Nullarbor Terracotta tiles from Monier Roofing were specifically chosen to create the mansard roof on a French Provincial-style home in Hunter Valley NSW.

Mimi and Steve Summers moved into their dream home after completing a two-year build. Set high on a hill with sweeping views, the spectacular home recreates the French Provincial-style – a look that the couple fell in love with on their many trips to Europe.

Originally from Sydney’s inner west, the Summers were looking for a tree change that involved giving up their corporate careers and moving to the Hunter, a semi-rural area where they had spent many a happy weekend away. They designed the house themselves, working closely with a local master builder, Lance Murray Quality Homes to recreate the classic flair and elegant lines of the French Provincial style.

“I just love design and I've got a home design business (Luxe Home Designs and Décor by Mimi),” says Mimi. “When I walk through the home and see all the elements in my head realised, it's actually quite surreal.”

The home has a traditional French mansard roofline featuring a two-tiered roof, high-pitched sides and a flat top to capture the essence of the French Provincial style, along with classically understated exterior details such as a formal garden, portico and symmetrical mouldings. The lower roof has a 30-degree pitch with the upper at 5 degrees.

The slate-look Nullarbor Terracotta tiles in Titan complement the sleek lines of the house’s classical styling.

“The Nullarbor was the obvious choice due to its flat and sleek profile, which gave it that European look and feel,” says Mimi. “The symmetrical A-line ridge tiles give it a sophisticated look.”

With the Hunter Valley known for its extreme temperature variations, Monier’s durable tiles made for a practical choice. The house’s location in a bushfire-prone area such as the Hunter Valley was also another consideration.

“I love the character of the home, and its classic architecture,” says Mimi. “When you look at the outside you can see lots of symmetrical detail, which are also complemented by the mouldings.

“We definitely had our challenges, but I think the end result and the streamlined look of the outside – with the shadow lines it provides at different times of day – is absolutely beautiful.”

The Hunter Valley home won the prestigious 2018 HIA-CSR Hunter Housing Award - Custom Built Home.

Photography by Murray McKean