Having found their dream home on the Sunshine Coast, the owners entrusted Di Henshall and her team at Di Henshall Interior Design with its completion. It was a perfect match as Di already had a strong connection to the property. “The developer commissioned us to design all finishes, fixtures, and fittings prior to purchase,” she explains. “The new owners then asked us to furnish the home to suit their lifestyle and family, using clean, modern furnishings to enhance the coastal environment.”
With children and grandchildren regular visitors to the beachside home, the owners were keen to create a day-to-day haven that would double as an elegant entertaining space. “We wanted to take advantage of the natural light and location,” Di says. “So, it made sense to select lightweight furnishings that complement the setting without taking away the main attraction: the view.”
Having transformed many beachfront properties, Di Henshall Interior Design were well-prepared for the rigours of the marine environment, which can take a toll on everything from tapware to sun loungers. “The extreme salt air and harsh sun were taken into consideration for all finishes and fittings,” Di notes. “Robust furnishings were designed to withstand the location – even the light fittings are resistant to salt corrosion – and also to be enjoyed by the whole family.”
A refined yet glamorous palette of finishes sets this coastal abode apart. It all starts in the entry, where a dramatic slate veneer wall and black-steel balustrade, set off with an elegant light fitting, draw you upstairs to the dazzle of ocean waves.
A sense of quiet luxury sets the tone in the open living and dining area, with a subtle wash of Venetian plaster featured above the fireplace and in the kitchen. Woven textures and brass detailing give a nod to the nautical location while the crisp lines continue into the bathrooms with black hardware and marble-look porcelain tiles.
While the largely monochrome scheme keeps the mood chic and modern, restrained pops of blue in the sofa, soft furnishings, kitchen cabinetry and main bedroom provide a delicate counterpoint, gently echoing the ocean views.
Japanese-inspired floral wallpaper elevates the children’s bedroom in another clever design choice. “This softens the look of the relatively small bedroom, with shutters to complete the effect,” Di says.
In such a stunning location, outdoor spaces were naturally a priority. “The front terrace faces directly toward the ocean, so minimal furniture is included, with the rear terrace being the protected, living space,” Di explains.
The monochrome palette extends out here too, where a full lounge suite, dining space and outdoor kitchen and barbecue are comfortably accommodated in what is a relatively tight undercover area. “It means the whole property is used to its full potential,” says Di.
After several months of mapping out and completing the building design development, the design and installation of furnishings by Di Henshall Interior Design took just three months. With everything falling seamlessly into place, Di says the only hurdle proved to be one of logistics. “Accessibility on a steep site is always a challenge,” she says. “But most beachfront properties have this same issue to overcome for delivery of materials, so it was always factored into our plans.”
With the owners thrilled with the outcome and now enjoying life at the beach, Di can reflect on her favourite detail of the finished home. “I am mad about lighting!” she says. “I think the lighting, including feature pieces, give the property a contemporary, yet timeless appeal.”
Words: Nicole Deuble | Photography: Anastasia Kariofyllidis