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How this striking home achieves a seamless connection to the outdoors

This elegantly designed Hamilton home wraps around a lush gully of native bush and boasts almost seamless connections to its outdoor spaces

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Meet + Greet

Katie and Matt Williams, (owners of a painting and decorating company), Boh, 11, Lola, 9, Rocco, 6, plus Margaux the French bulldog

As our families grow, most of us look to upsize and find a home to suit our lifestyles. But as their clan grew, Katie and Matt Williams went the other way – they chose to remain on their central Hamilton property and change the way they lived instead.

Originally purchased before the arrival of their children, the couple’s 1920s bungalow was becoming too small, so with a plan in hand, the couple approached local architects Edwards White to devise a new build. The old bungalow was moved to another property, and preparation began on a new home for the Williams’s.

Situated on a busy road, the new house was planned around a gully of native bush at the rear of the property. The concept was to create an inner-city sanctuary with perfect indoor-outdoor flow.

“This is the first home we have designed and built from scratch,” says Katie. “Coming from an older home and having a limited footprint meant good use of space was key for us.”

During the build, a cantilevered deck was washed away in a rainstorm, resulting in a new lawn stretching between the house and the gully. “With that change in topography, we needed to refine the design from a terraced deck and garden to a level-form grass area,” says Matt.

With a smaller, more refined deck design in place, a wall of joinery by Vantage Windows & Doors became an even more integral component, allowing sweeping views from the open-plan living space out to the emerald grass and verdant bush beyond, as well as allowing light and sunshine to come flooding in.

“Making use of the northern aspect was imperative,” says Katie. “The doors have been amazing because they let so much light in. On a sunny day, we love it how the sun comes in and heats up the whole place, including the concrete floors.

“But also, the house was built around that view of the bush. With the glass walls and doors, you feel like you are basically in that bush, even when you’re indoors.”

Regardless of the season, this home is all about connection – both with family and friends, and with the sights and sounds of those beautiful outdoor spaces.

“Our most favourite part about these doors is the fact we can open them all up and have one big living area for us to hang in,” says Katie. “They connect the whole house together.”

Words by: Tina Stephen. Photography by: Swell Productions

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