SIZE: Land 796sq m, house 408sq m.
PRICE INDICATION: CV (2008) $2.09 million. Auction November 30 (unless sold prior).
INSPECT: Sat/Sun 2pm-2.45pm or by appointment.
SCHOOL ZONES: St Thomas School, Selwyn College.
CONTACT: Peter Cleave or Greg Gibson, Unlimited Potential Remuera, ph Peter 021 756 246 or Greg 021 940 048.
FEATURES: Sunny, elevated three-level concrete, masonry and weatherboard home situated at the end of a quiet cul- de-sac. Two living areas plus large study/ entertainment room, lift access throughout and living opening out to swimming pool. Double garage with additional space for a boat of up to 6m, plus two off-street parks.

Having grown accustomed to semi-rural privacy and tranquillity, the Simpsons spent 18 months looking for a site round the bays that could echo that ambience.

Andy Simpson explains he and wife Barb had been "spoilt" by the serenity of living in Whitford with their three daughters. Andy's a former quantity surveyor who went on to part-own a commercial construction company. So they weren't daunted by the prospect of building when they decided to relocate somewhere round the bays (where Barb had grown up) earlier this decade. But they struggled to find a property that inspired them.

Then in 2003 they found a peaceful, undeveloped site at the leafy end of a quiet cul-de-sac, overlooking a little reserve. They rented next door and Andy was on-site daily ensuring all details were sorted as a high-quality, low-maintenance home was built for them and their two daughters still at home.

The land's elevation was used to achieve a private, north-facing outlook. "Instead [of looking on to neighbours], we look out on to fabulous trees, watch the tui and get sun all day," Andy says.

A lower wall of rough-hewn rock contrasts with the three-level home's weatherboards and solid masonry, accented by aluminium louvres.

Operating the intercom by the glass front door, you're oblivious to the fact you're directly underneath a big, mid-level swimming pool.

The entrance features the creamy travertine marble that's used generously throughout; anchoring the interior's soft colours.

Andy's focus on detail extends to the internal-access carpeted garage, where automated lights and a self-closing door assist when you're unloading groceries. It can fit two cars plus a boat of up to 6m. This level introduces the home's lift and has a sizeable storage area, plus an under-stair wine cellar.

The stairwell walls' textural quality was achieved with a special paint finish and the wide stairs never squeak. "A concrete house is so quiet, as well as being warm in winter and cool in summer," Andy says. "Once you've lived in one you never want to live in any other sort."

A striking entertainment room/study half a floor up admires a courtyard embraced by lush planting. The room opens up on two sides to the courtyard and a spacious off-shoot of the front deck, where Andy and mates barbecue while watching sport on the big screen inside.

The middle floor is a living hub containing the carpeted formal lounge with fire and the travertine-floored kitchen-dining-family room; both fronted by big glass sliding doors. There's an extraordinary outlook over the front 15m-long pool backed by palms and neighbourhood greenery, with an al-fresco dining area alongside.

"Being here, you wouldn't think you were in the middle of the city," Andy says.

In summer, the sliding doors to the pooled deck are invariably pushed back, creating an ideal indoor-outdoor entertaining space. The impeccable kitchen includes a long island harbouring dual DishDrawers and storage on both sides. Its stone benches are sand-coloured, while a splashback and select island cupboards feature deep-burgundy glass.

The top floor's two big bedrooms and master suite (with walk-in wardrobe) admire peaceful green views. The en suite, upper hallway and stairwell incorporate subdued sensor lights. The home's signature marble sheaths the double-basin en suite and the family bathroom, which are supplemented by separate toilets on the upper two levels. An oversized cupboard off the upper hallway conceals a laundry.

The Simpsons favoured their pool and tropical planting over lawn, as the cul-de-sac's reserve is just steps away and it's a 500m stroll to Madill's Farm and 1.5km to the waterfront.

Andrew says: "This place still brings a smile to my face every time I drive up to it. I love the way it looks and the proportions." But with their daughters grown and a beach house to enjoy, it makes sense for the couple to downsize.