While there were no television camera or production crew on site on this occasion, all eyes were on auctioneer Ben Kloppers when a Grand Designs New Zealand waterfront property went to auction late last year.
‘The Jetty House’, built by Patty and Geoff Coley, was considered one of the most ambitious builds to screen on Grand Designs NZ when it featured in Episode 2 of Season 4 in March 2019.
“It was always described as one of the favourites on the show,” said Ben.
When Patty and Geoff decided to build, they wanted to create something with a story of New Zealand history. They also wanted to keep the home authentic, honest and in keeping with the environment.
Their brief to design architect, Frank Stanton, was to design a home based on the classic kiwi boatshed, with four interconnecting pavilions and a central courtyard, which fitted seamlessly on what was an outstanding 3139m2 waterfront site.
““Patty had a vision to create something minimalistic that fitted in with the environment.”
Patty had sourced recycled building materials from amazing places, but she met up with Bay of Plenty-based Mike Uittinger who fashioned the massive hardwood trusses from the old Wellington Ferry Terminal along with rimu from a demolished Whitcoulls bookstore.
The nine impressive trusses were from timbers of the original Wellington Wharf, which was built in 1896 and pulled down about 2014. They were treated, tested for strength and stability and then made into the trusses which feature in the home’s Great Room and the outdoor area.
She sourced recycled bricks from the iconic Real Groovy record store in Auckland’s Queen Street, and recycled timber from the Te Puna Hall and Whitcoulls building in Wellington for the walls.
Her vision just kept growing from there.
The house features recycled things throughout. For example, the kitchen, a stylish cross between modern industrial and French country design, features an island bench that began its life as an engineer’s work bench in Nelson and the light fittings above the dining table were made from fencing wire once used by the family of Robbie Dean, the New Zealand rugby union coach and former player, and former Wallabies coach.
A large tank from the Waihi Mines was reborn as metal on stable doors, brackets on the trusses, in the dining table construction, and for frames of the original Groovy Records sign and pics of the Wellington wharf.
The owners took a hands-on approach with attention to detail. Geoff individually ‘blued’ the bolt covers, and Patty ‘rusted’ the front door to keep the industrial look running through the house, for instance.
When featured on Grand Designs NZ, the subject of budget inevitable came up. Viewers herd that it was $1.3 million. The couple admitted it went higher!
They certainly had no regrets about the build, saying at the time that they were so pleased that they never veered from the passion or the vision, and it was totally worth the cost and the wait.
While friends and family thought they must be crazy to go on Grand Designs, Patty was adamant thar she just wanted to share their story; and viewers were very glad they did with ‘The Jetty House’ instantly become a nationwide favourite.
“There is so much history in the house and it is stunning in its construction and finishes,” said Ben, “but Patty was keen for a new project, which was the sole reason for the sale.”
Bidding started at $1.5million.
“Everyone thought it would stop at $3.5m.
“I passed it in at $3.870,000 and the house sold following negotiations immediately after.”
‘The Jetty House’ sold for $4 million, exceeding the previous local record for Mangawhai and Mangawhai Heads by more than $1mil.
“We put together a comprehensive four-week print and online campaign culminating in the auction on Sunday 8th of November. We had 157 groups through the home and eight registered bidders, three of who bid on the day.
“The buyers – a family with connections to one of New Zealand’s sporting greats – are very happy. There was great excitement. It was quite emotional on the day.”
Ben, did you first see the property on GD?
Did being a GDNZ house attract a lot of attention?
It certainly helped with the promotion of the property because it was such a favourite.
Was auction day that bit extra special?
Yes. The whole campaign was pretty amazing with about 150 groups averaging two to four people through the home during the four weeks. About 150 people were at the auction. Only three bid on the day but when we paused the auction at $3.6mil, we approached other bidders who said they were out at $3.5mil. Only two of them stayed to $3,870,000.