Home addition and alterations

Lane Cove West

About the client

Our clients, David and Jane, are a dedicated couple who both work demanding jobs as lawyers. They have a meticulous attention to detail, and their high standards are reflected not only in their careers but also in their vision for their home. Despite their busy lives, they were open to creative ideas and design guidance. What they needed was a project management team they could trust implicitly, one that could deliver an exceptional outcome without requiring constant supervision.

The challenge

The project began with the goal of modernising their 1930s home in Lane Cove West. It included demolition of an outdated flat roof carport and a rear awning, as well as addressing deteriorated ground surfaces.

While our clients provided architectural drawings, the plan didn't deliver on key things that David and Jane needed in their home. After our initial meeting to understand what their goals were, we identified that the plans didn't address their storage limitations sufficiently. They wanted a home with a welcoming front entrance and unfortunately, the plans retained a cramped front entrance. We also found the design plans roof drainage could be improved and surface drainage for the new rear entertainment area was completely missing.

Always eager to enhance designs from a construction perspective, collaborating closely with David and Jane, we identified opportunities to optimise the project's design, ensuring it met their unique needs.

The solution

Redesigning the roof and creating functional storage

Our solution required a holistic approach to the project and a comprehensive redesign of the architectural plans.

To maximize storage space in the attic above the carport while also improving the roof's water flow and eliminating a problematic box gutter, we redesigned the roof structure. This change allowed us to provide easier access in the attic by increasing the headroom by a metre. The new carport now has a high ceiling and drop-down attic ladder.

A welcoming front entrance

The front entrance was cramped and featured a very small porch. The original plan included redirecting the porch entrance to the front door, but a prominent column obstructed the path remained. Collaborating closely with the clients, we suggested relocating the column, resulting in a dramatically transformed and spacious entryway. The front entrance underwent a dramatic transformation by relocating this column, opening up the space, and creating a fresh look that delighted the clients.

The original plan also had a double pathway which didn't consider the root mass of a protected tree in the front yard. The clients gave poetic licence to create a new design for this pathway which curves around the front yard. This together with a stunning swirling cove finish on the concrete surface in the carport and the new double gable façade, the street scape was drastically improves and modernised the dwelling’s entire appeal.

Luxurious outdoor entertainment area

A major facet of the project was the creation of an inviting outdoor entertainment area at the rear of the dwelling, complete with a luxurious jacuzzi spa. The original design lacked essential drainage and featured a stepped surface, which limited seating and dining options. Responding to the clients' vision for the space, we undertook significant modifications. The stepped surfaces were removed, introducing a gentle slope and a spacious, level area. We extended further into the generous rear yard and added a tasteful retaining step to separate the entertainment area from the yard while also leveling the naturally sloping lot.

These design refinements significantly expanded the functional possibilities of the space, allowing for expansive outdoor dining and seating areas. Collaborating closely with the clients to enhance functionality, we integrated an outdoor kitchen on the right side and introduced a raised ceiling, providing room for infrared heaters and large ceiling fans. The addition of mood lighting, garden accents, and a custom fire pit area in the rear yard further elevated the outdoor experience.

All exterior brick walls were transformed with an acrylic render, and we seamlessly incorporated stunning natural sandstone paving into the design. The end result? An outdoor haven that not only met but exceeded our clients' expectations, offering both beauty and practicality in perfect harmony.

To finish off the outdoor areas, we provided a full front and rear yard remodel to all landscaped areas with a feature Magnolia, new plantings and lawn areas.

Transforming the home's internal areas

As the project progressed, our clients made the decision to extend our services to encompass a comprehensive internal renovation. This encompassed a transformation of the sleeping and living areas on the ground floor, consisting of three bedrooms, a lounge room, hallway, and a bathroom renovation.

We installed elegant picture rails in all rooms, seamlessly blending with the period aesthetic while offering ample space for displaying cherished artwork. To marry art with technology, we introduced a sleek "Frame" art TV, positioned just 3mm from the wall, creating the illusion of a picture frame. This addition brought the lounge area to life, allowing for the display of rotating artwork from world-renowned artists.

Why we loved this project

As demonstrated in this project, we believe in really understanding what our clients true desires and aspirations are for their space and then finding the balance between concept, dreams and real functionality.

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For a job well done,
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Excel Tradeworks is a Sydney Hills based company providing building and specialist trade services for interior fitouts and residential projects.

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What our clients think

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Peace of mind for me was critical. I can go to sleep at night knowing its been done properly and there's not going to be problems later on. We built the trust with Brian very early on so we knew we could trust him to give us honest input and solutions.

Attached secondary dwelling, Kellyville

Attached secondary dwelling, Kellyville

Janet and Dimitri, Home owners

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Four years and a different home later, Brian is still providing a truly excellent standard of customer care and quality of workmanship, making time to come out all the way to Balmain East, just before Christmas and at relatively short notice. So, thanks once again Brian for a great job so well done.

Kitchen fitout, Balmain East

Kitchen fitout, Balmain East

Dr Steven Fleming & Dr Jane Fleming

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Always a pleasure to work with Brian and his team. Not often you come across a team who does their thorough research of plans when pricing and provides construction alternatives to create cost savings for clients.

Multi-level addition, Mosman

Multi-level addition, Mosman

Patrick Pace, Pace Architects