Some say home is a sense of belonging, an intimate space which we carve out with our loved ones in a bid to create roots.
For Colin White, The Coach House remained a faraway dream, a home which waited patiently as he travelled the world in the oil industry.
Living everywhere from Cairo to Kazakhstan, he has watched many a sunset in exotic locations.
But Colin believes nothing can compare to the glorious show of fierce orange and pink streaked horizons on offer in the secluded location of Kair, near Laurencekirk.
The Coach House offers the ultimate vantage point across open fields and towards the Mearns, and is surrounded by stunning gardens and the soundtrack of birdsong.
It all sounds rather idyllic for a property which is only a five-minute drive from the A90, with Aberdeen 30 minutes away and Edinburgh an hour and a half.
Even Colin admits to being shocked when he first viewed the 19th Century five-bedroom home, with his wife, Annette.
The Coach House has a way of getting under your skin within minutes of arrival, and buying a house wasn’t even on the agenda when they decided to pay a visit.
The best they hoped for was to get some new ideas for a renovation, and it’s not hard to see why they came looking for inspiration.
The jaw-dropping design was shortlisted in the Aberdeen Society of Architects Awards, and the frontage boasts floor to ceiling windows and original stonework.
The Coach House manages to be imposing yet welcoming all at once, and Colin and Annette fell under its spell immediately.
“Our plan was to convert the loft space in our house into a master bedroom with en suite,” said Colin.
“I was luckily at home when I spotted The Coach House online, and suggested we went for a look.
“With the award-winning design, we thought we could get some ideas.
“It was a beautiful day in February when we arrived and we were speechless.
“We looked at the view and after we had been round the house, we went for a coffee in Inverbervie.
“Annette turned to me and said ‘what would it take to buy that house’.
“And now we have spent 10 fabulous years here.”
You’d be hard pushed to find owners more in love with their home, and Colin and Annette have lavished care and attention on The Coach House from the get-go.
Although Colin is keen to point out that previous owners were behind the original renovation, his love of gadgets, bespoke artwork and passion for local craftsmanship is plain to see.
“The Coach House looks quite imposing from the outside, but as soon as you walk through the door, it feels like home,” said Colin.
“It has this way of welcoming you.”
The couple spend most of their time in the drawing room, which is overlooked by the minstrel gallery.
Large windows offer gorgeous views, and there is a contemporary-style Hwam wood-burning stove.
“I’ve seen sunsets all over the world, but nothing compares to the sunset that I’ve watched time and time again at The Coach House,” said Colin.
“Spring is my favourite time of year here, and I’ll never grow tired of looking outside. You don’t need a TV!”
The option of a film is still on offer however, with the trendy cinema room.
This space offers remote-controlled blackout blinds and surround-sound speakers.
The atrium is perhaps Colin and Annette’s biggest achievement though, and the transformation is a testimony to their love of interior design.
“The atrium previously housed a hot tub and spiral staircase,” said Colin.
“We wanted it be a more usable space, and we put a lot of thought into the detail with the help of Nikki, from Hyve Architects.”
There is now a bespoke American walnut floating staircase with glass balustrade leading to the upper floor.
Sky Frame floor to ceiling sliding doors lead to the patio, where a continuation of floor tiling means interior and outdoor space blend seamlessly.
“When we decided to renovate, it was really important to us that we used local craftsmen,” said Colin.
“The staircase arrived as a metal carcass, and a local joiner then came and built around it.
“There isn’t a single nail or screw, it’s fantastic craftsmanship and very tactile.”
The atrium also offers a wonderful sun trap.
It provides access to the south wing where there is a utility room, shower room, bedroom and study.
The dining kitchen was also renovated, and now offers a gleaming modern space with integrated appliances.
Low level lighting provides just the right atmosphere for entertaining, and it is on an open-plan level with the high-ceilinged dining room.
“I love Italian-style cooking, and we wanted a very simple, modern looking kitchen,” said Colin.
“The Coach House is so named because it was once home to horses and the blacksmith, but we think it now offers a wonderful blend of old and new.
“I love my gadgets, and we thought long and hard about things such as the lighting and sound system.
Upstairs there are three bedrooms, and the en suite master bedroom has a galleried sitting area, while another bedroom is also en suite.
Outside there are immaculate gardens, which include a natural pond and artificial golf practice area.
“Annette really enjoys gardening, and there is an adjoining field which is roughly five acres,” said Colin.
“I converted the former stable block into a man cave but the facility could easily be returned to a stable block for equestrian purposes.
“It is going to be a real wrench to leave there’s no doubt about it. The Coach House has given us so much happiness, and we hope the new owners get as much pleasure as we have.”
Offers should be made of more than £975,000.
Contact Simpson and Marwick on 01224 622622.