Projects/Portfolio - House Babcock




The best of times, the worst of times… building a house. Most people will tell nightmare stories about building a house. Allowing the Brymers to design our house and project manage the process, we experienced no such issues - it was a most professional, enjoyable and successful experience – the best of times really.

Selecting the Brymers was the result of a meticulous interviewing process, in which we tried to eliminate the cookie cutter and conveyer belt outfits, and tried to find a team that would work with us - appreciating our individual needs and desires - to create a very special holiday home many miles away from our home in the UK. We were looking for someone with local knowledge, but also someone with the inclination and ability to communicate often, openly and in detail with an overseas client.

The Brymers work as a team – and that is just one thing that makes them great. Merinda is the creative head and Ian manages the building process and financial and quality control aspects of the project. Both worked with us right from the very start to understand what we wanted out of our dream house in terms of look, feel, flow, and what our concerns and limitations were. We did not want a “normal” house with four walls surrounding a series of rooms, we also wanted something that would fit quietly into its surrounding environment, and we wanted to marry the organic feel of Africa with high tech modern standards and looks. Together the Brymers and us looked at several images of houses, architectural designs and interiors, we discussed textures and colours. They showed us examples in real life, taking us to houses in the area they had created, so that we could make an informed choice. They made every effort to understand how we lived – this was very important to ensure the livability of the house. Once we had laid out and discussed the basics, we let Merinda and Ian run with it. The plans they came up with were the most creative and all-encompassing product one could imagine - in a strange way, when we looked back at how we ourselves had first conceived the sketches for our house, the similarities were stunning – Merinda had truly understood what we wanted, translating our lay words into a beautiful and “different” home. She added bold creative statements both in the structural design of the house as well as in the interior design and interior decoration. Ian meticulously managed the building process, helping us select the best suppliers for everything from builders, structural engineers, to interior decorators, lighting, home automation and garden design. For example, when we could not find a specific stone for the extensive stone work in our house, he searched high and low until he finally found the stone we wanted in the Karoo, so off he sent a caravan of lorries to collect the stone for our house. He kept us up-to-date on progress against time and budget at regular intervals we had pre-agreed with him.

The building process was easy and well-informed and the final results were excellent. Communication with the Brymers was always easy and timely, be it via email, phone, fax or in person. There were never any negative surprises as they kept us fully informed ahead of time. And the house itself? It came in on budget and on time, and the very limited snag list was testimony to the high quality job done. But most of all, it is the most beautiful, livable and enjoyable home we could have imagined. Every time we come here, we are wowed over again, and so have been our guests who we have shared our home with us since. We believe that the key to this success was not just the Brymers’ exceptional degree of competence and professionalism, but also that we trusted them fully and allowed them to do what they do best! They made the project their own and gave it their all. We have no regrets and would recommend their services without reservation to anyone – locally or overseas – looking to build their dream home.

Jeffrey & Carola Babcock


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