Rosalind Willett has long called St Kilda home. The managing partner of Willett Marketing was living nearby when this apartment went up for sale, and despite not being in the market for a new home at the time, she was instantly taken with its sensational ‘60s features. ‘Our family was at a stage that living in an apartment close to the city and transport was very convenient’ she says, ‘we couldn’t resist.’
Rosalind’s apartment is the penthouse of her building (a block of 16) that was originally the builder’s own family home. It’s definitely not your typical shoebox apartment, but a four-bedroom, two-bathroom haven with multiple living spaces and even a rooftop terrace. They don’t make them like this anymore!
‘It has a beautiful aspect across to the city and neighbouring rooftops, trees and the Sacred Heart Mission,’ says Rosalind of her rooftop oasis. ‘The bird life is spectacular – magpies, currawongs and parrots come to drink from a bird bath I have and they love the new flowering native trees.’
After living here for eight years, Rosalind set out to renovate with the team at Wowowa Architects. The plan was to retain any original ‘60s elements (such as the glass doors, windows and dividers throughout) but otherwise give the place a serious facelift.
The renovations saw new joinery, flooring, carpet, heating, cooling and lighting added to the apartment. The kitchen, bathroom, and terrace were completely renovated, while the upstairs living room was redesigned with joinery pieces, timber slats, and ceramic tiles on the chimney.
Never ones to play it safe, Wowowa encouraged Rosalind to experiment with colour to add some magic and zing! ‘They were an inspiration, and pushed me to go with things I wouldn’t have thought of, or ordinarily been brave enough to do,’ she says. ‘Working with architects and interior designers brings magic to your home and the value of that can’t be measured.’ Among the many spectacular details are the superb green kitchen cabinets, the yellow striped awning over the terrace, and peacock coloured carpet. Brass finishes in nearly every room provide a sophisticated touch, tying the entire space together.
Rosalind currently shares this home with her son, jazz musician Jack Hosking, and his partner HR Manager Irene Censini, who are living here while they save for a property of their own. ‘The apartment remains a comfortable space for the family, bringing joy to all those who frequent it,’ Rosalind says, ‘It’s tactile, delightful to look at and be in, or as Mon [Wowowa architect Monica Woodward] would say, it’s thoroughly delicious.’