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The owners of this house have commandeered the top floor to create their own private retreat


Houses last renovated in the '80s can often present a higgledy-piggledy collection of small rooms and dark corridors. This house was no exception – a second storey added in the '80s provided a cluster of small rooms, including a family room and a master suite with a bathroom tucked under the eaves.

Interior designer Vanessa McNaught of Lake Road Interior Design says the owners, Ray Haydon and Sarah Herrod, wanted to open up the entire space.

"As the existing master suite was rather small, it made sense to create one large, light-filled suite on this floor," the designer says.

"The owners wanted to maximise the view, so the master bedroom was moved to the space formerly taken by the family room. The original bedroom became the location for the new bathroom and dressing room, and the landing between these rooms is now a sitting room."

McNaught says one of the biggest challenges for the project was ensuring there would be plenty of natural light in the dressing room. The solution was to create a glazed shower tower in the middle of the space. This allows plenty of natural light to filter through to the dressing room. The glass walls and a powerful ventilation unit ensure the area remains moisture-free.


A freestanding tub, positioned beneath the long window, is another luxurious touch that enhances the sense of a private retreat.

McNaught says the contemporary design of the oak vanity unit was influenced by artist Ray Haydon's mahogany sculptures.

"Although not a copy as such, the use of dark-stained oak battens reflect a theme evident in his art. Oak also frames the vertical lights either side of the mirrors."

Rather than repeat the dark wood in the dressing room, the designer opted for unobtrusive light oak cabinetry that would help keep this area light and bright.

First published date: 09 November 2009

Credit List

Interior designer Vanessa McNaught, Lake Road Interior Design
Builder Daniel Haydon
Vanity unit Custom design, built by Dalomi Furniture
Bathtub Hoesch Foster wall oval
Basin Villeroy & Boch Memento
Taps Hansgrohe Axor Citterio
Shower enclosure National Glass
Shower fittings Hansgrohe Raindance shower panel
Toilet and bidet Villeroy & Boch Subway
Ventilation Manrose
Flooring Feltex Melville in Prestbury
Paints Aalto Colour
Tiles Venus Accad Silver from Jacobsen Creative Surfaces
Blinds Luxaflex
Drapes Mokum Melaluca Stripe