Wed | Dec 11, 2019

Dream House | A romantic hideaway

Published:Sunday | November 24, 2019 | 12:20 AM
Shocking white soft carpeted bedrooms. A most unusual sight.
Fortified stone walls enclose the living room.
Dining on the outside: best place to savour your meals.
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Aesthetics, ambience, and presentation. All three, united in a common cause, have proposed to seduce those fortunate souls who enter the gates of this extremely secured, private residence.

For, make no mistake, this place will flirt with you any and every chance it gets … as it seeks to romance your very presence! Resistance to its irresistible architectural, environmental stimuli is futile!

The beachfront house from the 17th century greets you with wide-open arms. It has been painstakenly and beautifully transformed from its past, part of a fortification for the defence against marauding pirates and Spanish conquistadors. Evidence of its early life can still be seen in its original two-foot thick walls, along with several gun loopholes (narrow vertical openings in the wall), allowing light and air, as well the ability to watch and fire on invaders.

There is also a separate seafront two-storey building nearby, that is a part of the accommodations, which was constructed as a school house in 1953 (with tutor) by the owners, for their only daughter.

Imagine, if you will, the aged walls hugging you safely with its rough stonework. The proud stone columns (with arched fretwork). Leisure balconies and verandahs. Rich floor to ceiling wood panelled walls; low-wall wood panelling (wainscoting); and wood beam ceilings under Decramastic stone-chip roofing.

Then, there are the built-in wide bay-window seats; some arched doorways; Italian travertine (like marble) floors; and outdoor stone floors. Shocking white, soft, plush carpeting, engages the timber upper floor bedrooms and staircase, pampering your feet with every step that you take. No other floor finish feels so good underfoot.

Gleaming marble and granite countertops, marble walls, and glass enclosed, pleasure shower zones. Fittings are the high-tech, Grohe brand of Germany, a world leader in complete bathroom solutions. Interior design and decoration was passionately undertaken by the internationally experienced, Caroline Shasha Interiors of London, whose style is ‘classical contemporary with emphasis on comfort’.

Furniture was shipped in from United Kingdom and Europe, with many of the pieces designed exclusively for the house.

Jamaican art from its most celebrated painters (for example Kapo), adorn walls.

The combined, entire intimate floor area on two acres, woos with six luminous ensuite bedrooms, separate living and dining rooms, cozy library/reading nooks, powder room, wet bar keeping you in high spirits, and a chefs delectable producing, air-conditioned kitchen. Staff quarters, and laundry room are in separate structure.

Let’s undress and expose more of this heart-felt estate.

It is considered by those in the know, to enjoy “the best stretch of private beach in Jamaica”. An extensive 300 feet of white sand, kissed by turquoise waters that embrace its shoreline.

Be swept away by the deep blue, mosaic infinity-edge pool, with its own adorable, elevated, dining gazebo.

Right beside it, is a most desirable whirlpool hot tub, under a canopy of trees, massaging and caressing all your earthly cares away. A tennis court awaits play.

To reach this concealed site, almost on the border of St Ann and St Mary, one must travel through two private security check-points, then down a very long driveway – lost completely in a thicket of trees and foliage. Here, the obscure house vanishes from the eyes of the outside world.

Heads of state and royalty have quietly come and been emotionally touched by its serenity.

A love-spell has been cast … the sands of time can never interfere with that.

- Barry Rattray is a dream house designer and builder. Email: barry-rattray@hotmail.com/Lifestyle@gleanerjm.com.