A classic Queenslander home in the valley

With a bushland setting in the Gold Coast hinterland offering peaceful seclusion, this Queenslander home is a charming retreat in every sense.
Words by Leesa Maher

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valleyShane, a builder, and wife Letitia, a serial renovator, bought the two acre site in 1996, to build their dream home in the classic Queenslander style for themselves and their kids, sons Zachariah and Naithanial, and daughter Taeley.

The Queenslander features five bedrooms, three bathrooms, formal lounge with open fire and bar, a family room off the dining room, television room, library, study, upstairs loft/children’s retreat, and kitchen with scullery.

Valley High

“The inspiration for the house was very much dictated by the bush setting. It had to be a Queenslander home; it helped that it was always the type of architecture we liked,” says Letitia.

Inside, the look is somewhere between Hamptons and French provincial, with a little beach vintage too, all combining to create an elegant look that’s nevertheless geared to relaxed coastal living.

The natural beauty of timber shines through every room, from the high-gloss hardwood floors to the windows and doors framed in wonderful cedar. “A few years ago, I toyed with the idea of painting it white, but there is no way I could ever have gone through with it.”

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-4

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-7

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-8

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-11

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-12

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-14

A home with heart

Full of eels, fish and turtles, Tallebudgera Creek forms the rear boundary of the property and, for the children, serves as an alternative swimming hole to the in-ground pool.

“We spend lots of time by the creek in summer. The trees create great shade, and late afternoon is cooler there than on the verandahs,” Letitia says.

“It’s a very peaceful place to live. Having said that, I work from home and often the birds are so loud I cannot hear the person on the phone!”

All entertaining happens on the wide verandahs, as do Sunday snoozes on the daybed (favoured by Dolly the cat) and weekday breakfasts.

“Having acreage has been great with the kids growing up. Our boys love the outdoors, and they can kick a ball, build a cubby, or play in the creek,” says Letitia. “This is not the home for everyone, as it requires huge amounts of maintenance, but it is absolutely perfect for us.”

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-5

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-9

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-10

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-3

a-queenslander-home-in-the-valley-1

Photography by Steve Ryan, Rix Ryan Photography