No one likes a cold vacation rental. A part-time holiday house for extended family, Quinees was primarily rented out to the public for short-term stays. To make it more appealing to visitors, our brief was to increase the accommodation, and to definitively improve the home’s comfort.

Our approach to this heritage weatherboard cottage was to use sustainable architecture principles to create a sensitive yet contemporary addition. We’ve furnished the home with a new bedroom, laundry, living area and two new bathrooms. We turned a leaky old Blue Mountains weatherboard into a roomy – but cosy – all-weather retreat.

Our key response was to replace the ramshackle bathroom and laundry to the north of the property with a modest extension. Lowered window sills and reduced awnings allow low winter sun to penetrate the home. Once dark living spaces became light and bright, and a new indoor and outdoor living area connected the home with the garden at long last.

The new insulated slab concrete floor, with hydronic heating, disperses heat to the new addition, with hydronic radiators to the older section, helping the home achieve its new 8 star energy rating. Soon after completion, the cottage received its first long-term rental, a testament, we believe, to its successful transformation into an ideal holiday home. See its listing on HomeAway / Stayz.