Monday, March 15, 2010

'Currawong' - Come for a walk with me around this beautiful old property

My first visit to 'Currawong' was over ten years ago when the original owners were having a huge auction and clearing sale. It was filled with farmers bidding on machinery & tractors and hundreds antique dealers and collectors busily packing their cars with treasures. Andrew and I went up for the day and I remember walking around thinking to myself this is such a wonderful old place, it just needs someone clever to buy it and bring it back to life. It was quite rundown and definitely worn out, but had all the right elements for a great place to live. Then along came two friends of ours, Al & Lyn Bailey who have quietly over the last decade transformed this property into a magnificent home & garden and made it one of the Southern Highlands most desired homes.

I can't imagine that there isn't anyone that doesn't look up to 'Currawong' when they drive by on the country road. I always do! the house looks so peaceful sitting up on the hill and I love the way it nestles into the surrounding countryside. Lyn and Al have been planting & growing hundreds and hundreds of olive trees and making their own olive oil to sell. They have also beautifully landscaped the old gardens and added a large new wing to the home and renovated the old part of the house.

'Currawong' was built in the 1920's and if you have ever visited an old Australian property or station you would know of the energy in the air that lives in these places that can only come from years and years of farming & history. 'Currawong' definitely has it, with the very long white driveway that leads up to the house and around past the original cattle yards to the old sheds. You really do feel like you're way outback somewhere in Australia. As you all know I love spending time photographing the beautiful gardens of the Southern Highlands where I live and this is one home that I really wanted to share with you.

I love the beautiful whites and blue/greys that Lyn and Al have used everywhere around the home, it's soft and calming. Lyn said that the colour is a favourite of hers and she even had her bridesmaid dresses made in the same colour for their wedding. The soft grey concrete walkway around the house is really quite clever and randomly positioned and is made from the original old pathway that the previous owner had laid from the house up the hill so his feet didn't get wet while he went on his daily walks. Lyn and Al dug up the old pathway and brought it down the hill piece by piece to reset around the house. There are huge, beautiful trees around the house that give perfect shade through summer and they have planted masses and masses of blue Agapanthus flowers which line the gardens, the entrance and around the tennis court.

It is still a working farm after all, but a Southern Highlands style farm, which means there are beautiful views in every direction. Both Lyn and Al have cleverly modernised 'Currawong' without taking away the wonderful old history of the place. It's time to move on and find another place, "just like this one, but smaller" said Lyn. We both love 'Currawong' and we love our olive trees and this year's pick will be amazing as we have had so much rain. They pick their olives in May and hopefully they might win another medal for the oil. Lyn and Al's olive oil has won two gold and many others at the National Show in Canberra.

View from the living room across the pool to the front paddocks of the property and below the long driveway up to the house.

Thanks for visiting me today and I wish you all a wonderful week ahead, the weather is changing fast here and I have been busy photographing the last of the Hydrangeas and the gardens for the season. Where has this year gone, can you believe we are already in the middle of March, does anyone have any secrets on how to slow things down a little ?.

xx Coty

If you would like to contact Lyn and Al Bailey to talk about their farm or their beautiful home you can email them on or you can just leave me a message and I would be delighted to pass it on to them.

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Also welcome to everyone from Susan's Outdoor Wednesday at A Southern Daydreamer You should drop over to Susan's blog and see some 'very green' St Patrick's Day celebrations
Happy St Patrick's Day


  1. My compliments to Lyn & Al. What a gorgoeus property. The work that it takes to maintain such property is enormous and more than most would want to take on. It takes a master gardener and real appreciation of the lay of the land though to do what they have done. Their home is gorgeous...right out of a movie. Exactly what this American would imagine an authentic Australian countryside retreat to be. Congratulations on their olive oils & those agapanthus! Thank you Coty for sharing your lovely friends with us. Have a wonderful week. xo Lisa

  2. The shades of blue and gray around this property are so calming. Breathtakingly gorgeous.

  3. Being that agapanthus are my passion & having not lived in the right climate for them since my childhood in South Africa, I must admit I longingly gazed for quite some time at their bejewelled acres. Now with some fresh bread, their oil & a bit of vino I may have found a spot of perfection. Brava to Lyn & Al & as always gratitudes for sharing your friends & art.

  4. I so enjoyed this article, thank you. Stunning photos of a stunning property. Take me to Australia! Here I struggle to keep a pot of agapanthus going from one year to the next, while some have whole beds of them, amazing!
    It's always a joy to stop by and see your beautiful postings.

  5. Just gorgeous, Coty! Isn't it fun to watch those transformations? We have friends who gutted a very old house with "good bones" (as we would say here) and remodel it back to its former glory... then turn it into a B&B. What I know is that it took sooo much sweat and tears to make it beautiful again that at times they wondered if it was worth it! Turns out it was (: xxxVicki

  6. Coty, could I move from Kansas for this! It is so beautiful!!

    Art by Karena

  7. Coty, thanks for the tour! A lovely home indeed. I really like the agapanthus planted en masse - they look happy and huge. A happy week to you.

  8. Hi Coty, This is just stunning Pictures...

  9. Coty, More stunning photos of a stunning place!

  10. What a beautiful place and such great photos. Thanks so much for sharing.

  11. What a spectacular place. I really love the flowers, and inside looking out. Thank you for sharing it all, I enjoyed it.

  12. What a specatular property, Coty! Seen through your lens, Currawong takes on an enchanted quality. Thank you for sharing your world with us once again.

    Warmest regards,

  13. Happy St. Patrick's Day! Your home and grounds is beautiful.
    Joyce M

  14. What a great tour Coty. Your friends have a lovely home and property. I cannot get over the masses of Agapanthus flowers.

    Thank you for sharing their home with us today!

    ~ Tracy

  15. Beautiful pictures, the view from that house is stunning :)

  16. Coty dear your photos are incredible! You have really caught the essence of Currawong perfectly. I trust the new Owners embrace this magical property as much as your friends have. Looking forward to a future post on the next property the Bailey's transform.
    Millie ^_^

  17. I would love to live there! I hope you had a great St. Patrick's Day and Outdoor Wednesday :)

  18. Breath taking beauty! Thank you Coty and thanks to your friends for sharing this. laurie

  19. Hello Coty, Lyn Bailey here. I have just read all those gorgeous comments about your wonderful story on Currawong. I must say Coty, it does not surprised me that you have attracted such a beautiful group of readers who appreciate the beauty of this world. You are providing such a treasure to people, a treasure that helps to keep our hearts open and full of hope and love. I hope you realise this about yourself. You inspire us all. Much love. x


Your comments and emails truly make my day a very special one. Thank you for dropping by and visiting me at home in Australia, I read every single comment and I treasure each and every one. xxx Coty