Victor and Janice Maree first saw this North Warrandyte home in May 2011, as part of a Robin Boyd Foundation Open Day. To their surprise, it came on the market one year later and they jumped at the chance to secure the architect’s masterpiece.
‘We were, and remain, ardent Boyd admirers and the beauty of the three-bedroom home was overwhelming,’ Victor says.
‘We couldn’t believe that it was almost entirely untouched. And we left thinking that there simply cannot be a better house anywhere.’
The Wright House was first commissioned back in 1950 for Joyce and James Wright, who were graphic artists and avid entertainers, but in the early ’60s it was ‘reduced to ruins’ by bushfires, according the Robin Boyd Foundation.
The only remains were the Coldstream stone walls, which were incorporated into the new Boyd design in 1963, along with a detached studio, which he designed in 1970. As a result, the ‘Wright House II’ features steel posts as protective cladding from future fire hazards, while retaining much of its original mid-century magic.
Standout design details include an ‘amazing’ flat roof, the floating mezzanine level, and expansive glass walls that take in the lush and leafy surrounds of the 2.54-acre block.
‘And, the fact that it’s almost a hidden treasure, makes it all the more special. Many people who see the home for the first time say that they’ve been past the property hundreds of times and had no idea it is here,’ Victor says of the property’s bushland location.
‘The one thing that really resonated with us is the originality of this house,’ Victor says. ‘And, like the owners before us, we’ve been very careful to retain its authenticity by not altered anything. And, we’ve limited work to necessary maintenance, repairs and improvements and restoration where necessary.’
This care from the former custodians means the house remains as close as possible to Boyd’s design, with only small, practical updates throughout the years to the kitchen – which was refurbished in the late 1990s, in addition to replacing old toilets and upgrading the hot water system.
Almost exactly 10 years from the day they bought it, the Marees have listed the residence they thought the thought they’d never leave after deciding to retire interstate.
‘When we drive through the gates towards the house, we still experience so much pleasure that we can call this beautiful place home,’ Victor says.
‘Whether it’s looking out over the valley to the Yarra Ranges to an ever-changing horizon, chatting with friends in front of the fireplace on a cold winter evening, or simply enjoying the many outdoor spaces, every part of the house is a wonderful experience.
‘This is such a special home, and like the owners before us, we hope someone that loves and cares for it as much as we do will buy it.’
84 Kangaroo Ground-Warrandyte Road, North Warrandyte is listed with Mark Salvati and Belinda Anderson at Jellis Craig Boroondara for private sale. Take a look at the full listing.