After months of voting and speculation, the day of the much-anticipated House and Leisure House of the Year 2011, in partnership with SA Home Loans, event arrived. Members of SA Home Loans, House and Leisure, home owners and guests gathered at In Toto Gallery in Joburg for the big reveal. Each of the 12 homes, previously featured as a House of the Month in the magazine, showcased its own special style. Ultimately, it was House Number 8 – Light Fantastic – from the August 2010 Luxury issue that won the hearts and votes of our readers. The house captures the essence of luxury and elegance, with classic French charm meeting country living – SA style. Situated in Limpopo’s misty Magoebaskloof mountains, the family home of Henk and Monika Smith embodies opulent French glamour at its best. Its Victorian conservatory, show-stopping indoor pool, decadent chandeliers and landscaped gardens are just some of the features that catapulted it to the top of our list. A second winner was also announced on the evening – the lucky winner of the R30,000 in cash from SA Home Loans. By correctly voting for the winning house, fortunate reader Natasha Kemp Human from Rietfontein, Pretoria, won the coveted cash prize. The evening included delicious wines provided by Spier from their new Creative Block range, canapés from By Word of Mouth and chocolate for the goodie bags and tables courtesy of Lindt. Talented songstress Nonhlanhla Mdluli opened the evening, while Jazz Assassins was the main act. Thank you to In Toto Gallery for their hospitality and to The Whitehouse for the R200 voucher they contributed towards the goodie bags. Congratulations to the winning house and thank you to everyone who made this year’s event such a remarkable success. Naomi Larkin Editor – House and Leisure Captions: 1. Proud owners of the winning house, Monika, Rachel and Henk Smith. 2. House and Leisure editor, Naomi Larkin, and SA Home Loans CEO, Kevin Penwarden. 3. Members of the House and Leisure team. 4. The 2010 cover featuring Light Fantastic as our August House of the Month, with Rachel Smith posing in her parent’s bedroom. 5. A Victorian conservatory was added on to the house to bring in light and integrate the exterior and interior. 6. Pure decadence – a velvet sofa and a chandelier adorn the main bathroom. 7. The show-stopping indoor swimming pool allows light to reflect through to the main reception room. 8. The formal dining room is timeless and elegant. thecrystalconservatory.co.za 9. onwards: Pictures from the evening, including the food, guests, entertainment and display at In Toto Gallery.