There is something quintessential about Australian Coastal style that sets it apart from similar looks around the world. An Australian beach house is a long held dream for many of us, somewhere to retreat to, or if lucky enough to live in full time.
Australian beach houses need to be understated with a relaxed vibe Natural organic finishes are crucial with a blend of timber and stone and they shouldn't be over decorated. I therefore really enjoyed seeing the new holiday home from the very talented Simone Matthews of SOUL Home. You can hear from Simone and take a tour of The Pause, her latest gorgeous Australian beach house, below.
An Australian beach house tour
Interior designer Simone Mathews of SOUL Home had a clear vision when embarking on The Pause journey, to create a unique take on an Australian Coastal retreat for guests to enjoy. Drawing inspiration from the Bahamas, a touch of the Singaporean classic style with a smattering of Balinese villa, Simone created a home away from home that encompassed a blend of styles suited to the NSW South Coast vibe.
The goal was to design a home that blurred the lines between holiday home and hotel, ensuring guests had that holiday feeling as soon as they pulled up to the property. According to Simone, the key to creating the getaway sanctuary was all in the styling and choice of building materials required to get the look.
“When styling, I try to stick to a specific 70/20/10 rule. For The Pause, it was based on a style that revolved around 70% organic, 20% minimal with a final 10% classic layer to bring it all together. So, fusing an organic, minimalist, classical style,” says Simone. “How a house makes you feel is important when designing a home. With this in mind, I chose materials that had a natural and understated finish, you’ll notice there is a mix of timbers, and concrete with a neutral palette. I wanted the home to have a feeling of space and a sense of calm.”
The stunning front façade instantly catches the eye with wide verandas and a textured weatherboard exterior, finished with natural wooden doors and shutters. Cemintel’s ‘Balmoral’ weatherboards were selected by Simone and Ben to achieve the desired design aesthetic and ensure the home matched its coastal surroundings. Importantly, the cladding needed to withstand the salt in the air.
The interior is a warm white, supported by brass accents that offer a sleek, clean and understated look. An open-plan kitchen and living area provides a sociable place for guests to commune, with an outdoor dining area that can be enclosed if necessary, becoming an extension of the indoor space.
What was equally important to the look, though, was the durability of the building materials. “Holiday properties can’t be precious, and with The Pause, we wanted it to be a family friendly getaway so selecting hard wearing materials was at the forefront of my mind. We used Gyprock Superchek plasterboard throughout the whole house. Being a holiday rental property, durability and noise control were of utmost importance. As Gyprock Superchek is three times tougher than regular plasterboard, we knew it could withstand the impact of children running around and would offer resistance to dents, scuffs and scrapes. Most importantly though, Superchek guaranteed less noise transmitted between the rooms which allows guests to have their privacy,” says Simone.
Throughout the home, curves have been used as a stunning design element. In each of the guest bedrooms, arches were incorporated allowing for rooms to be broken into areas, and providing both a decorative feature and additional functionality. “The arches were the hero of the guest bedrooms. They were made to create different zones such as the bedroom, the wardrobe area and the ensuite while also giving the sense of space. Using Superchek made the job really easy as you can just cut the plasterboard to the shape,” Simone says.
Moving into the kitchen and dining areas, the most important aspect for Simone was to keep an open plan space where guests can come and congregate. Initially planning on breaking the space into three areas, kitchen, dining and living, Simone and Ben decided to build an oversized concrete island, combining the kitchen and dining areas. “The kitchen and living areas were quite limited in terms of space, so it was important for us to give the feeling of less is more. Pairing strong statement lines with soft curves in the wall achieved using Gyprock Superchek, the style incorporates classic coastal, minimalist and organic themes,” says Simone.
One of Simone’s favourite aspects of the build was the feeling of opening the antique timber doors, overlooking the oversized hallway and instantly feeling calm like you’re on holiday. “We’ve really tried to adapt a simple approach as the design of the build and the styling is enough to give it that ‘wow’ factor,” says Simone.
Ultimately, The Pause offers a retreat where guests can do just that, pause. Championing the understated approach, the home strips away any unnecessary noise and clutter and provides a place of relaxation and enjoyment.
Read my related post Australian Coastal Style – 7 steps to achieve this look
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