The very mention of a bed-and-breakfast can conjure up visions of chintzy chairs and lace curtains and fluffy three-egg omelettes that taste like Sunday morning. Bassano is none of that—except for the omelettes, which they will happily indulge. With a charcoal aesthetic and a menagerie of vintage pieces, the Red Hill, Victoria bed-and-breakfast has a voguish-meets-vintage quality ideal for placid days and carefree stays.
Once a pair of standalone cabins, the owners, Scotty and Eliza Bemelen, roped in architect Tom Robertson to convert the twin buildings into a single luxury private suite and artist studio, and designer and stylist Simone Haag to give the interiors a swish spin.
The suite, in turn, was divided into two halves, with an entryway, kitchen, breakfast nook and lounge on one side, and a private bedroom with an ensuite on the other. “The clients wanted neither to skew super farmhouse nor super modern. And so, they looked to us to create an eclectic, layered interior imbued with warmth,” says Simone, who customised everything to give the space an outré, unpredictable beat.
With a facade that riffs on rural and an interior that goes total monochrome supernova, there seems to be a distinct contrast between the inside and the outside. Or so it appears at first glance. But as you peel back the interior layers, you notice brutalist flourishes that echo the pastoral facade.
The bathroom, for example, plays host to a theatrically illuminated concrete bathtub and basin that look like they could have tumbled out of Stonehenge. The floor, meanwhile, sports travertine that plays up the earthiness.
The property has a subtle Italian vibe, a hat-tip, Simone reveals, to the clients’ ties to Italy. “We proposed a collection of 1960s and 70s Italian items, paired with a curated mix of contemporary components,” she says.
True to her words, the home brims with vintage gems: A spectacular reissue of the Brionvega Radiofonografo stereo, retro Italian light fixtures and an Annie Hieronymus sofa sit alongside modern pieces such as a side table by artisan Zachary Frankel and a Sarah Ellison-designed Yoko bed. The aesthetic is a knock-back in time, but with a decidedly modern twist.
“The interior concept is grounded in calming textures and tones that provide a private and intimate retreat away from the urban chaos,” concludes Simone.