August 29, 2019

Premium SAHOMES: Five-hectare Hills escape for sale

A sanctuary of bushland and wildlife, this Adelaide Hills property has been lovingly renovated over the past decade.

When Nic van Buuren and Kathryn Clausen returned to Adelaide after a gap year travelling South America in a van, the adventurous couple purchased a home on 5.1 hectares of bushland at Coromandel East.

The Hills property would be perfect for the next stage of their life together, with both of their children now living independently. “It was the wildlife and the serenity of the place that I enjoyed – getting out of the city,” Nic says. “One of the features that appealed to me was that it’s a bush block on a no-through road.”

However, after enjoying and renovating the property over 12 years, plans have changed and the couple are going on another “gap year”, which will possibly include cycling 4600 kilometres from the coast of France to the Black Sea. They plan to eventually settle in Tasmania and their labour of love has just hit the market.

“We’ll both miss the wildlife here. We have koalas come through at certain times of the year, kangaroos feed down the back of the property and the bird life is prolific. We have black cockatoos, rosellas, finches, magpies, kookaburras, you name it – it’s amazing.”

Nic and Kathryn have gone about renovating the home and outdoor areas, including extensive landscaping and garden areas around the house. “The bones were here. We worked out exactly what we wanted from the property and away we went,” Nic says.

The work has all been done and the four-bedroom, two-bathroom house is now ready for a family or couple to move in and enjoy.

Nic says he was surprised at the interest in the home, with 44 groups passing through the first open last Saturday.

The home offers a country lifestyle close to Adelaide. From winter nights around the fire pit by the dam, lazy summer lunches on the decking, or walking among the gums to spot wildlife – located just 10 minutes from Stirling and 30 minutes from Norwood. Half an hour and you’re in McLaren Vale.

“Whoever buys it will be very happy. They just need to do the usual maintenance that you would do on a country block – keep the grass cut and look after your garden, that’s about it. That’s something we’re proud of.”

Nic, a retired outdoor education and tech teacher, has set up a workshop in the 12 x 8 metre shed, while there’s also a preserving room with steel benchtops, which Kath would use to make preserves and also process honey from the bees they used to keep on the property.

When Nic embarked on a five-month motorcycle ride from Argentina to Alaska in 2016 to raise money for the Black Dog Ride, Kathryn sold her pickles, preserves and honey at local markets to raise money, with most things made from produce grown in her garden.

The tasteful renovation includes spotted gum flooring and fully renovated bathrooms, with a modern kitchen featuring granite benchtops, Miele appliances and glass splashbacks.

One end of the home features guest or children’s bedrooms and bathroom, leaving the master bedroom at the other end of the house, where a second lounge retreat is bathed in light from the bay window. Nic and Kathryn installed double-glazed windows throughout the home, partly because they wanted to be able to do away with the need for curtains so they could wake up to bush views.

Other features include a 100,000-litre rainwater tank plumbed to the entire house (interchangeable with mains), combustion wood heater which radiates throughout the home in winter, solar hot water, fully-fenced chicken enclosure, ceiling fans in the bedrooms, and plenty of built-in storage.

“There are lots of families in the area and a good community up here. It would suit a family or maybe a couple who have an interest in growing things, having chickens, and a bit of a slower lifestyle.”

The sale is being handled by Harris Real Estate.

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