A Tonal Sorrento Beach House Inspired By The Italian Coast


Sorrento House brings a taste of the Italian coastline to the Mornington Peninsula after a striking renovation by Fiona Lynch Office.

A Melbourne family with two young children engaged the interior design studio with hopes of returning their dated merchant builder-style home to its original glory.

‘It had been renovated, however not in a sympathetic way,’ director Fiona Lynch says. It had been given an all-white interior, with grey laminated joinery and intrusive open shelving elements that felt cold and out of place in the property’s beachy surrounds.

‘I could see that we could bring it back to its former self and soften the finishes, and really make it a retreat,’ Fiona notes. After stripping back the interiors, natural materials such as pale timber, open weave linen curtains and muted green hues were selected to create a sense of warmth and texture across the abode.

The client’s Italian heritage informed the brief for the renewed holiday house. This prompted Fiona to combine a ‘calming coastal Positano palette’ with the minimalism and symmetry of Italian Rationalism. She highlights the travertine and oyster-grey limestone features – showcased in storage units, the island bench and countertops – as one of the project’s most meaningful additions. Pairing this with timber joinery and woven-wicker screens helped create the property’s warm atmosphere inside.

‘The screens are custom and are made by a third-generation weaver from Melbourne, Camberwell Cane,’ Fiona notes. ‘They are master weavers, and once the framework is in, they come to the site, and weave the screen onsite. Their work is exceptional.’

Fiona and her team also curated the furniture for the project. They introduced soft curtains to give the home a luxe ‘hotel or getaway feel’, while incorporating linen – which is ‘classically suited to a beach retreat.’ The dreamy renovation even earned a commendation in the 2022 Australian Interior Design Awards‘ Residential Design Award category!

But perhaps most importantly, the home now caters to the owner’s Mediterranean lifestyle. ‘Our client is passionate about their Italian heritage, and they have deep a love for cooking and enjoying life,’ Fiona adds. ‘Their Sorrento beach house is now a place to do all that: to relax and enjoy good food and wine.’

See more projects from Fiona Lynch Office here.


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Angela M. Arriola

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