Charltons, Renovated Farmhouse, Federal, NSW 2480

[Previous post: Sunnyside, Kirribilli ,,,Next Post: Kardinia, Darling Point]
At last, a sympathetic renovation to a carpenter Queen Anne Federation house, with an eclectic yet liveable interior renovation to the highest standards of comfort and usability.

external image Charlton%252C%2520Federal%252026%2520evening.jpg


Gav and Waz secure a wow sale as Sydney family snap up their Byron Bay hinterland retreat
By Jonathan Chancellor Friday, 04 October 2013

external image ViewImage.aspx?id=6d95da5e-1d66-4588-b256-223feb9a0a26&width=800&height=600&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=

Charltons, the 120 year cottage on a hillside overlooking 58 acres in the Byron Bay hinterland, has been snappily sold by the Designer Boys, Gav and Waz.

  • The home (pictured below) combines an original 120 year old Northern River’s farmhouse trucked to the property which underwent extensive renovations and a contemporary extension completed in late 2010
external image ViewImage.aspx?id=0ef4c3d1-31ec-43fc-8401-cdb5b2d5e053&width=800&height=600&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=

external image ViewImage.aspx?id=8d0bbf27-822f-4989-8359-68637f8976cf&width=547&height=364&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=crop
  • It was 2007 when Warren Sonin and and Gavin Atkins, stars of the first 2003 series of Channel 9 reality TV show The Block, spent $610,000 for their 24 hectare holding after the duo secured $1.775 million for their two-bedroom Bondi penthouse.
  • The main house has a 290 square metres internal space and the guest residence has 155 square metres.

Federal farmhouse meets ‘designer’ charm

The Listing: Unique Estates

external image ViewImage.aspx?id=0ef4c3d1-31ec-43fc-8401-cdb5b2d5e053&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=7d484b8a-81fc-4f66-adf8-e48f387feda2&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=1e3bda68-267b-48a4-99cf-d6e56c29f91e&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=9dbccb01-07ca-4e31-aa67-0f56fe193b59&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=6bced2ee-68aa-412c-bea2-079f3d9b7e0b&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=17f716a5-64e4-43fa-86f4-7e96cb6d500b&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=a53d6052-0ffd-4f09-9925-4fe38f07e3ec&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=6d95da5e-1d66-4588-b256-223feb9a0a26&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=83e04464-5ee6-44ba-a264-19bdae3b1c74&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=aa0aa632-73ca-42b2-9428-ab0809a4eaa0&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=5d4bd99e-bde4-4778-a104-d31455f94788&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=184f0584-a035-495a-a9c4-4c2df4231b95&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=04ba9c62-5678-42ba-835c-c9f063ba4145&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=0bbb442a-840e-42b4-bfc3-54e6eb220b84&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=d6ead21f-f233-4620-9d3d-ad7ca2970b7f&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=4f360c5d-86da-434e-9a4d-4519e02ee1b1&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=0b773156-91dc-4538-b0aa-165a85c73dc9&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=6e11fd5f-e3bc-4f79-bc64-cf27156fd88f&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=e72cd7fa-31c6-48ac-9373-dbb9a3eb0959&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=2d9d8d45-9d88-4b07-8b82-b370b1dd75a1&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=48eda26d-1f19-4253-b278-7a125dffd0fa&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=7917beed-2854-4fe5-9364-ba00e910950b&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=fd5dfaac-7032-457b-9ace-fdb735669fd5&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=946017c9-da65-4767-9129-1f57ef6605d4&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=ff89b179-1ac9-4832-8e00-174dc364634d&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=0663e44c-5c6b-43bb-b7ee-7bc2a1520a4a&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=f4ce9f12-5b2f-4032-8150-0fdc6644fbb8&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=9f425b70-790c-42ab-bfbc-bfe381840f82&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=cropexternal image ViewImage.aspx?id=4e3d46ef-10f8-448a-a890-43e06d183d88&width=140&height=104&db=RealEstateManager3&resize=crop
Taking country living to an awe-inspiring new level, Charltons is charming, stunning and extraordinarily well considered. Perfectly placed on a protected hillside overlooking its 58 acre grounds, the home combines an original 120 year old Northern River’s farmhouse with extensive renovations and a generous contemporary extension.

  • Shaded verandahs and hinterland vistas frame the entrance to the home. Perfectly matched hoop pine floors combine with Andrew Martin striped lights and a beautiful hand woven New Zealand wool & silk rug in the entrance hall. The master bedroom features Ralph Lauren fabrics, a four poster bed, a fire place, double sided Hettich fitted robing and a spacious ensuite complete with Italian ‘alligator skin’ look tiles, double rainwater head showers and matching vanities. There are two additional guest bedrooms on the left of the hallway and a main bathroom with a deep soaker bath, double shower and vanity finished with Italian ‘stingray skin’ look tiles.
  • The hallway opens into the main living, dining and kitchen space and capturing the breathtaking hinterland views. Features of this room include a Jetmaster fireplace, a built-in retractable plasma TV, hand made ‘Little People’ pendant light; a Smeg kitchen complete with coffee machine, plate warmer, microwave, steamer, oven, wine fridge, dishwasher, wok hob & 5 burner gas cooktop. There is also a fully integrated Liebherr fridge & freezer. The butler’s pantry or K2 incorporates ample additional storage an extra sink and a second much larger wine fridge.
  • Leading off the main living entertaining space is a media room or fourth bedroom, an office nook and a beautiful formal sitting room. From the living area, solid sliding doors open onto a spacious outdoor seating & dining deck which overlooks the magnificent pool area and the views beyond.
  • Charltons also has a vegetable garden, fruit orchard, 2 car lockup garage and adjoining carport, 2 spring fed creeks which meet at the bottom of the land; a registered bore and a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom guest studio with its own entrance away from the main house.
  • Charltons is a truly remarkable property that must be seen to be truly appreciated. To arrange an inspection contact Nicolette van Wijngaarden at Unique Estates Australia.

The Block 2003: Where are they now?

Monday, September 20, 2010
external image block_3910.jpg

In the magThe Block

Gaz and Waz Gavin Atkins and Warren Sonin were the designer duo of the original Block back in 2003, and gave us a dose of gay pride as the first same-sex couple on Aussie reality TV.
  • The irrepressible pair still live a luxurious life, but now they run their business Designer Boys from the peaceful surrounds of a 24ha property in Byron Bay, in NSW.
  • “We’ve got 30 cows wandering around,” says Waz, 45. “Basically our lives have changed completely since we were on The Block. If you think that was chalk then this is cheese!”
  • It’s an entirely different landscape to the corporate jobs they once knew. “We thought, if we can survive The Block, we can do this,” Waz says. “So after the show we quit our jobs and started Designer Boys. But nothing has been handed to us – we’ve probably worked harder than anyone else.”
  • The pair are clearly thrilled with their tree-change. The solitude of their home allows Gav to indulge his passion for art, which he provides to hotels and resorts through Designer Boys Collections, while both say the silence is a very different but welcome kind of luxury.[1]

Designer Boys Byron Bay adventure

From animal heads in the hall to bright lights in the kitchen, Gav & Waz's latest project has it all.
The first stars of the reality TV show The Block, have just sold their $3 million home near Byron Bay. ‘‘We had offer and acceptance late last night,’’ says Warren Sonin, aka ‘‘Waz’’, one of the leading lights of the first series 10 years ago and one half of the Designer Boys with partner Gavin ‘‘Gav’’ Atkins.

  • ‘‘We’re only allowed to take our clothes - they’ve bought everything!’’
  • The recently completed home featured as the Domain cover story in Sydney and Melbourne on the weekend, sparking the interest of a Sydney family.
  • The boys say they’ve achieved ‘‘a great price’’, though couldn’t say if their goal of $3.3 million was reached due to a confidentiality agreement with the buyers. But there’s rarely been such a great time to sell property and if you've been putting it off until you do that long-awaited renovation or think you don't have enough time to get it ready, you might miss the perfect opportunity.[2]

Gav and Waz.
Gav and Waz.
Gavin Atkins and Warren Sonin with their dog Charlie at there renovation project in the Byron Bay Hinterland. Picture: Paul Harris.

The Block’s Gav and Waz, 10 years on

May 24, 2013 By John Clements 1 Comment
Contestants on the very first series of The Block a decade ago, Gavin Atkins and Warren Sonin, otherwise known as Gav and Waz (and The Designer Boys), have come a long way. And despite moving to Byron to enjoy a simpler life, they’ve never been busier.
Designer boys Gav and Waz and their dog Charlie
Designer boys Gav and Waz and their dog Charlie
Designer boys Gav and Waz and their dog Charlie
Still working as interior designers for private clients, in the last 4 years, it is their wholesale art business, Designer Boys Collections, that has really taken off.


  • ‘’We had always been successful at buying, renovating and selling properties together in Sydney and then we were selected for The Block in 2003 and it literally changed our lives forever,” said Gavin “The executive producers obviously realised that we had a talent for interior decorating and renovation and that we had (and still have) a very solid relationship.’’

  • Realising the opportunity to capitalise on their popularity, the first same-sex couple to appear on Australian reality TV started their business, Designer Boys, as soon as the show wrapped up. Initially, they focused on styling properties for sale, racking up more than 750 properties in less than 3 years! “The hands-on experience we garnered was just what we needed to take the business to the next level, where we focused largely on interior design and decoration for commercial and private projects.’’

  • In 2007, after a very full-on few years, they took another leap of faith and moved from Sydney to a 120 year-old farm on 60 acres in the Byron Bay hinterland. “We realised that we wanted to enjoy a more balanced, carefree lifestyle and to have a greater connection to nature,” says Gavin. “Now we are very settled with our Jack Russell Charlie and our 30 cows! We’ve realised that living a simple life makes us happy. Have we achieved this so far? Absolutely not! We both think we work harder than ever to make our simple life in Byron work!’’
  • Inspired by their own experience and finding that most of the artworks available to interior designers were mass produced, Gavin & Warren started their art business 4 years ago, to offer something unique and beautiful. ‘‘The trend towards using the natural aesthetic and textures in design will continue to move from strength to strength. As the world gets busier, as more people move to the city, people will increasingly yearn for beautiful products that are recycled, made from natural materials, are hand crafted and have beautiful texture,” Gavin says.

  • “The new luxury is all about product that it beautifully hand crafted, has soul, meaning and nothing to do with price or the label.’’ It’s certainly proving to be true, with many of the country’s top designers using their beautifully framed work in homes, hotels and resorts.
Their wholesale art, inspired by nature, is popular with interior designers
Their wholesale art, inspired by nature, is popular with interior designers

  • Their wholesale art, inspired by nature, is popular with interior designers
  • During the last year, the boys have travelled to some of the world’s most populated and isolated places.
  • “We’ve photographed and sketched along the way with a mission to create a travelogue of objects of desire, drawing on the striking colours, exquisite textures and natural beauty around us.
  • We have worked with the most talented craftspeople to bring our creative designs to life. Our collective objective is to work in an environment where creativity remains supreme and our love of natural beauty is honored in our artworks.”
Designer Boys blue fern
Designer Boys blue fern


  • Despite life not being as quiet as they’d hoped, Gav and Waz have no plans to sit still just yet and continue to work on both the wholesale art business and the interior design business.


  • “We’re currently in negotiations with one of the biggest homeware brands in the US to develop an exclusive Designer Boys range for them, so that’s very exciting!
  • Ultimately, we would like to have distributors in the US and Europe. However, we’re very mindful to build our business slowly to ensure we remain authentic and never get too big for our boots.’’
  • And with that humble attitude, shared passion and a strong relationship as a couple as well as business partners, they can’t really go wrong!


Find out more about Designer Boys Collections.


  1. ^ http://womansday.ninemsn.com.au/entertainment/tvfilmsbooks/7963126/the-block-where-are-they-now
  2. ^ http://news.domain.com.au/domain/real-estate-news/set-for-sale-in-six-days-20130927-2ujaq.html