Friday, June 18, 2010

Celebrating the holiday houses of Mandurah

First thing on Monday morning my partner went off to his new job.  Meanwhile the children and I have been working to collect and piece together all the various nuts and bolts that a family of four require in the modern world.  So we have been locating shops and food, visiting schools, opening a bank account, investigating GPs and exploring various suburbs.

Top of the list though is finding our longer term accommodation. Between us we have quite an extensive wishlist.  The children want a home a) near the beach or estuary, b) that will allow them to get a tiny dog and c) with their own living room for their private Legoland. I want a house with a sewing/making room as going cold-turkey on making things is doing my head in.  My partner and I both want a house that is a) big enough to host the hoards of house-guests we hope to have trailing through soon, b)  is close enough to schools, shops, work and facilities so that at least one of us can walk or bike there and c) feels like "us".

This last point is proving to be the sticking point.  When my partner and I viewed the various housing options online we both screamed so loudly in horror that the children came running from the other room to see what terrible thing had happened.  It would be fair to say that we have not yet tuned-in to the predominant style of modern housing on offer in Mandurah.  It would also be fair to say that no architects have been harmed - or even consulted - in the creation of Mandurah's modern housing stocks.  My PollyAnna pledge prevents me from saying much more...

However there is one style of housing here that I love.  As I cruise the various older areas of Mandurah the children have to cry "Eyes on the road!" as I find these houses so attractive and distracting.  The houses I love are known as the "holiday houses" of Mandurah and are what NZers would call baches or cribs.  Sadly they are an endangered species as every one that comes on the market is described as a "development opportunity".  Many have already been bowled and unfortunately many more are bound to follow.  If I ever turn into an eccentric old billionairess, I'll buy a huge block of land, set it up as a heritage park and rescue and rehome as many of these gorgeous homes as I can get my hands on.

I'm not the only person in town who appreciates these gems.  A few years ago the Friends of the Mandurah Community Museum photographed many examples of these homes, held an exhibition of the images and have reproduced some them on a lovely set of postcards.  The postcards are available from the Mandurah Visitor Centre, and at 50c each are a jolly bargain.  I have the whole set but I love them too much to post to anyone. The images below are some of their excellent work.

So how is our accommodation quest going?  Well yesterday the children and I viewed this home. 

It is fabulously mental, would suit our retro furniture collection perfectly and the view from the front lawn is of this.

Yes it is directly on the estuary.  My partner could kayak to work in about five minutes or hop there in ten.  The real estate agent gleefully told us that it is on death row.  When I said I'd love to get my hands on it - meaning I'd quickly restore and revive it it be the coolest house in Mandurah - she said "me too" meaning with a wrecking ball.  Hmmm.

Sadly that house isn't going to be the one for us so the quest continues....

So if you do come to stay with us and are shocked to find us living in this

please believe me when I say I tried, I really tried!

No comments:

Post a Comment