Inside Bulgarian architect Iwan Iwanoff’s Mount Lawley house in Perth, Western Australia


A look inside a sprawling mansion designed by late Bulgarian architect Iwan Iwanoff is like stepping back in time to a bygone era.

Steeped in history, Golowin House was built in 1959 in Mount Lawley, five minutes’ drive north of Perth CBD, for a Jewish family who emigrated from Russia to Australia after World War II.

Famed for their jam-packed social calendars, the Golowins were renowned for hosting theatrical and musical soirees at the house, where the third bedroom doubled as a wine cellar and a place for guests to play cards.

The foundations for the three-bedroom were laid by family patriarch Mr W. Golowin’s construction company, Golowin Bros, which was Iwanoff’s firm of choice throughout his four-decade career in Australia.

A look inside this sprawling mansion designed by late Bulgarian architect Iwan Iwanoff is like stepping back into a bygone era

Steeped in history, Golowin House was built in 1959 in Mount Lawley, five minutes' drive north of Perth CBD, for a Jewish family who emigrated from Russia to Australia after World War II

Steeped in history, Golowin House was built in 1959 in Mount Lawley, five minutes’ drive north of Perth CBD, for a Jewish family who emigrated from Russia to Australia after World War II

The house, which is on the market for the first time in 31 years, has been carefully restored to its original mid-century glory by current owners, Jane and Paul Gray.

Over the course of three decades, the Grays spent $1million (AUD) on meticulous renovations which include a new bathroom, a revamped kitchen and the restoration of terrazzo flooring, Domain reported.

Set on a corner block spanning 883 square metres, the split-level house features open-plan living areas and dozens of windows strategically placed to maximise natural light.

Perched on a raised platform, the three-bedroom is connected to the street by a footbridge which overlooks a fish pond.

The house, which is on the market for the first time in 31 years, has been carefully restored to its original mid-century glory by current owners, Jane and Paul Gray

The house, which is on the market for the first time in 31 years, has been carefully restored to its original mid-century glory by current owners, Jane and Paul Gray

As per Iwanoff's distinctive style, the interior seamlessly flows to the garden and heavy materials such as granite, copper and concrete are found throughout

His signature Brutalist style is evident in every corner of the house, which is filled with rough, unfinished surfaces, oblong shapes, straight lines and small windows.

As per Iwanoff’s distinctive style, the interior seamlessly flows to the garden and heavy materials such as granite, copper and concrete are found throughout

Over the course of three decades, the Grays spent $1million (AUD) on meticulous renovations which include a new bathroom, a revamped kitchen (pictured) and the restoration of terrazzo flooring

Over the course of three decades, the Grays spent $1million (AUD) on meticulous renovations which include a new bathroom, a revamped kitchen (pictured) and the restoration of terrazzo flooring

As per Iwanoff’s distinctive style, the interior seamlessly flows to the garden and heavy materials such as granite, copper and concrete are found throughout.

The upstairs opens onto a large balcony that looks out over a resort-style swimming pool and pool house in the Palm Springs inspired back garden.

A custom-designed letterbox, which Iwanoff is famous for, sits in the front garden like a sentry standing guard over the one-of-a-kind home.

The acclaimed architect, also known as Iwan Nickolow, was born in western Bulgaria in 1919 and studied architecture across Europe before emigrating to Fremantle, WA, where he lived until his death in 1986.

Set on a corner block spanning 883 square metres, the split-level house features open-plan living areas and dozens of windows strategically placed to maximise natural light

Set on a corner block spanning 883 square metres, the split-level house features open-plan living areas and dozens of windows strategically placed to maximise natural light

A large balcony looks out over a resort-style swimming pool and pool house in the Palm Springs inspired back garden

A large balcony looks out over a resort-style swimming pool and pool house in the Palm Springs inspired back garden

Iwanoff installed clerestory windows (pictured), an architectural technique dating back to the temples of ancient Egypt that positions rows of windows above eye level, to flood the interior with light

Iwanoff installed clerestory windows (pictured), an architectural technique dating back to the temples of ancient Egypt that positions rows of windows above eye level, to flood the interior with light

All three bedrooms (one pictured) are spacious with built-in wardrobes and lots of natural light

The master bedroom (pictured) boasts a beautifully renovated ensuite bathroom with Italian tiling

All three bedrooms (two pictured) are spacious with built-in wardrobes and lots of natural light

Acclaimed architect Iwanoff was born in western Bulgaria in 1919 and studied architecture across Europe before emigrating to Fremantle, WA, where he lived until his death in 1986

Acclaimed architect Iwanoff was born in western Bulgaria in 1919 and studied architecture across Europe before emigrating to Fremantle, WA, where he lived until his death in 1986

His signature Brutalist style is evident in every corner of the house, which is filled with rough, unfinished surfaces, oblong shapes, straight lines and small windows.

Iwanoff installed clerestory windows, an architectural technique dating back to the temples of ancient Egypt that positions rows of windows above eye level, to flood the interior with light, making the space feel bright, airy and considerably larger than its actual floor size. 

The Mount Lawley house is one of the earliest of Iwanoff’s Perth designs, preceding striking homes in nearby Dianella, Floreat and City Beach.

Perched on a raised platform, the three-bedroom is connected to the street by a footbridge which overlooks a fish pond

Perched on a raised platform, the three-bedroom is connected to the street by a footbridge which overlooks a fish pond

The Mount Lawley house is one of the earliest of Iwanoff's Perth designs

It preceded striking homes in nearby Dianella, Floreat and City Beach

The Mount Lawley house is one of the earliest of Iwanoff’s Perth designs, preceding striking homes in nearby Dianella, Floreat and City Beach

Listing agent Danielle Geagea describes the house as a 'once in a lifetime' buy

Listing agent Danielle Geagea describes the house as a ‘once in a lifetime’ buy

Listing agent Danielle Geagea, who is overseeing the sale for realtor Zsa Zsa Property, describes it as a ‘once in a lifetime’ buy.

Ms Geagea told Daily Mail Australia she has been ‘inundated’ with interest for the landmark home, which she expects to be snapped up soon.

‘An opportunity to buy an Iwanoff home close to the city is rare,’ she said.



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