A Durban beachfront apartment geared for fun
WHO LIVES HERE
A KZN Midlands-based couple and their three young adult children who spend weekends here whenever possible.
A four-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment in a 1960’s block on Durban’s beachfront with an openplan living area and scullery.
The owner of this apartment on Durban’s beachfront had always admired the retro charm of this 1960’s building, its location on the Golden Mile and its views of the promenade, so when two adjoining apartments went on sale at the same time, she jumped at the opportunity to buy them. “Durban’s a real South African city and has all the culture, vibe and seaside slip-slop attitude I love,” she says. “I grew up here and the views over the promenade and Mini Town with ships queuing for the harbour remind me of my childhood.”
These childhood memories inspired much of the design and decor on which the owner collaborated with Tracy Kelly of Nom de Plume Studio. Structural renovations involved removing the wall between the two apartments to establish a spacious open-plan living area,
turning one kitchen into a scullery-cum-laundry and the other into a bunk room, and revamping the bathrooms.
All the family’s activities were taken into consideration with a rack for surf boards, a rail for sunglasses and hooks for wet towels and costumes.
“One of the biggest changes we made was replacing the old windows with frameless stacking ones,” says the owner. “Now, when you open them, you feel as though you’re on a balcony. We enhanced this impression in the dining section with upholstered window seats teamed with small round tables and chairs to create the feel of a beach café. On the other side, we installed a ledge below the window which, with high stools, functions as a bar so we can take full advantage of the view.”
While the view is a major attraction, the drawback of the large windows is the damage caused by the sun streaming in. “This is the reason I chose expensive fade-resistant fabrics for the front rooms. In the bedrooms, I used lots of white as you can’t see the effects of fading,” explains the owner. A fresh blue and white colour scheme was used throughout. “I wanted the effect to be elegant yet relaxed and let the view be the hero.”
As the kitchen forms the centre of the apartment, it was important to get it right. “I wanted a simple, elegant kitchen with a beach cottage feel,” explains the owner. Freestanding units from Milestone Kitchens proved to be the solution. “We chose white cabinets with timber countertops and used these throughout except in the washing up area. We also installed a long shelf to display blue and white crockery. Instead of being hidden in the cupboards, it’s now an attractive feature.”
To carry through the seaside scheme, she chose a blue fridge, which was placed on a fridge base, also from Milestone Kitchens, to give it height and prominence.
“For us, a typical weekend starts on Friday evening when we enjoy a sundowner overlooking the beach. On Saturdays and Sundays, we have an early morning surf, jog along the promenade and then spend the rest of the day enjoying the beach. If we don’t have a snack at Kebabish, then we cook at home and eat in our own ‘cafe’. It’s bliss.”
SOURCES @home home.co.za Carole Nevin Designs carolenevin.com Cécile & Boyd cecileandboyds.com Chair Crazy chaircrazy.co.za K. Light Import klight.co.za Kebabish 031 368 1844 Milestone Kitchens milestonekitchens.co.za Mobelli Furniture + Living mobelli.co.za Nom de Plume Studio 033 342 4158 Patio Warehouse patiowarehouse.co.za Shower Solutions 031 303 2300 Tile Africa tileafrica.co.za Weylandts weylandts.co.za WOMAG womag.co.za
THIS SPREAD, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:Built-in window seats combined with round tables and chairs from Chair Crazy give the dining area beach café style. The blue and white Shibori cushions are from Nom de Plume Studio. As the family are keen surfers, a rack for boards was placed near the front door. Wicker baskets hold clean towels and slip-slops.
THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM: Reflecting the colour of beach sand, natural timber makes an attractive backdrop for the TV in the living area. To give the impression of being on a balcony, the owners replaced the original windows with frameless stacking versions from Shower Solutions.
THIS SPREAD, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:To make the kitchen appear more spacious, the owners chose freestanding units from Milestone Kitchens. By adding stools, also from Milestone, the counter serves as an additional dining area. The owners chose crisp white for the fabrics and bedlinen in the mainbedroom as it doesn’t show the signs of fading. The cushions on the sofa are from Cécile & Boyd.
ABOVE: Black and white tiles from Tile Africa bring the allwhite bathroom to life. Art deco black metal ball pendant, R5 760,K. Light Import.Copy the beach caféstyle of this dining area Sophie teak dining room armchair, R1 950, Patio Warehouse. Line jute carpet, R3 495, Weylandts.Jaipur Geometric Indigo cushion cover, R325, Carole Nevin Designs. Camino wood-look porcelain tile, R573,85/m², WOMAG. Piana side table, R1 799, Mobelli Furniture + Living. Blue velvet cushion, R249, @home. Bistro table,R2 999, @home.Get the look