Ray White Whanganui has partnered with the Whanganui Chronicle to find Whanganui's most beautiful home.
Each day this week we will profile one of the six finalists of the Beautiful Homes Whanganui competition with public voting now open.
When Stacey Jones and Jamie Ballantyne bought their Whanganui East property four years ago, they went in with an open mind and an empty canvas.
The couple bought the villa in 2017 knowing they had quite the project on their hands.
"The dream was to make it a Ponsonby-style villa in Whanganui East. We wanted to keep it as authentic as we could whilst modernising it."
Built in 1910, the villa had a lot of potential but a lot of work needed to be done.
"That's why we bought it. We bought it for its character. It had really good bones," Jones said.
"We completely gutted it. We stripped it back to nothing, raised the ceilings, added the deck. It was basically a tin shed when we got it."
From the middle of the house to the back, it was a completely new build.
The pair decided to keep the original colour of the house, Resene Silver Chalice - a neutral, conservative colour.
"It was just a bit tired so we painted over it and just matched the back to the front."
The front garden was completely replanted with iceberg roses, white hydrangeas and a magnolia hedge.
"In the summer it looks great. They're all in full bloom."
The backyard was "rough as guts" when they bought the property.
"All this planting, we have done all that," Jones said. "There was this big, ugly shed in the corner. It was rough."
Jones wanted to have more light coming into the house so they installed floor to ceiling french doors that would open on to a deck down to the backyard.
With a spa in the corner and a newly planted garden around the fence line, all their desires were covered.
"The gardens are just getting established. My dream was to be surrounded by a green wall."
With JD Builders helping out with the renovations, it took eight months to complete the build.
Jones loved the entire experience, saying it allowed her to be creative whilst keeping it authentic.
"I thrive on it. I loved doing this place and I found it so easy with fittings. I love the villa style. I really enjoyed doing this one, it was super fun."
Also in this series
Beautiful Homes Whanganui: Riverside setting has rural feel
Beautiful Homes Whanganui: 1910 Whanganui East villa gets modern twist
Beautiful Homes Whanganui: 1990s home designed to fit in with neighbouring properties
Beautiful Homes Whanganui: Property a 'custodial' honour for couple
Beautiful Homes Whanganui: Aramoho new-build inspired by Whanganui River
Beautiful Homes Whanganui: Levin couple find what they're looking for in Whanganui
She said they are moving on from the house later in the year as they look to build their own home.
"We're saying goodbye, which is a bit sad."
*Winners of the Whanganui Beautiful Homes Competition will be announced on Saturday, April 10.