THE GOOD LIFE
For interior designer Clinton Savage, moving from the city to an estate in the scenic Tokai region represented a new style of living
A country house in the Cape winelands
Wanting more space, fresh air and a slower pace of life, Cape Town interior designer Clinton Savage and his partner Ruald Rheeder, a well-known fashion designer, decided to put their home in Higgovale in the City Bowl on the market and move to the suburbs. What Clinton describes as a basic shell of a home was appealing for many reasons, namely its openness, the fact that it didn’t need renovating and the lifestyle and security offered by Silver Tree Estate. “The area is well known for its vineyards, we’re close to some fantastic restaurants, which we frequent often, and there are some great mountain walks, which we love doing with our Great Dane, Thomas,” he elaborates.
With this house, Clinton was his own client, a challenge he revelled in. “As a designer, you never really have time for your own home. In this case, I had to get the house ready for living in one month and it was a really enjoyable process,” he says. As they had sold most of their old furniture with their Higgovale home, they could start almost from scratch.
“We added personality to the house by focusing on the walls. In some areas, we clad the bottom half with white panelling to give a more formal feel and provide a contrast to the darker wallcoverings,” he explains.
The classic contemporary style he’s known for suits the modern Cape architecture and is also a softer take on the monochrome scheme he favours. Natural hemp boucle carpets were used in many rooms and the striking, one of a kind pieces collected by the couple over the years add personality.
Clinton’s aim was to give the structure a fresh, light feel and designed the interiors to suit their love of no-fuss entertaining where everyone, the furkids included, can put their feet up and relax. The finishes are very
practical; all the living room furniture is slipcovered in washable linens. “Nothing is too precious and we really live in every inch of the house,” he says. Clinton’s aim as a designer is to create spaces that are beautiful but without pretence. “To have a home that is easy to live in and not too precious is the ultimate goal of interior design.”
Although generous in size, with views of the surrounding mountains, the house has a very intimate feel. Aside from Clinton’s creative use of textures and layering, the indooroutdoor dynamic is the other star feature. Every room opens up to the garden and pool, and thanks to Clinton’s considered design, the different spaces all relate to each other, creating continuity throughout.
“The entire house has a certain honesty,” comments Clinton. “It’s the perfect spot for living and every door opens onto the garden and the views,” he says.
The outdoor dining area is a favourite spot in summer. The chairs are from Bespoke and the rustic wooden table from Trade Secret.
THIS PAGE, FROM LEFT: TO RIGHT:Woven baskets from the Pan African Market make a focal point in theentrance. Some were painted white for variation. The garden’s small lawn is just the right size for the dogs to laze on and dry off after a swim in the pool.
THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM: The whitewashed bricks in the living area provide a fresh aesthetic. The chairs and table in the dining area are part of the Clinton Savage Interiors range.
THIS PAGE, FROM TOP TO BOTTOM:The main en suite bathroom has a restful atmosphere. The mirrors are from @home. Clinton introduced gentle sage green to the master bedroom as it has a calming effect and complements the floral design of the Hertex wallpaper.
THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE LEFT: The dressing room was given a bold touch with an ornate light fitting by Morgan Associates. Hemp boucle carpets from Coirtex were used in the bedrooms. A chair and stool draw the eye down the passage and into the master bedroom. Clinton painted the linen cabinet bright turquoise, which adds a touch of quirkiness.