IN THE PRESS: Grounded by penthouse luxury
For Derek Park and his wife, building their dream home was a matter of necessity.
With the couple’s family home of 35 years no longer a practical option due to health complications, they decided to go against the norm and build, as retirees.
“Everyone says, ‘what? Building a new home at 77, you must be mad’,” Mr Park told New Homes.
“The interesting thing is I’ve enjoyed it immensely. Building a new home really gets you thinking – it staves off the dementia.”
Mr Park said it made sense to leave the couple’s former home.
“Our old home had the undercroft garage, stairs and all that sort of jazz,” he said.
“Initially we started looking to find a nice big unit that would accommodate us, without the steps.”
Comfortable in their Karrinyup location, Mr Park said he and his wife exhausted home listings in the northern suburbs but were unable to find any quality units to suit. Living on the beach was not a consideration.
“We did the rounds and soon realised that if we wanted a decent-sized unit we were talking in inverted commas about ‘penthouses’,” he said.
“So I thought, ‘why don’t we just build, if you like, a ground-level penthouse – no steps at all, beautiful gardens and minimal maintenance?’, and that’s exactly what we achieved with Refined Edge by Brian Burke Homes.”
Mr Park said he was determined moving to a single-storey home would not lead to a compromise on space.
The resulting 460sqm five-bedroom, three-bathroom unit is located less than a kilometre from the couple’s old home, and rivals it in size.
“The slight irony is people’s next question after telling them you have built is ‘oh, did you downsize?’,” Mr Park said, explaining the couple wanted to maintain the same number of rooms to accommodate visiting family.
“It’s worked out beautifully. I think we have achieved the objective of what you do when you’re retired and you want to get into something easier, something low-maintenance and with no stairs.”
On the style front, Mr Park was attracted to a contemporary finish.
“I didn’t want it to look like a gardener’s cottage from the front, so the designer pushed the ceiling heights in the front of the house right up high,” he said.
“We have these beautiful, vaulted ceilings.”
An impressive curved feature wall leading around into the main living area is a favourite feature.
“Everyone marvels at how the bricklayers and plasterers and so-on got it so geometrically correct,” Mr Park said. “It’s perfect.
“We really didn’t run into any hiccups and I think it’s probably because we were dealing with a builder who has got chosen tradespeople and suppliers, and they’re all working together as a team.”