As Seen on Grand Designs New Zealand
Our Grand Design
My name is Kim and I have the privilege and joy to be Boon’s husband. Boon has asked me to write this page, covering our involvement with Grand Designs NZ and what motivated us.
When I met Boon in 2016, romance could not have been further from our minds. We seemed to get on pretty well so we decided to become “theatre buddies”, to take advantage of the vibrant arts and cultural scene in Melbourne. Boon had lived there for 38 years and I was preparing to move home to New Zealand after a few years working in Australia.
Even as theatre buddies, it is impossible to be around Boon for long before the topic of Feng Shui arises, alongside traditional Chinese culture and philosophy. I am very open to new ideas and believe in lifelong learning, so I found this very exciting. To this day I am not sure what Boon got out of the deal.
It had long been Boon’s dream to build the perfect Feng Shui home on the perfect Feng Shui site. This was more properly a vision than a dream since she had already bought land on the beautiful Mornington Peninsular, not far out of Melbourne.
Our Grand Design
We will skip the romance part, but when we became a couple, the issue of where to live was going to arise at some point, since I see myself as a Kiwi and always wanted to return to my beloved New Zealand.
The “deal” was quite simple from my point of view. If Boon was going to have the courage to sell her “Feng Shui land” and cut her ties with Melbourne and move to New Zealand with me, then it was only fair for me to support her project to build the perfect Feng Shui home.
Little did I know what that truly meant, but it seemed a good idea at the time. Thus began our search for the perfect Feng Shui on the Northland coast.
There was also the question of how to establish Boon’s Feng Shui consulting practice in New Zealand. The challenge before even getting to a discussion about a consulting assignment is to educate potential customers on what Feng Shui truly is and why it is of such great and lifelong benefit.
As we wrestled with this challenge, the idea of featuring the build of our new home on Grand Designs, showcasing Feng Shui principles to the broader New Zealand public slowly came to the fore. We were delighted that Grand Designs embraced our ideas so readily and it was not long before building and filming began.
It was not surprising that the producers wanted to probe my motivation and beliefs, since I am a westerner with no prior exposure to Feng Shui. I was also project managing the build from start to finish.
Our Grand Design
As a Feng Shui master, Boon was passionate about “walking the talk” and to design her home according to strict Feng Shui principles. After all, we intend this to be our home for the rest of our lives. I was soon to discover how this can frequently come in to conflict with modern concepts of architecture such as we have become used to in the west. At this point we made what was arguably the biggest commitment of the whole project. Namely that where Feng Shui conflicted with aesthetics or practical design layout we would hold to Feng Shui and wrestle with the problem until we found a solution.
The other thing I was soon to discover involved the complexity of Feng Shui and how it impacts nearly every aspect of the design and build. To give just one example, stormwater drains are very important for us. Our house site is on a hillside and actually straddles what was a stream bed taking run off from the hill above us. The layout of the drainage system, right down to the direction of the pipes taking water along pre-determined compass bearings was critically important. As the earthworks progressed it was quite normal to see Boon up on Andy’s (our contractor) digger with her Feng Shui compass and engaged in intense discussion about exactly how to dig the drains.
It got to the point that even though I was project manager, Andy would not take my instructions unless Boon had signed it off!
Our Grand Design
The Grand Designs team saw this unfolding and at times they must have thought we were quite mad. The real “take out” for me from the building project is that Feng Shui is very complex and all pervasive. If you are truly serious about getting the benefit you need a Feng Shui master to guide you.
The build is virtually complete, Grand Designs finished filming and we are living in our new home. I do not think I was ever asked the 64 thousand dollar question “Was it worth it?”
The answer for me is an unqualified “Absolutely!” There is an extraordinary energy and tranquility that pervades the whole of our Di Tian Tai (the name we have chosen for our property, meaning the meeting point between heaven and earth).
I am not the only one to have felt this energy. At various times I witnessed contractors and tradespeople working on site become spellbound by Di Tian Tai’s energy. Most recently one of the furniture removalists delivering a consignment to our home just stood on the drive and fell silent. After a few moments reverie he commented on the energy of the place. When he had finished moving furniture in to the house, it was even more so.
I would not say I am a full blown convert to every aspect of Feng Shui, but it is definitely real and I am already feeling the benefit. As a westerner I would encourage you to have an open mind and have the courage to embrace Feng Shui, It is critical to be guided by a top notch Feng Shui master, so despite my understandable bias, I would strongly encourage you to speak with Boon!
On Grand Designs
Discover the ways Feng Shui can guide you to create a space that is harmonious and full of positive energy