MAKEOVER | This soulless Durban terrace is now a lush coastal oasis
A clever use of pattern has injected loads of personality into this revamped outdoor living space
Situated close to the beach in Umhlanga, the ocean forms the front garden of this penthouse owned by a wonderful couple in their seventies. Sadly though, the rather bland turquoise-and-white decor of their tiled terrace didn't live up to the spectacular sea views it offered.
The pair called in the team of interior design firm Douglas & Douglas to give the space an update.
Founder Wendy Douglas tells us more:
What was your vision for the new look of this terrace?
We wanted to give it a relaxed Mediterranean feel with a dash of Durban's tropical lushness.
What were some of the challenges you faced revamping this space?
The elements played a big factor as the penthouse is on the coast with salt air blowing directly off the ocean and on to the terrace constantly.
We overcame this obstacle by designing furnishings which would perform well in an outdoor setting. All the metal work is stainless steel with a powder coating for extra protection against the harsh elements, while all the fabric is Sunbrella outdoor performance fabric.
The patterned floor makes a big statement. Tell us more about this design choice.
The existing white tiled floor let off a terrible glare from the ocean's reflection on a sunny day, so we changed this flooring for both practical and aesthetic reasons. The new patterned floor adds to the Mediterranean look we were after and updated the space fantastically.
To avoid making the scheme too busy and to give the space a tranquil feel, we limited the use of pattern to the flooring. We purposefully kept all the fabrics plain to work harmoniously with it.
Any other decor tips you'd like to share?
If you are afraid of colour, but wish to introduce it into your home, choose green. For me it’s a neutral and will always give a calming lush look to any space.
On this terrace, for instance, the final addition of large scale planters filled with greenery was the finishing touch in transforming it into a coastal oasis.