You may be mistaken when you first see this 1888 Protestant hall that it was once a church but, that is not the case. It's always been a hall!
Built back in 1888 this hall sat idle for some time and was in much need of repair when Mike and his wife bought the property four years ago.
"The original plan was to renovate and extend and this place was going to be our family home, we wanted to move from Melbourne to the country," Mike explained
However, as it turned out Mike and his family moved into their existing property in Oxley when they moved from Melbourne and then had the idea to renovate the hall for a holiday rental.
“We just felt it wasn’t the right decision to make it our home so our next plan was to restore it,” Mike explained.
"It took a year and a half and I did most of the work myself with the help of Ben from Falcon builders" Said Mike proudly.
The rooms were already established so not a great deal of structural changes were made to the building. Mike shows me some before and after photos he captured of the journey in an album.
"The whole town embraced the fact that we took on this project. We had an open day when it was complete to show the community just what we'd achieved.
Now, standing in the completed hall, the open plan guest studio is light and bright with a touch of sophistication.
The stage originally went all the way across the room but is now a showcase for the free standing bath, giving this accommodation rental a real touch of country luxe.
The floors are original Baltic pine and a few of the windows were replaced. The red led light in the roof cavity adds a touch of quirky in this otherwise monochrome setting and the roof beams were restored.
“All the beams had roman numerals etched into them, and we think back when it was built it was a way of knowing which order to put them in during its initial construction,” remarked Mike.
Mike was behind the selection of all the interior fittings, aiming for a classic and stylish look and felt the black and white with a hint of old word timbers would be ideal for this type of renovation.
The cherry table was restored and the antique side table gifted by fiends. Mike and his friend handcrafted the timber and iron table.
Mike's favourite part of the property is the exposed brick work as you enter the front door.
"I spent two weeks just chipping the concrete off the bricks," commented Mike.
The effort and time was worth it as it certainly has the wow factor when you walk in the building and is a real focal point to the overall design.
Mike chose not to hang any artwork on the walls allowing the room to speak for itself as the art, and carefully curated pieces really do add a homely touch. Books line the television cabinet and old bottles that were discovered buried on the site are on display on the mantle piece. The fireplace is in full operation and Mike commented that during the cooler months he prepares it all so all his guests have to do is light a match. It's that kind of hospitality that makes this holiday rental a wonderful choice.
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