I could list 101 things I want in my dream home but, in the end, it all comes down to creating a calm and relaxing sanctuary to retreat from the busyness of life. A place where I can sigh with relief as soon as I step over the front threshold and immediately feel all my cares slip away.
This was exactly how I felt when I recently walked into Sterling Homes Lakeland 145.
With its soothing colour palette of white and grey, it easily invokes a holiday vibe without you ever having to leave home.
The three-bedroom, two-bathroom, two-living room design, on display at Washington St, Parafield Gardens, oozes an understated charm, reminding me of a restful, yet luxurious, hotel.
I’m particularly smitten with the living areas in the Lakeland 145, which is a courtyard home design.
A square opening, constructed on an angle to provide a small glimpse of what awaits, draws you from the front entry to the lounge room. There’s not a television in sight as you are instead greeted by warm, metallic pendant lights, timber furnishings and a full-length window that bathes the area in natural light.
From here, you also catch sight of the meals area, located in its own nook off the kitchen. With windows on three sides, this space is also airy and bright, with a glass-topped round table, wicker seating and more pendant lighting – a feature that is continued throughout the display.
Depending on your block, this would be a glorious spot to sit and enjoy the views of your side garden while relaxing with a cuppa or catching up with family over the evening meal.
The U-shaped kitchen itself is not overly large but is more than suitable for a courtyard design such as this. With space for an underbench microwave, oven and dishwasher, plus a four-burner gas cooktop, double sink and family-sized fridge/freezer, it includes everything you need.
I love the grey-green matt finish of the cabinetry, the square cupboard door knobs and marble-look stone counters. Glossy, grey subway tiles, with a wavy texture, complete the contemporary look.
A family room, with more full-length windows and sliding door access to the rear yard, rounds out the living area and provides a second spot to sit and enjoy the tranquillity on display both in and outdoors.
While Sterling Homes’ operations manager Rob Argenio says the interconnectedness of the Lakeland 145 design is keenly appreciated by home buyers, the position of the lounge room still allows for a somewhat secluded living space when needed. It also provides an array of options when family and friends come to visit.
“With two living areas connected in an open plan environment, the home allows the perfect setting for family gatherings and entertaining larger numbers of guests,’’ Rob says.
“The kitchen has been strategically positioned in the heart of the living areas and among an array of oversized windows, allowing you to enjoy the views of your garden and outdoor areas while you cook.
“We are particularly fond of the amount of ventilation and natural light gained from the expansive windows and doors opening the home to the side garden.’’
Three bedrooms are all located along one side of the home, starting with the master suite at the front. Ombre-coloured sheer curtains (which feature throughout the home for impact) frame an oversized return window, while an upholstered navy bedhead and an array of cushions splashed with metallic hues give a glitzy, hotel-type feel. A walk-in wardrobe includes a mix of full and half-hanging storage, as well as drawers and shelving.
An ensuite includes all the necessities and is tastefully styled.
The two minor bedrooms are positioned either side of the main bathroom and laundry, all of which is accessed off a separate hallway. Even the laundry feels inviting, with a noticeable lack of overhead cabinetry – but two sets of underbench cupboards – increasing the feeling of spaciousness.
Rob says the Lakeland 145 home brings functionality and open plan living to a courtyard design and would cater to a variety of buyers.
“The Lakeland 145 is an award-winning design,’’ he says.
“(It) is a home suited for a range of people, from first home buyers to people downsizing, investors or even a medium-sized family on a limited budget.’’
For me, the home’s generous windows, in both size and quantity, and minimalist styling – which make the home feel larger than it is – create a strong sense of calm and proves that compact homes don’t have to be cramped.
The result is a soothing, relaxed home that contains everything you need for modern living without being showy or pretentious.
It’s the perfect place to kick off your shoes at the end of a long day, unwind in the lounge or family areas and enjoy the peace that comes from a well-designed home.