The Dominion Post
This charming villa
The exterior of this 1910 Kelburn villa has been returned to its former glory and the interior is now a modern marvel. Architect Victoria Read has created a charming home with different moods from room to room. reports.
FROM the road this two-storey villa in the heart of Kelburn appears like most – wellgroomed, crisp in white, with a wellordered path and garden. But on arrival at the top of the steps it’s obvious it is unique.
It has been renovated and fitted for modern outdoor living, a style of life that was surely never contemplated a century ago when the house was built.
Research indicates the home was designed by architect George Troup for J Sloan Esq and architect Victoria Read was given the job of bringing it back to its former glory but with a modern twist.
‘‘It was in a terrible state, the old house had been converted to two flats and horrible stairs added at the back. But I could see how it could easily be fitted back together as one. I walked in and could immediately see the potential, it needed walls removed, new windows installed, that sort of thing.’’
The work was extensive, an eight-month project only recently finished. Ironically today the look of the exterior appears untouched, as was envisaged when the renovation started. Read was asked to transform the home without compromising the exterior yet on the inside changing room sizes and shapes to suit a family with three young children.
The entrance porch is a warm greeting point, bathed in sunshine with huge views stretching over suburban Wellington, it’s an area that invites you to pause a moment, where guests are duly welcomed and coats are shed.
‘‘In fact, it’s one of the favourite places for the family,’’ says Read, ‘‘on a Saturday morning, they get the newspaper, nestle in on the couch and read in the sunshine.’’
Off from the entranceway is the formal lounge, with Jetmaster open fire and a surround of tiles crafted by Middle Earth Tiles to replicate those of the era, in a deep emerald green. A room of comfortable proportions, and next door a media room is a new addition, an extension, part of stage two of the change.
‘‘On the lower level we added the media room and above it a master bedroom and bathroom, the second stage of the development. The media room is for movies and television, so the formal lounge can remain a peaceful and contemplative place.’’
The kitchen/dining stretches the length of the house, the pressed-tin ceiling in the front has been replicated at the rear where the removal of two walls has made the room one.
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