Today I am having dinner in a wonderful villa. I perceive the sea gradually hiding in the twilight. I look around and I realize that all villas in Porto Cervo have something in common, despite their individual peculiarities. They have a unique style, but they also followed the different fashion trends during the years. My first memories go back to the 80s when rattan ruled in traditional seaside properties, highlighting the difference between town and holiday house.
Ten years later there was an explosion of colours that overcome all details, which then led to a revival of total white. The following step – which is there for all to see – is a touch of pastel, subsequently mixed with rough wood, unglazed ceramics and some steel or coloured iron.
This plunge in the past makes me realize that Porto Cervo has a peculiar expressive soul that sets fashion trends also in the field of interior design; like a real artist, it periodically presents its own Spring-Summer collection, which is then to be found in villas.
As you might have understood, every opportunity is good to satisfy my curiosity. Therefore, I decide that the best way to find out the latest fashion trends in this cross-section of the world is to meet two popular stylists: Eva and Silvia from La Bottega dell’Arte.
I could spend hours singing the praises of those I deem to be the best interior designers of the whole Costa Smeralda, but no word could ever replace the sensations that overwhelm you when you cross the threshold of their boutique. Their warm welcome makes me feel immediately at ease. I have been knowing them for many years and I am familiar with their art of establishing an immediate bond with people. Both with friends and with occasional clients, their approach is always the same: they only show you the direction, but then it’s up to you to find the door of the White Rabbit and enter your personal Wonderland. I struggle to regain a certain objectivity that would allow me a more crystal-clear view, so as to break the spell I am under. But no way: I must surrender to the wizardry that surrounds me. This is why the most gorgeous villas in Costa Smeralda all have their trademark.
Here every detail is out of place and at the same time perfectly set in its corner of the world. You turn around and what seemed to be so perfectly integrated in your idea of space makes way for the next piece of furniture. It makes you want to have tens of houses, to steal this world and put it into yours. Then comes Eva to rescue me, taking me by the hand and leading me along the corridor of what one could barely call boutique, since words stop in your mouth at the sight of heaven. She explains how every piece of furniture matches a precise desire and every detail – even if it were only a candle – confers creativity and life to a room. She tells about fabrics that seem to convey vibrations just to the touch. I sit on the bed and – were it not for some glimmer of dignity that I still preserve – I would still be lying there because, as Silvia says, these are not only fabrics but hugs over time. While looking around amazed, in my head I have already furnished my next five houses, with Eva and Silvia keeping my curiosity alive by telling me about fashion cycles in Costa Smeralda. For a moment I even grant myself the luxury of closing my eyes and let my fantasy roam free. I still don’t know when we are going to start building our own house; sooner or later this will happen. But on my way back, of one thing I am sure: I am not going to say “goodbye” to Bottega dell’Arte, but rather “see you soon”.