Restoring Wellness in a Historical Setting

Hi Everyone!

As my love of design has grown over the years, I am frequently researching new projects. I have a special love for transformation projects that modernize older buildings into fresh new spaces while still respecting the original bones of the building. I recently came across today’s featured project and was instantly captivated.

©AlexFilz . Monastero

The Network of Architecture was hired to transform a 17th century monastery into a chic spa and hotel. Located near Lake Garda, Italy the project was twofold – to restore the monastery and make the most of its distinctive elements while converting it to a charming and unique hotel, and to design and develop a new wellness centre that includes a 500 square metre garden, multiple treatment rooms and saunas that would seamlessly integrate into its surroundings.

Like many historical restorations, this one had its challenges. After being cleaned, the building needed to be reinforced, restored and updated under the watchful eye of the local Heritage office who had the power to veto any detail. The heritage office called for a light touch for this restoration so while modern fire and heating systems were added to the building, the plaster walls, stone staircases and rib vaulted ceilings were carefully restored.

©AlexFilz . Monastero
©AlexFilz . Monastero

Throughout the 40 room hotel, the black, grey and white colour palette for the fixtures and furnishings match the austere palette of the monastery. The newer building echoes the original and is mainly built in plaster and stone. The 5,600 square foot spa building has a colonnade wall made of Vicenza stone that is the spine of the building with seven glass and steel cubes attached to it that house the harman, sauna, massage rooms and relaxation areas. Wood panels laser cut in a geometric pattern of the hotel’s logo pomegranates are seen throughout the space. Bleached oak along with cotton and linen effect textiles add warmth to the space and encourage relaxation for its visitors.

©AlexFilz . Monastero
©AlexFilz . Monastero
©AlexFilz . Monastero

The restrained design of both the hotel and the wellness centre provides a sense of peace for its visitors. It encourages people to slow down, lower their voices and take some time for self reflection and restoration.

©AlexFilz . Monastero

This is the perfect wellness retreat for wary travellers to sit back and relax in historical surroundings. The Network or Architecture has done a phenomenal job creating a space for wellness while respecting its history. Love it!

What do you think of this space? Let me know in the comments below.

I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS

Photo Credits: http://www.interiordesign.net and http://www.noa.network

Real Chic in Miami

Hi Everyone!

I have a confession to make…there are certain reality shows that I absolutely love. It’s not the drama that sucks me in (to be quite honest I don’t even understand it most of the time) but the fashion and the homes. When the Real Housewives of Miami season four premiered at the end of last year, I happily set my PVR for it, excited to see how the fabulous in Miami live. Thankfully they did not disappoint. The liberal use of sequins captured my attention and there was one home that was featured that made all of the screaming throughout the show worth enduring.

Dr. Nicole Martin is hardly your typical housewife, with a successful career as an anesthesiologist this new comber to the show was professional, articulate and frankly a breath of fresh air. Her house is just as chic as the woman herself. Initially I was drawn to this home by the entrance area. I have a deep fondness for arched doors and windows, and this home draws you in with them. Complimented with a beautiful limestone console and reclaimed marble flooring this just might be the entrance of my dreams. The more that I saw of the home, the more I fell in love. At 9000 square feet, it would have been really easy for this home to feel cold but instead it has a cool understated vibe that draw you in.

Large picture windows allow a flood of natural light to pour into the home, highlighting the double height ceilings and the European elk wood floor. Classic and timeless furnishings showcased against cream coloured walls create a clean and contemporary interior.

Made for entertaining, this home has a 3000 bottle wine cellar along with a 20 seat movie theatre and a gorgeous 12 person dining table perfect for hosting those well known housewives dinner parties.

The added bonus to this house is the gorgeous marble that is used throughout the bathrooms. The bold use of a burgundy/purple-ish marble in the powder room is perfection.

Surrounded by lush palm trees and greenery, the outdoor pool area is the perfect spot to escape for a bit of R and R while enjoying the sunny Miami weather.

Overall the design of this home is well thought and chic in a timeless understated manner. It’s warm, welcoming and inspiring for future design projects.

Thank you for stopping by Stylishly Zen today! I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS

Spaces That Make Me Smile – North Bondi by Greg Natale

Hi Everyone!

A few weeks ago an image came across my Instagram feed of a subtle but colourful french manicure. While it is not normally my style as I tend to stick with classic nudes or the occasional dark red for my nails I fell in love and promptly screenshot the image. The next time that I was at the nail salon I shyly pulled out my phone and asked my manicurist if she could copy the colourful manicure instead of my usual. While this may seem small and insignificant to some, I am slowly trying to break out of the somewhat monotonous routine I find myself in lately and a colourful manicure was my own small act of rebellion in order to change things up. My manicurist was able to achieve the look that I had requested but was not shy in telling me that “it was a trend from last summer”. Truthfully though, I didn’t care – every time I looked at my nails I smiled and I received more compliments about my nails over the following couple of weeks then I ever had before. This experience made me more aware that it was important to do and see things that made me happy and smile, especially as life just feels so hard and boring lately. The little things matter regardless of what that looks like to others.

Today’s project profile made me smile when I first saw it. I am not normally into art deco aesthetic but this one captured my attention from the first image that I saw – it made me smile. Located in North Bondi, Australia this home is a playful respite from the outside world.

Originally built in the 1970’s, Greg Natale opened up the interiors of this home and the results are both fun and memorable. Overlooking the ocean, bringing in the stunning views and optimizing sightlines were key for this project. Adding modernity by blending the living room, kitchen and dining room together the aesthetic of this home is light hearted and welcoming.

I absolutely love the playful touches added to this space especially the light mint colour of the fridge and cabinetry paired with the brass hardware of the stools and the open bar. Love it!

The rest of the colour palette is left light and airy which helps to elevate the lighthearted playfulness of the space. Softened edges such as the arched doorways and mirrors further added a lightness to the home. The bedrooms are kept clean and light as well, and the lime washed walls add a gorgeous subtle texture to the space.

Anchored by camel tones and wood help to keep this space from looking space and dreamlike.

Overall, like my previous manicure this space makes me smile and I hope that it adds a smile to your day as well!

Thank you for stopping by Stylishly Zen today, I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS

All images via http://www.localproject.com.au

The Sussex House by McKimm

Hi Everyone!

We made it thru a very long January! The freezing temperatures, continuing lockdown measures in place and early sunsets made for an extra long start to the year here in Montreal. Now that we are well into February, hopefully happier times are not far behind but in the interim I am diving head first into researching and dreaming about projects filled with natural light and outdoor spaces. Today’s featured project is located in the Melbourne neighbourhood for Brighton. The home beautifully balances clean architectural lines in a welcoming space while providing a sense of protection to the harsh surrounding environment.

Brutalist design has been a favourite of mine for quite some time and with its liberal use of concrete, clean lines, and natural light via large window this home is straight out of my design loving dreams.

Entering the home thru a gorgeous pivot door, the home offers a sense of journey and discovery as guests move thru the home. Communal spaces such as the kitchen and dining room are kept clean and minimal but offer a sense of welcome to any guests to the home. The refined colour palette of blues, greys and charcoal elevate the elegance of this large family home.

The home provides a deep sense calm and stillness boosted by uninterrupted sightlines. Exposed concrete elevates the level of grandeur within the minimalistic space while elements of brass and timber add warmth without being too stuffy.

The exterior of the home is kept minimal, combining concrete with tonal textures and black trim. Clean lines elevate the minimalistic luxury of the home. Surrounded by greenery and an outdoor pool, the large windows throughout the home help to bring the outdoors inside.

This home is the perfect place to get over the February blues. What are your thoughts on this home? Let me know in the comments below.

I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS

All images via http://www.thelocalproject.com.au

The Mit Chit House

Hi Everyone!

Since the pandemic started and we were forced to stay indoors more often than not, I have become more aware of open spaces, green space and natural light. In Montreal we are now back in lockdown, so naturally today’s featured project has many areas that I am currently missing in my life right now. It also checks off all of the boxes of projects that I am currently loving!

Located in Bangkok Thailand, The Mid Chit house by Looklen Architects features four different courtyards that extend beyond the double height interiors of the home.

The Mid Chit house is a new residence the is connected to an existing family home that is connected by an upped level enclosed bridge. Mid Chit means “close together” and it a beautiful example on the balance between private spaces and more public ones that invite the outdoors inside via courtyards.

Strategically placed skylights and windows allow daylight into the heart of the home, while natural materials and light colours give the home a natural airy feel.

The home is three levels entered around an open living and dining area that encourages interaction and openness within this family home.

The private level on the third floor houses the bedrooms that allow the residents privacy within their own personal space.

Light, airy and open while still allowing it’s residents privacy, Looklen Architects has done a wonderful job renovating a preexisting home to suit modern day. What are your thoughts on this stunning home? Let me know in the comments below.

Thank you for stopping by Stylishly Zen today, I hope that you have a beautiful day! XXS

All images via http://www.dwell.com