BECKIE WILSON

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A love for the established gardens of one of Wairarapa’s most prestigious estates was what enticed a Wellington couple to buy Carrington Estate, Carterton.

Forsyth Barr managing director Neil Paviour-Smith. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

Forsyth Barr managing director Neil Paviour-Smith and his wife Phillipa bought the estate in November last year.

“We are just really attracted to the gardens, we really love Wairarapa… so when it came on the market we weighed up all the pros and cons and ended up buying it,” Mr Paviour-Smith said.

The couple do not plan to make any significant changes to the house, but hope they can maintain the gardens to a high standard over time.

Mr Paviour-Smith has over 25 years’ experience in New Zealand capital markets.

He is a Director of Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand (CAANZ), a Council member of Victoria University of Wellington, and former Director of NZX.

The 143-year-old Carrington House was put on the market in August last year through Clark & Co Realty.

The estate was bought for $3,065,000, according to Quotable Value data.

Built in 1874, the homestead, two cottages, stables, outbuildings and a six-car garage sit on 6.9ha of land.

The elaborate two-storey home has a floor area of 811m2 with four large bedrooms, each with an ensuite.

The lower level includes a drawing room with a Steinway piano, 22-seat dining table, family room, grand dining room, country style kitchen, butler pantry and powder room.

The gardens are “pretty special”, especially the 100-year-old trees, he said.

“You can build anything nowadays but it’s the land and the setting and the environment you are in, and so on, which you have no control over so that was clearly a strong feature of that property.

“We’ll get some paint brushes and there are some things we want to do to the house like any buyer of any house, but we just want to fit in quite nicely.”

Mr Paviour-Smith and his wife were told about the property when friends who live nearby mentioned it was for sale.

The first time they saw the house and grounds was when they went to the open home late last year, he said.

“There has been a lot of buzz over Martinborough and Greytown over the years, but Carterton has been growing pretty nicely, the Wairarapa generally — it’s just a nice contrast if you live and work in Wellington.”

The couple also own Kourarau Homestead in Gladstone.