photographer: Giorgio Possenti
The Gulf of Policastro, a wide inlet of the western coast of Italy extending from the enchanting rock of Punta degli Infreschi in Campania to Capo Scalea in Calabria with its wonderful Mediterranean landscapes rich in nature and history, hosts this newly built villa arranged on three floors, commissioned by a couple of entrepreneurs keen about travel and exclusive resorts but also fashion, music and theatre. To the architect Carlo Donati they asked to bring in their home the comfort of a big hotel and the glamour of international clubs but also their love for the Aeolian Islands and Stromboli in particular, the usual destination of their trips by boat.
Just the color contrasts and dark shades of those volcanic unspoiled landscapes inspired the dark mood of the interior, rather unusual for a villa on the Mediterranean sea and in strong contrast with the outer skin of the building that comes in white stone. The employed materials contribute to the creation of an atmosphere of great impact: Basaltina lava stone for the floors, absolute black granite, burnished brass, grey plaster for the walls emphasize the materialistic matrix of the project and promote the light effects realized from Cannata & Partners.
The light of the Mediterranean with its colours and its textures penetrate with force in the spaces of the house, pervades its surfaces and enhances the volumes, in each interior light is discrete and indirect in order to respect this essential relation. The heart of the lighting project in fact is the will to not interfere with the outside world, rather the wish to emphasize its values and colours. “We captured the tones of the sun and the sea at sunset and we took them inside the house with the precise intent not to put barriers between these two worlds", Filippo Cannata says.
Each interior has its own lighting project: for the living room/kitchen lighting is given by small points of light that highlight the material of the walls and the volumes of the furniture, the stairs made in brass and glass is marked by simple lines of light that multiply in the moke-colored glass giving a total irradiance. Small signs of great aesthetic and emotional value. The large windows designed by the architect Carlo Donati are an invisible filter between inside and outside, at dusk they give to the architecture a new and deeper meaning.
This unique combination is evident in the master bedroom where the grazing lights of the walls merge with the sky on fire by the descent of the sun, and when the sunset ends in the room remains a halo of the colours of the sky that induces sleep. Whether day or night you never lose the direct relationship with the sea. The floating ceiling of the pool that is the real protagonist of the living with its stained circles reminds of a pond in which some stone were thrown, a constellation made up of multi-colored stars that overlooks the calm waters of an inland sea.
Even the garden surrounding the house enters the dialogue between architecture and light, it enters quietly, at night, capturing and returning the moonbeams. The trees and hedges, illuminated by a white-silver punctuation do not interfere, do not break the direct relationship with the Mediterranean, the visual and emotional contact between the buildings and nature persists intact. The realized intervention uses light as a medium able to convey to the inhabitants of the house a feeling of comfort and satisfaction of the senses.
The lighting of this villa overlooking the sea complies with the requirements of the inhabitants and with its infinite spectrum favours the same infinite sequence of emotions that run through their day.
A special control system consents to the owners to manage the intensity of light in order to achieve the desired level of harmony any time they want and get different sets for the different events of the house assuring in the same time the energy saving and the reduction of maintenance charges.
Project partners: Carlo Donati Architetto