Detached new build villa in Midlothian oozes LA luxe

With the glitzy sheen of an A-lister’s boudoir and the glittering lustre of Art Deco glamour, this new build is more Hollywood hills than the heart of Midlothian. And that’s exactly how the owner likes it.

D espite the appeal of a brand new home and all its walk-in credentials, some serious quandaries arise for house buyers looking for more: how can they put their own stamp on it? Can it be turned into a home that reflects their taste without any compromises? Is it feasible to make changes that will transform it into, say, the ultimate luxury pad? And just how complicated would it be to do that?
These were just some of the questions that went through Melissa Mellor’s head when she spotted a new development in a part of Midlothian that had always been close to her heart. The decision to go ahead proved to be easy, thanks to it proximity to both her father’s home and to Edinburgh. And, with money no object, and a style inspired by the eye-boggling residences of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Keeping Up with the Kardashians (two of America’s most-watched reality shows, in case you’ve missed them), this was going to be a no-nonsense project with change and deliberation at its heart. Like it or lump it.
Work had yet to begin on the plot Melissa had her eye on, which helped sway this property developer’s decision even further. The five-bedroom house that was planned for it, however, was almost identical to one at another development in Hamilton by the same builder. The showhome there was open and ready to view; Melissa quickly arranged a visit.
Much about the house appealed, especially all the high-spec details and quality trademarks of a reputable home­builder. She also liked its openness: there was a spacious hall, well-proportioned rooms and a viewing platform on the upper landing (nicknamed the Romeo & Juliet banister by her friends).
But she also noticed plenty of things that she wanted to change. The doors weren’t right and nor was the kitchen. The shower fittings weren’t up to scratch, the wood was the wrong colour and the light fittings weren’t in the best position. The manual garage doors just wouldn’t do for her Range Rover or her Porsche (both in white, naturally).
She went back to Midlothian and shared her misgivings with the sales rep. At the end of that chat, a 20% deposit was paid on condition that all of these elements would be changed to Melissa’s specification, then sourced and fitted prior to her receiving the keys. This, most certainly, is a woman who knows what she wants.
As work got under way, she went back to the develop­ment several times, even going so far as to check the movement of the sun around her plot so she could establish exactly where the light would fall in each room. Melissa was leaving nothing to chance in the creation of the home she was investing so much time and money in.
It was around this point that she got in touch with interior designer Carol Yates. As one half of Amabile Design, Carol was the creative brain behind the décor of a showhome Melissa had seen earlier. The pair quickly established a partnership and together spent months sourcing the exact pieces Melissa wanted for her home.

This is just a taster, you can browse the full article with more stunning photography on pages 152-162, issue 93.

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Words Gillian Welsh
Photography Neale Smith
What A five-bedroom new build
Where Midlothian