Extending a Home’s History

Our clients came to us with a very grand plan to add an extension to a very old cottage in Willunga. We were excited at the opportunity to honor what was a very historical building, but of course, we were also a bit daunted by what was obviously going to be a complicated project. At first glance, we knew the original building, the incredible slope and a creek below would all add further layers of thinking and planning to the build.

Our team was conscious of creating something that was visually impressive but still possible to construct within the clients budget.

We took the original concepts provided by the clients and worked hard on the practical elements. One major issue was dealing with the water runoff/ seepage against the retaining wall that holds up the extension and stops the cottage slipping down the hill.

The Owner’s always wanted the new and old to coexist in harmony, hence their decision to keep the kitchen in the original cottage.  Installing a series of Velux windows along the join between old and new helped flood the area with light, showcasing what was once the exterior wall of the cottage. 

The exterior finishes of the Kanmantoo Blue Stone and a mixture of Scyon “Linea” and “Stria” claddings worked really well together and softened the overall look, helping the cottage to also match in against the feature stone.

This home is filled with unique spaces, made for them to retreat to. In the main bathroom they choose a Travertine tile to create that high-class hotel feel, but still matching in with its heritage roots, castle-like is a good description of this bathroom. It does not have a typical bathroom layout, the spa is a lovely feature sitting underneath a corner window, along with the walk around shower.

For this type of home, it’s very important that the outdoor space is of an appropriate scale to the inside of the home. Having a young family it was imperative to have a space large enough to entertain big groups, but important to have more intimate place to sit with a great view over the creek and garden (to keep a close eye on the kids).

This was a complicated build with many different elements, including the retaining walls and appropriate water drainage system, which was acquired as there were no second chances. The window suite came all the way from Poland and the lime washed cottage walls all had to be treated with the upmost respect throughout the construction of the extension.


In the end, the Owner’s have their very own piece of history along with a home fit for the future.