WHILE working in London, Europe and South-East Asia, Janice and Will Liley daydreamed about living among the rolling green hills of the Southern Highlands, somewhere they could enjoy the four seasons and the change of colours, says Janice, an artist.
On their return home, the couple bought 45 hectares where they built their dream home.
“We admire the simple vernacular of the Australian homestead: a classic rectangle with a wrap-around verandah,” Janice says.
“And we also wanted to incorporate elements of New England architecture.”
Working with architect Richard Rowe and landscape architect Michael Bligh, they set about realising their vision.
“We took great pains to orientate the house to maximise light while ensuring protection from the hot summer sun,” Will says.
From Rosehill Farm’s gate, a kilometre-long avenue lined with white-trunked Blue Mountains ash eucalypts leads to the circular forecourt of the handsome homestead, painted dove-grey, with inky blue shutters that contrast with the New England red utility buildings.
Sight-lines and axes run perpendicular to charming walled and rose gardens, creating a cohesive layout that connects the main house to workshops, garages, stables, a studio and barn.
The rambling cottage gardens are fragrant with honeysuckle, David Austin roses and old-fashioned favourites such as hydrangea.
Janice has decorated the interiors with an artist’s eye.
“Colour is very emotive; it’s the first thing that you notice about an object,” she says.
Her abstract landscape paintings co-exist with works by Sydney artists Peter Godwin, Jo Bertini and Elizabeth Cummings.
Many pieces of furniture, such as two Chinese lacquer red children’s chairs plus a hall table and writing desk, were brought back from Asia, “evoking wonderful memories”.
The empty-nesters are downsizing nearby.
“Rosehill needs a big family with lots of energy,” Will says.
The estate could be run as a boutique B&B with the dressage ring repurposed into a tennis court or swimming pool.
“We have been custodians of a piece of beautiful land, now it’s time to pass it on,” Will concluded.
The property is located at 176 Kia Ora Lane, Kangaloon and has a guide price of between $4.6- 4.95 million. Inspections are by appointment.
Contact Colliers International on 0401 849 955.