Jessica Ghaie, co-founder of independent wine store Blackhearts & Sparrows, purchased this Fitzroy property in the late 2000s, back when the Victorian terrace needed ‘a scary amount of work.’
A major architect-designed renovation later, the house is ready for new custodians seeking a contemporary five-bedroom home with a rooftop terrace and parking.
Despite its dilapidated state at the time of purchasing, Jessica fell in love with the home for ‘the scale of the rooms and its incredible position in the heart of Fitzroy,’ she says.
These qualities have been enhanced in a major renovation designed by LSA Architects. Jessica worked with her brother and fellow Blackhearts & Sparrow co-founder Paul Ghaie on the project, focusing on opening up the rear of the home.
The result is the architecturally refined home you see today, complete with a bright open-plan kitchen, living, and dining area; five bedrooms; and two bathrooms across the two storeys.
The generous floor plan provides spaces to gather alongside quiet zones to ‘escape’ within the home.
There’s also significant outdoor space on the property for its location. In addition to the rear courtyard between the house and double garage, a spiral staircase leads to the private rooftop terrace where Jessica and friends have enjoyed many sunset glasses of wine. ‘It’s built for entertaining, so we’ve had some amazing dinner parties,’ she says.
Jessica’s favourite element of the renovation is transition from old to new — ‘walking down the hallway, with the light from the rear windows hitting you as you turn the corner’ and into the spacious kitchen.
Jessica loves Melbourne’s north where five of Blackhearts & Sparrows’ 12 national stores are now located. She’s seeking a new home to bring to life, but the business isn’t going anywhere. ‘Having built this with my brother, my partner and I wanted to collaborate on designing and building our own piece of history,’ she says.
The home is positioned just metres from Gertrude Street including its famous cafes, bars, and restaurant scene. Jessica adds, ‘Parks and playgrounds are just around the corner and the city is right there on our doorstep.’