Kirsty McLuckie: You do need a room of one’s own at times

There are many advantages of open-plan living – not least that a large living space can add value and desirability to a home.

Image: Adobe
Image: Adobe
Image: Adobe

One space for cooking, eating, lounging and working will certainly bring family life together, if that appeals, and it also has the advantage of only one room to heat and light, in this era of rising energy costs.

But you do need a room of one’s own at times, particularly if you have an individual hobby or pastime which requires equipment and concentration.

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This week heating specialist Stelrad has put together a list of random rooms that celebrities are reported to have in their homes.

If Lady Gaga has the urge to bowl, for instance, she doesn’t need to go far, as she has a bowling alley in her $22.5 million mansion.

Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates has talked about his home's unique feature: “We have a trampoline room in our house, the kids like that. Indoor trampolines, I recommend it. It’s a room with a very high ceiling.”

So one would hope – for the safety of both the cornicing and the young Gates’ bonces.

Whole rooms devoted to storing designer clothes are popular amongst the super-rich – Kylie Jenner apparently has a custom closet which holds only handbags.

Others build a glass-fronted, low-lit shrine to shoes, in much the same way as big game hunters display a trophy room of stuffed unfortunates – and for perhaps the same reason. Getting your hands on a limited edition pair of Manolos probably requires similar skills of cunning, patience and cut-throat determination.

I’ve also seen bedrooms in Dubai whose windows are under the water of an aquarium. No doubt it would be an immersive experience, but slightly unsettling to be nodded off to sleep by a passing shark.

I am more fascinated with the practical rooms, rather than those designed to photograph well on Instagram.

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Christina Aguilera, for instance, has a gift wrapping room. This might seem a ridiculous extravagance, but I see the advantages. To have rolls of paper and ribbons on dispensers, colourful bows, Sellotape and scissors always on hand – and a clear surface for working on – would be bliss leading up to Christmas.

A dog washing salon at the back door would be similarly welcome after a muddy walk.

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Kirsty McLuckie: Room for more thought

And a jigsaw room would be a wholly practical solution to having to roll up half-finished puzzles to prevent pieces disappearing up the vacuum.

Older grand properties abound with rooms that offer exactly what it says on the tin: your potting sheds, sewing, games or music room are all designed perfectly for just the one purpose, so perhaps wall-to-wall aquariums and flower arranging nooks are just a modern take.

And it is true that when selling a larger property, it is sometimes prudent to disguise its size.

A nine-bedroom house can sound daunting – more like a hotel – whereas a five-bedroom house with library, gym, cinema and art studio is much more attractive to the average family.

Whether or not a trampoline room is a selling point remains to be seen.

- Kirsty McLuckie is property editor at The Scotsman

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