A Visit to Pietra Nova, Lumio, Corsica
BoutiqueHomes' curator Simone Schoene pays a visit to one of our most enduring homes, Pietra Nova, on the rugged Mediterranean island of Corsica, and takes a tour with its delightful owner, designer and artist Nathalie Bourgogne. As she discovers, it's not an easy place to walk away from.
Arriving at Pietra Nova was a jaw dropping experience. When Nathalie opened the door to the house, my only words were "wow!" The home sits between massive rocks within the rugged landscape and blends in perfectly. It feels like it's positioned on top of the entire world around it, secluded and a little like a treehouse, with a lofty, inside-outside living feel.
Once you enter the house, you're immediately drawn into a living room that opens up on both sides through huge sliding doors. On the mountain side, there's a very inviting, sheltered courtyard-style terrace, with a long table for enjoying outdoor meals. It's shady, which is especially welcome in the heat of summertime.
On the garden side, I was blown away. When you walk out, it's onto a huge wooden deck, with only the landscape for a view. It looks almost unreal, like a movie shot in wide angle. It is breathtaking and colorful, with views of wild nature, beach, water, and mountains. There are several seating areas, with sun loungers and even a vintage bed at the farthest edge of the deck, which sets a beyond beautiful scene.
The house itself is like a design-meets-art piece, with very personal touches and even Nathalie's own whimsical paintings. She has brought back an eclectic mix of art and handcrafted items from her travels and from her time living in Africa. The color palette and decoration reflect that African influence, and she has managed, with her own artistic layer, to add so many surprising elements, which means that walking through the rooms is like a never-ending journey of discovery. Imagine an industrial-style bathroom with stars stencilled on the raw concrete floor, vintage wooden doors used to conceal built-in cupboards, stars cut into a wooden ceiling to allow light to shine through. There's something different to look at in every corner.
The two outdoor showers are also stunning. One is hidden behind tall bamboo and provides a lush, spa-like experience. The other is built into a washed-out rock formation, like a natural bath.
After a tour that led to many conversations and the exchange of countless stories, we ended up on the terrace enjoying the sunset with some Corsican wine. Nathalie is such an inspiring person, she creates a unique experience for her guests and even for passersby like me. What was planned as a sundowner drink ended in a spontaneous pizza night with more conversation. I left full of inspiration and admiration for what she has created with her design and creativity.
Follow in Simone's footsteps and discover Nathalie's luminous home and the majesty of the Corsican landscape here.
Photographs: Simone Schoene, Laura Austin & courtesy of Nathalie Bourgogne