Cover The idyllic coastal view from the other side of the kitchen

This modern Australian holiday home designed by Jimmie Martin emanates a sense of laid-back luxury with its colourful interiors and idyllic views

A surf mecca with its famous beaches that offer some of the best waves in the world, it’s not difficult to guess why Noosa is one of Australia’s most popular beachside destinations for holidaymakers around the world. The coastal town and suburb on southern Queensland’s Sunshine Coast is where many choose to purchase a holiday home, including this Australian couple who are mainly based in London with their three daughters. 

The clients, who are property lawyers, tapped London-based interior design duo Jimmie Martin to give their beach house a refresh. They had previously worked with the firm when it came to the design for their London Herne Hill home, and were so pleased with the result that they tasked Jimmie Martin with the transformation of their beach property as well.

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Situated in The Beaches, a gated community in Sunrise Beach, the property boasts stunning coastal views and direct private access to the expansive stretch of golden sand at the beach. Described as a “James Bond-style modern beachfront house”, the six bedroom is able to easily fit up to 14 people for a night.

“This is not a typical beach house. The building is sharp and modern with clean lines, like a beautiful white box on a hill,” describes Jimmie Karlsson, the founder, creative director, and one half of Jimmie Martin’s namesake. “I was struck with the light. It fills every corner of the property. Large windows framed the gorgeous view out to the sea with the sounds of the Pacific ocean.”

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The interiors were inspired by the scenic location, says Karlsson. The designer also wanted to add “an essence of British culture” to reflect the homeowner’s lifestyle. “The clients split their time between London and Australia, and this home reflects that,” he shares. “I was also inspired by the ethos of the punk subculture, combined with the vividness of pop art and some idiosyncratic surrealist elements.”

The art world serves as a large inspiration for the designer, and this is reflected with the abundant use of colour throughout the villa. “I really enjoy using colour in a bold and playful way, and the clients really appreciate this aesthetic as they don’t want to live a dull beige or grey life,” enthuses Karlsson. “The property needed to have a joyful irreverence. To achieve this, we used blocks of bold colour and added quirky elements such as an assortment of eccentric sculptures and specially curated artworks.”

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The home’s practical open-plan layout results in a sprawling light-filled living area. To segment the different spaces, the design team divided the large room into various cosy corners for seating, eating and relaxing. “By doing this, we could plan out each space separately and use the appropriate amount of furniture to fill the entire room,” says Karlsson. “The layout draws the tropical environment inside with bright colours, pops of pattern, rich foliage and modern accessories, beautifully blending interior and exterior spaces. It’s truly rejuvenating!” 

The walls and floors of the home are dressed in soft tones such as off-whites, stones and greys, which offers a clean backdrop for the colourful furnishings and artworks to pop. “The neutral tones create an open, relaxed space for the furniture to be displayed like pieces of art,” Karlsson shares. “As a result, we created a fun gallery space with an essence of Andy Warhol’s Factory.”    

As the homeowners intend to host plenty of social gatherings, parties and family reunions within the abode, the design team created plenty of inviting areas for large gatherings. Besides an indoor dining area, the terrace adjacent to the kitchen also features a large custom dining table designed by Jimmie Martin. This allows the homeowners to take the dinner parties outdoors where guests are able to soak in the coastal views.

Another area to absorb the breathtaking views? The kitchen. “When you’re standing near the kitchen island, to your left you’re greeted by 180 degree views of yellow sand and aqua sea,” Karlsson reveals, highlighting the special view within the particular spot. “If you look to the right, there’s a landscaped 25 metre pool with a waterslide; if that doesn’t scream fun & relaxation, I don’t know what does!” 

The kitchen also features one of the designer’s most favourite artworks: a portrait of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith, an early Australian aviator and trailblazer. “It not only connects the house to its location, but gives the house some roots. His famous quote ‘I’ve got a feeling we will make it with flying colours’ really encapsulates the design of the house.”

The bedrooms scattered throughout the home are no less vibrant, with each bedroom bursting with personality. The master bedroom, Karlsson’s favourite room within the villa, opens up directly to the outdoor sitting and pool area.

“I wanted to create rooms that are luxurious and relaxing, yet bright and individual,” says the designer. “I love the orange master bedroom as it’s a great canvas to work on. With a welcoming yet sociable feel, the space can be used in the day and at night, which is unusual for a bedroom.” 

In another bedroom, Karlsson injected a fun, retro vibe into the space with a leopard rug and graphic printed cushions. “These elements contrast beautifully with the blues and greens outside the window,” he shares. “I love that they add a different kind of edge into the room.”

Completed in the span of six months, the project was challenging as it had to be completed whilst there were still lockdown restrictions in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic. “It was challenging to design and install an entire project without actually being able to visit,” reflects Karlsson. “I am very involved with every project we do, but this becomes more difficult over Zoom. However, we rose to the challenge and the finished product is absolutely beautiful.”

Rich in texture, colour and light, the beach escape houses a dynamic, yet warm and welcoming composition with a relaxed sense of living. The homeowners are delighted with the result, and often head to the property for anything between three weeks to three months per year.

“I always work very closely with my clients to make sure they will be happy with the final product,” says Karlsson. “The clients love it, and use the house as a winter holiday home. It rejuvenates and recharges their batteries. They love spending Christmas around the pool and enjoying everything the house has to offer.”

The clients are indeed incredibly pleased with the results, singing the praises of the firm: “Their understanding of space, and the way they continually challenge the status quo, combined with their professionalism and efficiency, made our second project together just as enjoyable as the first,” they write. “And to think they had never set foot in the property! What a feat!”

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