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Case Study

16th Century Farmhouse | Catalan Countryside

by Ana Engelhorn

This 430 m2 Farmhouse located in Palamos consists of a main building and two towers, dating back to the 16th Century and used as warning towers for the Castle of Calonge in case pirates were spotted coming from the sea.  The building was later added in the 17th Century.  The Farmhouse is therefore a national treasure and building work was only allowed in the main building without touching the two towers. 

Ana Engelhorn’s goal was to restore the building to its former glory by giving it back its original materials, its high ceiling and large airy rooms that would bring the sweeping Spanish countryside views indoors. She wanted stone floors downstairs and antique oak floors upstairs. Even though the house is very big, a preference was given to big rooms rather than a lot of rooms.  The result was an elegant but homely three-bedroom house with a study, living room, kitchen/dining room and three bathrooms (including two ensuite).

The flooring is all 19th century oak from the UK and the ceiling is wooden beams with re-used ceramic tiles, just as it would have been in the 17th Century.  Both floors have floor heating, so no radiators are visible.

On the first floor, we can find the Spey Bath, situated in front of a large window, in the middle of the changing area, next to an antique sofa.  This ball & claw feet design is Drummonds’ longest bath, ideal if you like to lie flat, but it is low enough that you can also sit up and rest your arms comfortably on the deep roll top. It’s completed by our Mull classic bath and shower mixer bringing together elegance and functionality. This tub is also displayed with a plunger, an all-in-one stunning design with no overflow needed in the bath.

Its chrome finish, which adds bold contemporary touches and creates an elegant marriage between antique charm and modern luxuries, nods to the Double Lowther vanity basin suite and a 6-bar floor-mounted heated towel rail. This vanity is a stunning option where space is available in the room and features hand cut moulding, including integrated soap dishes.

On the lower floor there are two children’s bedrooms with one toilet between them.  The Brora high level toilet is composed of a hand crafted wall mounted cistern and classic pull and chain.

The entrance area leads to a large open kitchen with a central island. Ana Engelhorn’s aim was to make it the focal room of the house and for it to serve as a meeting point where the whole family could congregate, cook and socialise together. The dining area is small but cosy, right in-front of a huge fireplace and with a beautiful view to the Garden.

Right next to the kitchen-dining area is the living room, probably the largest room in the house and situated next to the guest bathroom. The latter features the Usk roll top bath, based on a classic 18th-century design known popularly as a bateau bath. Retaining its elegance across the centuries, it is a shape that fits perfectly into traditional or contemporary bathroom schemes.

Interior Designer: Ana Engelhorn

Photographer: Héctor Jensen Pie