Rural Idyll: Perfect Outdoor Kitchens

This acreage property in outer Sydney is a celebration of modern and rural design.

Backing onto a creek in the Hills Shire, north-west of Sydney, this five-acre rural property presented a raft of challenges, including a 21-degree slope, an environmentally sensitive area (the creek) and a “bushfire prone” classification. The design brief given to Martyne Bird of Birds Landscape Design & Management was extensive and included a swimming pool and water feature, an outdoor kitchen and entertaining area, a 110,000-litre underground concrete water tank, and a hidden room to house the pool pump and equipment. “When the design process commenced it was important to integrate our design into the existing landscape,” explains Martyne. “We wanted to make a feature of the slope and preserve the tranquil atmosphere of the natural bush while giving the owners additional outdoor living space.”

The focal point of the rear garden is the 12m x 8m swimming pool with its infinity edge. A lap pool area was designed to host the wet edge while the main pool/lounging space was fitted with long wide stairs to create internal pool seating. The pool pump and equipment are cleverly hidden beneath the hardwood timber deck, allowing an unobstructed view of the bushland beyond. To add movement and sound, the raised 2.3m x 2.3m spa, which can be seen from the outdoor kitchen, has a spillover.

The outdoor kitchen was constructed over the 110,000-litre concrete tank. “All of the rainfall collected from the outdoor kitchen and the home’s roof system is directed into this tank,” explains Martyne. “Many acreage properties require underground water tanks and the space above them can be utilised as an entertainment area; all you have to do is ensure the pump and manhole are hidden in the final layout.”

Next to the entertaining area, a simple pond was created, adding to the peaceful ambience. The shape was excavated to a depth of 300mm and heavy-duty pond liner put in place. Lucky stones and 40mm Nepean pebble were used to cover the base while plantings of liriope, frangipani and native grasses complete the theme. The end result is a landscape that sits in perfect harmony with its bushland surrounds and provides the owners with a variety of spaces in which they can entertain or relax.

Project details
Landscape design by Birds Landscape Design & Management

249 Annangrove Road, Annangrove NSW 2156
Mobile 0419 992 634

Landscape maintenance by Innovative Landscapes
11 Paperbark Crescent, Beaumont Hills, NSW 2155
Mobile 0410 414 473
Photography by Peter Brennan

Article published with the permission of Universal Magazines Complete Home

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