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A grand Hamptons-inspired farmhouse

An 1860s cottage held by a family for five generations forms the sentimental heart of this palatial Hamptons-inspired farmhouse.
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Natalee and Mark’s home is well off the beaten track. Set on sprawling farmland in the Western Australian Wheatbelt, it’s a good hour-long drive from Perth and 20 minutes from the nearest country town, yet as you meander up their dusty driveway, this stately manor is impossible to miss. “It’s not your average farmhouse, it’s more like a beacon, particularly at night when it’s lit up – you can spot it two to three kilometres away,” says Natalee.

Hamptons entryway
“Hamptons isn’t just one look, its very layered and eclectic, but all the elements need to talk to one another,” says the owner of her decorating. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

For the couple and their children Dakotah, 16 and Indianah, 14, rural life is still something of a novelty, after the opportunity arose to buy a 78-acre farm from Mark’s cousin and build a forever home.

“The land has been in Mark’s family for five generations and his great- grandfather built the original brick cottage on the site in the 1860s, so it holds a lot of history,” says Natalee.

Hamptons living room
In the main living area, a soaring eight-metre-high ceiling and wall of French doors and transom windows, by Jason Windows, floods the room with natural light. The crowning glory is a one-metre-wide chandelier from One World. (Credit: Cath Muscat)
Hamptons living room
Big, blowsy hydrangeas are synonymous with the Hamptons and are also one of Natalee’s favourite flowers, so the ‘Club Hamptons’ artwork by Felicia Aroney takes pride of place above the charming fireplace mantel. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

“Mark’s dad was born in the cottage, relatives have got married there and even though it had become quite derelict over time and should have really been bulldozed, we really wanted to preserve the family’s heritage.”

Hamptons kitchen
Keen to create something different rather than “cookie cutter”, the couple’s starting point for the kitchen design was a trio of bespoke timber-beaded chandeliers, available through Indah Island. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

For the designer, whose company, Indah Island, is renowned for its bespoke Hamptons- style projects,
the cottage and its vast landscape provided an irresistible opportunity to create something of grand proportions that’s unique, yet also personal.

“True American Hamptons homes are quite extraordinary
in scale and I really wanted to emulate that,” she explains.

Hamptons style
Library shelving, complete with a ladder, provides tiered surfaces to curate collections and create eclectic vignettes. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

The design took shape around the original cottage with adjoining north and south wings built on either side.

Inside, the bedrooms and bathrooms for Indianah, Dakota and eldest daughter Ebonee, who visits on weekends, were created within the cottage’s cosy footprint, while the generous extension allowed for a modern open-plan layout, with numerous living areas as well as a luxurious parents’ retreat, mezzanine level and a self-contained studio.

Hamptons bedroom
The decorative Intrim mouldings and wainscoting by Perth Bespoke Carpentry in Dulux Lexicon pop against walls in Dulux Rottnest Island, evoking a heritage feel. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

Surprisingly for such a large project, the build was completed in just 11 months, for which Natalee credits a dedicated team of tradies who worked to a tight schedule. A highlight since moving in last year was hosting Christmas. “We had 25 people for lunch and 18 stayed until New Year, which was a lot of fun,” says Natalee.

Hamptons bathroom
(Credit: Cath Muscat)
Hamptons Bathroom
(Credit: Cath Muscat)

“I love having a house full of people and, because of the size, it does feel like a comfortable resort with plenty of space for everyone to spread out and do their own thing.”


Hamptons outdoor area
In keeping with the resort-like feel, comfort is still key outside, where an array of plump wicker chairs and sofas are clustered for casual entertaining. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

Large Christmas gatherings now seem likely to become
 a tradition, in a home that is well-loved by a huge extended family.

“Everyone’s incredibly appreciative we kept the cottage and because it’s come through the generations, the house will always stay in the family,” she says.

Hamptons pool area
ooches Alfie (pictured on a lounger) and Baxter have embraced rural living. “They love being by the pool just as much as we do,” says Natalee. (Credit: Cath Muscat)

After 160 years and a sizeable extension, it’s enjoyed more than ever and is now ready for its next chapter.

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