Garden Of Glossy Greens
Belle Magazine Australia|December - January 2021
Whispering of mid-century Cali cool, strappy palms in graceful poses flourish under the limelight in a garden of glossy greens.
Chris Pearson

Glamorous, dramatic and redolent of Palm Springs, this streetscape and garden in Sydney’s eastern suburbs would look perfectly at home in that playground of Hollywood A-listers. As in that resort town of iconic mid-century retreats, landscape and architecture are intricately interwoven, the two engaged in a scene-stealing dialogue.

After returning home to Australia in 2017 following a stint living abroad the owners, a professional couple with young children, bought this handsome house near the harbour. Topping their wishlist for their new home were indoor-outdoor spaces that would make the most of that mild weather they had missed in their absence. But, while the house had been recently remodelled by architect Andre Baroukh + Associates and Paul Brough Design to spectacular effect, the garden had been left adrift and shortchanged the architecture. Its sparse vegetation, consisting largely of lawn and shrubs, was immature, making the home feel exposed and offering little privacy, with strelitzias along the back boundary one of the few vertical elements.

“The garden was also without a clear or defined entrance, with no real path to the front door,” says landscape designer Anthony Wyer of Wyer & Co who, with interior designer Cameron Kimber of Cameron Kimber Design, was hired to revitalise the garden and indoor-outdoor spaces. And the facade, while a headturner, was overpowering and in need of relief. “It was stark and in your face,” he says. “I wanted to introduce scale and softness, while framing and enhancing the architecturally designed house. The owners also wanted spaces for enjoying time with family and friends. It had to be an entertainer’s garden, the design dynamic and engaging, taking advantage of the property’s north-facing aspect.”

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