Starting with a tiny studio that was part of the landmark Arts Factory, Taliah and her husband Sein discovered they had flair for the process. The Pineapple Cottage, The Chapel and The Villas all followed, and as word spread, Taliah’s body of work shifted from being an Airbnb occupation to a fully fledged business. With successful renovations under their belt, the couple tried their hand at their first new build with Magnolia House – Taliah's favourite property. All of these skills have been poured into their most recent addition to the Beach Abodes family: The Bower Suites, House, Barn and Cottage.
Think relaxed Australian beach holidays mixed with contemporary natural luxury; Palm Beach, California mixed with New York loft, always bearing the marks of quintessential Byron design. But more than anything, Taliah’s spaces are thoughtfully designed, comfortable and practical. Well known for her support of local designers, trades and businesses, we thought it was high time to take five and hear her thoughts on natural and handmade objects, community and her gift for design.
Can I just put the good stuff down? I am a determined, passionate, hardworking, loyal, unpretentious type of gal.
In our business we’ve created an eclectic mix of accommodation types – from grand to small homes; romantic studios; even a transformed motel – each with its own unique style. I go into each project inspired by the location, and with a sense about what will work in terms of interior design – bohemia, luxe, contemporary, or a fusion of all. Within each project I mix a few styles, and that’s what makes the space original.
When it comes to my design aesthetic, there are a couple of cardinal things for me: beauty, space, light, simplicity and informality. My spaces are designed for people, not for magazines.
I love making a space feel stylish and on trend, but I consciously steer clear of choosing objects and furniture I have seen used somewhere else. I source unique pieces from here and around the world… one-offs – from door handles to artwork to rugs and mirrors – to give an interesting edge to a space.
And I love mixing it up; I never stick with one design concept for a space. It’s not always easy, and it doesn’t always work, but bringing disparate styles together is my signature, it’s what I am drawn to, and that includes mixing old and new. Natural, handmade textures work so well when they are mixed with a touch of modern and contemporary. They add such a rich texture and tell a story.
These handmade and tribal ‘finds’ become integral to the overall effect of the design. I see a piece and imagine how to use it and where, and the whole thing comes together ad hoc, yet creating its own symmetry and harmony in relationship to the other objects.
I guess I am a bit tribal when it comes to my family, and community as well. I have lived all over the world and visited so many beautiful places and met people who have changed my life through their generosity and love. I am blessed, and I want to share that and pass it on to my immediate family and friends – the people I chose to work with, and the greater community. In a small way, that sense of gratitude is also translated into our properties and how we present them for our guests.
The creation of beautiful and unique spaces, overlaid with luxury and comfort at every turn, is at the heart of every Byron Beach Abodes project. Spaces where you can’t help but unwind and immerse yourself in the joy of a break away, surrounded by Byron Bay’s extraordinary natural beauty.
There are few things which please us more than creating those spaces with like-minded local businesses, and The Dharma Door is just that. Woven textures, natural fibres, natural dyes, quality sustainable materials and a superior level of quality and craftsmanship are essentials shared by us both. That, and the opportunity to showcase the work of fair trade artisans from around the world.
You’ll see lots of product from The Dharma Door’s collection at The Villas of Byron, as well as in the newly styled Bower accommodation, whose interiors have been carefully crafted by styling gurus Lynda Gardener and Belle Hemming Bright of Inside Story. They have seamlessly selected The Dharma Door’s jute rugs, woven baskets, hemp string bags, wall mandalas and wall hangings and woven them into the signature Byron Beach Abodes aesthetic. We share a united appreciation of design, ethos, and a shared vision.
Photos by Jessie Prince
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