When photographer Lauren Bamford and her Tassie-born husband Keith traveled back to Hobart for summer holidays, weekends and Dark Mofo trips, they would stay in Keith’s teenage bedroom. While exceptionally grateful for the parent-in-law hospitality, it wasn’t quite the grown-up holiday vibe the pair were seeking!
At the same time, Lauren and Keith were hoping that Hobart might be their opportunity to get into the property market. Initially, they looked at purchasing an apartment, but the search proved elusive in a ‘super competitive’ market. And so, at the suggestion of friend and collaborator Stephanie Stamatis, they floated the idea of building something entirely from scratch.
Lauren and Keith perused land online to see what was out there, and ‘the first block that came up ticked all the boxes: location, character and price!’ Win win win! The pair flew down that weekend, put in an offer, and three years later – hey presto, Slow Beam is complete! Well, kind of. The first year saw a lot of back and forth on the design, and finding a builder to execute the vision. The next was ‘permits, permits, permits! City Council hell’, recalls Lauren. And the third was the build!
Slow Beam in West Hobart is a collaboration between Sarah Trotter of Hearth Studio with help from architect Murray Barker and Lauren. She highlights that Sarah was brought onto the project ‘literally straight away’, and the resulting outcome is a combination of Lauren’s love of colour, pattern and mid-century design; with Sarah’s subdued, earthy aesthetic. The resulting outcome is a moody bunker, ‘a cosy hideout, circa 1960s Italian style.’ Bellissimo in the dramatic Hobart bush!
‘It was important for me to invest in good pieces, made locally, by Australian designers,’ tells Lauren. The interiors are grounded in the incredible Esther Stewart carpet in the living room, which was custom made for Slow Beam. Lauren describes how this ‘hand-tufted, pure wool, wall-to-wall artwork’ came to influence the colour palette for the entire house. Furnishings and textiles were then added from Grazia and Co, before including the work of a whole swag of Australian creatives. The home is indeed an incredible showcase of local art and design, with pieces from Anna Varendorff, Ebony Truscott, Henry Wilson, Kirsten Perry, Ali McCann, Fred Ganim, Idle Hands, Eleanor Louise Butt, Jo Duck, Sarah Ellison, andSharon Alpren, amongst many others. What a lineup!
Lauren explains that designing a holiday home from scratch allowed her to be experimental, and embrace bold design. ‘I wanted it to stand out from the crowd, and be a place that people wanted to visit, not just a place to sleep.’ With these dramatic interiors, matched only by spectacular vistas of the Derwent River, this has got to be one of the most unique and breathtaking getaways in Tassie!
Book Slow Beam in West Hobart for your next Tassie trip here!
Welcome to Slow Beam, nestled in the West Hobart bush. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
A view over the treetops, with a Grazia and Co custom pillar table with Carrara marble, Featherston scape dining chairs in black leather. Bluestone crazy paving. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
A gem in the bush! Photo – Emily Weaving.
Chaise lounge and suspension chairs by Featherston. Grazia & Co resin coffee table. Linge Roset Plumy couch. Esther Stewart custom carpet. Painting by Eleanor Louise Butt. Photo – Emily Weaving.
Sculpture by Minaal Lawn. Grazia & Co resin coffee table. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
That carpet! Custom design carpet by Esther Stewart, Douglas and Bec ‘Turn’ floor lamp and Linge Roset Plumy couch. Photo – Emily Weaving.
Brass side table by Idle Hands. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Honestly, that carpet! Photo – Emily Weaving.
Lounge in the Featherston z300 chaise lounge. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Handblown orange glass tumbler by The Melbourne Workshop. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
No detail is overlooked. Floor lamp by Human Home. Photo – Emily Weaving.
A cosy corner. Caesarstone ‘rugged concrete’ bench tops, Grazia & Co Iva stools with sheepskin, and Ebony Truscott oil painting. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
The dark interiors sit against the craggy rock face. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
A brooding kitchen featuring Caesarstone ‘rugged concrete’ bench tops. Grazia & Co Iva stools with sheepskin. Ebony Truscott oil painting. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
A zing of brass with Henry Wilson handles and the cracks of the bluestone crazy paving. Ebony Truscott oil painting. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Arch vanity chair by Douglas and Bec. Artwork by Ali McCann. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Grazia and Co New York side tables. Custom made bed by Phil Mason. Bedside lamps by ODO for Milligram. Mug by Kirsten Perry. Linen by I Love Linen. Merino blanket by Seljak. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Views out over the Derwent River. Arch vanity chair by Douglas and Bec. Photo – Emily Weaving.
Incredible tiles by Sarah Ellison Studio. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Hello Hobart. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
Slow Beam, sitting quietly. Photo – Lauren Bamford.
A bath with a view! Photo – Lauren Bamford.