Far from the madding crowd
IN MYKONOS, HIDDEN FROM THE SOCIAL WHIRL, A VILLA COMBINES DESIGNER FURNISHINGS WITH AN IMAGE BASED ON THE LOCAL TRADITION.
words GAIA PASSI – photos MASSIMO LISTRI
Dazzling white stone, deep blue sea, infinite botanical hues, golden sunlight: the sophisticated splendor of the Greek islands. We’re in Aleomandra, the southernmost tip of the island of Mykonos. The large house seems to spring directly from the rock: «We designed it by looking at the surrounding landscape, and the typical architecture without an architect of the island, with soft, rounded lines», says Vassilis Matsaidonis, who did this project for a friend with Christos Nikolaou ten years ago. «Certain features, like the windows, suggest the architecture of Le Corbusier». Vassilis Matsaidonis and Christos Nikolaou are outstanding figures in the cultural life of Mykonos: they are the owners of the Rarity Gallery, a wellknown art gallery in the historical center, showing leading international contemporary art since 1995. «We wanted the house to resemble a gallery, with large, minimalist spaces», Matsaidonis explains. With over 1,000 square meters of space, the various levels adapt to the terracing of the land. The garden is «big but simple»: cacti, earthenware urns. Inside, shades of white adorn pale walls, while the floor is in luminous beige, with light chestnut wood for the ceilings in the bedrooms. The design furnishings have bright hues, like the marine blue of the sofa in the living area, or the bright red of the Le Corbusier armchair in one of the ten bedrooms. Well-chosen pieces give every room an elegant look and functional quality. The view
takes in the archipelago of the Cyclades, with windows gazing directly at the sea. From the terraces you can see Delos, with its amazing ruins that reveal a civilization of the distant past. Nearby stands the silhouette of Tinos, a place of religious pilgrimage, of mostly uncontaminated beauty. The infinity pool is a perfect spot to enjoy the extraordinary panorama. The designers have made water into an element of indoor-outdoor connection: the pool enters the house to create a soft, intimate atmosphere. And Aleomandra is an ideal place to get away from the bustle of the island.