Power St, Hawthorn

Power St, Hawthorn

Behind a tall brick fence and classic block-fronted Victorian façade, this beautifully renovated home (c1875) exudes a secluded country feel. This sensation envelopes you the moment you set foot onto the restored tessellated front porch which leads into a grand entrance, resplendent with original stained-glass windows framing the double-width hallway and lofty 12 ft. ceilings.

According to Gwen McWilliam in her 1978 book 'Hawthorn Peppercorns', this home is part of an interesting and important group of houses originally known as Hawthorn Farm, owned by pioneer Michael Lynch from before 1850, and positioned by the Hawthorn Creek. This part of Power Street is the likely location of Lynch's first house, before he built Grace Park House c. 1858. The entire Grace Park area was originally Lynch's land, and these are believed to be the earliest home.

When the current owners purchased the house in 2013, the interior colour scheme was a kaleidoscope of colour, with bright and vibrant paintwork throughout and equally colourful furniture and window furnishings to match. The original bathroom featured a deep, sunken, blue mosaic-tiled bath and was adorned with church-like stained glass windows. Fans of renowned British interiors guru Tricia Guild would no doubt have approved of the strong use of colour.

Visitors will quickly establish that many changes have occurred since 2013. Today upon entering, you are greeted by neutral décor in the original part of the house which honours the style and dimensions of the first four traditional rooms. To the right is the generously-proportioned front sitting room adorned with a Claire Sayers' artwork displayed proudly amongst the traditional features including one of the original fireplaces that has been lovingly restored.

As you continue down the spacious hallway, you'll pass a bedroom on your left with another of the original fireplaces and a renovated bathroom / laundry completed soon after the owners first moved in to make the home compliant with modern safety measures – the first stage of their renovation.

In 2018, the owners' brief to architect Sze-Jing-Fung was to design a liveable family home with a sense of flow from old to new – with a few eclectic touches throughout. The home now showcases the very best of practical contemporary living, blended with all the hallmarks of a traditional Victorian property including archways, high skirting boards, deep wide cornices and open fireplaces.

Fung, along with interior designer Aldona Pajdak, delivered a highly-functional design, brought to life by skilful Gippsland builder Mark Stevens of MK Stevens Builders. Aldona's styling touches can also be seen in the home today.

A warm grey interior paint colour is used on most internal walls, which works perfectly with the Wormy Chestnut floors installed throughout. The success of this renovation is immediately evident upon entering the open plan living, dining and kitchen space featuring generous windows that showcase the garden, saltwater pool and uninterrupted views of Grace Park – a favourite amongst Hawthorn locals.

The living room is home to an open fireplace which you can enjoy from the very comfortable and stylish Jardan couch. Adorning the walls in this space is an eye-catching series of artworks by artists including Jo Darval, David Bromley and Kate Mayes.

A chef herself, the owner had specific requirements in the room of her domain – the kitchen. Imported Italian tiles in a striking green give a Moroccan feel, with the custom steel window design with fluted glass a feature in this chef's paradise. Italian porcelain slab benches are both stylish and hard-wearing along with the 'fingerprintless' joinery contrasting beautifully with the wall of cabinetry and appliances. The jewel in the crown is the Falcon gas cooktop with teppanyaki plate and burners plus a Miele combi steamer. Beyond the kitchen is a family work zone office and a practical butler's pantry, with the home office hidden from view behind the fluted glass.

Before retreating upstairs, the master bedroom is positioned just off the dining space. This grand room faces Grace Park with sliding doors out to the deck to enjoy the morning sun. An enviable walk-in robe with double hanging space leads you to the ensuite which features the reverse side of the fireplace from the front sitting room. During the renovation, the owner requested the fireplace remain and it now sits pride of place in the ensuite, providing a touch of the traditional design in a modern bathroom. Adding a pop of colour and keeping with the eclectic theme are exquisite handmade sea-blue tiles adorning the walls.

Upstairs is the comfortable and relaxed children's zone, with three distinctly-styled bedrooms with built-in wardrobes and large play spaces for all the children to enjoy. A generous communal bathroom with double vanities and double head walk-in shower makes this level the perfect and practical addition to this family home.

From the rear patio there are more enticing and uninterrupted views of the coveted Grace Park. The interconnected indoor and outdoor living zones are a winning combination, with the spacious deck for family relaxation and the entertainment of larger groups. The saltwater tiled pool adds another touch of luxury for the family to enjoy in those warmer months.

A side driveway on the south of the house provides direct access to off-street parking in the rear of the yard. This well-designed and well-located property certainly has much to offer the fortunate family who call it home.