Clifftop outlook is a work of art

By Catherine Masters

SIZE: 227sq m apartment.
PRICE INDICATION: CV $2.65 million.
AUCTION: October 24 (unless sold prior).
SCHOOL ZONES: Auckland Grammar, Epsom Girls' Grammar, Parnell District School, ACG Parnell.
CONTACT: Pene Milne, Milne & Co, ph 021 919940.
FEATURES: Overlooking Judges Bay, this one- level apartment has panoramic views, an expansive, open-plan living area, deck, large gourmet kitchen, large media room or office. Low-maintenance lifestyle. Two parking spaces, storage locker, gym and easy access to Parnell Village and CBD.
3c/154 St Stephens Ave, Parnell.
3c/154 St Stephens Ave, Parnell.

An iconic hotel, where rock and pop stars used to stay, once sprawled across this site in Parnell. Big names such as Joe Cocker, Gene Pitney, Elton John ... there's a long list.

The White Heron Hotel was demolished a few years back to make way for upmarket residences and this roomy apartment in a block overlooking Judges Bay.

Owner and developer Kerry Knight opens the door and the visitor's eye is drawn past the open-plan kitchen and lounge to the big windows pulled back on themselves - framing the view to the deck and Waitemata Harbour.

Across the harbour are Mt Victoria and North Head on the North Shore, beyond is Rangitoto. The view takes in the port where machinery rumbles in the distance and in the foreground a train goes by. Ferries speed by on their way to Devonport or out to Waiheke Island and just below are Parnell Baths.

It's a very active view, says Kerry. "There's always something going on."

In the distance are the high rises of Takapuna and to the left is the Sky Tower.

There's greenery too, with pohutukawa that Kerry says look great in summer when in full flower.

The living area has a gas fire and there's a high-end Poggenpohl kitchen with sparkling Miele appliances.

Kerry shows two of three bedrooms, one with an en suite and one with its own deck and a bathroom with a stone floor next door. He points out a study/entertainment space and a separate laundry, which he says is a real bonus in an apartment, as is all the other storage in this one. To prove the point he opens another door to reveal a cavernous cupboard.

A hall from the entrance leads down to the separate master bedroom. In the hall is another big storage room that could be used as a walk-in wardrobe, a large en suite with a bath, then the bedroom itself that has the same spectacular views as the lounge. The doors in the bedroom also pull back on themselves, opening to the deck.

Kerry thinks anyone downsizing from a large house, who doesn't want to do any maintenance, would like living here."You're in Parnell, number one," he says, "which is two minutes from the CBD. You're sitting on the cliff with a grandstand view of what Auckland is famous for - its harbour.

'You're sitting in a gated community, and most apartment blocks don't have visitor car parking like that car court in the middle. You're also sitting in a small block, you're very secure, it's appointed incredibly nicely and it's large."

The body corporate pays to keep the cliff edge in shape so the immediate view is always tidy and nice, he says.

A staircase down Resolution Point lets you walk to the waterfront, "the finest waterfront in the world", says Kerry. Or walk to Parnell Village.

There's also a gym in the block for residents, with regular yoga and Pilates classes.

The block is only three storeys high, though Kerry admits he would have liked to build higher but town planning rules made this impossible.

He says he told the architect, Colin Leuschke, he wanted to create something signature rather than fitting more apartments in and making them much smaller.

"For those wanting apartment living, it's hard to get better than this - and it's all solid concrete."

- NZ Herald

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