What we loved about it was that it was a large 5 bedroom home with a sheltered, flat garden - good in Wellington! What we didn't love was the colour palate - you name it, you could find it. Pumpkin orange neighboured by Burgundy a speciality! However, it was structurally all there and just needed (major) cosmetic works. It was essentially an upside down house - enter the hallway to two double bedrooms, bathroom and an open kitchen, dining, living area opening to a wide covered balcony. Downstairs, a large living space surrounded the stairs (part kids' playroom and part formal living area), off which there were 3 double bedrooms, a laundry and family bathroom.
The best decision we made was to have the interior painted, skylights added and re-carpeting throughout before we moved in. Not always possible but sooooo worth the hassle later if you can do it.
I don't have any before photos of the upstairs bathroom but it was a dark room with timber panelled walls and ceiling, a forest green roll top bath and Victorian basin table. Very dark and with a poky corner shower. It was however a large, functional room. It came off the main hallway so had to blend with other rooms that followed:
We put in under floor heating, limestone tiles and painted the existing panelling. I was really pleased with how that came up as I like the texture it provides and avoids an overly stark look. Storage is my big thing in bathrooms and I had drawers in the basin unit and a large mirror cabinet recessed into the wall. I had the bath resurfaced as the cast iron roll top was a lovely, deep bath and hard to replace. A large shower (not well shown) and frosted glass on the original windows were installed.
The downstairs bathroom was less straight forward. It was to the rear of the house and in an almost basement space built right into the rock. Due to plumbing issues (pumping water up to the clearance) the original spa bath was built up. But, not just up, but up a grandiose stage. Honestly, think brothel!
The photo doesn't do the colour justice either - pumpkin orange! I used similar materials to the upstairs bathroom, underfloor heating, de-mister pad on the mirror and a stone basin (note - ensure these hold water before you install them. We had to remove and have sealed as it wasn't watertight)! We still needed to have the bath and shower waste raised above the general floor level so decided to put two wide steps at the entrance to the bathroom to allow for a single level bathroom. Much safer!
One of the best decisions was installing low level halogen lights around the walls for night lighting. This was the bathroom for the kids' bedrooms downstairs and as our girls were only 3 and 4 at the time, we could leave these lights on all night so they could find their way without being blinded by bright light during the night.
These bathrooms were installed late 2007 and I designed them to last. Putting in the extras like underfloor heating, good storage and quality, neutral tiles means the bathrooms will function well but can be updated with colour to walls and through accessories. The basics are there and they have been built to last.