Al fresco!
Home South Africa|October/November 2021
A well-appointed stoep is a must for outdoor summer fun.
Beatrice Moore-Nothnagel

Country cool

WHO LIVES HERE? Sharon O'Callaghan and Henau Marais

WHERE Riebeek-Kasteel

SIZE OF STOEP 60m2

When Sharon and Henau tackled their renovation the first time around, they opted for a roofless stoep, but they didn't account for the harsh summer sun in Riebeek-Kasteel. The house got too hot, so we had to move fast and initially erected a Bedouin tent, says Sharon. It was the most affordable option at the time.

Later, we fitted a proper roof with white IBR sheets and an IsoBoard ceiling. We opted for a smooth ceiling, instead of tongue-and-groove, as we didn't want to create a cottage look. While the stoep remains open in the front, the roof is deep enough to protect the space from rain. We love to sit outside and watch the rain fall, says Sharon.

The unpretentious cement floor boasts a brick inlay in a square format as detail, all sealed with a polyurethane sealant.

Since we had the space, we built a rather big 2m-wide braai. Going smaller would have looked silly. With Henau being on the tall side, we also built the braai lm high and it works perfectly.

The 1.2m pizza oven is also bigger than your standard 900mm oven and it's the main attraction on this stoep. “Every Friday is pizza night at our house, says Sharon with a laugh.

Our German neighbours joke that we are Riebeek-Kasteel's best kept secret.

Farm style in the city

Award-winning architect Johann Slee has always had a penchant for old farmhouse architecture, so when he got the chance to design his own house for the first time in 2015, this style was the logical choice - although he doesn't like to be limited by a specific aesthetic. The Slees' home consists of four barns' finished off with a combination of corrugated iron and 'kraal-type stone walls. This stone is the same as that used for the Castle of Good Hope in Cape Town.

I really love a stoep - at the front and at the back of a house, says Johann. You really feel part of nature on our back stoep.

The spacious veranda looks out over the beautiful Stellenbosch mountains and is everything the family has always wanted in a stoep. This is where they eat breakfast, relax, braai, entertain and hang out near the pool – they truly 'live' here.

The stoep creates the illusion that it's 'floating' in the garden, as it's open in front. The home's second storey forms a wide overhang of almost 4m without any pillars obstructing the view, providing a seamless aesthetic. Rectangular sandstone floor tiles enhance the natural look and contrast well with the darker stone of the walls.

Johann and René describe the décor as a typical mish-mash of styles as they have something of everything: old and new, beautiful, ugly and nostalgic!

EXPERT ADVICE

Ideally, a stoep should never be narrower than 3.5m, otherwise it can't be used comfortably,” advises Johann Slee of Slee & Co.

Architects. Here are his top tips:

• When planning a stoep, make sure it forms a unit with the indoor living area.

• Build your stoep on the north-facing side of the house, otherwise it will be too cold and no one will want to sit there.

• If your house has a view, it's a good idea to position the stoep about half a metre lower than the house so as not to obstruct the view from inside. CONTACT slee.co.za

Two looks for one stoep

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM HOME SOUTH AFRICAView All

Al fresco!

A well-appointed stoep is a must for outdoor summer fun.

7 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

An eye for design and colour

Marilouise van der Merwe has lovingly revamped a farmhouse at the foot of the Langeberg mountains that now glows with the same rich jewel tones as its surroundings.

5 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

A shore thing

Despite a protracted renovation with multiple setbacks, these homeowners agree: their view made it all worthwhile!

5 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

Seasonal splendour

The flowers and foliage in Isabel Johnston's English-style garden provide colour and interest throughout the year.

7 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

There's a Trump in my cappuccino

In the face of gentrification in the small town where she lives, Karin Brynard gets more of a grasp on the madness that is Trump.

3 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

Show off!

Would you love your orchids to flower repeatedly? Read on to find out how to achieve this.

5 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

Lamingtons WITH A BLACK FOREST TWIST

This classic treat boasts the proverbial cherry on top!

2 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

Throwback to the '60S

Make a stylish retro couch upholstered with cheerful outdoor fabric for your stoep.

4 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

NEW LIFE IN Nieuwe Street

A neglected house in the Karoo is now a Paarl family's home away from home - complete with a cosy stoep for get-togethers.

4 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021

Don't move, improve!

An architectural interior consultant shares her own home renovation.

4 mins read
Home South Africa
October/November 2021