Building A Dream

Don & Doreen Goodall.
A unique brief.

Imagine visiting the Goodalls on their Mossburn Hereford Bull stud farm and being presented with a pile of logs some 15m high with some logs up to 1.5m in diameter.
“Can you build me a house out of this?” said Don Goodall.
Don had planted these trees on the family farm with his father as a child and his dream, to build a home from them, was about to be fulfiled. There was Scotch Pine, Lawsaniana, Macrocarpa, Oregon and we bought in 10 cube of Heart Rimu for the kitchen and other furniture. Apart from the rimu and a little bit of decking all the timber was milled from that pile of logs to build a 480m2 house we produced 6 - 350 x 150 macrocarpa beams 7.0m long all the framing timber and 15,000 lineal meters of secret nailed tongue & grooved sarking. More timber than some people may like, but Don loved timber, the history of this timber and is absolutely enthusiastic about the results. Nothing is more important than that to both the client and designer.
Of course the design brief was rather more than “please build a home from this pile of logs” and incorporated everything from a launch with a flying bridge to a grand piano. Both Don and Doreen have a keen eye for detail and every aspect of their new home was thought through with care and discussed at length. Such was the detail that each piece of timber was hand picked by Don and given a place in the new home.

The Design

The approach to the upper level is bordered by a curved, schist stone  wall which leads through stone pillars to a huge, solid Scotch Pine entry door. The entrance opens into a foyer bathed in light from the central atrium and offers a welcoming warm glow from selected grain timbers. From this central foyer you can access the garage, office, powder room, master bedroom or move through the double doors into the open plan dining, kitchen, lounge, sunroom area featuring massive vaulted ceilings and a superb view over Lake Whakatipu. The entire top floor has been designed to be fully self contained to provide a future solution in the event of mobility issues.

The lower level consists of 3 bedrooms, library, family room, bar and a bathroom and spa lit from the glass floor in the atrium above. Level 2 also has a garage to house the jetski.

During the building process when some 15,000 metres of T & G sarking was spread on the upper garage floor Don saw the different grains and selected each piece of timber for a  particular wall and room. He would say,” I like these knotty bits can I have this in this room or that room?” This took time and put the project over budget by a considerable amount however the result was worth while and we were fortunate that Don knew what he wanted and accepted the costs involved. On that basis, “if our client wants it then the job is done.” Don was happy and we were happy.

After some consideration it was decided that a barrel vaulted ceiling in the garage would best house the launch. This would be continued at a right angle in the lounge, with lean-too roofs. This was enhanced by having the central vaulted ceilings lined with T & G sarking which featured exposed rafters with sarking over in the wings.
The roof was supplied and installed by Calder Stewart Roofing. It is Permanent Green ZR8 Hi Five which has been crimp curved to follow the roofline designed by Martin Kennedy. (Calder Stewart can crimp curve Hi Five to a radius of less than 0.5m) Calder Stewart Sales Manager Brendan Monaghan says “This roof is interesting in that the design called for a trapezoidal not corrugated profile. This profile gives a more modern feel than that normally achieved with the traditional stacked stone and corrugate combination usually used in the area.”
This home is packed with thoughtful detail and character, filled with reminders of the owner's farming origins and many extra touches to make their lives convenient and pleasant.

Both Don and Doreen are convinced the excellence of Martin's joinery skills, his patience and attention to detail has provided them with a home built to the highest of standards. It is the realisation of their dream. 
“To find a designer and builder of Martin's calibre today is very rare,” says Don.

For Martin the challenge of creating a special house from that initial pile of logs was satisfying and enjoyable.

Doreen describes it as a home built with fun and laughter. “It has been nice to bring something of the farm with us.”

Design Philosophy:

It is all about working together with the owners to design a home that is warm & friendly.” To achieve this Martin emphasises the importance of listening to his clients aspirations first, with no fixed ideas in mind. “Only then can you craft a home which will exactly suit the owners lifestyle and sit comfortably within its environment.”

The Designer:

Martin Kennedy has been involved in the building industry since leaving college in the mid 60's. His early experience as a draughtsman, servicing the precut market, lead him into the area of design and build. Since 1972 Martin has been self employed and applied his industry experience, natural design flare and superb craftsmanship to create many fine homes. The Goodall home featured here is testimony to those skills. Of recent years Martin has  concentrated more on design. His experience in the fundamentals of building has been invaluable and taught him to design from “the sticks up”. “ If I don't know how to build it, I don’t expect anyone else to, and I won’t draw it,” says Martin. That will sound unfamiliar to a lot of builders and sub-trades within the industry but it is this practical knowledge and application, Martin believes, that sets him apart.

Owners: Don & Doreen Goodall

Designer: Martin Kennedy Design
Builder: Martin Kennedy Construction
Telephone: 03 442 4890
e mail:

John Weatherburn & Kerry Round

Roofing Manufacturer & Fixer:
Calder Stewart Roofing
Telephone: 0800 115 232
Profile: Permanent Green ZR8 Hi Five

Plumber: Nelson Plumbing
Electrical: Laser Electrical
Stone Masons: Paul Sinclair & Ray Anderson
Plaster: Thompson Plastering