Another day, another Byron Bay hinterland property on The Design Files! (We’ll stop sharing projects from this region when they stop delivering!)
Our latest northern NSW discovery is The Perch – a luxury holiday house, inspired by the famous UK Soho Farmhouse.
This property is the first foray into accommodation and design for owners electrician Zach Holmes and sales director Geoff Cochrane. Despite having little tourism industry experience, they stuck to their guns, and the results speak for themselves!
The couple initially planned on buying a different property altogether, but an even better one soon came along. ‘Everything aligned and we feel pretty stoked that we’ve got it,’ says Geoff.
On site were multiple existing buildings, the main one being a circa 1975 mud-brick house. These buildings were structurally sound, but in need of some serious work to bring them back to life.
While many envisioned a Hamptons-style accommodation being the best fit for the property, Zach and Geoff pictured something more in keeping with its origins. ‘We wanted it to feel like it’s risen from the earth, having apparently been made from local mud and timber back in the day,’ Geoff says.
A few luxury touches were added also, such as the outdoor shower, and the retention of the existing ‘secret garden’ – aka the indoor solar heated pool.
The couple repurposed elements from the existing buildings in the renovation wherever possible, including an old retaining wall made into an outdoor table by Geoff’s dad and Zach. These recycled pieces have been styled alongside new and old finds from Coco Republic, MCM House, and local boutiques Island Luxe and Bisque.
The Perch opened for bookings on July 1, 2020, and even with a pandemic to contend with, it’s been booked solidly ever since.
The accommodation consists of two buildings – the main house and the ‘sleep out’ – which sleep four guests total.
When asked what visitors have loved most about the property so far, Geoff says, ‘A lot of people have likened it to being in the hills of Ibiza or somewhere in Italy, but still being unique with its own Byron flair…I think people genuinely love the fact that it’s imperfect.’