Pocket paradise

Thoughtful planning gives this compact masonry home most of the advantages of its larger cousins, but with a quarter of the upkeep
Story by: Charles Moxham
Exterior view of home featuring brick cladding, doors architecture, building, cottage, estate, facade, hacienda, home, house, property, real estate, residential area, roof, sky, villa, gray
Exterior view of home featuring brick cladding, doors and windows, landscaping.

Strong, solid, warm and quiet the benefits of a masonry home are well documented. While this building method is traditionally reserved for larger residences, the inherent advantages of concrete block construction can also be enjoyed on a modest scale.

This show home, designed and built by Eden Homes, has the look of a classic New Zealand residence. However, a touch of the Mediterranean in the design is due in part to its deep window reveals, plaster finish and clay-coloured roofing tiles all trademark elements of more substantial builds by Eden Homes, says director Rob Dines.

"This home is designed for compact living everything has its place, and upkeep is kept to a minimum," says Dines. "Built on only 216m², it includes a living room, a family, dining and kitchen area, four bedrooms, a bathroom and a double garage."

View of the living room featuring lounge suite, home, interior design, living room, property, real estate, room, white
View of the living room featuring lounge suite, coffee table, rug, fireplace with raised hearth, windows, French doors, recessed lighting.

White exterior walls are offset by the rich, natural hues of the cedar board-and-batten garage door. This is matched by the solid cedar of the front door to the home.

"At the back of the home in the generous outdoor living area the same wood is used for the cupboard doors on the built-in outdoor barbecue," says Dines. "Overall, there is a sense of harmony to this home, which contributes to its cottage-like charm."

On the interior, the house balances the traditional with touches of modernity. A raked, sarked ceiling brings a rustic and airy feel to the open-plan living spaces. The adjacent living room can be partitioned off with a push of a large 1.2m-wide pocket slider a contemporary feature that optimises the functionality of both spaces.

View of master bathroom which features floor and bathroom, countertop, floor, home, interior design, room, tile, gray
View of master bathroom which features floor and wall tiling, vanity with dark cabinetry, two freestanding tubs, mirror, glass shower enclosure.

The decor is mostly in light, neutral tones, appropriate to a show home, where visitors are likely to picture their own furnishings. Dines has chosen a matching solid oak island and dining table to contrast the off-white decor, and the living room has the same material highlights.

Despite the restricted footprint, bedrooms are spacious, and the master bedroom opens directly to the landscaped outdoor environment.

"Masonry-built with north-facing living areas, the house is snug and warm," says Dines.

Sep 29, 2009

Credit list

Kitchen designer and manufacturer
Good Kitchens
Firth Masonry TBC
Gib Ultraline
Jetmaster from The Fireplace
Kitchen cabinetry
Good Kitchens
Delonghi from Lifestyle Appliances
French Door Refrigerator by Fisher & Paykel
Firth Ribraft TBC
Doors and windows
Nu Look from Windows 2000
Cedar venetians from Home Vision
Hansgrohe from Hydrotech Sanitar
Bosch from Lifestyle Appliances
Dedon Outdoor Furniture from Domo
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