Designed by Belgian architect Sébastien Caporusso, the angular concrete beams, columns and generous windows of this 550-square-metre clifftop house frame slices of the surrounding Mediterranean sea, treetops and rugged cliffs that stretch out on either side. The home is spread across four floors with three terraces and is set within expansive grounds. In addition to the main house, Sébastien has added two guest rooms that are hidden away in the garden, completely separate from the house. Cut into the rock of the cliffs, they offer uninterrupted views of the sea.
The villa’s design is the result of an 18-month renovation project that saw the original building stripped back to its bare bones. The owners – a Belgian couple who live between Belgium and Spain – briefed Sébastien to improve the connection between the interior and exterior spaces, opening the entire structure up to its coastal setting.
‘Each room has been designed to be open to the landscape – with each enjoying an extraordinary view of the sea or wilderness,’ explains the architect, who also funnelled light into the house’s centre with a glass-lined atrium. ‘No matter what room you occupy, the view is breathtaking. This intense communion between architecture and nature provides an incredible sense of the infinite.’
As well as Vilhelm Wohlert – the Danish architect behind the Louisiana Museum near Copenhagen – and American minimalists Sol LeWitt and Carl Andre, Sébastien says he was inspired by Japanese architecture. ‘I’m fascinated by the way the Japanese integrate vegetation into interiors to create a sense of eternity,’ he enthuses. ‘Their use of wood and respect for ancestral heritage are an endless source of inspiration for me.’
Inside, the concrete spaces are softened with furniture made from raw and natural materials, such as wood, leather and stone, as well as more refined elements in terrazzo and brass. Sébastien was given free rein to source all of the artworks and furniture, which he says took about a year in total. He designed much of the furniture himself, including a leather daybed, marble and brass dining table, and terrazzo and brass nightstands in the bedroom. ‘I like the tactile aspect of these materials; it’s very important during the design process.’
This architectural villa is the cover star of ELLE Decoration Country Volume 14. Our latest look at the world’s most beautiful homes in the country, is on sale now. Buy it at hearstmagazines.co.uk/ed-country-14