Gold Coast star designer: how house designs will change

GOLD Coast house designs will shift to a more “minimalistic design phase” as building costs and interest rates soar, says a leading designer.

Emerging star designer Reece Keil, based at Mermaid Beach, believes building supply issues, a lack of trades, rising interest rates and a sporadic real estate market will cause new luxury house designs to change.

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Star designer Reece Keil at his office at Mermaid Beach. Picture: Glenn Hampson


Tallebudgera’s Kooringal Lodge is almost complete and up for sale. Supplied by Reece Keil.


“I think the immediate future of the landscape design is going to be forced to shift to a more simplistic – minimalist design phase in order to counteract this,” he said.

“People will still want champagne on a beer budget so either one of two drivers in every project will have to pair back: size or aesthetic.

“That’s where true creative design will be tested to maintain size and achieve aesthetics through simpler form and balanced materiality.”

Tallebudgera’s Kooringal Lodge. Supplied by Reece Keil.


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Mr Keil, a father-of-two daughters, has more than 19 years of residential and commercial design experience.

He opened his self-titled studio in 2009 and hasn’t looked back.

Villa Casa at Reedy Creek. Supplied by Reece Keil.


His jaw-dropping designs have won industry awards, featured on the covers of prestige magazines, and gone viral on social media.

Some of his work includes Hope Island’s Hidden Haven, Reedy Creek’s Villa Casa, Tugun’s Vantage, and Tallebudgera’s Kooringal Lodge.

Hidden Haven at Hope Island. Supplied by Reece Keil.


His designs have also made headlines in the real estate market with one of his projects on the Isle of Capri selling last month for a cool $6 million.

“I definitely feel a sense of accomplishment when I see how the homes I have designed are accepted in the market and go on to achieve record prices,” he said.

Vantage at Tugun. Supplied by Reece Keil.


He said the biggest mistake a homeowner could make is to follow a trend.

“In recent times people have become more interested and involved in the design outcome of their homes based on what they have been exposed to,” he said.

Villa Sunshine at Miami was designed by Reece Keil. It was recently on the market.


“Personally I think it’s a shame because with a spiking interest in design driven by a flow on effect of ‘trend influenced design’ the overall diversity of design hasn’t flourished as much as it could.

“That’s not to say there hasn’t been some great unique and evolved designs out there because there most definitely have, but good design has been overshadowed by the popularity of re-occurring ‘influenced’ design and the design elements associated with it. ”

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Designer Reece Keil produces bespoke homes that go against mainstream design trends. Picture: Glenn Hampson


Mr Keil said he focused on producing bespoke homes that went against mainstream design trends.

“Quite simply, if something is on trend I’m not interested in re-producing a version of it,” he said.

“If someone comes in and wants a Hamptons design for example I take that influence and give them a spin on it.

“I took a different road in order to give them what they want but also give them something that no one else has.”

89 Gibraltar Drive, Surfers Paradise was designed by Reece Keil. It recently sold for $6 million.


He said his favorite Gold Coast designs were those built more than 50 years ago.

“All of my favorite designs on the Coast are those of yesteryear – the properties that gave the Gold Coast its identity back in the 60s and 70s,” he said.

“Character driven, interesting, unique design – standing proud among monotonous urbanism.

“They were aesthetically individual, simple, cost effective and functional which, as it turns out, in the current climate is exactly what we need.”

Solair at Burleigh Heads. Supplied by Reece Keil.