Roger Gilchrist Building Services won the Southern Supreme Renovation of the Year award at the Registered Master Builders House of the Year at the weekend, for the company’s work on Gloria and Ian Hurst’s Willowpark, at Papakaio, inland from Oamaru.
Mr Gilchrist said his business had been awarded golds before, but taking home the supreme award was a special moment.
‘‘The supreme award is definitely an icing on the cake type thing.’’
The 18-month-plus renovation was not easy, but was very rewarding, he said.
‘‘It was a huge renovation. It’s over 700 square metres and it’s a pre-1900 homestead, which we more or less gutted and rebuilt.’’
It was the first time a firm from the region had won a supreme award, he said.
The house also won the award for a renovation costing more than $1.5 million.
Mrs Hurst said she could not be happier with how the house turned out.
The couple had to move out of the home while the majority of the work took place.
‘‘We have a renewed love affair with an old home and now it’s very contemporary and it’s awesome being back living here.’’
Mr Gilchrist and his team fully deserved every award they received, she said.
‘‘We’d call [Mr Gilchrist] an alchemist.
‘‘He managed to take Willowpark from the past into the future, and of course along with his extended team [they deserve the award].’’
She loved the indoor-outdoor flow of the house, she said.
‘‘What’s most significant is [the house is] very connected to nature, so every window we look out has trees and grass coming it it, that’s very nourishing.’’
The renovation was a family affair, as members of her extended family were involved with the design and interior decorating.
It was important that it was an ‘‘inter-generational project’’.
‘‘It needed to have young generation input because Ian and I can’t guarantee, at this stage, how long we’re going to be here, so it was designed for the future.’’