Tim and Emma Florea were on holiday when they bought a rundown renovator sight unseen, turning it into an award-winning resort-style dream home that’s going to auction this weekend.
The family transformed what was a “really rundown cottage” three years ago, just in time to be locked down in their dream home throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. But they found that even when they were free to holiday again, their children looked forward to returning to their dream escape.
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“My kids just want to come home because it’s like a resort. You open up the back, put music on, cook a barbie … The good thing is there are multiple entertaining areas.”
“We were all in the house during lockdown, but we all had our own spaces including the dog. It was actually not that bad.”.
“We were fortunate to have been living there during Covid-19,” Mr Florea said.
“It’s got a home office with custom cabinetry, big printer, computers. Everything we needed was in the house, and we ended up working from home the whole two years.”
The contemporary award-winning home at 13 Gresham Street, East Brisbane, today has five bedrooms, four bathrooms, a double garage spread across the 506sq m block.
Real estate agents James Curtain and Chris Dixon of Place Woolloongabba are taking it to auction at 2pm on Saturday May 14. They described it as a “modern masterpiece”, with the pre-1946 character cottage having been reimagined and reborn “blending old and new with retained traditional character and a stunning contemporary addition”.
The home was not such a pretty sight when the Floreas first set foot in what was a “really run down cottage”, but Mr Florea was up for the challenge.
“Salvadore from the Artificial started giving us some draft drawings. I really felt passionate about doing this build. I’m lucky that I can see the finished product before it starts – that’s what helps us to get to the finish line on all our projects.”
The site needed major work, with retaining walls going up around the perimeter, and the block raised in the back to level it out.
“When you walk through the front door it looks like a beautiful flat block but there was a lot of plumbing, electrical and earthworks done prior to construction. We raised the house, moved to the right a bit, kept most of the front of the cottage, but the trusses are brand new which was a project on its own,” he said.
“From there we started with the back of the build. Salvadore was in love with porcelain honed finish in off white which wasn’t really widely used then. We won a HIA award for the blockwork on the house and we built this house around the blockwork. The floors are 450 thick and just solid polished concrete built to European specs. There’s a large amount of steel integrated in the walls.”
Every detail was fussed over in the dream home, including custom made cabinetry, Tasmanian oak screening for the stairs, the mudroom, and the award-winning master bathroom.
”All you need is a lounge and dining table and you can move into that house,” Mr Florea said.
It has 50 solar panels on the roof, with louvres used extensively throughout to open the home up. “The whole build is louvres, it cost a fortune and you probably wouldn’t be able to do it today.”
The home will be open for inspection at 1.30pm on Saturday May 14, before the auction kicks off at 2pm.