IN PICTURES | This KwaZulu-Natal home abounds with bold design ideas
From the light fittings to the furniture, everything in this home makes a statement. Yet it doesn't feel over the top thanks to the clever use of a largely neutral colour palette
In Simbithi on KwaZulu-Natal's North Coast, building guidelines dictate the general architectural aesthetic of each new home, ensuring it blends into the eco estate's surrounding forest. But there's one home that manifests a little differently, with two frontal and one back-end pitched-roof peaks distinguishing it from a distance.
"This house definitely stands out from the rest," says Bruce Fyfe, one half of Durban-based interior design studio Fyfe Boyce, the designers tasked with the finishes and furnishings of this four-bedroom home on the verdant golf estate.
In line with the statement-making architecture by Johannesburg firm Masterworx, Fyfe and his partner Kelsey Boyce tackled the project by furnishing it with notable visual attractions.
"We wanted to let the architecture and furniture pieces speak for themselves," says Boyce about the open-plan home that was designed for a young family that does a lot of entertaining, creating a seamless flow between and within indoor and outdoor areas.
The home has two lounges and three dining options (one as part of the kitchen, another under glass and timber on the patio, and the third on a raised counter) on the ground level, with four bedrooms under the pitched peaks, connected by a flat-roof pyjama lounge.
"We created impact through a simple palette," says Fyfe, explaining the general neutrality of the space that is furnished mainly in natural tones, highlighted by accents of black and timber.
The entrance hall, which is elevated from the rest of the home with two steps, is laid in a marble-like black tile. "We wanted to design wow-factor spaces without going over the top," says Kelsey.
"People want to know what other people are doing in other rooms," she adds. So between the lounge and dining table, the duo introduced a slatted timber screen, ensuring connectivity between the spaces while giving each area fluid parameters. "We're big fans of using tools like this to separate rooms instead of having bricks and mortar."
The timber slats also suit the designers' love of texture. "KZN homes are generally laid back and tactile," says Boyce, "so we picked up on the texture of the environment and the landscape around the home."
The sugar-cane fields can be viewed in the distance, and the Indian Ocean is just a short distance away. "We also love natural fibres," says Fyfe. "Linen, cotton, raffia ... they all reference back to nature."
Neutrality may be the key factor in this home that flows directly onto the swimming pool and garden, where the blues and greens of nature's surrounding palette are called in to shine.