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Features > Summer > Waterside Homes > Coastal Retreat
JT013: Coastal Retreat
Transforming this 1950s seaside cottage into a New England style home was a family affair. In 2009, Coombe Cottage was an unassuming three-bedroom house. Its location, a few hundred metres from the beach was perfect for a family of water sports lovers, but the cramped layout and tired decor needed a complete overhaul.
Owners Esther Burley, a former marketing executive turned interior designer, and her husband Giles, a landscape designer who holds a royal warrant for his work on Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, were helped by their three sons aged 7, 13 and 15.
The back of the house now flows into the garden, which was planned to provide the ultimate privacy from neighbouring properties, protection from sea breezes and enough space to entertain in style. A self-contained
summerhouse at the end of the garden contains guest accommodation. There are two new en-suite bedrooms on the first floor of the main house and throughout, the interiors are firmly anchored its coastal location.
The soft, neutral backdrop lets the family¹s reclaimed furniture. Work by local artists hangs on the walls, colour pops are provided by retro accessories, and driftwood art made by Esther¹s sons is dotted around the house.
The motto behind this house¹s transformation was: "If in doubt do it or make it yourself".
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