italian home

Turning a semi rural area into a Little Italy


A remarkable Italian village-style home with a high level of details that turn heads

Turrell Building made a major impact at the 2020 HIA-CSR NSW Housing and Kitchen & Bathroom Awards, winning the overall NSW Region Renovation/Addition Project award and the Renovation/Addition $1.2 million–$3 million category for the home showcased here as well as the Best Large Bathroom Over 10sqm award for a different project at Galston. As a result of these achievements, Turrell Building now goes on to represent NSW at the 2021 National Awards in the Renovation/Addition category.

The winning renovation/addition project featured a stunning transformation in the semi-rural Arcadia area, turning a 60-year-old Mission-brown residential property into the spitting image of an Italian village. The property, owned by Arcadian locals Peter and Jenny Guest, pays the ultimate tribute to the passion and style of Italian culture, coupled with the region’s unique heritage.

The build required a very high level of detail in order to closely imitate a real Italian village, coupled with modern construction techniques to meet contemporary living standards. This has resulted in interior living spaces that are comfortable, safe and eco-friendly while the facade has an aged look and authentic character.

The detail of the finishes and the unique style sets this build apart from nearly every other home in Sydney, from the design of the traditional-looking florist shop, Italian-style trattoria, cobblestone laneway (which is actually an open-air hallway for the home), authentic terracotta roof tiles to the reuse of timber from the original home. The use of secondhand and mixed windows and doors couples with the changing flow of colours outside, which creates the illusion of multiple dwellings. What’s more, each bedroom and ensuite has its own unique style and decor.

The project that won the Best Large Bathroom Over 10sqm award is also a unique design, the vision of Turrell Building’s Managing Director, Neil Turrell. The bathroom’s extensive and tasteful use of stone and timber, while achieving a spacious, functional and stylish finish with clean lines and a feeling of opulence, impressed the judges.

“We are very gratified to have done so well at such a prestigious industry event. We have not entered the awards since 2006 when we won the Entertaining Area award. For a small local business to be recognised like this is testament to the passion we bring to everything we do, and the strong team we have built over the last 20 years,” says Neil.

Turrell Building is based in Galston but carries out projects in the Hills District, Upper North Shore and the Northern Beaches. The company specialises in quality new homes, renovations/additions and first-floor extensions.

“We have grown significantly in recent times and have found a strong niche in building mid- to high-level custom homes and extensive renovations for people who want highly functional but beautiful, well-blended spaces,” says Neil. “We also do alfresco areas and always try to pay tribute to the natural environment and use local materials.”