It’s the ultimate dream – a beautiful home with all the gadgets needed to make life just that little bit easier and a sports court to help keep the body tightly honed to face the stresses of the workplace.
When that workplace happens to be the seat of government, a royal palace or the domain of a billionaire, then the sky’s the limit in terms of what can be included in a sports court. Many famous residencies have these features and they can be opened up to people who do not live or work there, giving a public face to what would otherwise be considered as private.
So who has these amazing sports courts? Scroll down to discover a few answers.
The White House
America’s iconic seat of power, the President’s home, and one which seems to have been destroyed unimaginable times at the movies. With all the politics and problems that have to be dealt with, it seems sensible for there to be easy access to a sports court there.
That’s what The White House has, a court that was adapted when President Obama took office; it was converted from a tennis court to one that could be used both for tennis and basketball. The adaptation means that there is enough space now for a game of basketball on a full court. The court has been opened to many from outside The White House, including players from the Wounded Warrior project that aims to help those who have been injured in the country’s service, to top college basketball teams.
High quality surfaces and facilities can be found through outdoor courts at Versacourt.com, so the facilities available at famous residences can be recreated at home.
Built at the beginning of the 18th century, Buckingham Palace is known the world over as the official residence of the Queen of England. It is one of the most popular places for vacationers to visit, and parts of it are open to the public at certain times of the year. The Queen hosts Garden Parties for honored guests, but many may be unaware that in the palace gardens is a tennis court, a nod to the long tradition of this sport in the UK that reaches its apogee every year at the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championship.
Shaquille O’Neal’s Miami mansion
As one of America’s former great basketball players, Shaquille O’Neill has an amazing home that hosts a full tennis court as well as a gym and, as might be expected, a basketball court. Sporting celebrities don’t come much bigger than Shaq so it stands to reason that his sports court facilities are as big as they come!
David and Victoria Beckham’s former English pad isn’t really called Beckingham Palace, but the tabloid soubriquet has stuck. As one of the most famous soccer players in the world teamed with a former Spice Girl and now major fashion designer, one might expect some sports related activity, and the property has a gym and swimming pool for the new owners to enjoy.
This court may be in Beverly Hills, California but it once belonged to Mark Wahlberg so you know it has to have a Celtics logo at midcourt. The property also has a swimming pool, putting green and indoor gym with a roll up door that looks out over this awesome outdoor sports court.
Photo Sources: 1. Land & Water Design, 2. Arterra LLP Landscape Architects, 3. Edina Realty, 4. Estately, 5. Estately, 6. Estately, 7. John F Buchan Homes, 8. Pinterest, 9. Revival Arts | Architectural Photography, 10. Snap Sports, 11. TRG Architects, 12. Courts of the World, 13. White House Museum, 14. Vesta Homes, 15. – 16. Valley News, 17. Luxist, 18. Extravaganzi, 19. Estately
Many modern homes and apartments are designed and laid out almost exactly like the neighbor on either side. Giving your living space a personalized and luxurious appeal is often a daunting and expensive undertaking. Its even more difficult and financially straining when you’re a college student, recent grad, or just on a tight budget. No one aspires to have a mattress on the floor with bare walls, standard features, and dim lighting. Most people want the insides of their homes to be inviting, comfortable, and stylish, but few have the funds or vision to achieve it. Fortunately, a space that looks and feels luxurious without breaking the bank can be easily attained; you just have to shop in the right places and know when and what to do yourself.
Get to Painting
Painting is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to spruce up any room, though deciding on a color can be tough. Keep in mind what sort of environment you’ll want to create to complement your activities. For example, your bedroom walls will benefit from the peaceful, calming nature of blues and greens, while your office may profit from yellow’s energy and pensiveness. Opt for a neutral tone or a shade of off-white for the most versatility, and offset by accent furniture and decoration pieces.
Add Crown Molding to Corners
Many homes and apartments lack any detailing that tie together the points where the walls meet the ceiling, leaving the rooms with an unfinished look. Crown molding is a great way to give any space an elegant touch; the wider the trim, the fancier the area will look. The materials can be purchased at any home-repair store and installed yourself in less than a weekend.
Buy Refurbished/Renovated Vintage Furniture
Expensive furniture can be thought of as an investment since it will probably be following you from home to home over the years. Unfortunately, when you buy cheap, your room will look cheap. Buying replacements for particle boarded dressers will end up costing you more in the long run. High-end looking, well-constructed pieces can be found at affordable prices at flea markets and secondhand stores. Even beat-up and unfinished pieces with dents and chipped paint can be sanded and repainted or stained and finished with new hardware at a relatively low cost. Before spending your whole paycheck on a new bedframe or taking a trip to Ikea, shop around at local consignment shops or Salvation Army.
Keep Fresh, Clean Bedding and Upholstery
One of the simplest ways to make your living spaces look, feel, and smell luxurious is by maintaining the cleanliness and organization of your bedding and upholstery. Neatly made beds and sofas with properly fluffed and placed pillows make a room look more inviting and appealing. Look for sales for high quality and comfortable products that won’t break the bank. Always have at least one extra pair of sheets and linens—even if you need to spend like a college student and buy dorm bedding (here).
Don’t Forget the Throw Pillows and Blankets
Matching pillows and blankets are must-have accessories for any sofa, loveseat or lounge chair. Look for department store sales on high quality materials that will provide comfort for years to come. Mix and match sizes (overstuffed are better) and colors to match your furniture, walls, and carpeting to tie the room together and give your space a cozy draw. Don’t be afraid to experiment with patterns to provide a new dynamism.
Swap out Hardware Finishes
Most homes and apartments come with standard hardware finishes, meaning cabinet knobs, door handles and sink fixtures. Instead of simply settling for what was originally provided, opt for unique fixtures to add bold statements to the blandness of cabinets and doors. Look for vintage and artisan knobs and hinges for cabinets and door. Additionally, consider switching out your kitchen and bathroom faucets for something to match your personality and budget.
Switch Up Lighting
Lighting is much like hardware finishes, as they are often quite bland and standard among homes or apartments of the same build. To give your space a more luxurious feel, swap out your boring chandeliers and ceiling fans for a unique, designer piece. Flea markets, consignment shops, and online wholesalers are good places to look for expensive-looking lighting for wallet-friendly prices.
Get Creative with Mirrors
Strategically placing the right shaped and sized mirrors throughout your home is an easy way to make a room look bigger, brighter, and more sophisticated. Giving old mirrors new life with a few DIY techniques will put your creativeness to the test and keep more bills in your wallet! Grab a glasscutter here and start shaping your new room. Framing mirrors instead of pictures is also a great way to give an artsy and room-widening look to a small room or apartment.
Make Your Home Blossom with Plants and Flowers
Fresh flowers, houseplants, cacti, and succulents are an easy and eco-conscious way to add a luxurious feel to a room. Not only do they give a degree of freshness and brightness to the room, but they also increase oxygen levels and improve your breathing. Bamboo is a low-maintenance and inexpensive plant that can grow directly in water to evoke a spa-like atmosphere. Fresh flowers not only look elegant, but also give a room a garden-fresh aroma.
With these tips, a small budget, and grand vision, you can turn any room–big or small–into a sophisticated space fit for a queen, regardless of how your home looks from the outside. After shopping for deals, buying secondhand, and putting your DIY skills to the test, you’ll be on your way to creating the luxurious space you deserve.
Photo Sources: 1. Annette English & Associates, 2. Brown Contractors, 3. Sarah Greenman, 4. Madison Modern Home, 5. Maria Killam, 6. Atmosphere Interior Design, 7. Max Crosby Construction, 8. Meadowbank Designs, 9. Pinterest, 10. Tiffany Hanken Design, 11. Going Home to Roost, 12. Old Brand New Blog, 13. Renewal Design-Build, 14. Rikki Snyder Photography, 15. RLH Studio, 16. Jennifer Young Photography, 17. Kerrisdale Design Inc, 18. The Virginia House, 19. Domicile Interior Design, 20. Heather Freeman Design Co., 21. IKEA, 22. Merlin Glass, 23. Bernard Andre Photography, 24. Schranghamer Design Group, 25. Simpson Design Group Architects, 26. Chris A Dorsey Photography, 27. Jenkins Baer Associates, 28. Incorporated, 29. Jarlath Mellett, 30. CB2, 31. Old Brand New Blog, 32. SF GIRL BY BAY, 33. Studio V Interior Design, 34. Rikki Snyder Photography
House Boz is a spacious and luxurious residence designed by Nico van der Meulen Architects situated on a hill within a secluded nature estate in Pretoria, South Africa. The clients requested that this stunning contemporary four bedroom house had an emphasis placed on the design of the living rooms. Ensuring that the magnificent views were optimized was of utmost importance and the design of this 8,288 square foot (770 square meters) house responds well not only to the client’s requirements but also to the context of the site.
The concept of a bush lodge arose from the vastness of the site and the natural setting of the stand within the estate. Werner van der Meulen of Nico van der Meulen Architects was inspired to design a house that resembled a bush lodge in the way it responds to nature and its immediate surroundings. Translating this concept into a contemporary home was almost effortless thanks to the location, orientation and natural beauty of the site.
Phia van der meulen and the M Square Lifestyle Design team strategically linked spaces through their use of various natural materials in the interior spaces. The design exposes the truth of the materials by using them in their purest form such as incorporating in situ-concrete, quartzite cladding and rusted mild steel in the design.
Regardt van der Meulen’s original steel sculptures were chosen for the project, as they fitted perfectly with the steel theme of the project.
Approaching the stand via a long driveway, you are afforded the opportunity to appreciate the design from a distance before actually getting close enough to appreciate its spaces. The striking square and rectangular forms are strategically positioned to capture your attention while the rusted steel boxes and stone-cladded walls aid in camouflaging the house creating a sense of unity between building and site.
The stretched screen walls seem to want to reach beyond their borders while floating steel boxes are gracefully suspended in mid air. The prominent east-west and north-south axes link and connect all the spaces while this point of collision and interception of the axes becomes the center of the home and it is here where we find the living room and covered patio. Thanks to the views being orientated towards North, the entire Northern facade has the ability to open up and live out onto the expansive views thus also naturally lighting and heating the house in winter, while carefully designed overhangs and brise-soleil keep the summer sum out.
The entrance hall positioned between the double garages is distinctively located alongside a partially covered atrium that gently introduces you to several views through the house as you’re welcomed in. The koi pond introduces water as you approach the front door while various podiums add depth and dimension to this space. An elevated sculpture podium and interlocking planters bring this atrium to life. At the same time it makes it possible to sleep with open doors as it is impossible to get into the atrium once the Mentis grating gate to the driveway is locked.
Every design decision communicates and reinforces the concept, as can be seen in the selection of materials used and the way the internal spaces relate to the outdoors. Limiting the choice of materials to predominately natural materials and earthy colors, it is evident that even the smallest of details make reference to the concept in a very unique way. Initially the site revealed itself as a mound of quartzite rock which was excavated and hand cut for the gabion walls and the stone cladding used throughout the house.
The double volume entrance hall is framed by a back-lit perforated skin of scaffolding boards bolted to a wall, creating the perfect backdrop for the sculptural looking concrete staircase with steel inlays and the sculpture under it by Regardt van der Meulen.
The interiors feature linear and monolithic forms that complement the architect’s vision for this house. Many of the functional elements were designed to become beautiful features that visually connect the spaces and create links throughout the house rather than just remaining purely functional. An example of this would be the way the staircase relates to the aluminum ceiling which features in both the main living room as well as in the main bedroom.
The selection of furniture pieces once again continued this theme where splashes of orange were used in the living room making reference to the orange seen in the rusted metal cladding. The overall charcoal color range used in this house complements the shades of grey found in the off shutter concrete walls.
The kitchen overlooks the lanai and garden while the frameless folding doors create an invisible threshold between the inside and out. These doors, when completely open, allow for the kitchen and dining room to overflow onto the lanai and bar, making entertaining effortless and enabling adults to keep an eye on children in the pool, a mere meter away.
The lanai with a sunken jacuzzi is snugly positioned between the pool on one side and a stone-cladded wall on the west which screens the afternoon sun to ensure the lanai’s temperature remains moderate. It is these design decisions that truly set this house apart from the rest.
All four en suite bedrooms are situated on the first floor with all of the bedrooms having their own private balcony. The three children’s bedrooms are situated on the western wing of the house while the main bedroom is located on the eastern wing. A suspended walkway with steel sheeting as floor tiles, overlooking the atrium links the two wings and creates a sense of privacy for the main bedroom.
Challenges arose during the construction process; however Nico van der Meulen Architects clearly pushed the boundaries on this design. This house prides itself in its design for luxury indoor/outdoor living in the heart of nature where internal spaces effortlessly expand beyond their often invisible borders to a world of beauty outside.
The variety and combination of textures used in this design create a synergy in this home which makes it truly unique.
Photos: Courtesy of Nico van der Meulen Architects
House Dukken is an open plan glass and steel home designed by Nico Van Der Meulen Architects, situated in Meyersdal Eco Estate, Johannesburg, South Africa. Gracefully positioned within a secured nature reserve that affords you the privilege of appreciating the comfort of outdoor living, this particular home was inspired by its own setting. The clients requested a spacious modern home that expressed its appreciation for outdoor living. Situated in a private eco estate, it was crucial that this dream house opened onto the garden. Consequently the design developed into a layout that encouraged such a lifestyle. With views to the garden from almost every room, and large living areas that seamlessly flowed out onto the covered patio, this 7,254 square foot (674 square meters) home merges the thresholds between inside and outside. As the site slopes towards the street, terraces were built with gabions and natural rocks to enclose the north side, with the highveld savannah beyond it where game roams.
The concept incorporated the idea of floating elements which resulted in distinctive features that distinguish this house as a Nico van der Meulen masterpiece. The concept is clear and evident from the moment you arrive as your attention is drawn to floating planes hovering above you, as if suspended in mid air. Upon closer inspection these planes appear to be the main roof structure which at first seemed to be more of a decorative feature rather than a functional requirement. It is this very principle in design that creates beautiful and practical houses which become architectural works of art.
The site has a southern entry which was favorable in that it allowed for the entire northern facade where all the living rooms are positioned to open up onto a private north facing garden. The site sloping upwards towards the north also resulted in the garden having to be stepped and terraced with gabion walls creating interest even in the landscaping.
Having a garden that is on a different level can often pose the problem of a disconnection between the covered patio and the pool/garden area. It was of utmost importance to ensure that the house and garden still related and interacted as one space rather than two disconnected areas. This was achieved by leveling the pool area and terracing the upper parts of the garden.
The best part of this design is the way the entrance entices your curiosity with long stone cladded screen walls and once inside, the transparency and openness of this home that lies behind these solid entrance walls creates interesting contrast.
At the glass front door, an interesting contrast is created by the transparency and openness behind the solid entrance walls. You can catch a glimpse of the floating staircase as you move through the house, giving the home an airy feel.
Moving through the house and catching a glimpse of the floating staircase, you are drawn in by the transparency and openness of this home. Escorted graciously through the living spaces into the garden, you are once again introduced to what seems to be a floating block hovering in mid air which in fact is the main bedroom. The concept of floating elements was evident from every perspective and vantage point making sure this home always captivated your attention.
Natural materials were carefully selected and strategically placed throughout the home serving as gentle reminders of the serene location this house finds itself in. The selection of materials assisted in ensuring the house blends in discreetly with its natural surroundings while earthy colors unify the site with the home. Splashes of color were used to liven the interior spaces with emphasis given to textures and furnishings.
Photos: Courtesy of Nico Van Der Meulen Architects
The Retreat Selous is an all-suite tented lodge, an enchanting refuge situated in wild bush on the banks of the Ruaha River, Tanzania. Your suite is one of just twelve in this remote haven in the Northern Selous. As the largest protected wildlife sanctuary in Africa, The Selous Game Reserve is often described as a place where one will find the most pristine wilderness – one of the “secrets of Africa” indeed. The Retreat Selous has been built into pristine land, untouched for centuries far away from anybody else. A mystical and historical spot where the journey to experience the power of the African nature and undisturbed behavior of wildlife roaming freely around you is getting a new dimension.
The main house, ‘The Fort’ is perfectly positioned on the site of a former military observation point from World War 1 and provides guests with a direct 360 degree panoramic view over the Ruaha river and untouched plains. The beautiful tented suites are mounted on raised teak wood platforms and each comes with its own private deck and outdoor bath and chill out area allowing you to savour your own experience of the surrounding wilderness. The canvas interiors are handmade to reflect the stars of the African sky and are complimented with African antiques and local handcrafted materials.
To stay at this incredible retreat, nightly rates start from $695, from here.
The Retreat offers four different styles of accommodation. Twelve spaciously 100–220 square meters, more than six meter high tented suites under palm thatched roofs with expansive distance between each suite have been constructed in three independent units to correspond with the surrounding habitat, whilst guaranteeing privacy and romance.
Each suite has its own private outdoor deck with a stunning signature outdoor antique copper, brass or silver bathtub. Ethnic elements, bespoke furnishings, African antiques, natural materials and precious stones have been blended to create a unique sense of comfort and natural luxury using principles of Feng Shui and the Five Elements in materials and interior design.
Guests have a choice of Eagle Hill Suites with breathtaking views, the River Suites which are situated beside the river bank and come complete with their own private plunge pool or the Lion River Suite which is larger with an additional tent and ideal for families or honeymooners.
Guests at the lodge can enjoy a refreshing cocktail at the river bar while watching the sun set then dine by the breathtaking infinity pool or on one of the towers overlooking the Selous.
Caruth Boulevard Residence is a modern LEED Gold designed home by owner and architect Tom Reisenbichler, located in Dallas, Texas. When the architect built his 8,300 square foot family dream home, he was determined to prove that being environmentally friendly does not have to rule out luxury. “You can do luxury without being wasteful,” says Tom Reisenbichler, an architect with Perkins+Will who primarily designs hospitals and medical buildings. There is no shortage of either eco-friendly strategies in this three-story home, from photovoltaic solar panels on the roof to flooring made from recycled television tubes and countertops of recycled mirror glass, materials were chosen carefully; ninety percent of them are recycled or reclaimed.
In our world where many associate sustainable (green) design with a bohemian lifestyle, while others consider luxury wasteful, this house is designed to prove they are not exclusive. Integrated tightly into the large iconic trees on the site, this house uses traditional home proportions to blend with the neighborhood. The horizontal lines of the design tie the home to the land, while the roof and balcony reach into the trees making them integral to the home.
The design concepts emphasize the entertaining lifestyle of the owner / architect, with open plans that integrate indoor and outdoor spaces. The first level uses a central core (wooden box) as the main organizing element around which public spaces flow. This LEED Gold designed home features many sustainable strategies, from photovoltaic solar panels and recycled materials to native plants that are drought tolerant, every detail of sustainability is considered.
The couple, who entertain frequently and have welcomed nearly 3,000 guests since they moved into the University Park house last January, made sure that the residence works for gatherings both large and intimate. With its open concept, expansive rooms and walls of glass that slide open to integrate indoor and outdoor spaces, the first floor is a hostess’ dream.
What really wows guests, Reisenbichler says, is when they flip up the wood panel on the living room wall to create a serving bar from the wine room off the kitchen. Opposite the bar is another showstopper: an 8-foot-long gas fireplace that is positioned halfway up a stone wall. “It appeals to so many people, even if they’re not a modernist,” Reisenbichler says.
The spare design and hard lines of the architecture are softened by visual textures, richly colored rugs and warm wood walls, including teak that was salvaged from a monastery in Thailand.
“Most of the home’s finishes are pretty neutral,” Reisenbichler says. “It’s the art and furnishings that bring life to the space.” The art, including oversize sculptural pieces, canvases and African jewelry, is a collection of memories from the family’s travels juxtaposed with works from North Texas artists.
The six-bedroom, 10-bath house, includes mother-in-law quarters on the second floor. Rooms are full of sleek leather furniture, chrome accents, animal hides and graphic prints.
Photos: Bret Janak
Wallace Ridge is a luxurious home with spectacular views designed by Whipple Russell Architects, situated in the Trousdale Estates area of Beverly Hills, California. This project began with former clients’ wish to move back closer to the city of Beverly Hills. At the outset the property was in disrepair; had a choppy floor plan, and gabled roofs that did not fit the client’s vision of a modern home. The goal, of course, was to maximize the views while creating fluid well-lit spaces that would both serve and reflect the lives of the inhabitants. Marc saw a way to stay within the Trousdale Estates’ single story 14 foot height restriction and still provide spaciousness and a spectacular view. To create a vantage point for the best view, a roof terrace was built atop the master suite, accessible from the pool area.
The entire core of the house was redesigned to feature an open plan, high ceilings and a sleek flat roof. The front door, flanked by large glass panels, opens to a wide entry and provides an open sight line across the living area, though 12ft glass walls and 8ft glass sliding pocket doors, to the patio and pool. Rooms are minimally defined using tall panels, custom stained in a rich coffee bean brown that contrast with the light walls. The warm modernism the clients wanted, and a home suited for entertaining, was achieved with a harmonious use of materials allowing kitchen, dining, entertaining and living room spaces to flow easily into one another.
In the living area a large screen television and fireplace are recessed into wall-sized expanse of Portico Slate tile by SOLI. In the kitchen, the island and countertops are Caesarstone in Lagos Blue and cabinets have an acrylic lacquered finish.
Large glass pocket doors open to the outside from both kitchen and living areas, where there is a patio bar, conversation areas and a tabletop fireplace all encircling the pool.
As there is a musician in the family, the clients wanted to find space for a full music studio; Marc found it by digging down and locating the studio beneath the motor court. It includes a separate control room, sound booth for vocal recording, and tracking room, a soundproofed oasis for creation.
The master suite also opens to the pool though large sliding glass panels. The master wing offers a library/sitting room, and a home theater. Next to the bedroom, the master bath continues the use of brown with the tile in the master shower – a basket weave pattern from SOLI. Adjacent is a roomy closet/dressing area.
To create a vantage point for the best view, a roof terrace was built atop the master suite, accessible from the pool area. Pool tile is by Ann Sacks, “ Promenade” in Eucalyptus and Heron.
The master terrace provides space for entertaining, sunbathing, a game of table tennis, and a view all the way to the Pacific.
Photos: Courtesy of Whipple Russell Architects
H3 House was designed by 314 Architecture Studio to give a sense of connection to the water element that surrounds it, inspired by the love of the owner for yachting, situated in Athens, Greece. The detached property covers a total area of 1,000 square meters, set in a plot of land 7,000 square meters. The relationship to water is in evidence with artificial pools around the exterior of the house, creating a sense of cool tranquility. The water for the smaller artificial pools and the main large swimming pool is supplied by a borehole, and the water supply for irrigating the garden areas comes from a rainwater drainage and collection system. The bio-climatic design of the house allows the sun to supply heat to the property in winter, and to mitigate its impact in summer when hot air is vented to the outside. The use of geothermal energy provides energy saving cooling and heating systems via fan coil systems. The solar spiral system installed in roof areas operates in combination with solar panels installed to the rear side of the plot, and are used to heat the pool water. Photovoltaic panels for electricity generation are installed at the same point.
The house uses eco-friendly materials, and the interior, including all the furniture, was designed to meet the owner’s specific requirements. The design aims to create a luxury ergonomic environment with clean lines and a minimalistic aesthetic. An abstract sculpture by Yiannis Aspra in the surrounding grounds of the house is a striking feature. The architecture, building materials, as well as the energy management and conservation technologies conform to the highly dynamic requirements of a modern residential home, but at the same time are environmentally friendly.
Photos: Courtesy of 314 Architecture Studio
Leobo Private Reserve ultra-cool luxury villa surrounded by 12,000 acres of pristine African wilderness in the Limpopo Province, South Africa. Unlike any other game lodge, the villa is only available on an exclusive use basis, totally private and yours to enjoy. The main house is simply stunning. Designed by award winning architects Silvio Rech and Lesley Carstens, this private house is state of the art and even has a fully automated research-grade observatory tower to view the night sky in world class conditions.
There is a full team of staff to make your stay one of complete luxury and relaxation, including butlers and a talented private chef. The house will take your breath away, but the real star of the show is the 12,000 acre private game reserve / playground on your doorstep. The Leobo Private Reserve is fantastically well equipped for fun – there are quad bikes, dirt buggies, horses, mountain bikes, motor bikes, helicopters, clay shooting, fishing and more, all to use at your leisure, with no rules or time constraints.
See the abundance of wild game on horseback, quad or from the comfort of a Land Cruiser, all with the commentary of an expert. The experienced bush guides can take you animal tracking and show you the wonders of nature on the reserve. Forget timetabled game-drives. Here it’s just you and the bush (with of course the team of experienced staff) so you can do what you like, when you like.
Sleeping six, rates at Leobo Private Reserve range from $28,803 to $70,078, from here.
Pearl Valley 276 has been designed by interior architecture firm Antoni Associates as barefoot luxury living on the exclusive Pearl Valley Golf Estate located near Paarl, just 30 minutes outside of Cape Town, South Africa. The home was designed for a young family re-locating to the Western Cape, looking to change from city living to a more relaxed country lifestyle in which to bring up their young family. Designed around a central pool, this home focuses on family entertainment with an emphasis on the use of natural materials. The interiors boast a sporty elegance and laid back coolness.
The owners approached Antoni Associates to create an interior that was modern but with an emphasis on ‘barefoot luxury’ and the use of natural materials. The design approach by Mark Rielly and Jon Case was to focus on the use of natural organic materials such as timber and stone. These tactile materials add a sense of homeliness and warmth to the contemporary architecture. Timber flooring was used throughout, which contrasts with the raw off-shutter concrete ceilings, warm stone and marble cladding.
The owners of this home love to entertain and wanted the house to reflect their lifestyle. The informal family spaces include an open plan kitchen, informal dining and open bar, all linked to the entertainment lounge. A feature marble clad two-sided fireplace divides and screens off the family lounge from the spa room. These areas of the house flow out onto the outdoor entertainment deck with a sunken outdoor boma (a typical South African outdoor enclosure). Here timber seating is casually arranged around an open fire.
The furniture is modern and complementary to the experience of the home. The clients’ love for color has been introduced with injections of bold prints and vibrant fabrics. Bespoke furniture from OKHA Interiors is featured throughout. A combination of bold and discreet lighting was used to create a “wow” factor and the layering of lighting set various moods. Subtle lighting has been incorporated in all recesses and feature bulkheads to give a warm glow to peripheral edges. Concealed lighting has also been used to highlight and accentuate the organic natural finishes.
Photos: Adam Letch