Un­der the sun

Perched on a Si­cil­ian hill­top, this con­tem­po­rary house is de­signed to make the most of the up­lift­ing power of bright, cloud­less skies

ELLE Decoration (UK) - - Contents -

Perched on a Si­cil­ian hill­top, this con­tem­po­rary house is de­signed to make the most of the up­lift­ing power of bright, cloud­less skies

Casa Bo­chini in Si­cily is the per­fect place to de­com­press from

the stresses of daily life. It lies close to the 17th cen­tury town of Noto – a UNESCO World Her­itage site – as well as the Ven­di­cari Na­ture Re­serve, which is home to flamin­gos, sea tur­tles and some of the finest sandy beaches on the is­land.

Renowned Mal­tese de­signer Gor­don Guil­lau­mier cre­ated this mod­ern hol­i­day house for a fam­ily from north­ern Italy, de­sign­ing the build­ing to con­tain a series of spa­cious out­door ter­races, de­signed for loung­ing, din­ing, sun­bathing and con­tem­pla­tion. Sus­pended above the prop­erty is an eye-catch­ing – and seem­ingly weight­less – 30-me­tre steel canopy, which pro­tects the house from the sun and casts dra­matic ever-chang­ing shad­ows onto the ter­races and walls be­low, like a gi­ant sun­dial.

In­side, the house was de­signed to be ex­pan­sive and open. Rooms flow into one an­other, and the huge glass doors en­cour­age you to for­get whether you are in­side or out. In­deed, the rus­tic plas­ter fin­ish on the in­te­rior walls is typ­i­cally used on ex­ter­nal façades – pig­ments were added to bring out its at­trac­tive earthy mud tones. ‘The idea was to cre­ate sim­plic­ity and min­i­mal­ism, with­out giv­ing up com­fort,’ says Gor­don. ‘There’s a pu­rity about the house.’

The colour pal­ette is neu­tral. Pol­ished grey con­crete floors run in­side and out; the fur­ni­ture is sim­ple and mod­ern. A large in­dus­trial-style kitchen – com­plete with mar­ble work­sur­faces and a vast, wrought iron-framed din­ing ta­ble – flows into a liv­ing area, where blue and brown Ma­jolica ce­ramic tiles make ref­er­ence to the area’s tra­di­tional crafts. Gor­don de­signed the tiles based on graphic Si­cil­ian de­signs and had them hand­made and painted by ar­ti­sans in Cal­t­a­girone, a town famed for ce­ram­ics. ‘I used lo­cal labour, lo­cal ref­er­ences, and sim­ple lo­cal ma­te­ri­als,’ says Gor­don. ‘The house is rooted in its land­scape.’ gor­don-guil­lau­mier.com

Ex­te­rior A 30-me­tre steel shel­ter casts long shad­ows over the court­yard, which is equipped with an out­door liv­ing and din­ing room. A lamp is in­te­grated into the canopy and over­looks the be­spoke white lac­quered din­ing ta­ble, teamed with chairs de­signed by


Liv­ing room Blue and brown Si­cil­ian Ma­jolica ce­ramic tiles de­signed by Gor­don Guil­lau­mier form a fea­ture wall – they were hand­made and painted in Cal­t­a­girone, a lo­cal town famed for ce­ram­ics. The chairs are vin­tage wicker pieces (try 1st Dibs for sim­i­lar) and the rugs are Ber­ber de­signs (try Maroc Tribal, which spe­cialises in Moroc­can car­pets) Stock­ist de­tails on p150

Liv­ing room The so­fas are out­door pieces, up­hol­stered in linen with a frame that fea­tures a bas­ketweave de­sign (Ethimo’s ‘In­fin­ity’ sofa from House­ol­ogy is sim­i­lar). Maroc Tribal sells sim­i­lar Ber­ber rugs Stock­ist de­tails on p150

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