The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Home - - UPDATE - With editor Robyn Wil­lis robyn.wil­lis@news.com.au

Tak­ing a dif­fer­ent kind of stay­ca­tion

One of the most en­joy­able as­pects of tak­ing a hol­i­day some­where com­pletely dif­fer­ent is the sense of im­mer­sion in a new cul­ture.

Af­ter a while, though, what seemed so ex­otic can start to feel kind of nor­mal, so nor­mal in fact that it sud­denly seems com­pat­i­ble with life at home.

Watch any South Pa­cific cruise ship roll into port and you’ll see ev­i­dence of this par­tic­u­lar phe­nom­e­non as peo­ple dis­em­bark with corn-row hair­styles and an abun­dance of trop­i­cal print dresses. I mean, of course it’s to­tally suit­able for the of­fice on Mon­day morn­ing.

Where it gets more prob­lem­atic is when you fall in love with some spe­cific dec­o­rat­ing style and start mak­ing plans to recre­ate it at home.

At var­i­ous points, I’ve been deeply en­am­oured of Greek is­land de­sign, the Span­ish ha­cienda look and tra­di­tional English farm­house rus­tic­ity.

For­tu­nately, funds have never al­lowed me to carry through with my plans to com­pletely over­haul my home, although I still have a rug on my bed­room floor that I bought on the Greek is­land of Rhodes — which I loved so much I lugged it all over Europe.

But it’s not that un­usual for ar­chi­tects and in­te­rior de­sign­ers to re­ceive re­quests from home­own­ers with big­ger bud­gets than mine look­ing to recre­ate that re­sort ex­pe­ri­ence they loved so much in Fiji or Bali, or to make their home feel more like a French chateau than a sub­ur­ban bun­ga­low.

And if you’re look­ing for that sense of es­capism or sanc­tu­ary, then more power to you. In truth, I’ve seen some beau­ti­ful — and ex­trav­a­gant — ex­am­ples of homes where the de­sign aes­thetic is in to­tal con­trast to its lo­cal back­drop and yet, some­how, it still works.

Just start plan­ning early to get the prod­uct you want when you want it. Cus­toms can be a drag.

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