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lux­ury in a Paarl fam­ily home

Laid­back liv­ing meets lux­ury fin­ishes in this home on a ru­ral es­tate in Paarl

hen Bernd and Karen Sch­wendtke de­cided to re­lo­cate to the Cape, Bernd gave Karen carte blanche in the choice of lo­ca­tion, de­sign and decor of their new home. “I chose this site at Val de Vie be­cause it has won­der­ful views of the Paarl moun­tains,” says Karen. An­other factor was the per­fect po­si­tion at the end

Wof the large recre­ational lake, which pro­vides water views from most of the rooms and makes the prop­erty feel much larger.

As the Sch­wendtkes were still liv­ing in Pre­to­ria, Karen, a busi­ness­woman and breeder of Arab horses, knew she would have to find some­one in the area who could as­sist with project man­age­ment dur­ing con­struc­tion, es­pe­cially as Bernd would be work­ing in Dubai over this pe­riod. “I wanted some­one who could in­ter­pret my style and taste and be my eyes and ears when I couldn’t be on the build­ing site,” says Karen.

She in­ter­viewed sev­eral lo­cal dec­o­ra­tors, and for­tu­nately had an in­stant rap­port with Ni­co­lette Jonas, who runs a

suc­cess­ful decor busi­ness, In­te­rior Con­cepts, in Paarl.

Karen’s brief to Ni­co­lette was to cre­ate a home that would be easy to main­tain and truly lock up and go, but at the same time em­brace what the beautiful coun­try setting had to of­fer. Al­though the house is com­pact, it has sev­eral sit­ting and eat­ing ar­eas in­clud­ing a glam­orous for­mal din­ing room and a more re­laxed braai room with stack­ing glass doors that open di­rectly onto the gar­den and the lake.

“The idea was to give Karen’s home a mod­ern, clas­si­cal look with good flow be­tween the in­side and the out­side,” says Ni­co­lette. “We also wanted to add a bit of bling and to ref lect Karen’s in­ter­est in Ara­bian horses.” This is par­tic­u­larly no­tice­able at the en­trance where a stal­lion sculp­ture by Arend Eloff greets vis­i­tors.

Sub­tle bling per­me­ates the din­ing room, which fea­tures wall­pa­pered walls, a whim­si­cal chan­de­lier and Vene­tian mir­rors. Glam­our is car­ried through to the ad­join­ing kitchen, which has mar­ble work­tops and metal­lic pen­dant lights. “As it’s vis­i­ble from the liv­ing room, we tucked a scullery be­hind it to keep it look­ing neat,” says Karen.

The more re­laxed braai room has a slat­ted tim­ber ceil­ing, which gives it warmth and in­ti­macy. “We di­vided it into two sit­ting ar­eas so there’s easy ac­cess through the cen­tre to the pool and ter­race out­side,” ex­plains Ni­co­lette. With easy liv­ing in mind, all the cur­tains and the ceil­ing fans are re­mote con­trolled.

Karen’s daugh­ters chose the decor for their bed­rooms. One has a large black four-poster bed while the other fea­tures soft

pink hues. The main bed­room is sub­tly lux­u­ri­ous but the star of the show is the dress­ing room where an­tiqued mir­rors clad the walls and ref lect lac­quered fit­tings and a crys­tal chan­de­lier.

The guest suite on the ground floor is self-con­tained with a kitch­enette screened by fold­ing shut­ters. “This way our guests can make them­selves at home with­out hav­ing to come through to the main house,” ex­plains Karen.

Prac­ti­cal­ity also reigns in the gar­den where Karen opted for has­sle-free im­i­ta­tion grass around the house. “I also included sweet-smelling plants so that when the wind blows or on sum­mer evenings, fra­grance per­me­ates the house.”

To add more liv­ing space, Karen built a gazebo on the other side of the pool, which is a pop­u­lar spot for tea and sun­down­ers and a small is­land be­yond that for wildlife. She also included a deck for launch­ing ca­noes. “Bernd and the girls have a lot of fun ca­noe­ing on the lake,” she adds.

“When Bernd re­turned and saw the com­pleted project, he was thrilled with it,” re­calls Karen. “It’s mod­ern, warm and a great place to come home to.”

THIS PAGE, FROM TOP: Saskia’s bed­room has French doors that open onto a bal­cony. The soft throw is from Wool­worths.

Ni­co­lette loves to add in­ter­est with paint tech­niques. Here she gave the van­ity in Saskia’s bath­room a har­lequin pat­tern and com­bined it with sassy dog print wall­pa­per from Her­tex.

Get the look Turn your pa­tio into a re­laxed

haven with these ac­ces­sories Java lounge chair,

R6 995, Block & Chisel. Opal vo­tives from R129, JVB Fur­ni­ture. Dove Grey Leather Dhur­rie rug, 1,6 X 2,3m, R1 599, Air­loom. Oceana small metal an­tique brass pen­dant, R2 690, K. Light Im­port. Chevron scat­ter pil­low case, R250, Hello Pretty. Set of three round nest­ing ta­bles, R9 375, Mavro­mac & Gatehouse. Bronze pill stool,

R1 499, JVB Fur­ni­ture.

SOURCES Air­loom air­ Arend Eloff aren­de­ Block & Chisel blockand­ Brian Rolfe Hello Pretty hel­ Her­tex her­tex­ In­te­rior Con­cepts 082 565 4500 JVB Fur­ni­ture K. Light Im­port Mavro­mac & Gatehouse mavro­macan­dthe­gate­ Stel­len­bosch Blinds & Shut­ters stel­len­ Supreme Up­hol­stery supre­me­uphol­ Wool­worths wool­

WHO LIVES HEREBernd and Karen Sch­wendtke and their two daugh­ters, Saskia (11) and Ara­bella (6).THE HOUSEA mod­ern, dou­ble-storey house with a large liv­ing and din­ing area, an open-plan kitchen and glass-en­closed braai room on the ground floor. Up­stairs, there are four bed­rooms and three bath­rooms.

THIS SPREAD, CLOCK­WISE FROM LEFT: The braai room is fur­nished with re­laxed wicker chairs and metal side ta­bles all from In­te­rior Con­cepts in Paarl. The pen­dant lights are from K. Light Im­port. Karen cre­ated ex­tra liv­ing space out­doors by adding a gazebo, which they of­ten use for din­ing al­fresco, and a deck from which to launch ca­noes. The gazebo forms part of the swim­ming pool and is a lovely place to en­joy the view.

THIS SPREAD, CLOCK­WISE FROM ABOVE: On the far side of the braai room, an L-shaped sofa from In­te­rior Con­cepts and easy chairs of­fer a com­fort­able place to re­lax. The scat­ter cush­ions are in a leaf de­sign fab­ric from Mavro­mac and the but­ter­cup yel­low ones are in a Her­tex fab­ric. In the TV room, a blue vel­vet sofa picks up the colours in the paint­ing of one of Karen’s horses by Brian Rolfe. Vis­i­ble from the TV room, the kitchen has mar­ble coun­ter­tops and com­fort­able bar stools from Supreme Up­hol­stery. The din­ing area is fur­nished with a mod­ern chan­de­lier from K. Light Im­port and Vene­tian mir­rors. The ta­ble and chairs are from Supreme Up­hol­stery.

THIS PAGE, CLOCK­WISE FROM TOP LEFT: Ni­co­lette gave the dress­ing room a glam­orous ef­fect with a wall of spe­cially made an­tiqued mir­rors off­set by white lac­quered cup­boards. In the cen­tre is a mar­ble-topped chest high­lighted by a chan­de­lier from K. Light Im­port. The main bath­room has mir­rored cup­boards and the shower is en­closed by a French-look­ing black met­al­framed screen. Soft grey tones, a vel­vet head­board and mir­rored side ta­bles all by In­te­rior Con­cepts cre­ate a very glam­orous look in the main bed­room.

ABOVE: Dec­o­rated with rich olive green touches, the guest suite fea­tures wall­pa­per from Her­tex and blinds by Stel­len­boschBlinds & Shut­ters. The kitch­enette is screened off with shut­ters.

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