Thu | Aug 11, 2022

Dream House | A ‘Bessa’ dream

Published:Sunday | July 31, 2022 | 12:07 AM

The attention-grabbing swimming pool actually flows under the elevated house.
The attention-grabbing swimming pool actually flows under the elevated house.
With a room like this, it may be hard to get out of bed in the mornings.
With a room like this, it may be hard to get out of bed in the mornings.
Entire walls of glass doors blend extensive seaview balcony with the interior spaces.
Entire walls of glass doors blend extensive seaview balcony with the interior spaces.
An unprecedented Dream House setting, beyond all expectations!
An unprecedented Dream House setting, beyond all expectations!

A rare geological feature, a blowhole erupting , shooting water into the atmosphere, along with natural sea pools for swimming.
A rare geological feature, a blowhole erupting , shooting water into the atmosphere, along with natural sea pools for swimming.
1
2
3
4
5

Geological activities have carved the rock formations of this aqueous dream site, occasioning a rare phenomenal occurrence in the natural world known as a blowhole. This design feat by the hands of nature displays the strong wave action of gushing water coming up through cracks in the rocks, erupting intermittently with water jetted forcefully into the air. Wow! Only a fortunate few on Earth have ever witnessed this.

But there is more, much more. Added to the synchronisation of this multi-level physical arrangement is the emergence of two separate tidal pools for swimming, naturally shaped by the surrounding rugged landscape, with various levels of sun–tanning rock platforms and two seaside firepits for outdoor barbeque get-togethers – all reached by various built-in cut-stone steps. Another wow!

What also provokes unwavering attention is the free–form swimming pool, flowing from outdoors and continuing straight under the actual elevated house, with a walkway bridge crossing its blue waters. The unabated hurrah continues!

The eye-catching, peaked–roofed residence, ‘floats’ above the jagged coastline, with the entire blissful sleeping, cooking, dining, and living arrangement (inclusive of a 110-foot wraparound balcony) levitating on columns high above the ground. Only the two-bedroom staff quarters are in a corner, and a partial pool is positioned underneath the building.

This house, right outside Oracabessa, St Mary, hides away completely amid four acres of woodland, far from the main road, protecting you from the harsh realities of this world.

The undeveloped property was bought in 1970 by Jack and Nancy Connell, with Maffessanti (the number-one dream house builder on the island at that time), erecting the structure in 1972. After a valiant 10-year search for that consummate north–coast villa, this married couple from Chicago, USA (husband is of Jamaican heritage), both in the business of hospitality and real estate, finally stumbled upon and made it happily theirs, two years ago.

The spatial format also makes provision for three bedrooms and three bathrooms, with the entire casually decorated atmosphere defined primarily by local artwork, handmade wicker and blue mahoe furniture, by artisans extraordinaire. Specifications called for: high cathedral ceilings that humble those within, complete walls of glass sliding doors, admitting a sight beyond description.

Living and dining are enriched by the original marble tiles, with the other areas in old terrazzo tiles that are now back in vogue. The kitchen and bathroom counters are finished in granite. The hue throughout (interior and exterior) is of a calming, cream shade.

One word comes immediately to mind with regards to this residence – unbelievable!

- Barry Rattray is a dream house designer and builder. Email feedback to barry-rattray@hotmail.com and lifestyle@gleanerjm.com