By Sungula Nkabinde, Project Consultant Lorna Ioakim, Property Co-ordinator Chantel Spence, Photography Irma Bosch
When choosing a location, the owners of this home had decided that they wanted to be close to water in a game reserve, and ever since they saw a couple of antelope grazing on what is now their property, they were sold. Now, with their dream house completed, the owners enjoy sunsets from the main deck, overlooking a small ravine where they can observe the various birdlife of the the reserve, while also being able to see different fish as well.
The house was built with a modern flare in mind to ave appealing visual lines, and a combination of wood and glass for the exterior. At the entrance, you are met by two very old solid steel doors reminiscent of a jail cell that dates back to the 1700s. “We wanted it to be simple yet elegant with straight lines. The house had to have large windows in order to observe the views. A lot of effort was put into ensuring that the home is environmentally friendly,” say the owners, adding that the home was intentionally built to face the north with large windows to let the winter sun in. Double-glazed windows were installed for insulation and many of the rooms were also sound proofed. Floor heating, geysers and swimming pool heaters all use heat pumps to save electricity, and LED lights were installed in most of the rooms.
The house is also dramatically lit to enhance its contemporary design to the fullest. “The clients were very open to our lighting suggestions and trusted us to light their home beautifully. This contributed to their home being the best lit home on the whole estate,” says Sarah Lyn of Sarita Sharman Lighting. The house is an entertainer’s dream with wide open areas, high ceilings and sliding doors that let you move around between the various areas without being blocked off.
“For the interior design, we tried to be as practical as possible staying with natural, timeless elements like marble, wood and glass,” says the owner. In terms of furniture, they selected combinations of classics and antiques that were both durable and timeless. These were sourced from various locations in South Africa, including Inge’s Decor, and overseas as well.
The owners chose marble floors for the high-traffic areas downstairs and outside the entertaining areas, and walnut wood floors for the stairs and bedrooms to give them a warm feeling. They say they put a lot of effort into glamorising the home’s night time appeal. They did this by using feature lighting on the trees, focusing especially on the two big Baobabs that form the anchors of the house and are the first features you see when coming down to the home.
The gardens were designed to to have wide open lawns for the kids to play and to have minimum maintenance. “We wanted to do something a little different to our garden while still keeping it simple. For this we selected low maintenance desert plants, and we layered the entrance with stone and sleepers instead of the traditional paving in order to give it a warmer feeling,” they say.