Three hundred square meters of building, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen, butler’s pantry, laundry, walk in ‘robes, study nooks and outdoor areas. At last the contestants have completed the very final space in their apartments. Next stop… the challenge apartment!
Kerrie and Spence
Cash strapped Kerrie and Spence leaned heavily on vouchers this week, bolstered by a $5k windfall from the Philip Island Racing Challenge. They ploughed that cash into their terrace to great effect, creating a clever indoor outdoor area that felt like an extra room in their home. With the biggest kitchen in St Kilda they arguably don’t need a barbecue, but it was a slightly odd omission. Loved the choice of outdoor setting and table, and the bamboo will grow from strength to strength, but the styling fell short this week and their lack of budget showed as a result. By rearranging some existing styling elements they should be able to luxe it up without additional expense.
Courtney and Hans
Hans and 99 problems this week, and lack of money was just one of them with six hours of heavy lifting, Courtney vetoing his terrace plans, then taking a disliking to his tiles. Things took a turn for the better when they came second in the Philip Island Challenge, but I have to say I was underwhelmed and frustrated by their clinical take on the terrace. With an indoor/outdoor area there’s such an opportunity to inject some colour and interest, and instead they played it as straight as an arrow. The home theatre concept helped to redeem the space a little, but the outdoor setting isn’t simpatico with kicking back and enjoying a movie, and when the screen is retracted you’re left staring at a blank white wall.
Hayden and Sara
From water leaks to teppanyaki grills, it was a physically tough week for Hayden and Sara, but the wow factor they achieved with their sculpted Teppanyaki grill with it’s equally sculptural extraction vents, was worth all the sweat and tears. It packs an instant luxe punch from the moment you walked through the door, and the Alexa controlled heating and cooling upped that impression even further. We just wanted to kick back and soak up the ambiance, so it was a pity that they didn’t include a comfy couch to enjoy it all from. Overall though, a glamorous indoor/outdoor area befitting the grand old Gatwick.
Jess and Norm
It was an emotional week for penthouse couple Jess and Norm, who ran out of cash and had to sideline their trades, before winning the Domain prize and getting themselves back in business. The resulting terrace didn’t just have wow factor. It had triple wow factory. From the adjustable louvered pergola, to the tattoo like mural, to the gentle trickle of the water feature, the entire space screamed luxury. I loved the super-sized herb garden, complimenting the outdoor cooking area, and the dining and lounge areas are elegant and sophisticated. Our only reservation was the positioning of the sculpture whose only purpose seemed to be to hide the wooden and wrought iron bench they built themselves. That didn’t stand in the way of them finally securing their much-wanted room win with a perfect score of 30.
Bianca and Carla
it was temporarily raining men in Bianca and Carla’s apartment but, men dancing around the living room in their jocks notwithstanding, it was a great week for our second penthouse pair this week. From the moment we walked onto their terrace to the strains of Flo Rida’s ‘Welcome to My House’ we felt right at home. The louvered Vergola was perfectly positioned when the rain came during our judging, but highlighted the positioning of the couch, open to the elements. The outdoor fireplace soon warmed the cockles of our hearts though, and was well worth the effort it took to instal it. We loved Bianca’s choice of furniture, their landscaping, and the expansive feel of their outdoor area, and I’m pretty sure the bidders are going to love it come auction day as well.