Take a tour of this old-world eclectic home in Montuiri.
See how one jet-setter adapted her signature style when she moved from a big city to a small island off the coast of Spain
“I spend a lot of time travelling the globe,” says German stylist Katharina Albrecht, whose freelance work takes her to cities like Tokyo, Shanghai and Copenhagen. “After the hustle and bustle of a trip, I long for the tranquility of sprawling spaces, calming decor and quiet surroundings.” That’s precisely why, after living in large metropolises like London, Madrid and Paris, Katharina settled in sleepy Montuiri, a tiny village on the Spanish island of Majorca. Located in the centre of town, her 1,700- square-foot four-bedroom villa was purchased from an architect-artist, who used part of the space as a gallery and left almost everything – artwork, old book collections, furniture and more – in Katharina’s very willing hands. Armed with antique furnishings, international inspiration and a stylist’s expertise, Katharina created a chic sanctuary that pairs old Spanish architecture with eclectic design for a truly cosmopolitan look.
Though her patio is petite, homeowner Katharina Albrecht maximized the limited square footage by creating several different sitting and siesta areas unified by airy and angular white furniture. The neutral tones amplify the tropical feel of the space, allowing the plantings to take centre stage, especially when they’re in full bloom.
French traditional meets mid-century Spain: The classic Louis XIV- style velvet settee (a gift from the home’s previous owner) is paired with a vintage bistro table common to 1960s Majorcan coffee shops. The compelling juxtaposition of fancy flourishes and simple silhouettes asks the eye to linger here longer.
The dining area, which is open to the kitchen, is where Katharina entertains most since her living room is located upstairs. A simple rug defines the space and warms up the original terrazzo floor, while the antique Spanish pantry door and armoire are the perfect patinated counterpoints to the stark white walls, contemporary drum pendant light and Eames-style chairs.
For Katharina, another happy coincidence of trading a big city for a small town was getting to know her neighbours. In Montuiri, it’s common for villagers to fetch a stool and sit halfway out their front doorways, chit-chatting with whomever passes by. Katharina’s villa, located next to a church, sees a lot of foot traffic – which is precisely why the heavy wooden doors to her house are always open.
Katharina chose a four-poster bed that would accentuate the master bedroom’s 13-foot-high ceiling and allow straight sightlines out the window, taking advantage of her serene surroundings. “From my bed, I look over the rooftops to the mountains and watch the sunset,” she says.
The multicultural master bedroom boasts references to many countries. Under the original Spanish beams and a vintage bronze Italian Flos pendant light, a Danish flea market find desk sits beside a bed that looks plucked off the beaches of Bali. The space demonstrates how mixed influences amount to stunning style, right down to the picture of French actress Brigitte Bardot displayed in a frame found streetside in Madrid.
Sometimes the simplest strokes create a striking vignette. In the patio area, artwork by a local artist in a minimal black frame is all the curvy Thonet bench needs.