Cover The home tastefully combines sandy tones, ebony accents and rustic materials

The work of Mimouca Barcelona, this serene seaside retreat in Spain offers plenty of design ideas for the minimalist

Costa Brava (meaning wild coast in Spanish) sits in the hinterland of northeast Catalonia as one of Spain’s most popular holiday havens. Located in the historic city of Girona, it’s no wonder why. Rugged mountain ridges cuddle sandy bays of glistening emerald waters lining up to an extensive, picturesque coastline.

And of the many beach towns dotting this trajectory is Llafranc, a medieval city with narrow streets rich with gastronomic and boutique commercial provisions. Iconic landmarks, such as the 14th-century San Sebastián Lighthouse and the Camino de Ronda de Calella de Palafrugell—a scenic coastal walk—trailing against the Les Gavarres Mountains promise summer days backed by history and nature.

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It is against this setting that the owners of this house in Llafranc have chosen to spend time away from the city with their three teenage daughters. They purchased the four-storey, semi-detached abode, located in the Ses Brises district. It is perched on elevated land to accord the occupants panoramic vistas and privacy within a charming shell of tangerine-tiled roofs and Menorcan windows.

To customise the property for the family’s needs, the owners called upon interior design firm Mimouca Barcelona. “The client wanted a comfortable, practical and warm house to enjoy family weekends and vacations,” says the firm’s founder, Marta Casas. “We designed the layout such that each family member has his or her own space, but there are also common areas for moments with friends and family.”

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Past lush planting on the street level, a staircase travels down a storey to the main parts of the house. It comprises three bedrooms and the fluidly connected living, dining and kitchen zones. 

Low-slung cream sofas hug a corner of the living room and cloister around rough-hewn coffee tables in an inviting manner. Here, the fluid lines of Chinese artist and novelist Gao Xingjian’s Double Vue painting projects movement onto the still walls. His poetic ink-on-paper composition juxtaposes with heritage door panels at the kitchen that the owner acquired at an auction.  

 

Outside, the garden terrace is given equal attention by Casas, who crafts it to segue with nature. Waxed pine walls envelop a sofa in grey upholstery using fabrics from Romo. A bamboo-and-polycarbonate pergola framed in iron completes the bucolic hideaway. “The goal is to enjoy the sea views with maximum comfort,” Casas explains.   

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While this level enjoys a more intimate dialogue with the landscape, the second-storey master bedroom suite feels more exclusive, with impressive views to wake up to. The spacious room is defined by a ceiling tracing the gabled roof’s triangulated peak, according it with a lofty feel. Casas inserts built-in closets in lightly painted, saw-cut pine. It frames the bed, which is made snug with linens from Maison de Vacances and cushions from Teixidors. Gervasoni bedside tables accompany Bamboo pendant lights conceived by Israeli designer Arik Levy for Forestier, melding soft and hard materials.    

A large sliding door leads into the master bathroom. When opened, it further enhances the room’s spaciousness. Here, smoky grey micro cement walls and black-painted skirting continue the neutral foil. Twin cement-coloured Shui washbasins from Cielo Ceramica echo the touches of the greyscale colour scheme. Custom-designed vanity mirrors bordered by a black iron framework, a black towel holder, black bath and washbasin fixtures and even the door handle point to Casas’ thoroughness.

Considering both big gestures and minute details results in a thoughtfully designed holiday home that the owners look forward to visiting. “The order, comfort and warmth of the spaces, together with the freshness, luminosity and harmony are among the things that they appreciate most,” Casas affirms.

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