St. Denis

Nestled in a tranquil and leafy street in the heart of Sydney's upper north shore this character-filled home is one of a kind. The single-storey residence features an historic eastern wing built from sandstone and brick with classic fenestration and a hexagonal wrap-around verandah at the rear with expansive views out over the landscape. CALDESIGN was engaged by the owners to re-model the entire exterior.

With an extremely wide frontage and sloping topography the unusually shaped-block presented plenty of design challenges. Top of the list was how to maximise the use of space - especially the awkward corners, without compromising the final design.

The brief included an in-ground swimming pool and a cook's entertaining area - including a pizza oven and plenty of bench space to prepare and serve food, an area for a fire-pit and casual sitting, open lawn areas for the kids and screened utility area. Street appeal was also on the list for the front - improved pedestrian and vehicle entries as well as privacy, planting and lighting.

The concept was to create a garden that flowed effortlessly out from the house, that was connected with the house thematically and stylistically, and that featured distinct 'rooms' designed for different activities - each with its own sense of identity and function, but also linked. The final design reinforced and juxtaposed the unusual geometry of the house to help connect the separate areas in the garden and to provide clear delineation between the utility, entertaining, and pool zones.

New and old elements were incorporated in the design including 100 year-old forged iron farm gates sourced from a friends property and then skillfully restored by our team for the driveway entry. The pedestrian gate we designed as a personalised gesture to the wonderful owners. Hand-hewn cathedral-style Moroccan sandstone flooring was used throughout with sparrow-picked stone walling to match. Add in stunning Cretian terracotta pots, bronze garden lighting, dressed Mahogany timber structures and antique pool tiles and the result is a beautiful and timeless garden.

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