Dream Destination – Casa Aviv by CO-LAB

Hi Everyone!

It has been a really interesting almost year and a half since the world first shut down due to the pandemic. Here in Montreal, we have spent the better part of it in lockdown and with a curfew – a completely new way of life for most of us. While there have obviously been challenges there has also been opportunities for self discovery. I learned to enjoy the peacefulness of parts of my life and to lean into the slow down. The idea of rushing back into large and rowdy crowds hold little appeal to me at the moment. One thing that I am looking forward to is travelling and once I am able to do so, I plan to take a trip where I can breath, relax and enjoy my surroundings without feeling rushed or anxious…my current idea of heaven.

Until then though, I am dreaming about destinations that would fit the bill and today’s Dream Destination feature has been at the top of my list for months. Images of Casa Aviv by Co-Lab have made it’s way around social media these past few months. Surrounded by lush greenery, this minimalistic structure that leans towards austere simplicity offers both calm and privacy.

The 330 square metre home is located on the Yucatan Peninsula along the Caribbean coastline. Oriented east to west to take advantage of the prevailing winds and cross ventilation, this rental home was built with low maintanence durability in mind. I love the simple design choices such as hand polish cement covering the concrete walls and the double height ceiling in the living and dining area along with the black terrazzo flooring. My absolute favourite part of this home are the pivoting glass doors that open to create flow from the living area to small but gorgeous swimming pool and garden.

The home also has a rooftop terrace that can be enjoyed by guests. Many of the furniture and light fixtures throughout Casa Aviv were also designed and fabricated by Co-Lab. Both the styling and the colours used throughout the home help it to further connect with its natural surroundings. Love it!

What do you think of this vacation home? Would you like to experience it for yourself? Let me know in the comments below. All images via http://www.dezeen.com

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

Inspiring Design

Hi Everyone!

Today’s Inspiring Design is a renovated 140 year old terrace home in Melbourne, Australia. Terrace homes have always fascinated me. While I normally gravitate towards images of spacious homes, I am always impressed when the design of a terrace home makes the most of the limited space to create the illusion of a larger area.

As this is a heritage home, conserving the exterior of the home was important. The renovation focused on the back of the home, where the space was opened up to the back garden. The brief from the clients included an outdoor entertaining area and low maintenance garden, and that the extension should be as light filled and spacious as possible.

The result is a fluid passage thru the home and a light filled open plan that makes the most of the space. Floor to ceiling windows and glass doors along with a concrete bench that runs from the extension to the outdoor space, creates a flow between the indoor and outdoor space.

Simple, clean lines combined with natural materials such as concrete, steel and timber contrast beautifully with the historical facade of the home.

The clean and uncluttered colour palette helps to further open up the space. Book matched marble and a gorgeous statement gold hood elevate the luxe factor, while bold artwork and a few pieces of brightly coloured furniture add a fun playfulness to the home.

The sophisticated grey colour used throughout the bedroom and bathroom is both welcoming and elegant. The use of different textiles in the same colour add subtle visual interest and keep the spaces from being boring.

I especially loved the entryway to the home. Although it’s quite narrow which is normal for a terrace home, the beautiful crown moulding and archway combined with natural light streaming in from the stairwell and the back extension make an inviting entrance to this historical home. The choice in furnishings including a sculptural light and brightly coloured cabinet further elevate the welcoming vibe that is then carried throughout the home.

What do you think of this terrace home? All images via http://www.design-anthology.com and you can see more images of this Melbourne home here: https://design-anthology.com/story/henry-house

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

Inspiring Design

Hi Everyone!

I’m sure that it comes as no surprise, but all of this extra time at home has me deep diving into the world of architecture and interiors.  So far I have completed Kelly Wearstler’s Master Class, read Live Beautiful by Athena Calderone from cover to cover, and I am now over halfway thru Kelly Wearstler’s Evocative Style. I am also slowing catching up on the pile of design magazines I have stacked up and I am loving all of the interior inspiration that Instagram is currently providing.  Aside from other activities that are keeping me busy while isolating, I am very happy in my design education bubble.

The gorgeous kitchen in today’s Inspiring Design is what first caught my attention.  While I had never before dreamt of a dark kitchen, with a stunning black marble island, floor to ceiling steel windows and chevron wood floor this may well be the kitchen of my dreams.  Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-06The Dutch Gable House by Austin Design Associates is the design firm behind the dreamy and contemporary renovation of this historic Melbourne home.  The renovation seamlessly melds the existing Edwardian and Federation details with an elegant colour and material palette and modern design.  The result is a timeless and sophisticated home that is a design lovers dream.  Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-03Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-21The combination of stunning materials such as Cote D’Azur marble, oak herringbone floors and titanium granite along with the steel floor to celling windows which invite an abundance of natural light, and details such as freestanding tubs and restrained decor make this home bright, inviting and chic.  Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-17Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-02The outdoor space is equally restrained yet inviting.  It looks like the perfect spot to enjoy a sunny afternoon with a great book and glass of rose.  Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-05Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-12Heritage-Sophistication-Dutch-Gable-House-by-Austin-Design-Associates-Melbourne-VIC-Australia-Image-04The proverbial icing on this beautiful home are the furnishings that elevate the materials used throughout the home.  From the deep green dining chairs paired with a statement wood dining table, cool and varied lighting choices and the mix of furniture using both natural textures and sleek design, I can’t think of anything that I would change in this home.  Love it!

You can see more of this gorgeous home here.  Photo credit http://www.thelocalproject.com.au

I hope that you are all staying safe and well while social distancing, and that you have  great day! XXS

 

Behind the Design with Carola Vannini

Carola Vannini is a talented Rome based architect whose designs are the true definition of timeless sophistication.  With a minimalistic yet elevated aesthetic, Carola has the ability to transform worn and dated interiors into timeless, elegant, dream worthy spaces.  Since discovering her work, I have spent a lot of time admiring her designs both on Instagram and on her own website.  I absolutely love how she uses backlighting to create beautiful lit from within interiors in a variety of spaces.  As an admirer of her work, I was very excited when she agreed to be a part of Stylishly Zen’s Behind the Design series:

  1. Did you always know that you wanted to work in architecture? Has it always been your passion?

I actually didn’t.  I never thought of being an architect before signing into my university classes.  It was a surprise for me to find out such an interesting world.
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  1. How would you describe your design esthetic?

I would describe it as a balance between ancient and contemporary minimalism.  My motto is “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” and I totally believe so.

  1. Where do you find your inspiration from?

It depends on every peculiar case. I always adjust my taste to the environment I have to deal with and, of course, with the clients’ taste and needs.
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  1. What has been your most challenging project so far? Why was it so challenging?

It is definitely the one I am still working on at the moment. It is a new construction Barn House in Tuscany. A very big project that I had to design from scratch.  Now it is almost completed even though I am still working on the garden and landscape design of it.

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  1. What is your favourite project to date?

Among the completed ones, it is Navona Penthouse. I am very attached to that project because I had a great feeling with my clients and brought me a  lot of satisfaction when it got published on last April issue of AD Italia.

  1. How long does it take for you to normally complete a project?

From the design to the final step, I would say one year. But then, again, it depend on the case.
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  1. What is your favourite part about working in architecture?

The design part, where creativity can flow out of my head. Afterwords, the works themselves can get pretty stressing and tiring. Less creative and more practical.

  1. Any favourite travel destinations that you like to escape too?Why?

I really enjoy Greece, especially the small islands. But my heart is actually in Thailand. A little too far from me to escape there only for a few days though.
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  1. How would you describe the design style/esthetic in Italy?

There is always a cassic and elegant touch. No matter what, if you were born in Italy, you breath beauty since your first day of life and I truly believe that this effects us all. Not  only architects.

  1. Do you have a favourite type of project to work on (private/public)? Why?

 I mainly work on residential and I like it very much. I would really to go back to some public space design though, such as restaurants or hotels.
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  1. What wellness practices do you incorporate into your lifestyle to help you deliver such beautiful projects? (This can range from workouts, nutrition, meditation practice, etc)

I am a pilates and yoga fanatic. I really think that my daily workout is the best moment of my day; so useful for me to take a break and go back into myself. It helps me to face the rest of may time with much more energy and positive attitude.
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  1. Any words of wisdom for someone who is just starting out their design career?

Don’t give up your ideas for your clients’ ones. If you are really convinced that something is right that way, try to take them by hand and gently make them understand  your point.  You are the architect, right?
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Thank you for stopping by and special thanks to Carola for taking the time to participate in this month’s Behind the Design.  To see more of Carola’s work you can visit her website at http://www.carolavannini.com or check her out on Instagram @carolavannini

I hope that you have a beautiful day!  XXS

All images courtesy of Carola Vannini

Fresh Colour Palettes for the Holiday Season

Happy December Everyone!

I LOVE the holiday season!  While this year it feels like the holiday season came very quickly, I am still enjoying all of the ugly Christmas sweaters and cookie recipes that are currently flooding my Instagram account.  While I won’t be hosting a holiday meal this year, there are a few colour palettes that I am loving for the holiday season.  These colours work for both table settings and holiday fashion, enjoy!

Winter White

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There is something so beautiful about an all white outfit or table setting.  It is so simple and delicate yet a monochrome table setting or outfit has a lot of impact.  A touch of greenery on the table helps to tie the entire image together as in the picture above.  For an all white outfit it’s best to keep it simple.  A full white suit or white denim paired with white t-shirt are great ways to pull off this look without stressing about it.

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Pewter and Gold
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E45BE8F5-95E6-4127-B42F-C8F3CA2AFE32I love the look for pewter and gold together but it is a colour combination that is often overlooked.  When I came across the image above on Instagram the other day, I was once again reminded what a strong impact this colour combination can have.  Pewter toughens up the glamour of the gold just enough without overpowering it.  Whether featured on a table setting or combined in an outfit, this colour combination has staying power into 2020 and beyond.  I also love how black helps to anchor a table setting of pewter and gold, don’t be afraid to mix it up and play around with this colour combination.

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Pale Pink and Deep Red

IMG_7560This colour combination tends to be used more for Valentine’s Day celebrations, but I love how fresh it is for the holiday season.  The deeper red feels traditional and rich, while the pale pink gives it a modern and unexpected twist.  I especially love the outfit below with the pale pink pants and deep red sweater, it features this colour palette so beautifully.  I am obsessed!

IMG_7568Which colour palette are you loving for the holiday season?

I hope that you have a beautiful day!  XXS

Images via http://www.pinterest.com, http://www.homestolove.co.nz, http://www.townandcountrymag.com, @aninebing, @figtny, @styleslusso, @nicolewarne, @lenaterlutter