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A Hamptons-style new build on Sydney’s North Shore

When Sydney-sider Robyn and her family embarked on a new build, they called on *Home Beautiful* to bring their Hamptons-inspired vision to life.
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When they snapped up a run-down property in a coveted suburb of Sydney’s North Shore, Robyn and Jonathon had lots of time to dream what they would do with it– close to a decade, in fact. Working in Singapore and living within the confines of a condo with their three young children, they dreamt of their future family home back in Sydney, picturing days spent lazing by a glittering pool with plenty of space for everyone.

“This is the first time my husband and I have actually lived in a house together,” says Robyn. “In Singapore, we always chose condos to save for the dream house in Australia.”

Quickly realising that rebuilding their new house would be more cost-effective than attempting a full-scale renovation, Robyn spent years whittling down her options, visiting HomeWorld display home village whenever she returned to Sydney. “We thought our budget would be better spent if we were to spec up a package build rather than spend double on a custom builder and architect,” she says. “But I visited so many companies and all the houses looked the same.”

It wasn’t until a friend recommended Hall & Hart Homes that Robyn found what she was after.

“My style is relaxed Hamptons with a beachy, boho vibe,” says Robyn. After Home Beautiful introduced her to Hamptons expert Natalee Bowen of Indah Island, the pair set about sourcing pieces in keeping with Robyn’s casual take on the classic style – such as the shimmering Beacon Lighting ‘Frost’ chandelier above the dining table (available from Indah Island) in lieu of traditional crystal. A striped ‘Armani Beige’ rug designed by Natalee for Carnival Homewares anchors the scene.

One of the standout features of the Hall & Hart Homes ‘Elyse’ design chosen by Robyn is its open-plan layout. “Clients work with our architectural designers to create their perfect plan, rather than building a cookie-cutter project home,”explains Hall & Hart general manager Craig Sutton. For interior designer Natalee, that meant “all the design elements had to speak to one another in a very cohesive manner.”

“They offered the design flexibility I wanted,” she explains. “Which was lucky, because I changed a lot!” Guiding her decisions were the biggest items on her wish list: an open-plan living area that flowed seamlessly outdoors; an expansive kitchen and all bedrooms on one level.

Carrying the simple yet sophisticated colour palette of soft timber, white and taupe throughout gives the open-plan kitchen and dining area its beautiful sense of flow. Robyn chose Dyna Core laminate flooring in Valley Oak from Accent Carpets to capture the casual ambience of a beach house. Overhead, glass ‘Marcel’ pendants from Beacon Lighting subtly highlight the island bench without distracting from the adjacent dining zone.

This is a great example of a modern, coastal Hamptons look,” says Natalee of the crisp white kitchen, lined with Polytec ‘Berrilee’ cabinetry in Ultra White Matt. “The slight Shaker profile gives it
a Hamptons narrative, but the clean lines and handle-free doors make it modern.” A splashback of Dekton ‘Opera’, complete with matching benchtops, lends a luxurious look, while white cane bar stools from Indah Island bring the beachy feel.

“Clients are often surprised that they can move the location of stairs, increase window sizes and change the facade!” says Hall & Hart director Neill Evans. “Robyn and her family heavily customised plans to suit their lifestyle.”

An atmosphere of informal luxury permeates the main living area, thanks in part to a double-sided Real Flame fireplace that gives a glimpse of the formal lounge beyond. “Robyn wanted this room to feel very relaxed, so we used soft colours rather than layering lots of pattern,” says Natalee of a space that features two dive-into Melbourne-made sofas from Molmic. Above the fireplace is a print of Italy’s Amalfi Coast from Oz Design Furniture.

The supremely comfy and beautiful Molmic ‘Sherman’ sofas in Dusty Blue beckon invitingly 
from all angles. “The covers are washable, which was a must-have for me with the kids,” says Robyn. “I initially wanted white couches but everyone said, ‘Don’t do it!’ This was the lightest alternative.” The gorgeous grey-blue shade now forms the room’s elegant focal point, topped with cushions from Oz Design Furniture. Behind, a geometric shelving unit from Indah Island provides a dramatic backdrop and displays cherished family treasures.

With the layout locked in, Robyn invited Home Beautiful to help create a light-filled interior with hints of the Hamptons. “The key to a fresh, unfussy Hamptons-style home is in the colour palette and materials choices,” says Home Beautiful editor-in-chief Elle Lovelock. “Crisp whites, soft greys and materials like linen, marble and washed timber.”

A glamorous powder room adds pizazz to the home’s neutral colour palette by way of glittering gold accents such as the Phoenix ‘Vivid Slimline’ wall basin mixer and showerhead in Brushed Gold. Robyn visited the Hall & Hart design studio to select surfaces including the ‘United’ wall tiles in Pumice Gloss and ‘Templar’ floor tiles in Herald Grey, both from Beaumont Tiles. A beaded ‘Koralky’ pendant in French Grey from Beacon Lighting brings a touch of carefree boho style.

Robyn’s penchant for midnight velvet appears again care
of an opulent ‘Emily’ bed from Temple & Webster bedecked in Cultiver linen and a Carnival Homewares velvet cushion in Ice Blue. “I really love navy velvet at the moment,” says Robyn. “We wanted a beautiful space for my mother-in- law, who lives interstate, for when she comes to stay.” Dapper plantation shutters from Wynstan let light in without compromising privacy and are framed by brass ‘Aksel’ wall brackets by Beacon Lighting. A ‘Tahitian’ fan in Off White, also by Beacon Lighting, makes a statement overhead.

Guided by Elle and the Home Beautiful team, plantation shutters and sheer white curtains, all supplied by Wynstan, were installed to convey an airy coastal ambience, contrasted with light fixtures by Beacon Lighting to bring a contemporary edge.

Layers of beautiful Cultiver bedlinen and misty velvet cushions from Tara Dennis Store give an air of easy going elegance. “I’ve got touches of pink that Jonathon doesn’t like, but I thought, ‘If there’s any way I can get away with pink, it’s a dusty pink like this one,'” says Robyn. “That way it doesn’t look too girly.” The muted tones marry beautifully with deep charcoal ‘Alberta’ carpet from Accent Carpets.

Robyn and Jonathon’s serene five-star ensuite includes an indulgent Caroma ‘Aura 180’ freestanding bath. Robyn added extra skylights during the design phase to ensure the space was flooded with natural light, an effect enhanced by ‘Belga Grey’ porcelain tiles from Beaumont Tiles. A woven white ‘Coral’ pendant from Beacon Lighting supplies natural texture.

Home Beautiful matched Robyn with Hamptons expert Natalee Bowen of Indah Island to deftly capture that pared-back look. “Robyn didn’t want anything too formal, so we kept to clean lines and a light palette for a zen-like, calming effect,” explains Natalee. Adds Robyn: “And I needed furniture that would be practical with a three-year-old daughter running around! Natalee chose beautiful, simple pieces that I just love.”

Bi-fold windows opening from the kitchen ensure the in/out connection Robyn craved, but they weren’t part of the original house design. “Hall & Hart doesn’t usually offer bi-folds, but they sourced them for me,” says Robyn. “Indoor/outdoor living was the biggest thing I wanted from the house – in summer we’ll get the sense of it being an outdoor room.”

“Beyond choosing a great builder, I think investing in good landscaping was one of the best decisions we made,” says Robyn about Ballast Landscape, who built a cabana out of James Hardie cladding to provide a sunlit spot for sitting by the pool. “Our block was difficult because it sloped in two directions, but the landscaper transformed everything – we just have to wait for our plants to grow!” Ezarri glass mosaic tiles from Europe Imports line the self-cleaning pool
 by Compass Pools.

With the paint just dry on their nine-month build, Robyn and her family are thrilled with the haven they spent years yearning for. “What I’m most looking forward to is the weather warming up and sitting outside, having a barbecue and watching the kids play in the pool,” says Robyn, looking out the window with a smile. “Being here almost feels like we’re on holidays.”

‘Bespoke’ and ‘new build’ might not be two words you expect to see in the same sentence, but the grand Hamptons-style home of Robyn, Jonathon and their three children, Jasper, 12, Matilda, nine and Amelie, three, will change the way you think of new homes forever.

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