Hamptons style renovation in North Balgowlah by All Australian Architecture. Images: Stegbar
Taking inspiration from the Hamptons, this sun-lit two-storey home at North Balgowlah also pays homage to the homeowners’ Queensland upbringing. Queenslander and Hamptons architecture are similarly distinguished by the look of timber weatherboard facades, the use of natural materials, muted colours and open-plan living, and Elizabeth Webb wanted to blur those lines in her contemporary beach house.
“I’ve always been drawn to crisp lines, airy interiors, clean white and blue colour palette and gorgeous natural materials,” she says.
Dark timber flooring adds warmth to an all white kitchen
To realise her dream, she worked closely with architect Adam Pressley from All Australian Architecture, who decided it was easier to knock down the three-bedroom cottage on the site, and start again from scratch.
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“At first, Elizabeth wanted advice on renovating, but during the site inspection I explained that too much of the existing house would have to be changed, and that renovating would be more expensive than building new,” says Adam. “The old house was in poor condition, and looked as if it had already been renovated a few times and re-clad at least once.
“It was a bit pokey and the kitchen was enclosed. It was the sort of house you wouldn’t bother trying to renovate as the bones just weren’t good enough.”
The light floods in through versatile bi-fold doors
On the upside, the land was generally flat with a wide street frontage, making it an ideal building block. The new house was approved as a Complying Development, bypassing council.
To best achieve the Hamptons and Queenslander look, window and external shutter details were key to the design. Adam was also able to get custom timber windows made that met a Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) of 12.5, by using Stegbar glazing. The cladding on the house was completed using James Hardie’s Linea weatherboards with timber windows and trims, and the roof is Colorbond. Typically Hamptons, the colour scheme is a white on white theme.
The new home spans across two levels with five bedrooms, three-and-a-half bathrooms, a large kitchen and living area and fireplace.
Wall to wall white gets a pop of colour in the nursery
The main design challenge was that the site was not that deep. Adam wanted to create an expansive space, but had limited land. The answer was to build vaulted ceilings with exposed beams and use large glass windows and doors to make the space feel much larger.
To bring the outdoors in, Stegbar bi-fold windows were used in the kitchen while French doors were installed across the entire back wall of the living room. This allows the adjoining deck and backyard to become an unobstructed continuation of the main living space.
On the west-facing front of the home, smaller windows were used in order to minimise afternoon sun.
Cane furnishings accentuate the resort-style feel
Elizabeth took control of the internal finishes, choosing engineered oak flooring on the ground floor, and a sisal style loop pile carpet on the first floor.
“I love wool carpets but with two toddlers and two dogs, solution dyed nylon was the sensible choice. I was lucky to find this one that looks exactly like wool carpet,” she says. “It’s super soft and entirely stain resistant.”
The narrow timber detailing on the wall references classic Hamptons styling
The kitchen is another success story, with subway tiles on the splashback matched with a Carrara marble countertop.
“Everything is easy maintenance, which you don’t expect with a white house. Everything was chosen to stand up to kids and dogs.”
Industrial lamps bring focus to the heart of the home
Architect Adam Pressley from All Australian Architecture, aaarchitect.com.au
Builder Beaches Building, beachesbuilding.com.au
The brief The owner wanted a Hamptons-meets-Queenslander inspired home
The site Relatively flat block with a wide frontage
How long did it take? 18 months from the start of the design process to building completion
Linea weatherboards on the facade in Scyon, scyon.com.au
Steel roof from Colorbond, colorbond.com
Windows and doors from Stegbar, stegbar.com.au
Kitchen countertops in Carrara, carrara-marble.com.au
White subway tiles in kitchen and bathrooms from Amber Tiles, ambertiles.com.au
SDN sisal style loop pile carpet on ground floor from Tuftmaster Carpets, tuftmastercarpets.com.au