Boating empire home that was fit for a king

A Wahroonga estate that has been home to the Halvorsen family of the famed boat building empire for the last 67 years, and once hosted the King of Norway, has just been listed for sale.

Ray White Turramurra | Wahroonga director David Walker said the Halvorsen family home called Skaugum at 60a Burns Road, Wahroonga was both “stately and dignified”.

“This iconic Wahroonga home sits in a highly coveted dress-circle setting and is testament to the iconic family who built it,” Mr Walker said.

Built by Harold Halvorsen of Lars Halvorsen Sons Pty Ltd fame in 1950, this three-bedroom home with marble tiled foyer on 1665sq m is rich in heritage.

The family’s boat building company was once described as “one of the most famous names in Australian marine engineering”.

Halvorsen Boats traces its roots to 1887 when Halvor Anderson launched his first wooden craft near Arendal in the south of Norway.

His son Lars followed in his father’s footsteps and became a boat builder, and his son Harold settled in Sydney in the 1920s and later built his home at 60a Burns Road, Wahroonga.

Most of the stunning woodwork the property features, including the timber floors, architraves, skirting and the grand staircase bannister was built by Harold in the Halvorsen boatsheds in 1950.

David Walker

Harold’s son Harvey Halvorsen inherited the home in 2000 when his father passed away aged 90.

Harvey Halvorsen and his wife Nancy have more recently been living between Sydney and the United States.

“There are so many rooms in the home that we’ve loved for different reasons, and at different times of the day,” Mrs Halvorsen said.

“The home has a north-to-rear aspect, and we love the conservatory which is bathed in sunlight all day. The other room we love is the casual living room which has a built-in wrap-around lounge where we spend a lot of their time relaxing and reading.

“At night, and particularly during the winter months the formal lounge room with fireplace is so inviting and a large space where we love entertaining guests, using the bar which flows into this room as a lit up hub where many memories have been made chatting to friends.

“Now we are moving to the US where we spend a lot of the year already. We feel it is time for another family to enjoy the estate and make new memories,” Mrs Halvorsen said.

The family had plans to extend the home into a 5 bedroom, 3 bathroom property with a huge living area and the current layout with the billiard room above the garage made it very easy to extend and link to the existing house.