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How Australia’s housing history was influenced by Greeks

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Greek, Italian and other immigrants who flooded into Australia in the post-war era changed the way our houses are designed, according to an article in The Australian.

Journalist, Bernard Salt, writes that “this cohort of workers, of doers, of labourers” brought about the idea of indoor-outdoor living.

Previously, from the 1880s, Australians were living in English terrace houses or what many called the “Australian dream” – the quarter-acre block with three-bedroom brick veneer.

But with the arrival of migrants, such as the Greeks, the epicentre of modern Australian life – the “kitchen-family room with outdoor alfresco” – was conceived.

“And ever since then, say from the 1990s, the Australian home, whether modest or grand, has been based on this simple but effective lifestyle layout,” Salt writes.

Outdoor dining – or “alfresco”. Picture: istock.

“Indeed so influential were the Mediterraneans in reimagining the Australian home that we nicked their terminology. The back veranda, a close but outdoor confrere of the kitchen-family room, has recently gone up-market and now will only respond – like pop stars Beyonce and Madonna – to a single name, ‘alfresco’.”

With that being said, what does the future of Australian homes look like?

According to The Australian, more recent migrants from India, China and The Philippines will influence the industry.

Something like working from home, as we have done during the coronavirus pandemic, could also be a powerful force in reconfiguring the way we live.

Source: The Australian.

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