Contemporary beach house renovation

TEXT CANDICE BOTHA PHOTOGRAPHS SALLY CHANCE
Last updated on 12 October 2016

Thanks to a carefully planned renovation, this contemporary beach house is now the epitome of cool coastal living

beach house

The new deck provides a level area around the swimming pool, ideal for relaxing.

Set above a secluded beach on the KZN South Coast, this renovated property is now an idyllic retreat for the Durban families who co-own it. However, it wasn’t always like this. When they bought it, it consisted of a warren of rooms and lacked outdoor areas where they could enjoy the sea views.

beach house with sea views

Set just above a secluded beach, the house now has a much more contemporary look yet still blends with the landscape.

In their brief to Stefcon Projects, who undertook the renovation, they requested a practical, hassle-free family holiday home that could cope with sandy feet and wet costumes. And the main focus had to be on the ocean.

covered patio

The owners love dining on the covered patio overlooking the sea. Folding shutters by American Shutters protect the furniture from the elements when the house is not in use.

The Stefcon Projects team, led by Calvin Wright, set about creating a contemporary structure with balconies anchored by steel support beams from Avellini Bros, and this instantly modernised the structure. A new roof by Four Seasons Roofing features a large overhang to protect the new deck and patio.

beach house patio
“No one wants to be bothered with maintenance and repairs when they’re on holiday so we chose top-quality, long-lasting fittings that won’t rob the owners of their free time,” he explains.

tv room

The television is housed in a timber-clad recess in the living room. The neutral colour scheme suits everyone’s taste and can be easily updated with new accessories.

Another important consideration was security. “To relax, one must feel safe, so we really did our homework here,” says Calvin. “No doors open directly outside; instead, they all open into courtyards or enclosed balconies.”

Surrounded by milkwood trees, which the owners insisted were not to be damaged, and overlooking the Indian Ocean, the house now has great flow between indoors and out. “The large, open spaces are ideal for relaxing and spending time with our children,” says one of the owners.

beach house kitchen

The kitchen, by Wood Components, is a gathering spot.

The light and airy downstairs living area has several different zones for lounging, entertaining and cooking. A separate TV room and a bedroom kitted out with bunk beds ensures that the children are happy too.

The interiors are modern with a hint of texture and warmth provided by the raw oak boards used as cladding in the living room and kitchen and the fun red stools around the kitchen island.

outside area

A particularly striking feature is the ‘floating’ timber staircase that leads to the upstairs bedrooms, all of which have been decorated with white bedlinen and subtle sea tones.

Large glass sliding doors open out onto a covered patio that’s also protected by folding shutters. “This area overlooks the ocean and it’s where we all usually end up. The view is like a beautiful, ever-changing picture and we love watching the whales, dolphins and birds all going about their seasonal routines,” says one of the owners. A few steps down is the deck and swimming pool and beyond this, a flight of stairs leads to a gate to the beach.

beach house dining room table

A 10-seater dining room table makes it easy to accommodate a crowd. A built-in cabinet displays treasures discovered on the beach.

The weather here is not always perfect, which is why the renovation included the addition of a courtyard on the inland side of the house. Decorated with wicker chairs and abundant greenery, it’s a fabulous space to sit and read or socialise.

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