Every family home purchase has that moment, the coup de coeur. If you are unfamiliar with the French phrase, it means a blow to the heart. Love at first sight. Mashamba Design’s clients, who split their time between Germany and France, experienced their coup de coeur in 2014 while searching for a holiday home in Palma de Mallorca.
Jennifer Warren-Gash, Curator of Outdoor Living at Mashamba Designs, first met her clients in October 2021. They met to discuss adding additional pots and greenery to the terraces. But during that conversation, it became clear that the family wanted more from their outdoor living areas. What ensued over the next year was a redesign of their outdoor terraces.
The family had a specific vision in mind. Being in the middle of the city, they wanted a Mediterranean refuge that took full advantage of their bay views. Their brief also included comfortable and functional spaces to gather. They envisioned relaxing pool days with their children. Long candlelit dinners. And chatting and dancing with friends well into the night. They wanted an eclectic mix of styles and a cohesive design that was full of their favorite shades of turquoise and soft neutrals.
Perched on a hillside in one of Palma’s oldest neighborhoods, the house had spectacular views over the Bay of Palma and its port. It was this view, and the promise of bay breezes, that beckoned them through French doors, onto the terrace and stole their heart.
With several teenagers to keep entertained and happy, Jennifer created a casual hang out area by the pool. Under the shade of a lemon tree, she placed large turquoise and white sunbeds and deco cushions by the Italian brand, My Your Design. Their shape adds a relaxed element to the space, and they are as soft as a cloud to lie on – perfect for all-day poolside lounging. As a bonus, they are durable to both kids and the elements.
Opposite the sunbeds, a long wall flanks the pool. It originally housed an overgrown built-in planter and a large area of boxed in plumbing. Jennifer removed the planter and built a kitchen area with bar seating in its place. The boxed in plumbing became an outdoor shower.
The once unattractive wall is now a usable space for the family to gather and cook on summer days. Jennifer used eye-catching tiles in the shower and kitchen to break up the lines of the distressed wood paneling and the wall.
The tiles also happen to be one Jennifer’s favorite details of the project. She says, “We worked with Baldosas Capo, a small family-run business on the island that custom makes tiles by hand. The bold pattern and color choice personalize the space, letting the clients’ personality shine, and they give a fun vibe to the pool area.”
The clients’ existing Olea europaea copa and their pots, which have hand painted stripes, add to the whimsy and coordinate with the color scheme. To complement the Mediterranean feel of the planting, Jennifer added succulent plants along the façade in a low built-in planter she had installed. She says, “We were lucky that the house had established vines that soften the façade. I love the shape and structure of Agave attenuata and planted it alongside the existing bougainvillea. The contrast of the planting fits with the mix of styles that the clients prefer.”
The impressive views from the dining terrace are what made the clients fall in love with the house. This terrace serves double duty as both a seating and dining area for the clients to enjoy at different times of the day.
Just off the kitchen, Jennifer placed a sofa and chairs so that the family could have their morning coffee in comfort and watch the sun rise over the bay. Later in the evening, they return to the terrace to catch the bay breeze and eat dinner in the shade provided by the house.
The clients loved the weathered gray wood of their existing dining and console tables. Jennifer kept them in the design and added new seating and accessories from Belgian furniture house, Tribu. The extra-large braiding and rounded forms of the furniture are refined and modern, creating an elegant feeling that contrasts with the rustic wood.
For a feature wall behind the dining table, Jennifer worked to accent the clients’ artwork by placing structural Agave triangularis in large handmade pots below. All materials were kept to a palette of neutral grays and white apart from the turquoise highlights in the cushions.
The upper terrace is where the magic happens. It’s a chillout space with comfy couches for lounging but it can turn into a party space at night. It’s where the family entertains with cocktails – thanks to large windows that open to a bar just inside. And when the sun goes down, it’s where they can dance under the stars and over the twinkling lights of the port.
Jennifer tied the chillout terrace together with accessories and plantings. Tribu globe lights with a crochet effect mimic the look of Mediterranean fishing nets. Beautiful to look at by day, they are even more interesting at night with the shadows they create.
Nearly a dozen, large-leafed Strelitzia augusta were planted in pots crafted by the artisans at Atelier Vierkant. Each terracotta pot is a handmade, unique piece of art that requires a six-month lead time. Jennifer reassures us though, “All my clients love Atelier Vierkant’s work and agree that the pots are worth the wait. In this project, the pots elevate the space, creating a luxurious, private oasis in the middle of Palma.”
Both Jennifer and her clients were thrilled with the end result of the redesign. For sure, the family experienced their second coup de coeur when they saw their new outdoor spaces. The three terraces and mix of styles were unified with Jennifer’s color palette, plantings and new furniture and accessories. Spaces were functional and managed to be both sophisticated and fun, allowing the family to make the most of the outdoor Mediterranean lifestyle they desired.
Live is better outdoors. Mashamba Design can create your urban oasis or your countryside idyll. Based in the Mallorca, they work across Spain and Europe – anywhere that their flare for design or specialist knowledge of Mediterranean gardens and outdoor living can be of service.
Contact Jennifer Warren-Gash for a consultation.
Designed and managed by Jennifer Warren-Gash, Curator of Outdoor Living at Mashamba Design.
Photographed by Nuria Vila Foto.
Text by Meridith Moore.