Generations of notable owners have shaped this Australian property.
It’s been an ideal place for a champion sculler turned boat builder to call home. And a landscape designer. And a publishing company executive.
The estate, where Sydney’s Colo River flows into the Hawkesbury River, dates to 1890 and was once owned by Peter Kemp. The self-taught rower had been born along the Hawkesbury and went on to become the World Sculling Championship titleholder many times over.
When Kemp wasn’t winning competitions, building boats or testing the waters outside his front door, he coached other scullers onto victory. Two of his children would go on to be champion rowers.
Although Kemp’s original home burnt down in 1904 after he had moved on, it was rebuilt by the titleholder then as a single-story sandstone cottage. A much later owner, a landscape designer, added his vision with park-like grounds.
The current residents had a modern addition designed by architect Timothy Moon in 2006, did renovation work, further upgraded the landscaping and restored the citrus orchard. The swimming pool, guesthouse and studio were built.
The approximately $9.36-million estate (AUD 12 million), known as Venetiaville, encompasses 50 acres with formal gardens, lawn and forest. Trees line the driveway.
The elevated site takes in river views from the residence and resort style infinity pool.
A wide, column-lined veranda surrounds one portion of the main house, which has three bedrooms. An open plan great room with a vaulted ceiling adjoins partially covered terrace space as does the entertainment pavilion. Details include high ceilings, exposed beams, walls of glass that frame the gardens, fireplaces and a library/office.
The sky-lighted kitchen with white cabinets, stainless-steel appliances and an island adjoins a butler’s pantry and sandstone wine cellar.
A tranquil corner of the yard contains an outdoor shower.
The guest cottage includes a study, three bedrooms and two bathrooms. The wooden barn has a loft, bathroom and workshop. There’s a two-car carport and a pond.
The Colo River is a popular stretch for fishing, canoeing, picnicking and bushwalking.
The international Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport is about 61 miles away.