Antima has made a name as a design-based company that transforms older villas in prime Marbella locations into stunning contemporary homes with a touch of original charm and refinement. With Valeria, the team has excelled, drawing from new founts of inspiration.

Words Michel Cruz, Photography Courtesy of Antima

Antima has made a name as a design-based company that transforms older villas in prime Marbella locations into stunning contemporary homes with a touch of original charm and refinement. With Valeria, the team has excelled, drawing from new founts of inspiration.

Words Michel Cruz, Photography Courtesy of Antima

The unmistakable touch that sets an Antima home apart is rooted in a very personal approach. Antima properties are sourced, designed, renovated, engineered, decorated and finished with loving attention to detail. “For us, each property we recreate is a unique project, and we design and fit them as if we were doing it for ourselves,” says chief designer Synne Brendmoe. “The idea of creating a personal dream villa each and every time is the principle that guides the way we work, and as a result we would happily live in all of them ourselves, though I have to say that Villa Valeria is a particular favourite.”

All creative work has to flow and evolve, finding new sources of inspiration and expression. Antima’s latest project is a fine example of this, and therefore one of its most impressive homes to date. Set upon a gentle rise overlooking a golf valley down to the sea, access is through a quiet street in a select villa suburb of Marbella. “The original property had charm but had become outdated, so we took its prime location and created a new home, staying true to most of the original floorplan and also incorporating timeless elements.”

Exotic Inspiration

Villa Valeria marks a change of direction in stylistic terms, an evolution away from the cool Scandinavian-rustic style that fits so well with Marbella’s homes and climate. “For this wonderful property, we allowed ourselves to be inspired by the exoticism of Morocco, which opened the design to a world of beautiful furnishings, colours, textures and detailing,” says Synne. This visual and sensory exuberance was complemented with touches of Provençal and Andalusian style, all interpreted in a contemporary way. The result is a property with a timelessly tasteful look and ambience of its own.

As the electric gates glide open and the villa’s forecourt reveals itself, details begin to catch the eye, such as the lush but drought-resistant greenery that envelopes the setting, and a colour palette that deviates from the strict white we have become accustomed to. “Villa Valeria is all about subtle yet stylish natural tones with a soft mint overtone.” The walls gently cast rather than mirror the sun’s light, making this a home that feels comfortable in all seasons. As you step into the house, the tall classic doors are the first of many design elements to stand out.

Found in an old country monastery, they were painstakingly restored and painted in the home’s signature green-grey detailing – to wonderful effect. Maintaining the finest elements of the original property’s layout means that Villa Valeria celebrates the return of a classic villa element: the patio. A marvel of design that dates back thousands of years, this enclosed open space allows for cooling air to circulate through the home while providing spectacular views along the infinity edge pool to the sea and also offering an imposing entrance with intimate lighting and spaces.

21st Century Comfort With A Natural Touch

The patio courtyard sets the tone for what follows, ushering one towards a spacious living room that retains another original feature – a beautiful stone fireplace, albeit with modern gas fire. This focal point competes with views of the sea, but walk around, from the lounge into the dining room, kitchen area and beyond, and you realise just how natural the flow of this house is. The Antima team always carefully considers the look and feel of each and every room, but then also makes sure that it all fits seamlessly and sensibly together, and this shows within Villa Valeria, where you effortlessly glide from space to space, both indoor and outdoor.

In this way, the living room links with an outdoor lounge; the inside and outside dining tables have been designed in such a way that they can be joined, and the beautiful kitchen with large bar and backlit ice bucket sink features a breakfast area both inside and under the stars. Sliding doors also reveal an adjacent space that is ideal as a little study or play area. It comes complete with a comfy bay window, a feature seldom seen in these parts but symmetrically repeated in the guest apartment on the other side of the courtyard.

This stylish room with its own private access, views and intimate outdoor seating area sets the tone for the altogether six bedroom suites in the property, one of which has an accompanying children’s bedroom with bunkbeds. Villa Valeria is sophisticated and luxurious, but with a very easy-going, natural sense of style. Flowing on from the main lounge is a cosy family room ideal for watching movies, and like most parts of the villa it enjoys direct access to its own outdoor area – in this case the main terrace that leads on to the garden and dramatic drop-edge swimming pool.

Style And Enjoyment

For me, the two defining elements of Villa Valeria are style and enjoyment, making it a sumptuously tasteful home with an effortless refinement, yet also one inspired by the sheer enjoyment of living here. This is also reflected in practical features such as a kitchen lift that takes prepared dishes to the entertainment areas on the lower floor and the rooftop, an outdoor kitchen and bar, and a cosy seating area with firepit that flanks the pool, not to mention a sprinkling of private relaxing zones from which to take in the sun and views.

There is no upstairs floor, which qualifies this home as a villa in the strictest, most classical sense of the word. The master suite is located in the private wing of the main living area, at ground floor level, and with its own breakfast station, outdoor seating area, Balinese-style shower and bath mirroring the indoor bathroom, it offers a true sense of privacy. Indeed, close the door behind you, and it feels like a true suite, complete with state-of the-art dressing room made to measure. This is also true of the charmingly styled children’s bedrooms on the same floor, since bespoke furnishing is another distinguishing characteristic of an Antima home.

The Sandon Brand

Antima custom makes much of the furniture and decoration that helps create the distinctive look of its homes, which has now been separated into a venture of its own, a dedicated furniture company named Sandon. The product range, which continues to evolve and expand, contains a highly personalised component and is manufactured in Spain. “Quality and style are two of our benchmarks and also the reason why Sandon pieces are so highly valued.” They help to create the special style and ambience of Villa Valeria, alongside handpicked furnishings from leading European design brands.

The lower floor of the property contains both, in spaces as diverse yet complementary as a highly evocative Hammam-inspired spa with sauna, Turkish baths and massage/treatment area. Also on this level are a top-spec gym, a home cinema and an entertainment area with bar and adjacent wine cellar, all in close contact with outdoor spaces and natural light. This is also true of the two guest suites, if not the case for the immaculate laundry and machine rooms. The lower floor furthermore features small, fully equipped kitchens in the guest suites and a food station with kitchen lift – a feat replicated on the large rooftop terrace, which in itself is a panoramic lifestyle space with lounging areas, firepits, outdoor dining, a barbecue and professional pizza oven. “Villa Valeria is an exciting evolution in our design style,” says Synne, “but also first and foremost an example of how natural living, designed around enjoyment, can be in the 21st century.”


Antima Group
Marbella/Los Angeles/Oslo
Tel: (+34) 620 399 567.