Polar opposites

This modern duplex with its uniform white exterior belies the light and dark, cool and warm contrasts within.

Photos: The Palm Co.


Laura Valic

Builder Baz Clarke loves to incorporate new products into his builds, and gets a huge amount of satisfaction watching them spring to life off of the drawing board. 


‘I still drive or purposefully take my dog for a walk past builds we finished years ago, just so I can revisit them and feel proud about what we’ve achieved,’ he says. 


His most recent build, the Teal Avenue Townhouses, situated in Paradise Point at the northern end of the Gold Coast, is another one to add to his list of growing achievements through his boutique building and development company, Luxbuilt. The duplex has identical floor plans – but on the one side is a home with pale tones and a distinct ‘Scandi’ design, while the other offers bold and moody finishes, themed ‘Melbourne Luxe’.
The townhouses show what can be achieved with different finishes based on the same layout and budget
Image: The Palm Co.
understair nook
‘People are interested in quality builds…but it has to tick all of their boxes’
Image: The Palm Co.
Originally hailing from Melbourne himself, Baz says he wanted to ‘bring a bit of Melbourne design to the Gold Coast’. Together with interior design studio, Zephyr and Stone, run by sisters Ania Forster and Kasia Clarke (who is also Baz’s wife), he completed a striking project that appealed to his interest in challenging and contemporary design. 

The HIA member business offers full design and construction services, mostly ‘custom builds with medium to high-end finishes for people who want something unique that they’re proud of’. Zephyr and Stone help by providing the creative vision and complete the designs, floor plans, specifications and inclusions for all of Luxbuilt’s projects. 
The kitchens were designed to be the focal points
Image: The Palm Co.
Visually beautiful with practical everyday functionality 
Image: The Palm Co.
For the Teal Avenue Townhouses, the idea was to show what can be achieved with different finishes based on the same layout and budget. With two bedrooms and a study, media room, two living areas, a formal dining room separating the kitchen, plus a bathroom, ensuite and powder room, the duplex promises a comfortable lifestyle for its intended buyer. In the thick of construction, the Melbourne Luxe townhouse was quickly snapped up while the Scandi serves as the business’ display home.

From the outset, the kitchens were designed to be the focal points; visually beautiful with practical everyday functionality to draw people into the space. Sleek cabinetry, with integrated appliances and plenty of storage, thanks to tall 2.7-metre cupboards, are complemented by feature benchtops. 
‘The kitchens definitely take centre stage in these townhouses and took the majority of the planning,’ Baz says. ‘We chose to incorporate three-metre long islands as this is where people tend to congregate. We really wanted to create a space where people enjoyed spending time.’

In the Scandi townhouse, the 2pac cabinetry features a muted grey tone and velvety smooth feel, and is accompanied by feature shelving in Polytec’s Angora Oak Woodmatt. This is further complemented by Laminam Statuarietto Porcelain benchtops and splashback in a matte finish supplied by Ace Stone & Tiles. A black sink matches the door hardware and the surface-mounted downlights by Beacon Lighting above, which provides just the right amount of lighting for the room. Completing the Scandi concept, the flooring in Plantino Engineered Oak drifts into the formal dining area.
kitchen appliance storage

integrated appliances and plenty of storage thanks to tall 2.7-metre cupboards

By comparison the Melbourne Luxe is all about the darker hues. ‘For the cabinetry we chose Evenex in Burnished Oak,’ Baz says. ‘We incorporated extensive curved cabinetry to soften the masculine effect of the hard finishes, such as the tiles that cover the ground floor. These Italian 600 x 600mm grey tiles help to provide balance, along with Alpine Matte benchtops from WK Quantum Quartz. 

‘We curved the island bench on both sides, including the stone. The curves look fabulous and the purchasers absolutely love them.’

The curves sweep on into the wet rooms in both units. Floating timber vanities match the materials from their respective kitchens, and contrast with grey tiling that extends to the ceiling and throughout the double showers. With one key modification, the ensuite in the Scandi townhouse became Baz’s favourite room. 
‘We really wanted to create that wow-factor so we installed a full width double-glazed skylight above the shower,’ he says. ‘It’s an amazing feature and I smile every time I walk past. It’s the most beautiful room both during the day and night.’
mirrors vanity
Curved floating timber vanities
Image: The Palm Co.
‘We incorporated extensive curved cabinetry to soften the masculine effect of the hard finishes’
Image: The Palm Co.
Another standout feature, he says, is the timber panelling in the dining room and master bedroom.

‘The timber cladding comes pre-made and we painted it a shade slightly darker than the walls,’ Baz says. ‘We also created a shadow line at the ceiling and floor level; so it almost looks as though the walls are floating. 

‘It creates a beautiful effect, particularly at night with the pendant lights shining on them. It’s a fabulous product by Glosswood, we’d love to use it again.’
The duplex promises a comfortable lifestyle for its intended buyer
Image: The Palm Co.
Cabinetry features a muted grey tone and velvety smooth feel
Image: The Palm Co.
Baz says that the duplex has proven to be a huge success for the business, garnering a positive response from other designers and the public alike. Social media has helped to draw in visitors to view the project.

‘Impressions so far have been fantastic and we’ve had great feedback,’ he says. ‘Social media is one of the biggest avenues that people are finding out about us at the moment, especially through Zephyr and Stone’s Instagram presence. It’s a popular way for people to see a finished home and it’s something we’re heavily invested in to help grow our business.’

Riding the success of the project, Luxbuilt is about to commence a new duplex close by, with the same level of attention given to customisation. 
‘In the current market we’re finding there are a large number of people interested in quality builds – they’re willing to spend the money but it has to tick all of their boxes. As long as we can stay well informed of trends and continue to build quality properties, the future looks bright.’

Teal Avenue Townhouses at a glance

Builder: Luxbuilt
Designers: Zephyr and Stone
Location: Gold Coast, Queensland

Melbourne Luxe Materials:

  • Cabinetry: Evenex in ‘Burnished Oak’, Elton Group
  • Benchtops: WK Quantum Quartz in Alpine Matte
  • Appliances: fully integrated by Fisher & Paykel
  • Tiles: 600x600mm Colletiva Tortona Bianco Matt tiles from Ace Stone & Tiles; Artedomus Yohen Border mosaic tiles
  • Flooring: Levante Wool carpets in the colour Felucca from Cavalier Bremworth
  • Lighting: Dowel Jones Lord Sconce, LED Bar Pendant from Beacon Lighting
  • Paint: Crisp White, Taubmans Endure. 

Scandi Materials:

  • Cabinetry: Polytec Angora Oak Woodmatt and 2Pac in a satin finish in Taubmans Ashen Mist
  • Kitchen benchtop and splash back: Laminam Statuarietto Porcelain benchtops, matte finish
  • Appliances: fully integrated by Fisher & Paykel
  • Tiles: 600x1200mm X-Rock white, supplied by Three Balls Red
  • Flooring: Plantino Engineered Oak Elemental in Lyon; Levente wool carpets in the colour Felucca from Cavalier Bremworth
  • Lighting: X-Small Lucciola Wall lights from Lights Lights Lights; MFL by Masson Mila surface mounted downlights by Beacon Lighting; Skylight, supplied and installed by Skydome Brisbane
  • Feature timber wall: Glosswood Raw Paulownia Designer Lining double profile, painted in Taubmans Ashen Mist
  • Paint: Ashen Mist, quarter strength, Taubmans Endure.

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