Award-winning Australian homes you can rent for the holidays

You may be surprised to discover that many of Australia’s most recognised and awarded homes are available to rent for short-term holidays.

While you might not be able to afford the hefty mortgage repayments on some of these iconic homes, that’s no excuse for not bedding down in them for a few days. Magney House at Bingie

Homes such as Glenn Murcutt’s landmark Magney House at Bingie, on the NSW south coast, is one example.

Bordered on three sides by Eurobodalla National Park, this deceptively simple home cemented the Pritzker Prize winner’s reputation as the creator of a uniquely Australian “tin sheds” style of architecture.

Arguably one of the most influential Australian homes of the 20th century, Magney House received the nation’s highest residential design honour, the Robin Boyd Award for Residential Architecture, in 1985. Cape Schanck House

Cape Schanck House on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula was created by Paul Morgan Architects. The home is surrounded by a forest of tea trees and features an internal water tank to keep the interior cool in summer. It also won the Robin Boyd Award, in 2007. Related: The humble Beachcomber is Australia’s most iconic homeRelated: Most impressive beach houses around AustraliaRelated: Australia’s best holiday homes revealed in Stayz awardsThe Seidler House

Designed by the great modernist architect Harry Seidler, The Seidler House (previously known as The Berman House) is like a wave of concrete breaking dramatically over a cliff. The views are stupendous, over the Wingecarribee River towards Joadja, Mittagong and Bowral in the Southern Highlands.

Winner of the Blacket Award for regional architecture in 2001. Staying at Toumbaal House

Toumbaal House, winner of the 2003 RAIA Wilkinson Award for Outstanding Residential Architecture, has been featured in almost every major design magazine around the world. For a design geek like myself, it’s absolute heaven. My English wife just can’t wait to get inside and have a cup of tea.

???This was one of the first homes by architect Fergus Scott and it came to typify his response to climate, landscape and shelter. In awarding him the Wilkinson, the jury said: “The Toumbaal House is not so much a ‘home’ but an idea of a ‘camping place’.”

It’s not like any camping we’ve ever done, but we take their point. One of the home’s most distinctive features is its fully exposed central courtyard and hearth, dividing the living quarters from the bedrooms. The house also has a series of sliding skins – glass, insect screen and solid hardwood – that can be opened and closed as the weather demands.

Set on 80 hectares and completely surrounded by the largest coastal National Park in NSW (Yuraygir NP), it feels a lot more remote than it actually is.

One BBC documentary on the house referred to its location as “The Outback”. It isn’t. In fact, it’s only about a five-minute drive to the north coast holiday hamlet of Brooms Head and a twenty-minute drive to the much larger river township of Maclean.

And the judges are correct – staying in the house is a little like camping, in that you never feel out of touch with the natural environment. My city-raised kids experienced many firsts. Seeing the Milky Way in all its celestial glory, going on a nocturnal “critter walk” looking for pythons (we didn’t find any) and steering the car along the private landing strip.

During the cool of the evening, we close the house down, and sit out by the hearth toasting marshmallows over the fire. In bed at night, we slide into dreams to the sounds of the Earth; the lime-green tree frogs, the wind whispering through casuarinas and the distant roar of the ocean.

“Can we live here?” asks my five-year-old. You can’t get a better recommendation that that.

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Football year in review: Kerr star act for Australia

Story of the Year: Sam Kerr and the Matildas rise to the top

Who else would it be? Samantha Kerr had a year that most athletes could only dream of – she became the first woman to score four goals in a match in the US National Women’s Soccer League, was crowned player of the month twice, named in the team of the month four times (in a six-month competition, no less) was awarded the league’s Most Valuable Player award at season’s end, and finished as the competition’s top scorer comfortably.

Since returning to the W-League with Perth Glory, she’s averaging more than a goal per game in the early stages of that competition – and these were just her club level achievements.

For Australia, she bagged a staggering 11 goals in the calendar year, including four in the Tournament of Nations, as the Matildas beat three of the world’s best teams; USA, Japan and Brazil consecutively to win the tournament. After that, they breezed past Brazil and China twice each in friendlies on home soil, including a 3-2 win over Brazil in front of a record crowd in Newcastle.

Inexplicably, Kerr wasn’t among the three finalists for the FIFA World Player of the Year award, a decision that was rightly hammered by football fans around the globe. She was, however, honoured as Asia’s best player and included in the IFFHS World Team of the Year.

A combination of success and star power means that the Matildas now arguably sit as the most universally loved national team the country has to offer – and are a big chance to win both the Asian Cup next year, and the World Cup in 2019. The Winners: Sydney FC

Graham Arnold’s men completed the greatest season ever recorded in the A-League, shattering records left and right. Whatever your feelings towards Ange Postecoglou’s Brisbane Roar side of 2010-11, the Sky Blues eclipsed them in both goals scored and conceded per game, and grabbed more wins and more points despite the season being three games shorter.

Magic moment: Sydney FC players celebrate after winning the grand final. Photo: AAP

Sydney went on to win the Grand Final against Melbourne Victory in a penalty shootout, with the league’s best player, Milo?? Ninkovi??, slotting the winning spot kick. The first half of the 2017-18 season has been just as kind to them, as they sit at the top of the ladder and lifted the FFA Cup trophy after beating Adelaide United in the final in November.

The Losers: USA, Italy and the Netherlands

Three World Cup stalwarts won’t be heading to Russia next year, having failed in qualification – the American failure was particularly embarrassing, not only due to the quality of opposition in the CONCACAF region, but because broadcaster Fox Sports shelled out $400 million for exclusive rights to broadcast the tournament, only for the USA to lose their last game against Trinidad & Tobago, and fall all the way to fifth in their group.

Italy’s loss to Sweden in the play-off round meant that they would not be at football’s showpiece event for the first time in 60 years, and also robbed legendary keeper Gianluigi Buffon of becoming the first player to go to six World Cups.

Year to forget: Dick Advocaat gestures with Netherland’s Ryan Babel during a World Cup qualifying match between the Netherlands and Sweden. Photo: Peter DejongQuote of the Year: Dick Advocaat

As mentioned above, the Netherlands failed to qualify for the World Cup, being pipped to second in their group by Sweden, who then beat Italy in the play-offs. The Swedes only finished ahead of the Dutch due to goal difference, and the two teams were slated to play each other in the final game of the group stage, with Advocaat’s men needing a hefty win to swing that for and against.

But first, Sweden had their penultimate game against Luxembourg, and a win by a large margin would squash any remote hopes for the Netherlands to overturn the difference. “What if Sweden win 8-0 or something like that?” A reporter asked the Dutch coach.

“They won’t win 8-0, what a stupid question that is,” Advocaat said. “8-0? Well, no I don’t believe that.”

Sweden, of course, won 8-0 – and lost that final game to the Dutch by two, advancing to the play-off round with a goal difference of +17 to Sweden’s +9. Social media moment: Aaron Mooy, the young Huddersfield fan, and the ??5 note

After Huddersfield Town’s stunning win over Premier League heavyweights Manchester United, it was a touching moment between their Aussie midfield maestro and a five-year-old boy that stole the show. Adam Bhana, a young Terriers fan, found a ??5 note at the game, and wrote a letter to the club offering it to Mooy, who scored the opening goal in the victory. Pure class from young Adam pic.twitter南京夜网/KVSpfJlZrm??? Sean Jarvis (@SeanMJarvis) October 24, 2017This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Ablett will play midfield, not as permanent forward: Scott

Geelong did not recruit Gary Ablett to just play forward and expect him to play a significant role in the midfield in 2018.

The champion veteran will turn 34 early in the season but Geelong coach Chris Scott has dismissed suggestions the Cats would use him as a permanent forward next season.

“We didn’t bring him in to be a forward,” Scott said.

“We brought him in to be a midfielder, [but] with an open mind as well. We need to see how he plays.”

Scott was confident surgery had reduced the risk of Ablett dislocating his shoulder and his hamstring issues were manageable as the dual Brownlow medallist enters his 17th season.

“He didn’t come to us and say ‘Look, I am almost cooked here. Can you just hide me in the forward pocket for a couple of years and I will snag you 30 goals a year?’ ” Scott said.

“He has an aspiration to help the team as much as possible and we all believe that is in the midfield first.”

Ablett was traded back to the Cats after a seven-year stint with Gold Coast at the end of the season to play alongside star midfielders Joel Selwood and Patrick Dangerfield and chase his third premiership in Geelong colours.

The Cats have a plethora of players Scott describes as midfielders who can play forward including Dangerfield, who kicked 45 goals in 2017, Nakia Cockatoo, Selwood, Mitch Duncan and Ablett.

Scott said Ablett’s competitiveness on the training track was already proving valuable as he pushed the Cats’ emerging midfielders to improve.

He also indicated that competition for spots inside the Cats’ forward line will be hot with Tom Hawkins remaining a focal point inside 50.

Geelong will look to players who can apply forward pressure to play in front of goals and are hopeful Lincoln McCarthy and Cory Gregson will return free of injury alongside recruit Stewart Crameri and forwards such as Brandan Parfitt, Dan Menzel, James Parsons and Cockatoo to fight for spots.

Scott said what clubs assessed when it came to forwards had changed.

“It’s not tall or small. It’s mobile or immobile,” Scott said.

Scott confirmed that Cats’ veteran Harry Taylor will play as a permanent defender in 2018 after kicking 22 goals playing mainly as a forward in 2017.

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Barnaby Joyce denies cabinet axings were ‘payback’

Clockwise from top left: ‘Winners’ of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s cabinet reshuffle, John McVeigh, Michael Keenan, Michaelia Cash, Craig Laundy, Christian Porter, Bridget McKenzie, Barnaby Joyce, Dan Tehan, Mathias Cormann, Damian Drum, Kelly O’Dwyer, Peter Dutton, Melissa Price and David Littleproud. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced a cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday 19 December 2017. FedpolDeputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce has denied “payback” motivated his cabinet decisions as the infighting in the Nationals continues to overshadow Malcolm Turnbull’s ministerial reset.

Tuesday’s reshuffle saw five people appointed to the 23-member cabinet, including rookie Queensland federal MPs David Littleproud??? and John McVeigh???, in a move designed to woo voters in the key battleground state.

But the rapid promotion of Mr Littleproud and Mr McVeigh, who were both elected for the first time just 18 months ago, came at the expense of the now-former infrastructure minister Darren Chester and assistant minister for trade Keith Pitt.

The ministerial rearrangement has infuriated some Nationals MPs, who accused Mr Joyce of taking revenge on Mr Chester for supporting Bridget McKenzie in her successful bid to become the Nationals deputy leader.

Mr Joyce did back-to-back television interviews on Wednesday morning in an attempt to explain Mr Chester’s demotion.

“There is no payback, there is no payback in trying to get geographic representation right,” Mr Joyce told Sky News.

Mr Joyce maintained selection for cabinet was made on the grounds of age and geographical representation.

“I think we’ve got an incredible talent pool. In any process, there is going to be people who are rightly upset. We have an immense pool of people who have the capacity to be cabinet ministers, without a shadow of a doubt. And I’m very proud of that in the National Party. And we have a cabinet group now that has people in their 30s, in their early 40s, late 40s, I’m 50 and Nigel [Scullion] is in his 60s,” Mr Joyce told ABC television.

“And if you’re saying in any reshuffle, through the history of the Australian Parliament, there are going to be people who are upset, that’s hardly a remarkable statement.”

Mr Turnbull’s reshuffle was overshadowed by the dumping of Mr Chester and the reasons behind it.

Some MPs were convinced it was because Mr Chester, who had attracted no criticism for his performance as minister, supported Senator McKenzie’s leadership bid while others said it was because they were both from Victoria and the Nationals’ vote in Victoria did not entitle it to two cabinet positions.

Senator McKenzie was entitled to her cabinet position when she became deputy leader.

A gracious Mr Chester said being dumped was “character building” and that he had had several conversations with the Prime Minister and Mr Joyce before the reshuffle was announced.

“Barnaby Joyce offered me an assistant minister role as they call them these days. I chose to reflect on that overnight and advised both the PM and the Deputy PM I didn’t intend to take that offer,” he said on Tuesday.

Mr Joyce’s cabinet picks have turned what was supposed to be a routine ministerial reshuffle into a political headache for Mr Turnbull.

It caps off a year in which Mr Joyce had to fight a byelection after the High Court ruled him ineligible to sit in Parliament, and outspoken backbenchers such as George Christensen and Barry O’Sullivan forced Mr Turnbull’s hand on a banking royal commission.

Mr Joyce, however, denied there was a discipline problem in the Nationals, saying the junior Coalition partner had been doing “an excellent job”.

“When you talk about ill-discipline, because we got a banking royal commission up, it’s something our constituents want. I’m quite happy we got a banking royal commission up. It shows we have the capacity to listen to our constituency, as we should, and deliver for them, as we did. And, you know, that’s a good outcome,” he said.

The new ministry will be sworn in by the Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove, on Wednesday morning. iFrameResize({resizedCallback : function(messageData){}},’#pez_iframeTT’);

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Whips, Black Roses feature on T20 draw

CATCH: Newcastle district cricket chairman Paul Marjoribanks and Newcastle mayor Nuatali Nelmes. Picture: Marina NeilWhips, Waratahs and Black Roses will officially bepart of the Newcastle cricketlandscape fromnext month.

Belmont, Waratah-Mayfield and Cardiff-Boolaroo will adopt those respectivenicknames for the recently launched NCC Big Bash.

Traditional district club identities will be replaced by logos and emblems throughout the five-round T20 tournament, which doesn’t include premiership points.

Others like Lions (Merewether), Rosellas (Wests), Sabres (City), Magpies (Charlestown), Pumas (Hamilton-Wickham), Tigers (Wallsend), Sea Dragons (University), Kookaburras (Toronto) and Seagulls (Stockton-Raymond Terrace) are better established.

Whips, Waratahs and Black Roses may have previously been used more internally than externally.

On field the Magpies and theBlack Roses kick start proceedings in a midweek twilight fixture (5pm) at No.1 Sportsground on Tuesday, January 9. Sunday double headers follow across eight venues on February 4 and 11. Semis and the final are scheduled for February 18.

R9: Waratah 180 v Uni 5-151; Magpies 8-340 v Tigers; Cardiff 0-18 v Toronto 7(dec)-385; Wests 297 v City 5-46; Lions 5-190 v Hamwicks 84; Stockton 1-26 v Belmont 262.

* STILL on T20 and Sydney defeated Penrith to claim their second NSW Premier Cup after Sunday night’s final at the SCG.

Sydney club’slight-hearted Twitter post comparedtheTigers’ success to that of 2017 AFL champions Richmond.

A big year for Tigers… the small matter of Richmond winning the @AFL… and the much bigger deal of @SYDCricketClub winning the @KingsgroveSport T20 Cup.

— Premier Cricket – NSW (@PremCricketNSW) December 17, 2017

* NEWCASTLE recorded its first win of the NSW Country Colts Championships at Tamworth on Wednesday courtesy of a century to captain Josh Claridge (112).

Western weren’t able to reel in Newcastle (9-265), who had already lost toIllawarra and finalists Riverina the previous two days.