Canterbury House by Simone Haag

  • Simone Haag and a team of esteemed collaborators invite us inside a transformed Victorian cottage-style home.

    When the opportunity arose to work for one of Melbourne’s most sought-after custom home builders, Mazzei, the team at Simone Haag didn’t need to think twice before collaborating. Belonging to Mazzei owners, the very personal decision to entrust the styling of their home came easy. 

    Mazzei Director Daniel Mazzei said Simone was a fitting choice. “Simone is unique in her approach, producing interiors that are never the same but have a connection to the client,” Daniel said. After poring through images of Daniel’s recently completed Melbourne home, we couldn’t agree more.

    Esenar’s bespoke sheer curtains allow for a gentle influx of natural light.

    Ligne Roset’s iconic Bonnie armchair creates a focal point in the living room, contrasting with the surrounding monochromatic furniture, including the Utrecht armchair by Cassina.

    The soft curves of Ligne Roset’s Ottoman armchair integrate into the sitting area.

    The existing 1891 dwelling was in need of a major facelift, both inside and out. “It was succumbing to nature, sinking into the ground and disappearing behind a wild and overgrown garden,” Daniel says.

    A key challenge faced was the existing Victorian floor plan. Catt Architects worked on ensuring existing spaces could be optimised for the day-to-day while honouring the home’s history. Their creative solutions included a customised walk-in wardrobe, with an original fireplace.

    Structurally, Catt Architects also reconsidered the floor plan to welcome ample natural light and to achieve a sense of flow. “Allowing natural light into the floor plan dictated the introduction of internal double door frames and the removal of internal walls to capture and extend the light within the home,” Daniel explains.


    Interior Designer Catherine Francis says respecting the home’s heritage was paramount.  Looking abroad for inspiration has resulted in a quiet elegance throughout the interior.  Quality materials and fittings including a glazing system from Belgium, solid European oak floorboards by Dinesen and large quantities of hand-selected Livio marble were employed to create a modern home with an understated elegance. “Catherine’s influence is reflected in the joinery throughout the home; beautiful, functional and unique, ”Daniel says.

    Landscape designer Nathan Burkett and his team focused on bringing the exterior of the home back to its former glory. “Nathan was instrumental in transforming the outdoor areas into functional and beautiful spaces,” Daniel says. “He understood the beauty of Victorian symmetry and took a ‘less is more’ approach to the façade of the home allowing the historical design to be the hero in the landscape.” 

    Meanwhile, the team at Simone Haag focused their attention on the interior styling, through their curated selection of furniture, art and object styling. Simone built on the home’s existing design and creating an elegant, minimal and simplistic dwelling. This was achieved through re-enforcing the refined material palette and incorporating timeless and interesting pieces. “Having the opportunity to work with Simone as she shared her process to curate beautiful pieces of furniture, lighting and objects for our home was indulgent and a highlight for us,” Daniel admits.

    Paying homage to the home’s original roots, listening to the clients brief and knowing when and where to push the design boundaries resulted in a considerate – yet celebrated style. Simone Haag, in collaboration with Mazzei, Catherine Francis, Catt Architects and Nathan Burkett Design have not only successfully renovated this once tired Canterbury House, but completely transformed it from head-to-toe.

    HC28’S Bold Console is the ideal display space for any decor piece.


    Canterbury House by Simone Haag | est living

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