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Bellaire House is transformed to its former glory, with a subtle modern twist

Ash Grey brick tiles

Bellaire House has come full circle. A clever and much-needed transformation by Austin Design Associates has taken this original 1968 mid-century house in Beaumaris back to its original character after it had been renovated in true 80s style (think bland apricot, pale grey and peach tones).

In fact, Fiona Austin, Director, and her team have accentuated what was left of the original house, removed and any trace of the 80s renovation, and added a creative modern twist.

“We’ve tried to be slightly mid-century with the house, and pushing its modernist sensibilities to be a little more modern than it was … The house had really good spaces and the living room was a great size, so we got rid of the formal dining room and rearranged the interior of the house within the existing footprint without having to add on,” Fiona says.

With minimal structural change, Bellaire House is now a thoughtfully designed, light and airy home that looks much more generous in size than its internal footprint would suggest. It is now equipped with a new kitchen, a combined butler’s pantry and laundry (to replace the formal dining room), two living areas, a study nook and an entrance from the garage.

Of course, it was the well-considered material palette that made all the difference to the end result. New oak flooring combines all of the new spaces as one, while dark joinery and panelling in the living room, along with dark grey opening windows and white frames, as well as accentuated timber doors, add subtle modern hints to the interior design.

Perhaps the most beautiful room in the reinvigorated home is the living room. The new heartbeat of the house is flooded with natural north-facing light and pulled together by a joinery unit, complete with a new wood burner fireplace, enclosed by Ash Grey brick tiles in traditional stack bond.

“Bellaire House is a traditional pale beige 60s brick on the outside, so the Ash Grey brick tiles add to, or keep it in the spirit of, the original 1960s house, and they also give the fireplace and chimney breast a solid feel,” Fiona comments.

The transformation of this room is perhaps the most satisfying for Fiona and her team, because, “that room was always a nice space and having the fireplace was always a real feature of the room. But when the previous owner lived there, the fireplace was never used and now my clients use it all the time,” Fiona explains.

Having spent their first winter in the newly transformed house, Fiona’s clients are exceptionally happy, not only being able to use their gorgeous fireplace, but also to have so much more room for this family of four to relax in and live amongst.

Photography: Armelle Habib

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