision PTZ cameras; Samsung displays; CoolMasterNet HVAC system; and Pentair IntelliTouch pool control.
Ryelec relied on RTI as the control and automation backbone, with two RTI XP-6s control processors driving the systems, and incorporated Schedules and One Touch Button drivers in programming to address specific needs.
Ability to Create Custom Airbnb Mode Is Necessity
The family wanted the ability to control every aspect from a central location on each level — using a customized interface — while having local room control.
With the family spending most of their time elsewhere, remote access was a must. And with prospects as a vacation rental, a custom Airbnb Mode was required that could hide certain control features — like security and automation schedules — from guests.
“The [family] had briefly considered using multiple apps for individual control,” says Tom Ryan, director of Ryelec.
“And while this approach would certainly have been cheaper, it would also have made it extremely difficult to control their home and virtually impossible to create the Airbnb Mode and other unique features they wanted. To do that required a control platform that matched power with easy customization, both in terms of functionality and the look and feel of the interface. RTI fit the bill.”
RTI Software, Interfaces Make System Interaction Easy
The family and guests have a variety of options for interacting with the technologies. Each level offers a KA8 8-inch touchpanel with a custom interface featuring a full 3D floor plan of the home and real-time feedback on lighting, air conditioning, and AV systems.
Users can tap on any room to access a pop-up layer of quick control options, and then swipe across for high-level control of each system.
Systems can be accessed locally or remotely via the RTiPanel app running on an iPhone. Additional control is provided by eight RTI SURFiR companion remotes, while a T4x remote with 4-inch capacitive-touchscreen is in the upstairs lounge.
With RTI Integration Designer software, Ryelec created a number of custom control features, in addition to the Airbnb Mode — Home, Going Out and Away modes can be activated via a long icon press on a KA8 touchpanel or iPhone.
Away Mode, for instance, shuts down all indoor systems and disables all internal schedules; arms the security system; and initiates the Perimeter Security function for the PTZ cameras. To maintain the garden while conserving water, the irrigation system is scheduled to water every zone in sequence for a set time every other day, while automatically pausing the cycle on rainy days.
To save energy, whenever the AC is turned on in a zone, the zone’s electric windows automatically close.
“The ability to access their home remotely has also been a big hit,” Ryelec says. “They love being able to pre-heat the pool or adjust the temperature before coming home for the evening or monitor CCTV feeds from anywhere. This level of control is a big selling point for renters as well, who would much rather spend their vacation relaxing than trying to learn sophisticated systems.”