Beaches Home + Property Issue 3

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home + property.

SOUTH COAST RETREAT Robertson Collectif Arthouse Projects Formed Gardens

This season we’ve had a ball exploring everything you need to make your home and property dreams come true. Find out how to build better on The Beaches, eco-furniture to blow your mind, tiles, pools and all the joys of brilliant floors! Plus, step inside one amazing private retreat on the South Coast. Proudly serving the Northern Beaches, Sydney, Australia – since 2014.

We connect people and property, wherever they may be...

The Future of Real Estate Our tech connects us with the right buyers or tenants for your property. As the algorithm changes, so does our approach.

Contents home + property.



10. 5.

Stay Cool This Summer Upstate share their top tips on how to maximise your outdoor entertaining space for dining and lounging this Summer.


Upstate: Unlocking Opportunities How to become a savvy investor amongst the rocketing residential renting rates and ever evolving inclination to invest in a new build.


Dream Home, Expert Design Coco Republic’s expert design team share insights on how to give your space, whether it be a single room or an entire home, a stylish make-over.

20. The Power of Property Read about how Upstate has taken an innovative approach to residential sales by using unique strategies that have left their clients extremely satisfied.


22. Building Better on The Beaches Unadulterated Q & A with Mark Romeo about his secret formula to building exceptional homes on the Northern Beaches.

24. Crafting Outdoor Bliss Want to know how Focus Pools and Miller Stone & Co do it?! Read all about both company’s collaboration with one another to create immaculate outdoor living spaces.

10. Aspiring South Coast Retreat Exclusive Q & A with the architect, builder and landscape designer of Jaspers Brush, the ultimate retreat home on the South Coast.

16. Serenity Found in the Southern Highlands A bit about buyers agent Earth Property and their dedication to finding you the perfect family paradise for you outside of bustling city life.

18. Navigating the Commercial Landscape Discover how Upstate excelled in this year's commercial property sector and explore their future plans for 2024.


28. If It’s Good Enough For James Bond... Diana Taylor’s journey to discovering an iconic Avalon Original Furniture Brand, and rebirthing it stylish, heirloom pieces of furniture art. Checkout Sway Home Avalon.

30. Taking Care of Your Financial Wellbeing Sam Ayliffe at Astute Manly is a financial organising hero, guiding you toward your money goals and keeping you on track.

33. The Secrets to Bush Food Plants Managing Director of Harvest Nursery, Marina Grassecker is back to tell us all about the native bush foods that could be spicing up your garden.

COVER Aspiring South Coast Retreat | Jaspers Brush Photography: Anna Wiewiora (annamul)









Danish Bespoke Design









Showroom 7-8, 1000 Pittwater Road, Collaroy 2097 | 02 9972 9300 LIC NO: 185107C KI TC H E N S • L A U N DR I E S • B A TH R O O MS • W A R DRO B ES • O F F I C E S • E N TE R TA I N ME N T PROPERTY. UNIT S // 3 Beaches


STAYING COOL THIS SUMMER With the long Summer days ahead and festive season in full swing, now is the time to maximise your outdoor space for dining, entertaining or lounging. We are loving the outdoor tren n ds this trends year; there are some fun and bright ide eas to bring ideas your space to life. Here’s somee we have our eye on.

Impress you your guests with an outdoor bar cart stocked with coloure coloured co glassware, unique cock cocktail shakers, fun straws and ingredients for your favouri favourite summer spr spritz. Huset

Elevate your tablescape this ffestive i season with i h ffun and contrasting colours. Make a move away from the traditional red and green by mixing and matching placemats, napkins and glassware in non-traditional colours such as pinks, oranges and blues. Pillow Talk

Instantly inject a pop of colour to your outdoor dining or pool area with a bright-coloured umbrella. Inspired by European beach clubs, these come in a range of colours and patterns sure to throw the right kind of shade to your outdoor space. Business & Pleasure Co.

Unwind in style with an outdoor sling chair. Comfortable and chic for your patio or by the pool, they are also easy to stash away or transport with you to picnics, the beach or camping. Temple & Webster

There’s so much playful glassware around at the moment. Be it fluted glasses, tumblers or brightcoloured pitchers, the options are endless to make drinks time all the more exciting. Fazeek

Speak to your local Upstate team today, and they’ll show you the possibilities that are earning excellent results. Upstate - The Future of Real Estate | PAGE 5


Unlocking Opportunities: A CLEAR SOLUTION TO SYDNEY’S HOUSING CRISIS: NEW DEVELOPMENT City-wide, Sydney has a rental vacancy rate of under 1.5% and has experienced the annual rent increase of 27.5%. This is the highest annual rent increase since REIA records started in March 1994. A lack of development sees renters set to suffer most from high rents and dwindling supply of stock. Sydney’s real estate market may currently be feeling the effects of rising interest rates but it’s a different story in the rental market. Across the city, the median rent has risen by 25.6% over the past year, according to SQM data, with apartment rents lifting an incredible 29.3%. Nowhere is this price increase more evident than in the new development market.


Dee Why and surrounding suburbs

Property Type

1970s-1980s Builds

New Builds

1 Bedroom



2 Bedroom



3 Bedroom



CASA DELMAR Indicative Investment Cashflow Table For 1-Bedroom Apartment Deposit Amount




Purchase Price




Deposit + Stamp Duty




Total Loan Amount




Annual Repayments (IO)




Est. Strata (PA)








Expected Weekly Rental




Annual Surplus/Shortfall




Nestled in a serene enclave amid lush gardens bordering Stony Range Botanical Garden, select from a range of stunning one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments and penthouses including a high-end, limited Luxury Collection of penthouses or garden apartments. Above is an outline of an Indicative Depreciate Schedule based on a one-bedroom apartment purchase in Casa Delmar. To learn more about the potential investment benefits, register your interest at or call 1800 335 627.

HERE IS A LIST OF BENEFITS FOR BUYING OFF-THE-PLAN DEVELOPMENTS: Modern amenities. Newer builds offer attractive amenities such as lifts, undercover parking and spacious common areas, providing a more enticing prospect for tenants. Tax deductions. You can establish a depreciation schedule across the property’s brand-new appliances and finishes, potentially saving thousands at tax time. Government grants. The Government has introduced several First Home Buyer

grants, assistance schemes and stamp duty concessions that also apply to purchasing off-the-plan. Maintenance-free living. With all fixtures and hardware being brand new, investors can avoid the hassle and costs associated with the potential breakdown of old fixtures translating to a more cost-effective investment. Upgraded features. New builds come equipped with contemporary features such as air-conditioning,

dishwashers and internal laundries, addressing the preferences of today’s tenants who prioritise modern conveniences over outdated facilities. In summary, choosing new builds ensures investors not only meet the evolving preferences of tenants but also stand to benefit from higher rental incomes, reduced maintenance concerns and substantial depreciation benefits. It’s the smart choice for a sustainable investment.

For personalised advice and tailored investment strategies, it's recommended you engage with one of our portfolio advisors. Our experts are well-versed in the nuances of the Sydney market and can guide investors towards making informed and profitable decisions. Speak to our Projects Team on 0488 668 166.

Upstate - The Future of Real Estate | PAGE 7



Words & Photography: Coco Republic

Whether it’s a single room or an entire home makeover you’re looking for, Coco Republic’s design team are experts when it comes to transforming spaces into cutting-edge and stylish interiors. And lucky for us, their flagship showroom in Balgowlah also hosts an award-winning interior design studio. Read on to learn more about their latest interior design offerings.


nspired by worldwide design and architectural influences and well-versed in the art of how to live a well-designed life, Coco Republic has revamped their interior design packages to help you do the same.

The new tiered services cover every facet of residential interior design, so whether you want a room refresh or a customised interior design package for the whole home, Coco Republic has a comprehensive system to meet your needs. Showcasing a wealth of technical experience and a talent for bringing visions to life, Coco Republic’s team seamlessly blends practicality with unique and diverse styles.


Discover the tier that’s right for you:

“Designing a space and selecting furniture can be time-consuming and overwhelming. Our designers can streamline the process, present you with curated choices, and handle the logistics of ordering, delivery, and installation.” DIANA RIBAREVSKI, DIRECTOR OF INTERIOR DESIGN AND STYLING, COCO REPUBLIC

TIER ONE YOUR DESIGN JOURNEY BEINGS Tier 1 is a complimentary service and offers a 60-minute consultation with a design consultant, in the showroom or virtually. The one-on-one session includes furniture and homewares curation along with materiality and palette selections. Finally, an easy way to feel like an expert on your own home.

TIER TWO UNLOCK YOUR STYLE This impressive package extends to an on-site analysis carried out by the design team, who will then create customised mood boards and furnished floor plans for up to three rooms, which will be presented during a showroom presentation. The fee for this service is $995 and additional rooms can be added for a fee.

TIER THREE TURNKEY DESIGN SOLUTIONS This brilliant, bespoke interior design package builds upon Tier 2 and includes optional extras such as turnkey design solutions, which can extend beyond furniture and homeware specification, for up to five rooms. Assistance with window coverings, and colour and paint selections, along with an interior design renovation service menu, can be unlocked. This unique service has a starting price of $2,495 and includes a dedicated Project Manager.

Both Tier 1 and Tier 2 packages come with styling services. White-glove installation and delivery is available for an extra fee. Each package is tailored to provide unique outcomes based on individual needs.


Interior Design Insights Diana Ribarevski is the Director of Interior Design and Styling at Coco Republic. She understands how the Coco Republic team can provide a deep level of expertise and knowledge of interior design and furniture curation: “With the expertise and guidance of one of our designers, you can create a space that reflects your style, optimises functionality, and provides a harmonious and visually appealing environment. A well-designed space can enhance your daily living experience, create a positive ambience, and increase the value and appeal of your home. “Leverage the experience of our skilled designers to research, source and coordinate furniture options aligned with your vision. Designing a space and selecting furniture can be time consuming and overwhelming. Our designers can streamline the process, present you with curated choices, and handle the logistics of ordering, delivery and installation. This saves you time and minimises the stress associated with furniture shopping and design decisions.” •

Flagship Showroom at 198 Condamine Street, Balgowlah Insta: @cocorepublic | |

Beaches Home & Property



On our getaway to the NSW South Coast this season, we discovered a beautiful, architecturally designed, private home south of Berry. We also caught up with architect, Liam Robertson, Builder, Andy Bishop, and Landscaper, Luke Baldwin, from Formed Gardens, to understand how they came together to work on this special residential project. Sit back and discover how real dreams are made. The brief for this spectacular project on the South Coast of NSW was to design a home built for versatility. A space that seamlessly caters to the needs of its retired owners and has the ability to transform into a welcoming place for up to 18 children and grandchildren to enjoy. Balancing a blend of intimacy with expansiveness, the Architect, Builder and Landscaper worked seamlessly together to check every box. Come with us as we step inside and glean insights from the creative minds behind this exquisite home. Discover the inspirations, design process and thoughtful details that make this residence truly remarkable.

PART ONE: DESIGNING THE DREAM Liam Robertson is the Owner and Architect at Robertson Collectif, an architecture and interior design studio based on the South Coast of NSW. Here he talks about the importance of design and wants versus needs. Jaspers Brush is a divine home! Congratulations! How did you get involved with the team to bring this special property to life? We were initially introduced to our clients by Andy Bishop from Arthouse Projects, a South Coast construction company. Andy had constructed a residence for the clients previously and we had worked with Andy before so the process was easy. Luke Baldwin from Formed Gardens works with us on most of our South Coast projects and had worked with the clients before too, so collaboration was easy and each party already understood each other. This made for a really enjoyable process and project. How do you begin the design process for a client’s dream home? We meet our clients and talk as much as possible until we feel we fully understand the brief and the site. In this case there was an existing house to be reused as part of the brief. This required time to be spent assessing what portions of the existing building are possible items to retain and reuse or alter.


How do you balance your expertise with a client’s vision? Understanding our clients is a huge part of the design process. Taking time to sit down and talk to them allows us to understand the underlying thoughts of their brief. Then we can answer or create design solutions that we feel will respond to everyone. Over the years we have learnt enough about wants versus needs to warrant a degree in psychology. We’re lucky to have clients who trust us to realise their brief. How do you ensure the design reflects a client’s lifestyle and functional needs? As part of the initial brief and project scope, we get a good understanding of how the finished project needs to perform and how it will be lived in by our clients. The most satisfying moment is seeing them enjoy the project we’ve created. How do you stay up-to-date on the latest design trends and technologies? We’re lucky to be based two hours from Sydney so it’s easy to access our suppliers in the city. Locally, we have a strong network of like-minded tradespeople and makers giving us a fantastic network to learn from. Architectural media is also a wonderful thing to keep anyone excited about the industry. If your dream home had a theme inspired by a fictional place, which one would you choose and how would you incorporate it into the design? This is hard… After a bit of thought, Springfield – the town from The Simpsons TV show. It’s full of bold, solid colours. Surely it would be a happy, bright place to live in. We have started to bring more colour into our interiors so bringing the colourful town of Springfield in could be really fun inside a new project.

Architect: Robertson Collectif @robertsoncollectif


Architecture | Interior design SOUTH COAST NSW Nominated Architect Liam Robertson NSW Arch. Reg. 9960 ACT Arch. Reg. 2465 PO Box 4021, Gerroa 2534 NSW @robertsoncollectif Beaches COVERED. Home + Property


PART TWO: BUILDING THE HOME As the owner of Arthouse Projects, a construction company based on the NSW South Coast, Builder Andy Bishop specialises in new homes and renovations. Here he discusses the challenges and the steps that made this project a dream. This is one special project. Did you face many challenges along the way? We were involved early on in planning how to construct the home the most economical, efficient and cost-effective way while keeping with the design team’s vision. The home has seven bedrooms and classified BAL-FZ ,which is the most extreme bushfire rating. Material shortages were causing massive delays when it was in the design phase so we had to think outside the box with a lot of the decision making. What’s your approach when collaborating with clients throughout the build? We have a simple belief that communication is the key to a successful project. We also use an online platform to log daily updates, progress pictures, videos and files to help streamline the process.


“We had to think outside the box with a lot of the decision making.” ANDY BISHOP, BUILDER, ARTHOUSE PROJECTS

How do you ensure construction aligns with the design and the client’s vision? Firstly, we define the scope and goals of the project with both the client and architect. This is done by identifying key deliverables, milestones, budget, quality standards and risks of the project. How do you handle unexpected challenges or changes that pop up? It’s almost certain that unforeseen challenges or changes will arise, especially in current climates. We handle this by a combination of effective communication, collaborative problem solving and proactive decision making. What measures do you take to ensure the quality and durability of the construction work? Employing a team of superior craftspeople, appropriate material selection and experience is essential. We share regular progress reports and on-site inspections daily to ensure the quality and durability of our work. Communication and providing the right maintenance procedure for after construction care are also important. What steps do you take to keep a project on schedule? Pre-construction planning is key, also employing an expert site foreman for the duration of each job and sticking to a critical path.

Builder: Arthouse Projects +61 412 708 708 @arthouseproject +61 412 708 708 @arthouseprojects ABN: 18626949237 | BUILDERS LIC: 340280C



PART THREE: FORMING THE GARDENS It’s often the gardens and green space that put the finishing touch on a beautiful home. Luke Baldwin is the brains behind Formed Gardens, a landscape design and construction company servicing Sydney and the NSW South Coast. Here he talks about all the elements that go into achieving a harmonious outcome. The gardens around this Jaspers Brush home are simply stunning. Tell us about the journey. I’ve worked with Liam and Andy on multiple projects and over the years we’ve built a great trust in what each person brings to a project. On this project the landscape and building design will evolve on-site no matter how resolved it is on plan, so having a building team that understands that, and has the ability to workshop ideas and execute the detail, is highly important to achieving the vision. Interestingly, I’ve looked back at the 3D designs that were created for this project and it’s almost identical to the end result. What that says to me is that in principle, although there may be tweaks along the way, a good team will ensure the intended vision and level of quality in finishes, and throughout, is brought to life. How do you understand a client’s ideas before starting the landscape design? Firstly, I listen to the client's needs and dreams, for the future use of the property or home. For instance, this is a holiday house for the clients and their extended family, including a clan of grandchildren. Then we figure out how that brief and vision fits into the site context and how it can work with the proposed architectural design and other factors like development controls, environmental challenges, budget and accessibility. How do you incorporate the natural surroundings and architectural features into your landscape designs? On a site like this, with so much natural beauty, it’s important for the landscape to blend with its surroundings and help settle the building into the site. Making sure landscape and architecture are speaking


the same language is integral to achieving a harmonious outcome. One of the great things about working with Liam, and his team at Robertson Collectif, is the ability to create these marriages between building and landscape. An example of this is threading the stone element through the house and garden. What role does sustainability play in your landscape designs? Sustainability plays an integral role in all our designs, especially now with a warming climate and rising material costs and transportation challenges. We try to use as many locally sourced products as possible and stick to local native planting that once established is low water use and can handle variabilities in weather and climate. Particularly on a site like this which operates completely from rainwater supply.

Photography: Anna Wiewiora (annamul)

How do you balance aesthetics with functionality? Firstly, the design needs to perform the intended function. Spatially it needs to work and connect with key areas of the site and architecture. Getting this right sets up the aesthetic layers and that’s when the fun starts to happen to achieve a vision for the design, materiality and planting. Such layers are influenced by the architectural features and surrounding landscape environment. How do you ensure the longevity and ease of maintenance for the landscaping elements? Using sustainability principles, that is, materials that will stand the test of time and age gracefully within their environment. We also try to use local native plants where possible for these reasons. •

Landscaper: Formed Gardens Sydney | South Coast NSW (02) 8036 8580 @formedgardens

Sydney | South Coast NSW (02) 8036 8580 formedgardens Beaches COVERED. Home + Property

S O U T H E R N H I G H L A N D S | N SW | B U Y E R ' S AG E N T

SERENITY FOUND IN THE SOUTHERN HIGHLANDS Escape the city hustle and discover tranquility in the Southern Highlands, just an hour and a half south of Sydney. Earth Property Buyers Agents, your local advocates and guides, not only unlock exclusive off-market gems, but ensure a seamless journey to purchasing your dream home.


community where markets brimmed with local produce, and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee and baked bread permeated the air. A foodie’s paradise, the region delighted palates with the flavours of farm-to-plate goodness.

Tired of bustling city life, a family embarked on a transformative journey to this idyllic retreat, where time seemed to slow down amid rolling hills, cosy cottages and the sweet scent of eucalyptus.

For arts enthusiasts, the Southern Highlands opened its arms wide, adorned with galleries and theatres showcasing the rich cultural tapestry of the region. Shopping became an experience, with boutique stores offering unique treasures crafted by local artisans.

In the Southern Highlands, life’s pace was not dictated by the ticking of a clock but by the gentle sway of trees. Vast open spaces offered solace, with greenery stretching as far as the eye could see. Children revelled in expansive school yards, where education extended beyond books, encompassing the fresh mountain air and the world outside the classroom. This haven revealed itself as more than a tranquil escape; it was a vibrant

Embracing a slower, wholesome pace, the family found paradise. For those seeking to make the Southern Highlands their home, Earth Property Buyers Agents stood as trusted local guides, weaving dreams into reality as advocates in finding dream homes. The region, akin to a story unfolding every day, became a canvas for new beginnings.

As local award-winning buyer’s agents, Earth Property Buyers Agents navigate the real estate landscape, often unveiling exclusive, off-market gems tailored to unique needs. Their robust real estate relationships, market knowledge and negotiation prowess ensure a seamless journey from aspiration to acquisition, saving time and resources. Let Earth Property Buyers Agents be your advocates, turning the page to an exciting new chapter of home ownership in the idyllic Southern Highlands. Visit or call 0418 797 701 to embark on your Southern Highlands dream.


0418 797 701 | Insta @bowral_buyers_agent | @southernhighlandsbuyersagent PAGE 16 | BEACHES COVERED.

Words: Adam Marsden | Photography: Bodhi Todd

estled an hour and a half south of Sydney in the heart of NSW, the Southern Highlands unfolds as a picturesque haven, beckoning weary souls to embrace the enchanting beauty of a treechange.

Get the return on investment without the hassle.

Have your commercial property managed by the most professional team on The Beaches with full support from the largest leasing team who place more tenants than any other agency.

You will receive a detailed monthly ʟnancial statement

We study the market and ensure rent reviews are up to date

We manage tenants, ensuring your property is well maintained

Qualiʟed commercial managers specialise in legal compliance

The team you can trust to manage your commercial assets, helping you achieve your property goals. Let’s chat and let’s get your property managed by the best. 02 9971 9000

Enjoy peace of mind, knowing your asset is in good hands

U P STAT E C O M M E R C I A L W R A P - U P 2 0 2 3

NAVIGATING THE COMMERCIAL LANDSCAPE While Upstate has certainly made its mark on The Beaches’ residential property market, they also thrive in the commercial property sector. Here the team gives us the lowdown on 2023 and unpack future trends.

Upstate Commercial stats 2023


Number of enquiries


Number of inspections


Visitors to our website

UPSTATE: WHAT WE’VE SEEN IN 2023 A tumultuous market. We experienced a tumultuous commercial property market in 2023 with varying real estate conditions. This uncertainty is largely due to the 13 interest-rate rises since May 2022, rising inflation, and an underlying sentiment of economic uncertainty. Despite the inconsistency, Upstate has continued to see record commercial property vacancy rates and all-time rent rises in a number of commercial sectors. Increased time on the market. Across Australia, commercial property enquiries were down 18% in 2023. With subdued demand, this means properties are spending a longer time on the market on average than during


the pre-pandemic booms. Despite this, we’ve noticed well-priced, professionally marketed commercial properties continue to outperform. Growing commercial interest from the big end of town. We’ve also noticed large institutional investors and organisations are increasingly interested in commercial real estate investments. Often fed up with short-term, highmaintenance tenants in the residential sector, many institutional groups are shifting their focus to commercial properties that offer long-term, stable tenants and incomes in case of subdued economic growth in 2024 and beyond.

REASONS TO SELL IN THE CURRENT MARKET After over a year of post-pandemic adjustment, the Australian commercial real-estate market has experienced the lowest level for a third quarter seen in more than a decade. Fortunately, The Beaches are witnessing a much different story, showing signs of great improvement despite ongoing economic headwinds.

The recent uptick is a sign that the region’s resilience during a tumultuous few years is beginning to bear fruit, as reflected by a relatively strong economy since the initial slumps around COVID-19. Australia’s commercial property market is expected to bounce back with a projected population growth of 10% over the next five years, making the region an increasingly attractive prospect for local and overseas commercial investors alike. This is particularly the case on the highly sought-after Northern Beaches with an unmatched balance of work and lifestyle, a fast-growing industrial sector, and significant proposed developments in and around the Brookvale area. As office assets, retail spaces and industrial properties experience increasing demand and the build-to-rent (BTR) sector in Australia continues to gain momentum, we expect an exciting few months ahead. Now may just be the perfect time to capitalise on the favourable market conditions and the growing demand among commercial real estate investors.

Words & Photography: Upstate Real Estate


he commercial team at Upstate Real Estate has navigated a challenging property market to achieve considerable success in 2023. Led by Vince West, they have plenty of insights to share on future trends and factors that will be shaping commercial real estate investing on The Beaches.

THE YEAR AHEAD Here’s what Upstate is predicting for 2024 and beyond. A shift to recession-proof assets. The Australian government has forecasted economic growth for the 2023-24 financial year to just 1.5% and has predicted inflation to hit 7.75% by year-end. With growing uncertainty, we predict commercial owners to act quickly when selling as they shift to recession-proof assets and cash. Despite this increase in stock coming into the market, we expect strategically located commercial buildings to continue to perform. Rental pricing to hold strong on The Beaches. The Northern Beaches market still has a relatively finite supply of commercial properties. As such, we forecast property price growth to remain relatively strong and perhaps even outpace the national average rate of 6.5% per annum over the next five years. With a dampened economy ahead, now is the perfect time to buy in the relatively stable Beaches market. Investors buying in anticipation of the Brookvale masterplan. Initially drafted in 2017, the recently revised Brookvale masterplan is set to improve transport connectivity, increase community spaces and support around 1,000 new jobs with new, quality office spaces in the area. As they have already begun doing so, we predict that many investors will look to buy commercial real estate on The Beaches in anticipation of these major developments.

COMMERCIAL REVIEW WITH VINCENT WEST Warehouses. The Beaches’ warehouse market is still the most desired and strongest commercial asset class. Although yields remain fairly tight, the industrial

685 Pittwater Road, Dee Why

sector boasts the most demand with the lowest vacancy rates of all sectors and the lowest incoming supply. In recent months, we’ve found both rents and sale prices are stabilising and quality buildings, with easy access and higher clearance, in good locations are still outperforming the secondary stock by far. Offices. On The Beaches, we’ve noticed ‘a flight to quality’, meaning tenants and buyers are desperate for the highest quality of office space with warm shell fitouts. This means the presentation of your office space is key to strong enquiry levels, as employers look to entice their staff back into the workplace with appealing spaces. This trend is largely attributable to the success of our more boutique suburban office markets, in particular Dee Why and Manly, which boasted the lowest vacancy rates on record. Retail. It has been a volatile year for the Australian retail-industry sector with consumer discretionary spending reducing due to higher interest rates and a rising cost of living. Fortunately, the Northern Beaches holds a strong position due to its demographic and tourism trends and so, despite a slight softening in yields, we’ve seen investors still have an appetite for blue chip tenanted assets. On the tenants' side, we’ve seen they are looking for more turnkey properties to reduce their initial fit-out costs, leading many landlords to hold out for quality tenants in search of a longer lease period. With retail sales continuing to tighten, it will be interesting to see how the retail sector responds in 2024.

Beaches, A-grade tenants in these properties are thriving but there remains a lot of demand backlogged for well-located showroom opportunities. While gyms and health facilities were the flavour of the last few years for this asset type, we are now seeing furniture goods, trade supply and bulky-goods retail options push gyms to the industrial sector. Developments. Over the past financial year, we have seen a lot more commercial stock coming on to the market right across the Northern Beaches primarily due to the increase in recent construction costs. The rapid rise in prices is making it difficult to price certain large projects; however, the more experienced developers are actively seeking opportunities in more premium locations. With a short supply of affordable housing on the beaches, many developers (local and out of area) continue to demand development in the region. Upstate is the largest commercial property team on The Beaches and the only commercial agent that services every corner of the region. From Manly to Palm Beach, and everywhere in-between, they are constantly adapting their technologies and approach to the changing market to support client success. Having fostered results for over 40 years, their experienced team have a finger on the commercial pulse and a true love and understanding of The Beaches.

Showrooms. With commercial vacancy rates being at all-time lows on The

For all of your commercial property and leasing needs, contact Upstate. •

1/1 Minna Close, Belrose

61-63 Kenneth Road, Balgowlah

Vincent West Commercial Licensee/Director in Charge 0403 444 000 |

Upstate - Beaches The Future COVERED. of Real Estate Home +| Property PAGE 19


THE power OF PROPERTY True to their style, Upstate is defying traditional norms and taking an innovative new approach to residential sales. Read on to discover why their Residential Sales team is a powerhouse on The Beaches.

One standout achievement for the team was their recent inaugural September Sellout Auction Campaign. The numbers tell a great story – 50 properties were brought to auction for the month of September, 13 sold prior to the event, and the rest sold on the night or shortly after. “All the buyers were very keen to make a purchase so there was high demand on the night,” says Upstate General Manager, Meschell Howarth. “Some buyers missed out so they were ready to buy any new properties that came on the market.”


The success of the night not only elevated clients but positioned Upstate, once again, as a dominant presence in the industry. And the exciting news is, the September event is set to repeat itself over summer with two big auction nights planned for 8 and 13 February, which means homeowners have the opportunity to launch their property just after Boxing Day. “The timing for this is backed by convincing statistics,” adds Meschell. “There’s a 27.5% increase in property listing views during the holiday season, as buyers have more free time and spend more time scrolling and researching properties.” There are also fewer properties on the market – in fact, 54.3% fewer, compared to March/April. So the chances of attracting serious buyers are significantly higher, with a 28.2% increase in enquiries per listing (stats provided by REA).

Words: Donna Armstrong | Photography: Upstate Real Estate


ar from a cookie-cutter strategy, Upstate Residential Sales prides itself on utilising out-of-the-box sales initiatives and strategies that not only set them apart but also drive exceptional results for their clients.

THE WINNING COMBO Upstate understands that selling a property can be a stressful journey, especially over the holidays, so the Residential Sales team go above and beyond to support each of their clients. Their complimentary in-house concierge team also takes care of every aspect of property presentation, from decluttering and painting, to renovations and styling, which means less stress for you. “Our concierge service is one-of-a-kind,” says Meschell. “The team are extremely experienced and ensure a hassle-free selling process. If you list your property soon, all the hard work can be done before Christmas, so the pain and worry is taken away.” Choosing Upstate Residential Sales means you partner with a team who love what they do, and have an impressive track record. Here are just some of the advantages of collaborating with Upstate: Extensive prospective buyer database. With a database exceeding 242,000, Upstate connects sellers with a huge pool of potential buyers. Digital-first approach. With an in-house team of marketing experts, Upstate uses a digital-first strategy to leverage the power of online platforms. This not only maximises visibility but also attracts the right audience. Speedy sales. Upstate Residential Sales takes pride in selling properties 22% faster than the competition, with an average of just 20 days on the market. Auction excellence. Upstate’s auction clearance rate is 19% higher than the Northern Beaches average. Passionate and credentialled team. With a crew of over 70 passionate professionals, from Manly to Palm Beach and up to the Forest, they are committed to providing the best service and expertise. •

Scan to find out the value of your property.

Choosing Upstate Residential Sales means you partner with a team who love what they do, and have an impressive track record. Here are just some of the advantages of collaborating with Upstate


Extensive prospective buyer database

With a database exceeding 242,000, Upstate connects sellers with a huge pool of potential buyers, no matter where they are.

Top Tech

Digital first approach

Upstate’s team use a digital first strategy to leverage the power of online platforms. This not only maximises visibility but also attracts the right audience.

22% Faster Speedy sales Upstate Residential Sales takes pride in selling properties 22% faster than the competition, with an average of just 20 days on the market.

19% Higher Auction excellence Upstate’s auction clearance rate is 19% higher than the Northern Beaches Average. Our purpose built auction HQ elevates the experience for both sellers and buyers.

70+ Crew

Credentialled and passionate professionals

From Manly to Palm Beach, to the Forest and beyond, the Upstate team are committed to providing the best service and expertise possible.

Thinking of selling? If selling your property with ease and getting a great result is your goal, the Upstate Residential Sales team is the strategic partner you need. Contact one of the agents, who specialise in your area, and make selling your property in the new year your greatest goal for 2024.

Residential Upstate - The Future of Real Estate | PAGE 21


Building Better

ON THE BEACHES Mark Romeo is the Director and Builder at The Perfect Space, an award-winning design and build specialist in Manly. Since 2006, he has been helping families build their dream homes. We caught up with Mark to talk about his deep love for The Beaches and explore why his winning formula is the key to building exceptional homes. What’s the best thing about working on residential projects? My favourite thing is the relationships we build on-site and the banter. I love that what we’re doing is important and I feel privileged to be trusted to build family homes.


i Mark, you’ve been building homes on The Beaches for over 15 years. What do you love about the area? I walk from Queenscliff to Shelly Beach at least four nights a week with my family, and I always tell my daughters how lucky they are to be living here. I head to the beach in the morning and the evening and it seems to ground me and give me energy. I love the community and the lifestyle. Most weekends you’ll find us hanging out in Manly at the bars and restaurants. When did you realise you wanted to be a builder? I think I was destined to be a builder as I grew up on building sites with my father, working Saturdays and school holidays. When I left school, I started a carpentry apprenticeship with my uncle who was a master craftsman which gave me my attention to detail. When I finished my apprenticeship, I gained experience in supervising before starting my own building company in 2006.


Can you share a memorable project you have worked on? Anyone who knows me has heard about my Palm Beach project. This project was particularly challenging due to the steep nature of the site. The first part of the project was to build an extension to a driveway bridge suspended in the air that wrapped around Barrenjoey Road. I remember standing at the edge of the driveway before we started and Harley, my apprentice, basically said, “How the heck are we going to do this?” At that point, I wondered what I had got myself into. But like any hard job, I put together an A-team and we rolled into the site with machinery and made the first level pad to stand on. It was a momentous accomplishment, but that was just to start! If you buy me a beer someday, I’ll tell you the rest of the story. We finished that project in 18 months and to say it was challenging is an understatement. Harley, who is now my supervisor, looks at the jobs we do now and if any of the young guys complain he laughs and pulls out a story from the vault about the Palm Beach job. What challenges are you seeing in the construction industry at the moment? The biggest challenge is the skills shortage. The other challenge is the increased compliance and new NCC rules that are being implemented. We are combatting this by doing extra training to stay up to date with the changes.

“I feel privileged to be trusted to build family homes.” MARK ROMEO, THE PERFECT SPACE

How do you approach the design and construction process at The Perfect Space? Very early in my career I found out that the biggest problem is managing expectations. Unless you have a process around this, there will always be a gap. What we discovered is that following four specific and critical steps will always lead to a successful outcome. We’ve refined these steps over the years and they consistently produce positive results for our clients, building homes that tick all the boxes and the budget. What sets The Perfect Space apart from other builders in Sydney? The first and most important thing is our tight-knit team who are at the top of their game – assembling a great team is the one thing I’m most proud of. Our firstyear apprentices are just as important as our senior supervisors, and we all understand we have a key role to play in the success of the company. Our clients benefit from having people working in their homes that are happy and genuinely care and love what they do.

and, let’s face it, building tricky and complicated extensions, you need to produce solutions. What should we look for when choosing a builder? That is simple. Look for a team who has a proven track record in delivering the type of project you are trying to achieve. Most people think they should start with an architect, which seems logical, but if budget is important then start with a builder as they’re the ones who have firsthand knowledge of construction costs. We recently got approached by a client who had approvals for a $1 million budget project. They assumed it might creep up to $1.3 or $1.5 million max, but when the quote came in it was $2.5 million. They had already spent thousands on plans and approvals and had to go back to the drawing board. What’s more devastating is they lost over 12 months of time, then you have to add cost increases. We hear this a lot.

The second thing is our CDCA (Concept Design and Cost Analysis) process, which we’ve refined to where it is today. Our customers can be taken through the building process with transparency and honest advice. Our clients choose to work with us because they understand that to reach their project goals, they need to find a team that has their best interests at heart, and have the processes, experience and record of accomplishment to back this up.

If you genuinely want peace of mind, an understanding of what’s achievable, and how much it costs early on, then look for an integrated design and build company.

We’ve completed 33 projects since 2020, so we have a wide and varied range of projects to draw from. We’ve also won many awards which benchmark us against the best in the business.

How important is The Beaches community to you? Being socially responsible is part of our DNA and we’ve made it our mission to support families who are less fortunate than us. Every year, we donate our time and resources to embark on a working bee, which our team loves. Our team is really proud of our work we do with Bear Cottage. We receive letters of gratitude, which we read out at our strategy team-building days. •

What do the most satisfying and successful projects have in common? The most satisfying ones are when the clients are on board as part of the team. Things don’t always go to plan

What trends are going to spike our interest in 2024? We’re moving towards efficient homes. I’m noticing smaller swimming pools, solar panels, double-glazing windows, and some homeowners are excluding gas appliances.

Words: Donna Armstrong | Photography: The Perfect Space

3/23-24 Belgrave Street Manly, NSW 2095 | (02) 99074568 | INSTA @the_perfectspace | Builders Lic: 266190C |

Beaches COVERED. Home + Property

M I L L E R ST O N E & C O. & F O C U S P O O L S


OUTDOOR BLISS Creating a harmonious blend of elegant outdoor spaces requires the expertise of those who understand the artistry of both paving and swimming pool design. In the collaborative efforts of Miller Stone & Co. and Focus Pools, a dynamic duo emerges, dedicated to turning mundane backyards into luxurious retreats.

"I love guiding people through their project. The main outcome we often get, from the initial meeting, is a plan of attack and how to spend money in the right areas." NATHAN MILLER, OWNER, MILLER STONE & CO.

"We gain insights into the client's design expectations and identify the specific trades required to provide the best outcome."

Paving a Path TO O U TDO O R LI VI N G Nathan Miller, the visionary behind Miller Stone & Co., brings over two decades of expertise to the table. Specialising in high-end tiles and paving, Nathan's mission is to transform outdoor spaces into works of art. The initial process begins with a personal touch. "We initiate the process by arranging a meeting, either in the showroom or on-site, to engage with the client and the process," says Nathan. "A site visit is invaluable for everyone involved, providing a tangible connection to the project. It helps me understand the intricacies of the work required, facilitating thoughtful design decisions and refined finishes.

Once the vision is agreed upon, Nathan thoroughly assembles a concept of flooring and walling sample options, along with pricing for a proposal. The uniqueness of Miller Stone & Co. lies not just in tiling and paving but in Nathan's ability to guide clients through the entire process. "I have all the necessary trades at my fingertips and the patience to work through any hurdles with my clients that may arise," says Nathan. Clients appreciate the holistic approach offered by Miller Stone & Co., where a well-thought-out plan is developed within budget. Nathan's role extends beyond paving, often involving additional trades like landscapers, pool builders, electricians and plumbers to ensure a comprehensive outdoor living experience.

Continue over page > PAGE 24 | BEACHES COVERED.

PREMIER TILING AND PAVING Revamp your living spaces with Miller Stone & Co., the leading tiling and paving supplier on the Northern Beaches. Under the guidance of Nathan Miller, we've earned trust through 20+ years of steadfast commitment to quality. Enhance your surroundings with enduring natural stone, skilled craftsmanship and a diverse array of premium tiles and paving solutions. Breathe new life into your interiors, backyards, swimming pools and commercial projects. From stunning natural stone tiles to durable pavers in an array of captivating colours, textures and sizes, our inventory boasts an elegant selection sourced from trusted suppliers worldwide.

Explore excellence in tiling and paving. Visit our Collaroy Showroom or call for a personal appointment today. Elevate your spaces with Miller Stone & Co.





Complementing Miller Stone & Co.'s mastery of paving is Focus Pools, led by Founder and Builder Jason May, alongside General Manager Dean. Specialising in the design and construction of bespoke pools and spas for over 60 years, Focus Pools is the go-to team for turning ordinary backyards into extraordinary outdoor havens. "When we begin working with a new client, we usually start with a site meeting to establish a feel for the site and inspect access for excavation," says Dean.

"Our draughtsman also seeks all approvals, dealing with Council, certifiers, Sydney Water and others so it’s a very easy process for the client," explains Dean. The comprehensive services provided by Focus Pools extend from the initial design and approval to the creation of a stunning, certified pool and spa. The team manages every aspect of the job, from purchasing structural engineering and home warranty, to coordinating trades for excavation, form and steel, pre-plumb, and shotcrete, ensuring a seamless progression through each stage.

OUTDOOR LIVING The collaboration between Miller Stone & Co. and Focus Pools creates a seamless integration of paving and swimming pool design, providing clients with a one-stop solution for their outdoor living dreams. Backed by decades of combined experience, this dynamic duo ensures an enjoyable and efficient process for families seeking to elevate their outdoor spaces. As Summer arrives the collaboration between Miller Stone & Co. and Focus Pools promises an opportunity for outdoor enjoyment. Working in tandem, they craft a blend of upscale aesthetics and practical design, turning any backyard into a luxurious retreat suitable for year-round pleasure. • Photography: @Miller Stone & Co and Focus Pools

"We discuss their dream pool and confirm potential locations for filtration and services such as electricity, plumbing and gas."

From there, Focus Pools engages their draughtsman to collaborate with clients on designing the pool and landscaping.


"We explore the realms of colours, tiles, and water chemistry, covering chlorine, salt and mineral/magnesium pools. Our solutions, including automation, in-floor cleaning, swim jets and automated covers, offer a holistic approach to pool design and maintenance." DEAN, GENERAL MANAGER, FOCUS POOLS

1/1010 Pittwater Rd, Collaroy 2097 (02) 9170 3699 | or 0424 506 110 Insta: @millerstone_co PAGE 26 | BEACHES COVERED.

1/1010 Pittwater Rd, Collaroy 2097 (02) 9168 8010 Insta: @focuspools

We transform Sydney backyards into year-round outdoor havens. Harnessing "smart" innovation and technology, we incorporate capturing, filtration, lighting, and heating solutions—all backed by our comprehensive warranty. NORTHERN BEACHES NORTH SHORE | EASTERN SUBURBS 1/1010 PITTWATER RD, COLLAROY 2097

(02) 9168 8010

Our Property Team

Kathy Foster & Meredith Christie from our property team will assist you from start to finish. CONTACT |

Wood Marshall Williams has been the trusted choice for legal services for more than 40 years on Sydney's Northern Beaches.

Meriton Lighthouse, 888 Pittwater Rd, Dee Why NSW 2099

(02) 9938 2444 Beaches COVERED. Home + Property




resh from opening its doors in November, Sway Homes on Avalon Parade is home to a stunning collection of chic furniture from Pacific Green. The unique, designer brand was born in Sydney in 1973 thanks to local Avalon resident Bruce Dowse. Bruce teamed up with fellow entrepreneur and designer, Peter Ryan, and the two launched Post & Rail, which they later rebranded as Pacific Green.

Back then, in the mid-1970s, Bruce and Peter knew the planet was in trouble and wanted to find sustainable alternatives to traditional hardwoods. Their mission led them to the South Pacific, where they discovered vast abandoned coconut palm plantations, and established the world’s first coconut palm-focused factory. The men worked closely and respectfully with the local Indigenous communities and started producing stunning pieces of art disguised as furniture.


James Bond...

Pacific Green is one of those brands that immaculately blends old worlds and new ways. Their pieces are made from superior natural materials, including Palmwood®, and full-grain Italian leather that only gets better with time. Three decades ago, Pacific Green gained global popularity when James Bond star Pierce Brosnan became their Environmental Spokesperson.

FAST-FORWARD TO 2023… Thanks to Bond, Pacific Green found a name for itself in Hollywood and now, 50 years later, they have three popular stores in America. In Sydney, however, it’s local businesswoman and Sway Homes Owner, Diana Taylor, that has launched Pacific Green’s only Australian showroom, in Avalon. “I’m thrilled and proud to bring this unique, iconic range of design furniture, a perfect match for our coastal lifestyle, to The Beaches,” says Diana.

As a proud ambassador of the brand Diana says it’s her vision to bring breathtaking designs and sustainable luxury into homes on The Beaches. She believes every piece of furniture is not just a functional item but a bona fide work of art and the two businesses share the same values when it comes to sustainability. “No compromises are made on comfort, with each handmade piece of furniture being a unique artwork and heirloom.” Diana also operates Sway Curtains at Home Co. Belrose and has an impressive portfolio that includes the Opera House, The Australian Museum, and countless Northern Beaches residential projects. The new store in Avalon features curtains, blinds and shutters, along with a full measure, quote and install service. If you do nothing else this weekend, head to Avalon, explore the showroom, and pop in and say hi to Diana. •

Words: Donna Armstrong | Photography: Sway Homes

If lush, iconic, eco-friendly furniture is your jam, Sway Homes in Avalon is the place to be. As the exclusive Australian retailer of Pacific Green, local businesswoman Diana Taylor is bringing sustainable luxury back to The Beaches. Read on to discover how it all began…

“No compromises are made on comfort, with each handmade piece of furniture being a unique artwork and heirloom.” DIANA TAYLOR, SWAY HOME

Avalon Showroom |24/11-13 Avalon Parade, Avalon Beach 2107 Insta: @Sway_curtains | 1800 722 853 |

Beaches COVERED. Home + Property


TAKING CARE OF YOUR FINANCIAL WELLBEING Sam Ayliffe from Astute Manly is a hero when it comes to organising money matters and keeping you on track to hit your financial goals. Kick back and learn more as he shares four simple tips to support your financial wellbeing and get you ready for 2024.


s the end of the year approaches, it’s a good idea to evaluate your financial situation, determine how well you’ve progressed toward your goals, and decide whether you need to make any tweaks for the new year. Here are four top tips to get you started!

1. ORGANISE YOUR FINANCES There’s no better feeling than understanding how you’ve spent, saved and invested over the past year. Now is a great time to gather all the information about your bank and credit card accounts, your savings and superannuation account, loan balances, insurance coverages and other aspects of your financial plan. Getting organised will help you get calm.

Look over your past year’s budget and see how you’ve spent your money. Assess your income and expenses, look for places where you can save, and revise your budget to reflect any changes you need to make to your income or expenses in the new year.

3. CHECK YOUR LOANS Are you utilising offsets accounts, if they’re available? Have you reviewed your loan in the last few years? If you’ve got multiple loans or debts, you could consolidate some of your debts into a single loan to give you more certainty and control. You might look to refinance for a better interest rate or consider looking at a fixed rate. Fixed-rate loans offer you the certainty of monthly repayments for the term of the fixed-rate period. There are drawbacks to these loans which we can explain to you so you can make an informed decision. We have access to dozens of lenders, including the big banks and smaller lenders. If you’re unsure of how well you’re tracking, or if there’s a better offer out there for you, speak to us.

4. AUDIT YOUR INSURANCE COVERAGE While it’s vital to minimise your insurance premiums, it’s just as important to ensure you’re covered for what

you need. Being caught without the cover you thought you had could be devastating. When it comes to insuring your most prized personal and business assets, it’s important to understand the difference between using an insurance broker and going direct. One of the most important differences is during the time you need help most – in the event of a claim. Insurance Brokers should represent you during the claims cycle and have the experience and knowledge to ensure the claim is handled as it should be by the insurer. They know your rights and work to protect them, as well as knowing key contacts and escalation points within the insurer group to get results.

Got some questions about your financial wellbeing? Don’t hesitate to reach out to Sam and the team at Astute Manly. With only a short time left in 2023, now’s a great time to find a financial partner who cares about you, your family, and your future. •

Sam Ayliffe – Astute Manly | 0414 976 865 | 02 9984 1911 | | Astute Financial Management Pty Ltd | ACN 093 587 010 | Australian Credit Licence 364253 | Wealth and Personal Insurance services provided by an authorised representative of Alliance Wealth Pty Ltd | ABN 93 161 647 007 | AFSL 499221 | General Insurance provided by Astute Insurance Pty Ltd | ABN 59 622 582 236 | Authorised Representative of Ausure Pty Ltd ABN 94 096 971 854 AFSL 238433. Health Insurance products are underwritten by St Luke’s Medical and Hospital BeneƓts Association ACN 009 479 618 (St.LukesHealth), a registered private health insurer, [trading as Astute Simplicity Health] and members are introduced by Astute Financial Management Pty Ltd or related entities (collectively known as Astute) for which Astute receives a commission.


Words & Photography: Astute Manly




Beautiful homes start here. Elevate your home's style with Choices Flooring's Summer flooring options. Find the floor you've been looking for and let your style shine.

Explore Choices Flooring’s ‘Summer Choices’ with the durable Plantino timber range. Ideal for ensuring a cosy home throughout the year. Visit us in-store or go to PAGE 31 | BEACHES PROPERTY.

Choices Flooring Balgowlah 192 Condamine St, BalgowlahBeaches T: 02Home 9907 9077 + Property



wild summer

With all signs suggesting that this Summer will be exceptionally hot, we spoke to the Animal Justice Party and Sydney Wildlife Rescue about ways to assist our vulnerable wildlife during the season.


t’s easy to see that the best things about life on the Northern Beaches are the beautiful and abundant natural surroundings. We are so fortunate to live in a part of the world so rich with fauna and flora. However, it’s also easy to see that these habitats are under threat, not only from weather extremes but from human impact like development and urban sprawl, road collisions, 1080 baiting, round-up and other chemicals. So how can we mitigate this impact and support our beautiful wildlife?

WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE! Water is life. Leave out a dish of clean water in your garden, even on apartment balconies, and watch the birds, bees and other critters flock to it. But ensure to incorporate a water escape route to prevent drowning. Not only will animals drink but they will also bathe.

A dehydrated bird will display droopy wings and beak wide open. This is a sign that they are experiencing heat stress and need water.

BUSHLAND, GARDENS AND GREEN SPACES Get behind efforts to preserve natural habitats. Contact your local Members of Parliament and the Northern Beaches Council to emphasise the need for wildlife-friendly roads. With the Wakehurst Parkway upgrade eroding wildlife corridors, let's make preserving nature a priority. Reduce the poisons and chemicals you use around your garden as we need the insect world to flourish. Local Animal Justice Party member, Susan Sorensen, is concerned about the future viability of our native bushland. "The increasing disappearance of the bushland and wildlife corridors, has made it imperative that we live in co-existence with native animals to make it easier for them to survive in the urbanised environments they have been pushed into," says Susan.

FEEDING WILDLIFE With changing weather patterns and native food sources diminishing,



let’s allow the sharing of home-grown produce with wildlife. Plant native bush tucker shrubs, trees and flowers. Leave out seeds, nuts, apples or carrots in times of drought and when food is scarce. However, do contact Sydney Wildlife for advice before feeding wildlife. You’ll love to watch the animals going about their daily habits in a space created for their safety.

MANAGING WILDLIFE VISITORS According to Sydney Wildlife local volunteer, Helen Pearce, hefty penalties, surpassing $2,500, can be incurred for trapping and relocating protected wildlife. She recommends reaching out to Sydney Wildlife for possum or wildlife-related concerns. Additionally, safeguard your living space by covering doors and windows with screens, placing mesh over entry points and enclose all roof spaces to your home. Create a habitat in your garden, like a possum drey. Ensure food secure storage and never leave food out on counter tops. Lastly, supervise your companion animals or pets around wildlife, especially at night. •

Sydney Wildlife Rescue | (02) 9413 4300 WIRES | 1300 094 737 For help or information about 1080 | TO VOLUNTEER, DONATE OR BECOME A MEMBER: Animal Justice Party | Sydney Wildlife Rescue |



Bush Food Plants Harvest Seeds & Native Plants nursery in Terrey Hills is a haven for top-quality plants and grasses, seeds and tube stock. But did you know they also offer native bush foods? Managing Director, Marina Grassecker, encourages you to spice up your garden with three of the best.


ative bush foods refer to edible plants and fruits that are Indigenous to a specific region, often associated with the native flora of Australia. These foods have been traditionally consumed by Indigenous communities for thousands of years and are known for their unique flavours, nutritional value and adaptability to local environments. HERE ARE THREE SPECIES BUSH FOOD ENTHUSIASTS WILL LOVE:

Words: Marina Grassecker | Photography: Harvest Nursery

ANGOPHORA HISPIDA: DWARF APPLE GUM A tall shrub or small tree 5m to 7m with the most aromatic of flower clusters. It's like sticking your nose in a honey pot! This shrub copes with a wide range of soil types and coastal areas. She is frost resistant when older and drought tolerant, and enjoys a sunny to lightly shaded position. She attracts all the insects and bees! The flowers can be used to make a honey tea. The fruits are edible and have a sweet flavour.



This lovely small shrub, from 0.5 to 1m, produces a profusion of sweettasting edible fruits. It will grow in most soil types including coastal gardens and is great for a low-growing hedge. Once you’ve collected the fruits, give the bush a light trim to encourage the next year’s harvest. Loves a sunny to half-shaded position and can cope with a light frost. They’ll also attract seedeating birds, butterflies and bees.

As the name suggests, she is a shrub that can reach up to 1.5m, featuring highly aromatic minty foliage. She enjoys a sunny to a light-shaded position, will cope with heavy frost, and attracts butterflies and small insect-eating birds. In Spring and early Summer she’ll produce a gorgeous display of violet flowers and you can use the leaves in cooking and salads.

TALKING ABOUT HABITATS This year, after a few years' hiatus, we’ve seen some gorgeous butterflies around the nursery and, yes, the flies are bothering us again too! While they are annoying, it’s so good to have them as last year there were none to bat away.

every year. They do bump into us in the office, but they are harmless and just want to get out of our way. Their paper nests are a marvel to behold and we have lots of walls in the office for their homes. They also keep the spiders and mosquitoes under control.

Flies are one of the biggest pollinators on the planet, so welcome back, we missed you! The hornets are also back after about three years of no-show, and a few are coming into the office to build their nests as they once did

Discover our two-acre nursery brimming with everything from local species of tube stock to advanced plants. Watch out for the big Harvest Native Nursery sign and big red arrow to guide you up the laneway. •

281 Mona Vale Rd, Terrey Hills 2084 | 02 9450 2699 | Insta: @harvestseedsandnativeplants | Beaches COVERED. Home + Property

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