— A Drought-Tolerant Coastal Escape 2019

Location: Awabakal Country, Catherine Hill Bay

Atelier Photography, Shutter Project Photography

This stunning property needed a subtle but impressive landscape design to reflect both the location and architecture of the house.

“Native coastal

shrubs, grasses and


Materials chosen for each of the property’s four functional spaces anchor the surrounding rugged landscape, with sandstone boulders, gold decomposed granite and recycled timber reminiscent of the historical Catherine Hill Bay wharf.


On arrival, sculptural recycled timber battens blend privacy with visibility to create a unique facade while adhering to estate frontage guidelines. A decomposed granite path leads you on a journey throughout the property, stopping at two central hidden courtyards, before finishing in the backyard at a statement sandstone fire pit, ready for swapping stories over the flames.


Throughout the four outdoor spaces are a mix of native coastal shrubs, grasses and groundcovers, set off by our favourite Queensland bottle tree and the silver-green foliage of 50 year old black olive trees. Each plant is equipped to tackle the coastal salt spray and winds, while the area’s poor quality clay soil was ameliorated and excavated to combat long-term drainage problems.


The result is understated yet powerful. Designated functional spaces to live and play, balanced with planted areas that maximise space. The show stopping sculptural screen and eclectic plant selection delivers a unique design that plays by the estate rules.

Plant Palette

Queensland bottle tree (brachychiton rupestris)
Olive tree (olea europaea)
Kidney grass (dichondra repens)
Fraser island apple (acronychia imperforata)
Mat-rush (lomandra spp.)
Knobby club rush (ficinia nodosa)
Lilly pilly (acmena smithii minor)
Coast banksia (banksia sp.)
Australian tree fern (cyathea cooperi)
Native violet (viola banksii)

Material palette

Recycled timber batten screen
Sandstone block fire pit
Gold decomposed granite
Sandstone boulders