This Tropical-Vintage Home in Ibiza is a Study in Effortless Cool

Set in a tranquil oasis of scented pines, swaying palms and perfumed orange blossom, Can Mimosa is a rare jewel on an island known more for its sybaritic lifestyle than for its tranquil refuge.

“The energy of the place is truly magical,” says Caroline Legrand of her home on Ibiza. “Every day when I meditate at the heart of the land, I feel deeply grateful that I am custodian of this little piece of paradise.”

Belgian-born Caroline, a London-based interior designer, had been coming to Ibiza for years with her two children. “I rented for the first time, for four weeks, and realised that this is my favourite place in Europe,” she explains. In spring 2014 she began house-hunting in the Porroig and San José areas, within easy reach of the airport and the island’s most beautiful beaches. “I was extremely lucky to see this house first, and was just blown away by the land and the beauty of the gardens,” she says. Caroline’s vision for her holiday home was clear from the outset. “I wanted to keep the interior cool, in both senses of the word, while keeping an easy connection with the outdoors,” she says. “After all, it’s a summer house – so it had to be light and airy, but avoid all of that white, super-modern look.” So she did it her way, using a palette of uniform creams and off-whites with ad hoc touches of caramel, tobacco and stone – natural tones and textures that blend together well. This palette suited the monochromatic marble surfaces that presented an ideal blank canvas for the glam, 1970s vintage vibe she envisioned.

Natural materials and organic fabrics were important additions, too; shaggy rugs, rattan and organic wool curtains, along with cork wallpaper in the cabana, all added warmth and a certain retro quirkiness. Caroline combed vintage shops, visiting just about every furniture store in Miami and Palm Beach. She also sourced simple designer items in London from The Conran Shop, then headed to Maison & Objet in Paris for china and glassware, and finally ended up at Pols Potten in Amsterdam for lamps and chairs. 

The end result is a carefully curated mix of hip vintage and designer pieces from renowned names including Pierre Paulin, Milo Baughman, Harvey Probber, Claudio Salocchi, Tom Dixon and Roger Capron, which she has cleverly combined with evocative artworks from the likes of Peter Beard, David Benjamin Sherry, Ryan McGinley, Christopher Wool, Adrian Stern and Claudio Conti.

With the interiors of the house sorted, Caroline then turned her attention outdoors. Her first project was to convert the unwanted garage into a comfortable guest cabana, adding a gym at the rear. “I incorporated large glass windows to create panoramic views of the garden so I could recreate a bit of a Palm Springs feel,” says Caroline.

As entertaining is an important part of Ibiza life, Caroline then focused on designing a garden chill-out area, with a mega-sized wooden dining table and an outdoor kitchen and barbecue, along with a sunken seating area under a dramatic pine tree and a Jurassic-style table made of Yosemite wood. 

Caroline’s practised eye has resulted in a simple yet elegant summer home that has been carefully considered, balancing glamour with earthiness. Her aesthetic is based on a passionate premise. “I want to live with things that give me joy every time I look at them,” she says. “Living here makes me really happy.”

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A version of this article was originally published in our January 2017 issue.