Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Colourful Villa on Isla Taboga

Have you ever been to Panama? No, neither have I. So, let's go together to this lovely, small mountainous island 12 miles south of Panama City, in the Bay of Panama. Here interior designer Diane Burn transformed a modest little shack planted on a fine piece of hillside property overlooking the town, San Pedro into a warm and colorful villa. The architecture, says Burn, “is a fusion of colonial, tropical and Mediterranean influences.”

A verdant garden, landscaped by Tony Urrutia, borders the front steps.

Pleased to meet you, Diane!

The living room, which leads to the terrace, is “lofty, airy and light,” Burn says. For the interiors, she brought together pieces collected around the world with local furnishings and textiles, many of them purchased at Galería Vida, a “chic” furniture shop in Casco Viejo, the old quarter of Panama City. Notice the stacked coffee tables which can be used as trays as the one on the couch.

A late-19th-century transom found in Panama City crowns the large-scale window in the kitchen/dining area. Burn raised the ceiling four feet, then treated the surfaces with a rustic cement finish.

Warm colours in the covered terrace.

The outside dining area has views of the village, an uninhabited island and the mainland of Panama beyond. The chairs, which were made in Panama City, were modeled after a set of 19th-century French wrought iron garden chairs Burn acquired while living in Paris.

A guest room opens onto a private courtyard “complete with an exterior shower surrounded by high tropical palms and an oversize hammock that will make the guest feel like they’re in their own little Shangri-la,” says Burn. She bought the paintings at a Guatemalan co-op.

“Gossamer and romantic,” is how the designer describes the master bedroom, which has an 18th-century French baldachin. Here, as throughout the villa, decorative artist Karin Linder painted the walls for an aged effect.

Masks make a statement on a courtyard wall.

Local builder and artisan Armando Lopez crafted a large banquette for the covered terrace.

And now we go back home. Enjoyed the tour? See you tomorrow!

Photography by Michael Calderwood
All images and information from here.

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  1. I was so surprised to see this! I'm from Panama and I often feel my country is invisible on an international scale. It was very nice to see this little villa in Taboga! Taboga is a lovely little island in front of the bay of Panama. Although the water is certainly not the cleanest, Taboga has this really homey feeling and nicknamed the "island of flowers". There are no cars there, just golf carts, and you can basically walk the whole thing in less than half an hour. It's awesome. The design and decoration for this villa was really nice (I liked the aged walls and green windows!) - though I must say not exactly climate apropriate, I think the couches may have been too cushiony for Taboga's humidity/heat. Oh... and the bed with the "curtains" over it... let me tell you - VERY SMART! hahaha Bring your bug repellant when you come visit Panama. ;)
    Oh and I loved the kitchen/dining room area.

    Awesome post!!! Have a nice day!

  2. up to heaven and back and up and back and uuuuup and back! and then i take a nap and then i wake up and love you up to heaven and back and up and back

  3. Hi Kifus! So sorry that it is so lang ago I visited you (and a lot of other blogs I also love)but it was a really hectic time for me the past month! I missed your posts, so I am scrolling down at your blog today!
    A big hug!

  4. Wow Gabi, thanks for all this information about Taboga! I loved reading about it and I hope one day I can visit Panama.

    Greet, don't you worry dear, I love it when you visit but I know you are very busy. I really don't know how you find the time to do everything, even leave comments!! Thanks!

    Delfina: you are my sunshine. I love you so much.


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