A modern version of a luxurious country mansion, this home was designed for the discerning owners to cater for their love of antiques, horses and entertaining.
Welcome to Cobah Lodge, a sumptuous home set on beautiful acreage. Vistas of tall gum tree forests, deeply planted ferns and palm-shaded canopies combined with swathes of coloured camellias, hedges and understorey gardens provide the setting for the residence. Designed for the owners’ retirement, the house incorporates both formal and informal spaces linked together on one level and highlighted by the centrally placed kitchen and scullery, from where you can see the whole property and the distant horizons.
The only remnant from the original house, which was demolished to make way for this new creation, is the dramatically renovated swimming pool. A dining room inspired by 17th-century France and a sunken formal lounge suggest the elegance of past eras combined with a taste for the built-in conveniences of modern life. The owners’ outstanding collection of antique solid timber furniture has been matched with the construction of custom-designed joinery pieces throughout their home. The French armoire, built-in bar, large secret wine cellar, study desk and wall units, bed heads, side-tables, window seats, buffet units and audio-visual cabinets are all finished in unique solid timbers from 14 different species. Even the swivel-mounted hairdryer and shoe racks in the “mud room” have been specifically designed to meet the hostess’s particular requirement.
Though it caters to every modern need, the home has the friendly air of a farm, with Arabian horses grazing in the fields and dogs gathering to welcome visitors. Because of the sloping site, a games room, study, cellar, bar, kitchen and cabana are located at the lower swimming pool level. Subterranean bores supply irrigation and storage water for the gardens and a natural spring is expressed as an open sandstone wishing well. Pathways and formal courtyards surround the house and lead the visitor in many directions, including towards the botanical garden, which has 7000 mixed bulb species planted under deciduous trees in the upper meadow. Separate guest accommodation with a bathroom and kitchen is included in the purpose-built six-horse stable complex, which was designed to complement the main house and provided ideal temporary quarters during the main construction.
A Colorbond roof and coloured cementrendered walls offset the interior, where an abundance of timber is found. A balance of thermal efficiency is achieved through masonry flooring, metal roofing and energyefficient glass. Where large west-facing views open to the higher front forest and swimming pool, deep shade structures have also been mounted outside the glass to maintain interior comfort. During five years of planning, designing and building together, the owners and designer have fashioned a lifelong friendship. The blending of ancient and modern in this home was made possible by a willing and carefully thought-out building process. Weekly reviews of the work progress by the builder, designer and owner enabled carefully crafted detailing and design consideration of interior elements to create something truly unique.
Paul Meyer Design Pty Ltd,
1 Lisle Court, West Pennant Hills NSW 2125.
02 9871 3977