South Wraxall, Wiltshire

South Wraxall, Wiltshire

The Long family, London cloth merchants, began building in the 15th century, with successive generations adding to it. South Wraxall Manor's random rubble stone edifice's facade is punctuated by stone-mullioned windows, but the Wiltshire manor house had been badly neglected when Robert and his team began their work in 2007.

Robert describes Wraxall Manor now as a house that “passes peace back to anyone who comes here” but initially the team solved problems that had to come before decoration - discovering the layers and unpicking the complex interlocking plan in order to make the house habitable. The Great Hall ceiling, with its complex of queen posts and collar beams on arched braces is typical of the pre-Reformation period; the drawing room's 17th century Flemish tapestry balances the fireplace and a set of gilded armchairs, covered in velvet, are part of a suite commissioned for the Duke of Leeds in the 17th century. Robert's passion for carpets is evident in nearly every room at Wraxall Manor.

Robert's "point about Wraxall is that you have to mix it up, it had to have some ordinary things in it - and some wonderful things too." A detailed process to understand how the clients want to live was critical to the success of this project, like all Kime projects. The study is furnished with an important French ebony and Boulle desk of 1800 and a sparkling rococo gilt mirror, while the family sitting room is anchored by a pastel Smyrna rug. Pelmets, bed hangings, curtains and upholstery in document textiles and embroidered suzanis mix easily. The bathrooms are a mix of marble, crystal chandeliers and mirrors, grounded by rugs and drapes. 18th century French twin beds retain their original Toile de Jouy fabrics, while spreads are made from Robert's Ghost fabric. The Chinoiserie room's hand-painted DeGournay paper and the Raleigh room’s Spanish painted leather walls provide magical backdrops. The loggia, opened once again to the fresh air, is restored to its original splendour, with Roberts’ addition of an outdoor fireplace and sociable wine tasting table.
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
South Wraxall, Wiltshire
With a focus on creating an environment that reflects the interests and tastes of the client, with inspiration from their travels and collections, this project, in a handsome London neighbourhood was led first by identifying the structural changes that would enhance the livability of the house, followed by a full interior design project.
A garden square flat in a building designed by Sir Thomas Cubitt, showing lofty ceilings and doors out to a tree-filled terrace lent itself to significant renovation to create an elegant London home for clients who returned to Robert Kime Design for a second project.
Ardagh, in County Cork, is a beautifully built granite cottage, with rough-cast render and a two up, two down floor plan. Originally built by an Englishman in the mid-nineteenth century; high ceilings and spacious rooms provided good scope for a holiday home.
Upper Farm, where for many years Robert lived and from which he ran his growing business, was in an enviable position, just half a mile up a drive on the way to a Roman fort. The house and farm buildings ripe for conversion provide the context against which Robert created one of his most well-known projects.
Swangrove - a hunting lodge, a maison de plaisance, built in 1703 for the second Duke of Beaufort sits on the edge of Badminton Park and sports a distinctive symmetrical design of castellations and tall chimneys. In 1996, the then Duke of Beaufort approached Robert for his help in reclaiming it as a hunting lodge.
When La Gonette was acquired in 1999, this house was a "perfect ruin" - a sound roof with a magical facade and hundred foot terrace, but no floors nor much for doors or walls. Not deterred, by the project's end the burnt-out shell had been transformed into a magnificent house, full of comfort, attention to the vernacular style and rivalled gardens.
Originally a modest bergerie, sheltering a goat herd and flock, by 1880 it had grown into a farm with a courtyard, a basse-cour and outbuildings. High in the valley in Provence, the design project demanded an understanding of the building’s origins and the client’s enthusiasm for the house as it stood and it’s historical importance.
Paradise Island, in the Bahamas, was home to an unusual project - a day house - “a private, safe and comfortable house” for retreat from the busy life in the main house. Designed from the ground up by Robert, a typical Bahamian house on the exterior, with a light-filled and unexpected bohemian richness within.
A long, convergent terrace, on the edge of Calton Hill in Edinburgh was conceived in the 1820s by the architect William Playfair. Behind the classical rustication is an 1850s mansion interior with commanding proportions.
An 18th century building with fine proportions and a good staircase; only the front had been doctored in the 19th century, sits a hundred yards from the British Museum. Within view of the eccentric steeple of nearby Saint George’s Bloomsbury, a glass ceiling was inserted by Robert at the far end of the ground floor of the building so this remarkable Hawksmoor church built in the late 1720s could be easily admired.
An abandoned village hall in Wiltshire had a strong appeal as a project - set in a quiet spot, with virtually no traffic was thought "wonderfully tranquil". Fields with long views of farmland behind and a building in disrepair were reimagined as a comfortable, safe haven.
Docker Nook - in Longsleddale, described as a "farmhouse and outbuildings, probably originally cowhouse under granary, under one roof. Late seventeenth, early eighteenth century. Lime-washed stone rubble" occupies an enviable position within the Lake District National Park. Following the purchase, a full restoration and redecoration project ensued.
The Gunton Arms is situated in the one thousand acre deer park which surrounds Gunton Hall near Cromer, Norfolk. The park was created in the early eighteenth century by the Harbord family and was comparable in scale to the parks of the estates to the west, Holkham and Houghton. A pub with bedrooms brought back to life by art dealer Ivor Braka; the public spaces and bedrooms at The Gunton Arms are all designed by Robert Kime and team, mixing Kime’s signature style with Braka’s extensive art collection.