Marlborough Sounds project up for architectural glory - 24 Aug 2016


Nestled into the hills of Mahau Sound is this Lawson Homes award nominee.

A Blenheim builder who pulled off an impressive Marlborough Sounds project will compete on the national stage for the crown of New Zealand's best build.

Lawson Homes has been named as a national gold reserve finalist in the Registered Master Builders House of the Year 2016.

The nomination is a major win for Lawson Homes owner Andrew Lawson, who said the 18-month project offered unique challenges for his team.

"I've been building for 20 years and this is one of my favourites," he said.

"The photos almost don't do it justice."

The home "wraps around the hill" to overlook the waters of Mahau Sound.

Lawson said it was a challenging site to build because of its isolation.

Construction trucks struggled to manoeuvre around corners and alternate ways were devised to move product in and out of the site.

Major retaining works were required before construction could begin to ensure the steep hillside would not erode.

Lawson said the building difficulties were well worth the final product.

"It doesn't happen often to get recognition on the national stage," he said.

"It's a highly architectural house with a lot of cool features.

"While the home is expensive - it has a true bach feel about it."

Lawson Homes estimated the property was completed at a cost of about $5 million.

It had a spa bath, outdoor fireplace and shower, guest suites, games room and large barbecue area.

The property was used by a family in Christchurch as their private bach.

The project took home gold in the regional category last month.

Lawson said the inclusion into the national category added an extra element of satisfaction.

"To get a [regional] gold is fantastic - but to be up for the national, we're really chuffed," he said.

The property would compete in the New Home over $2 million category.

It would be re-judged for the national gold reserve award, which would be announced in Auckland on November 26.

- The Marlborough Express

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