Words by Dan Warden
At the pinnacle of Cornwall’s luxury property market, interior design stops being about what’s ‘in vogue’ and instead sets an unmatched, unfaltering standard of its own.
Here at Drift, we’re fortunate enough to see and meet the minds behind some of Cornwall’s most luxurious properties. This has led us to the conclusion that luxury homes – the kind that occupy a class of their own – offer so much more than mere curb appeal. Indeed, for those of us who wish to enjoy the best that life in Cornwall has to offer, making a house a home is as much about the interior as how it appears from the pavement.
The last paragraph, in our opinion, sums up the ethos behind award-winning Cornish property developer, Legacy Properties. But that’s not to say that their homes aren’t beautiful from the outside, because they most certainly are – there’re no two ways about it! Appealing to those who wish to live in the utmost high-end luxury, Legacy’s premium properties enjoy the very best in every aspect, from the build – where the finish is second to none – to the interiors, which are realised in partnership with Cornish interior specialists, Iroka. In fact, catching up with Neil Simpkin, who only recently joined Legacy Properties as Sales and Marketing Manager, he tells us how impressed he’s been so far by the quality of the finish in everything Legacy builds. In fact, he goes as far as to say: “If it’s not right, we start again.”
This is really why the Legacy/Iroka partnership works so well. It’s based on trust, on Legacy’s confidence in Iroka’s unrivalled ability to share a mindset that does not cut corners – one that pays close attention to each and every detail and finishes the job without fault. After all, isn’t this something we all want when commissioning a company to transform our home interiors?
Legacy Properties and Iroka have been collaborating on award winning, design led properties in Cornwall for more than five years. Over that time, the two growing businesses have developed a working relationship that focuses on delivering the highest standards of finishing and attention to detail that Legacy customers have come to expect. As Legacy’s Managing Director, Nick Long tells us, he and his team “demand a ‘no compromise approach’ to quality from our skilled trades and partners, and value and support those that we trust to deliver to our exacting standards, time after time.”
Iroka was launched in the summer of 2006, as we learn from Managing Director, Luke Weller. Having initially launched the business with a vision of creating a retail space – showcasing some of Europe’s finest furniture, window treatments and flooring – it soon became apparent that there was great demand from clients for assistance in bringing purchases together and making them work with their existing interiors. “While the displays looked amazing, we found that our clients wanted more than a gallery of quality product.” So Iroka changed tack, moving away from being a showroom and instead becoming what Luke describes as a “giant interactive design studio.”
Iroka’s current interior design service is a formidable contender for the best in the south west, but how has it evolved? “Due to our geographical location and the general growth of the second home market in the south west,” explains Luke, “there is no doubt that holiday homes now account for some 70% of our turnover as a business.” He tells us that there are things his team have become specialised in, much through circumstance and necessity rather than by design. “Most of our clients are looking for a fully managed, ‘hands off’ service. I have clients that I have designed and fitted more than one property for and still never met! At the most extreme end of our service, we will design a property’s interior to include layout re-modelling, new bathrooms and kitchen, right the way through to floor and wall finishes, lighting design, and of course, all of the furnishings and home accessories.”
Having spoken to Luke and learned just how comprehensive Iroka’s interior design service can be, we take a look at one of Legacy Properties’ latest developments – The Rocks in Holywell Bay – to see the finished result. It doesn’t take long to realise that the partnership is a match made in heaven; Legacy’s trademark build quality simply will not settle for anything less than the best, something Luke and his team of interior designers are firmly on board with.
“Our customers rightly demand the very best in every aspect of what is likely to be their dream home,” Nick elaborates. “We have learnt to place our trust in the Iroka team to always deliver perfectly thought-through interiors that remain aspirational, without simply following the fashion.” Indeed, as you take in the stylish, open-plan living, kitchen and dining areas of these fabulous homes; tread along the wide plank engineered oak flooring and enjoy the warmth radiating from beneath the boards via remote access underfloor heating, you begin to get an idea of the sheer quality on offer at The Rocks. From the rugs in the living space, to the plush wool carpets in the bedroom, to the elegant simplicity of the furniture and finishing touches, everything has been realised with a delicate master stroke, resulting in high-end homes that feel fresh yet homely – a balance rarely struck in brand new show homes.
Iroka was launched in the summer of 2006, as we learn from Managing Director, Luke Weller. Having initially launched the business with a vision of creating a retail space – showcasing some of Europe’s finest furniture, window treatments and flooring – it soon became apparent that there wasgreat demand from clients for assistance in bringing purchases together and making them work with their existing interiors. “While the displays looked amazing, we found that our clients wanted more than a gallery of quality product.” So Iroka changed tack, moving away from being a showroom and instead becoming what Luke describes as a “giant interactive design studio.”
While we have him, we can’t resist asking Luke what’s ‘in vogue’ right now, and whether or not these trends translate along the Cornish coast. He explains: “Generally there is a trend for darker finishes in the market. Rich deep timbers and marble on heavy stones, with a hint of even terrazzo paired against coloured glass.”
Black brassware and fittings are still abundant too, according to Luke, and there are “still large format wallpapers and luxe velvets hanging around from last year.” This, however, is sometimes difficult for us in the south west, as the high-end design trends sometimes just don’t transmit to a Cornish clifftop with sweeping views. “We have to carefully select elements of trends that we can blend with lighter and paler finishes using washes of whites and pale grey,” Luke confirms. “For me it feels like a blend of Nordic coastal, with a dose of black steel tubular finishes and maybe some touches of heavy navy velvet and soft grey textured rugs; for me, this walks the line between current fashion and our location.”
With an exceptional command of their combined industries, Legacy Properties and Iroka together prove that, when it comes to realising your dream home, whether buying brand new or redecorating an existing property, you needn’t look further afield than the Duchy. As Nick finishes: “To know we are collaborating with other talented Cornish businesses and delivering world class, award-winning homes without having to look for talent outside of Cornwall, is an achievement we should all be very proud of.”