Tucked away down a quiet residential street off the main road running through the Swansea suburb of Llansamlet a quiet interiors and garden lockdown revolution has occurred.
As the lane bends towards its final dead-end there is a detached house that has gone from a nice but standard house to an eye-catching, luxury party pad with glossy, high-end interiors worthy of any footballer’s home.
And it all happened during the lockdown period.
In 2012 the double-fronted house wore a pebble dash exterior but now it is wrapped in an eye-catching and contemporary slate facade.
In 2009 there was water in the garden in the shape of a hot tub on a terrace but now there is an incredible elevated swimming pool and even the koi fish get a posh elevated pond to live in.
Katherine and Dean Thomas have owned the house and surrounding land for about 17 years and they’ve been busy creating their own little hamlet in this corner of Llansamlet.
Firstly they converted a detached garage into a house, then built another detached house on their plot of land, sold their front garden that now has a house on it, and have now even started building a brand new home in the area.
But cosmetic tattoo artist Katherine, who runs her business Blush Beauty at the same premises in Llansamlet as Dean’s gym and sport supplement premises called Muscle Finesse, found the house they currently live in never seemed to get a moment of their time or attention.
And then lockdown came and the experienced construction couple totally transformed the house from standard to stunning.
The bathroom, the hall, the stairs, under the stairs, the lounge, the kitchen diner, the garden – they were all tackled during lockdown.
Katherine says: “The house and garden kept us really busy. We didn’t feel the strain of lockdown because we had all of this going on – I think that makes us very fortunate.
“Before lockdown we couldn’t do anything because our businesses would always take priority, there was never any time, so in lockdown we threw ourselves into it completely.”
When visiting you can park in the covered carport at the front entrance or the attached double garage and then enter a world of interior design that focuses on drama and opulence with every room demanding attention via its incredible statement items and touches of Katherine’s modern style.
A strong theme throughout the amazing home is reflective gloss surfaces, adding a touch of glamour but also assisting in bouncing light around each space.
And lighting is another aspect of this contemporary property that has been given prominence in most areas, from purple accent LEDS lighting up the kitchen work surfaces and bathroom alcoves to a statement chandelier in every room.
Where some people sometimes fail to see lighting as a key element of a space until they are choosing the fitting, Katherine has ensured that the lighting in this family home is one of the fundamental elements of the interior design.
Enter the hall and the tactile slate walling continues inside, although this time in a lighter shade, and ensures that there is a visual connection between the exterior and interior of this unique property.
Immediately you will discover the thought that has gone into the modern makeover of this home.
Where many people would see the under stairs area as a dead space only suitable for shoe storage or somewhere to chuck the coats this home has a bespoke built-in oak wine cellar and bar area. Genius.
So if it’s been a hard day at the office the bar is literally ready to greet you as soon as you get home.
Katherine says: “It was just wasted space cluttered with coats and bags and everything that you throw down when you come in through the front door.
“You put it there and then it stays there until the following day but you can’t do that now – everything is tidy and everything has its place and now even the wine has its own place, although it doesn’t stay there long!”
Behind the wine cellar there is an intriguing corridor that leads to a hidden downstairs cloakroom and shower and a handy and sizeable utility room, all tucked out of the way.
The first door on the right takes you to a separate lounge and this space is an indication of the interior style to excite throughout the home.
The velvet and silk fabrics combine with the tactile carpet to give the room a luxurious feel.
The tones of soft grey and deep purple not only add to the contemporary theme set by the funky integrated fireplace but give the room a sense of calm as well as cool.
Arguably the main design statement in the room is the end wall, featuring bespoke carpentry creating a recessed home for the television, sunken alcoves, hidden drawers and of course that ultra-contemporary fire.
Move to the end of the hall and the ultimate social space inside the home can be found; an open-plan kitchen diner lounge that spans the width of the house.
At one end the kitchen awaits with a mono colour scheme mixing gloss black and gloss white cupboards with black splashbacks and white walls.
The number of extra details to notice include the purple under cupboard lighting and the design of the wall units.
The white cupboards are framed in black, ensuring there is a seamless continuation of the black across along the wall and also helping to give the white cupboards more prominence.
Some people might be a bit scared choosing a predominantly black kitchen and huge, black American style fridge-freezer but the continuation of the light, gloss floor tiles and white walls throughout this open-plan space balance the bolder, darker statement pieces in the room.
Into the dining area through a subtle archway and this space has been zoned with a few extra design statements to ensure it too has personality.
The light fitting over the island unit has increased in size and number of glass droplets compared to its design cousin hanging in the kitchen and the red chairs centre the whole space and add visual interest.
A second archway into the lounge area repeats the design of the kitchen arch and is softened with distinctive palm leaf wallpaper that is also found on one wall in the lounge area.
At the end of the open-plan rear space is a relaxing chill-out lounging zone with a big sofa, big TV, and also big design statements, including bold wallpaper that ties the neutral tones of the room together.
There is a real mix of surfaces in this room that keeps your eyes interested as they scan the room, from the tactile rug on the floor to the crystal ball light hanging from the ceiling, from the soft leather sofa to the mirrored furniture.
Throughout this open-plan room the spaces are zoned to separate them via colour, lighting, pattern and distinctive design choices.
But there is plenty of connection too, mainly through the repetition of the archways, the continuous flooring throughout, the use of the same wallpaper and the choice of reflective surfaces.
Up the stairs to the four double bedrooms and family bathroom but before having a peek inside these spaces the landing is worth a linger.
This space has been utilised by the addition of a chaise lounge positioned under the window making a cute space to read or relax, but again this space has been given personality.
The slate tile tactile wall from the hall flows up the stairs to the ceiling of this space and creates horizontal lines for the eye to move along.
This feature is countered by the bold, wide stripes of the wallpaper on the other two walls creating vertical lines for the eye to move down.
The circular shapes and glass droplets introduced by the statement light plus the thick pile carpet balance these bold patterns with softness and the glass staircase panels ensure no light or views into this space are blocked.
All the bedrooms continue the theme of reflective surfaces but up here the soft greys and pinks take over with only accents of black and white.
The master bedroom has a whole wall of built-in wardrobes and one bedroom is currently being used as a dressing room but arguably the sparkling star of the first floor is the bathroom.
The huge bathroom easily accommodates a large black and white statement free-standing bath and a sizeable walk-in shower.
There are many statement pieces to notice in this space apart from these though including the black toilet, integrated shelving lit with purple LEDs, and the ‘his and her’ basin units featuring waterfall taps.
All these design features and choices are given an understated but tactile soft grey tiled backdrop across the floor and walls.
However back downstairs and out into the garden via a door in the kitchen the glamorous bathroom might be momentarily forgotten because the garden has had an impressive transformation.
Now instead of a yard, shed, and hot tub there is an oasis of water for both humans and fish.
The slate of the exterior of the house is the standout material clothing the two special features in this space – the elevated swimming pool and the elevated koi pond.
How clever to build both water features upwards rather than downwards, saving money and extra hard work.
The couple had a previous quote of more than £20,000 for a fibreglass pool and installation but have managed to create their pool for just £11,000, which included a specialist company doing the plumbing, heating system, and lining the pool.
The hot tub has moved to a more private area behind the pond, surrounded by fencing, and this is where a cosy al fresco dining area can be found too.
It’s no surprise to discover that the garden is Katherine’s favourite spot in the whole property, although the glamorous bathroom is also a contender.
She says: “The bathroom is my favourite place inside the house because I do spend a lot of time in the bath but I also love the pool.
“It is lovely on a lovely day, especially in the evening – it’s gorgeous out there.
“The garden is so tranquil and the fish are amazing to watch. I’ve wasted hours sitting there watching the fish through the glass.
“I wasn’t into fish but since I’ve had these koi, well they are just amazing and so relaxing to watch. I’ve spent hours just watching the fish and drinking wine in the garden.”
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With the work inside and out completed, Katherine and Dean are looking to concentrate on constructing their dream new-build property nearby so this contemporary party pad is on the market and Katherine says it’s a house that’s ready for living for someone new to put their own finishing touches inside.
She says: “My style is modern but it’s cosy too. The house is not so modern that it feels cold – it’s got a nice feel and it flows right through the house, it’s got a lovely peaceful flow right the way through it.
“Obviously my decor is not to everybody’s taste so people might want to change a few things but it is a move in-ready house – there’s nothing to do, it’s all new.”
That leaves so much more time for a new owner to take a dip in the pool and relax on a garden lounger watching the fish.
The contemporary property with a pool is for sale with estate agent Tyron Ash Real Estate. Give them a call on 0333 305 0656 to find out more including the price for this perfect piece of outdoor paradise.