From Where You'd Rather Be: European Home Tours
As many of us take flight to the Northern Hemisphere in search of summer, we remember the incredible, far-flung places we’ve been invited to over the years. The imprint of these vibrant cities and way of life there is evident in these desirable dwellings, from their proximity to brunch in Amsterdam and strong coffee in Paris, to sweeping views of Barcelona - each one a reminder of the spoils of Euro living.
Amsterdam: Lotte van Raalte and Borre Akkersdijk
Lotte and Borre, a photographer & fashion designer respectively, met while collaborating on a creative project. The like-minded pair now share the top floor of a former school building, complete with huge windows that overlook the city and invite plenty of natural light - a plus for Lotte’s line of work. The space is imbued with many personal touches, including a bed & table made by Borre’s Uncle, and collectables from their combined travels. Playfulness is undeniable in this Amsterdam abode: a giant stegosaurus puzzle and bowling set take pride of place in the living areas, also bestowed on them by Borre’s family members.
Paris: Ben Mazey
With a job that calls for regular travel (when we first met Ben he was working as Design Director at Kenzo) a place of sanctuary on his days off is paramount for the Kiwi-born creative. What Ben missed about home - barefoot supermarket trips during long, lazy summers - is made up for in the authenticity he admires in the French and their culture. That, and the four-week sabbatical France takes in August, where Ben gets on the first plane to Greece, headed for an island that he describes as ‘like going back to the late 70’s’. Unfortunately Ben won’t reveal the name of this secret hideaway, but he kindly shares a window into his gorgeous Parisian apartment, which is arguably just as good.
Barcelona: Zio Baritaux
Way up on the 16th floor, Zio & Fuzi can see ‘the whole city’ from their living room, and from their bedroom: a glimpse of the Mediterranean Sea. With this wide-reaching backdrop, Los Angeles native Zio works for herself as a writer, editor & publisher of Strange Plants I & II, odes to how artists think about plants and portray them in their work. Bed is Zio’s favourite location in their lofty apartment, and on weekends will venture outside for churros or eggs benedict at their chosen locals. Since becoming freelance Zio admits she's never had the ‘Monday morning blues’ - but we’re sure waking to the majestic view of La Sagrada Familia helps with that too.
Madrid: Ana Cerrato
While nurturing a family (and a burgeoning business, Cayumas), Ana Cerrato makes the most of a quiet life surrounded by a bustling city. Her range of venetian slippers contribute to her love of life’s little luxuries; from a daily bath in her clawfoot tub, to the maternal rituals of homework and dinner time. The family home is an inviting combination of ornate and opulent, filled with antique treasures and unexpected delights, like a verdant garden in the middle of Madrid.