A Visionary Penthouse in St Kilda

Before any creative process commences, you must start with a vision. To imagine something that doesn’t exist yet, and to see past the ‘now’ and into the future – this is perhaps the greatest skill of the creative mind.

Interior designer Bec van der Sluys has this magical ability! Today we chat with Bec about transforming the roof of an old office building into her dream family penthouse, with Tom Robertson Artchtects and Simone Haag, as part of the Holly Apartments in St Kilda.

Lucy Feagins

The St Kilda Penthouse home of interior designer Bec van der Sluys  Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Designer details! The Soriana Sofa by Tobia Scarpa, Ivy coffee table from Grazia & co, and CC Tapis rug (available at Loom), Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Bec collaborated with interior designer Simone Haag on the interiors. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Photo – Derek Swalwell.

A sense of functional opulence has been achieved through the use of velvet, brass and leather. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Bec wanted ‘an apartment that felt open and light’. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

The family home offers 360-degree views. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

The exterior of St Kilda’s ‘Holly Apartments’. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Homeowner and interior designer, Bec van der Sluys. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

‘I wanted to inject colour and texture,’ explains Bec. Photo – Derek Swalwell.

While the project took a little longer than expected, Bec is over-the-moon with the finished result! Photo – Derek Swalwell.

Lucy Feagins
22nd of November 2018

Four years ago, Bec van der Sluys visited the site of an old office building under renovation in St Kilda. When she stepped onto the roof, inspiration struck. ‘The views were stunning and the vibe, tranquil and inspiring.’ Bec explains, ‘I immediately identified the opportunity for residential use’. Her vision was to create a family home across the entire top floor.

The sprawling penthouse, which includes a rooftop garden, was architecturally designed by Tom Robertson. The interiors are a collaboration between Bec and Simone Haag.

As both the interior designer and client, this jaw-dropping project has been a labour of love for Bec, challenging and propelling her own design practice. She explains her brief (to herself!) – to create an apartment that felt open and light, with an emphasis on natural elements, ‘grounded in timber, stone, marble and foliage’. This design intent has been well-and-truly met, in this incredible penthouse, where 360° views across Melbourne are matched with luxurious, refined yet playful interiors.

Initially faced with a blank canvas, Bec and Simone have created a comfortable, functional home here, ‘without compromising on sophistication, quality, luxury and warmth.’ A sense of lux is achieved through the use of velvet, brass and leather, which enhance the and soften sleek architectural lines of the home. Bec particularly emphasises the importance of art and photography in decorating the space, with a strong focus on Australian artists.

For all it’s sophistication, this is also a home full of personality. Bold colour choices and unexpected details are peppered throughout the property, bringing diverse influences together into a singular vision.

Bec describes that ‘whilst this project took a little longer than I had anticipated, it is everything I had envisaged, and we are delighted with the outcome.’ With uninterrupted views of the city, next-level interiors, and one seriously impressive furniture collection, we’d be delighted to call the Holly Penthouse home, too!

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