If you are familiar with the gorgeous and cosmopolitan Caribbean island of St. Martin, you may already know that the Terres Basses area is at the westernmost edge of the French side. Beautiful and highly coveted, this is also the location of the delightful villa known as Always. It easily lives up to this name as guests always remember it and always yearn to revisit.
A luxurious and spacious six-bedroom villa, it was lovingly designed and built by Jeanne Salome and Philippe Fricker, and adhered to the owners’ wishes that it retain a distinctive Creole style. You will immediately notice the classic touches, but also the airy and open spaces that the owners also wished to emphasize.
The owners said that one of their goals in creating Always was to build it “with the same essence of the old [original] home”, and they have indeed managed to capture its island charm and emphasis on the outdoors. “The moment that I prefer, ” said the owner when asked what they loved most about Always, “is the sunset of Baie Longue”. Fortunately, visitors have a bevy of spots, indoors and outdoors, from which to savor that view.
Classic and Contemporary
An expansive villa, Always is built with two wings framing the long edges of a stunning pool. Leading your gaze across the gentle slope of the landscape and towards the sea, it is framed in a silky wooden terrace and furnished with full-sized sun beds, lounges, and assorted open air living spaces. A truly expansive space, it also opens into some of the lower-level bedrooms and living spaces and also features a delightful al fresco dining gazebo.
The focal point of the terrace, though, is the grand and eloquent staircase that leads up to the second-floor verandah. At the top of the stairs, most visitors will catch their breath at the open air living room. A true great room with open floor plan, it contains a casual dining spot along with a full-sized living room and entertainment space. The full-sized kitchen is in this area as well, ensuring that guests never miss one moment of the scenery, sea breezes or memorable interaction that the villa has been designed to create.
The designers emphasized an airy and bolder white palette while softening every setting through the use of distinctive furnishings, textiles and flooring. For example, a bedroom may have a large bed with snow-white linens, mahogany stained furniture and sisal rugs over wooden floors. This flawless blend of colors and textures creates remarkably stylish interiors and yet you always feel welcome and relaxed.
When asked what visitors should take away with them after a stay at villa Always, the owner said, “The same experience that I have every time…serenity and pleasure.”
This is easily done in a setting such as Always, though the owner also has a few recommendations for day trips and little getaways that will put the finishing touches on a visit. A visit to Orient Bay as well as Anse Marcel to the north, chartering a private boat for a visit to Anguilla to the north or to one of the nearby islands such as Dog Island or Prickly Pear, and sampling at least one of the fantastic restaurants are on the owner’s must do list.
A truly unique setting, with its dual cultures of French and Dutch sides, the many stunning beaches and flawless waters, and even the casinos and shopping, all add up to St. Martin being a great place to holiday, and Always will serve as an unforgettable base from which to savor as much, or as little, as you desire.
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