Big Australian houses Are Media’s House & Garden brand offers 13 dream homes, but what might set this book apart from some others is a good look inside the home of Neale Whitaker. The magazine editor turned TV star The block and Love it or list it has given magazine readers glimpses of certain rooms in his home in the past, but this time he’s not Home & Garden Cameras for a good snoop around the property.
are media Australian Home & Garden has been publishing books for a long time. Just this month it released what could become one of its biggest hits.
Australian Home & Garden editor-in-chief Tanya Buchanan also edited Lovely Magazine for Are Media. Here she worked as editor-in-chief as a colleague of Neale Whitaker when he was still there Belles editor-in-chief.
“He was my boss,” Buchanan said media week. “He left it to the competition to edit them Vogue Living and I replaced him as editor. Now he is very successful on TV and has a large following on social media. It was great to be able to show what he and David have created with a beautiful home near Berry.”
Although Buchanan had a good relationship that helped bring the photographer to Neale Whitaker’s estate, not everyone is ready to open their home to the brand’s readers. “I’m not even sure if I would have my own beautiful dream home that I would open up to share for a magazine or book. Our sources for new homes are builders, architects and designers. Some people love reporting. There are so many wonderful houses here now that we never have to fight for content.
“Through the books that we also publish under the publishing house Lovely As a brand, we realized there was a real demand for content about great Australian homes,” said Buchanan media week. “When you’re limited by the number of pages you can feature in a magazine, having that little extra space to feature a house in a book is a real luxury. It’s also great to be able to print these images on beautiful paper.”
Buchanan noted that sometimes they feature the same house in a magazine and then a book, but the presentation will always be different, sometimes with a new photo shoot for the book.
Are Media has a real stranglehold on top-selling home titles Home & Garden plus Belle, home beautiful, inside out, country style and Real life. “We are all a little different and stay in our tracks. Some people might want a home Lovely but it could be more of a Home & Garden Story. I am fortunate to work in both areas and steer projects to the right publication.”
Buchanan noted that the magazines she works on have a sustainable business model. “We’re making a profit and the company is supporting a sector that might not have been as exciting as the fashion titles were a few years ago. During the pandemic, of course, people were focused on their homes and many decided to renovate to make it more of a sanctuary as they were spending so much more time there.”
Books are a big growth area for Are Media
In 2021, the Australian home and lifestyle books category saw a 15% increase in volume and a 17% increase in value compared to the previous year. That equates to approximately 200,000 books sold with a retail value of over $7 million. Are Media has a growing share in this category.