Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Archive: A Tiny Retreat in Southern France

The tiny (38 square meters) cabanon of Michèle and Bruno Viard enjoys spectacular views of Lubéron in Southern France. Traditional Mediterranean trees and shrubs, planted around the base, soften the strong lines of the retreat. On the other side of the cabanon is a pool, whose design was inspired by old agricultural irrigation ponds.

Top left: In the kitchen the stone sink is set into an iron-reinforced concrete countertop and is backed by antique tiles. Simple taps and a faucet, all from a garden supplier, provide water. The light in the corner is shaded by a former grain shovel. Right: The shower is set into a corner of the kitchen. The linen shower curtain is supported by a branch mounted directly into the wall. Bottom left: The bottom of a broken wine glass, embedded in the natural lime walls, acts as a hanger for a shopping bag.

Left: On the main floor, the bedroom opens directly out onto the terrace, with a view over the countryside. Right: A plan of the cabanon. A: the terrace. B: the bedroom. C: the kitchen. D: the salon.

The salon, furnished simply with garden chairs, an old table and bench, and linens.

Perched on a hill in the south of France is the tiny cabanon of Michèle and Bruno Viard. Sensitively renovated, the soft colours of natural stone, concrete and wood echo the landscape. Every inch of space has been used intelligently, such as tucking the hot water heater under the stairs outside to free up space for a shower in the kitchen. Simple to live in, with spectacular surroundings, it's the perfect summer home. From an early 2000 issue of Marie Claire Maison. (photography by Gilles de Chabaneix).


Jane Flanagan said...

I adore small spaces... I would never want to live in a ginormous pad. This seems like the perfect size for a holiday when you should be spending as much time as possible outdoors!

Jessie Cacciola said...

oh that saloon is just perfect. those little cubby shelves! so soothing. and it looks almost tuscan.

stacy said...

I was reading this and thinking "Where did you find this", it makes me want to flip through old magazines and see what other good stuff I can find.

Anke said...

How cute is that? It seems 38sqm is all you need. And a purple door! :)

Lori Langille said...

I also find this little place huge in inspiration -- it really makes the point of how it's not just space but the quality (or usage) of space that makes a home enjoyable to live in. And glad to hear I inspired you to have an enjoyable browse through old magazines, Stacy!

Millie said...

A wonderfully inspirational post Lori! We downsized (happily) but 2 yrs. later I still struggle each day with trying to adapt to this smaller space. It's me, not the space that's the issue!
Millie ^_^

Lori Langille said...

Glad you enjoyed this, Millie! Your own place sounds great, too!