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Home on the Hacienda: A Rustic-Luxe Mountain Rental in the Sierra de Gredos of Spain

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Home on the Hacienda: A Rustic-Luxe Mountain Rental in the Sierra de Gredos of Spain

June 29, 2018

A recent family vacation in Granada has left me with Spain on the brain: I’m plotting my return. And next time, I hope to stay at Casas del Naval, a 110-acre mountain compound in the Sierra de Gredos, in Western Spain’s Extremadura, dreamed up by landscape designer/creative spirit Jesús Moraime.

It began as Moraime’s country place away from Madrid, and, in recent years, he’s restored the original gardener’s cottage, acquired surrounding properties, tended oak forests, brought in an endangered breed of cattle, and added this built-from-the-ground-up hacienda. It’s surrounded by wildflower meadows. Oh, and there’s a saltwater pool, too. Join us for a look.

Photography courtesy of Casas del Naval.

las encinas casas del naval spain 1
Above: Set in the foothills of the Gredos range and inspired by local farm dwellings, the limestone stucco and terracotta structure is built into a natural slope: The front entry leads to the upper floor bedrooms, which get the most dramatic views, and the living areas on the lower level open onto the garden.

The house was designed by Moraime in collaboration with architect Alicia Lopez-Izquierdo and interior designer Javier Cargo. The co-creator of Madrid’s Casa Gonzaléz & Gonzaléz (see Better Tools for Living), Cargo worked with Moraime on the project from the get-go—and also furnished Moraime’s Baixa House, one of our favorite Lisbon hotels.

the house is named las encinas for the surrounding holm oaks. it&#8\2\17;s  10
Above: The house is named Las Encinas for the surrounding holm oaks. It’s also, thanks to Moraime, alive with plantings. Shown here: David Austin roses, stachys, nepeta, and euphorbia.
cargo says the interior is an ode to natural materials and that he took inspira 11
Above: Cargo says the interior is an ode to natural materials and that he took inspiration from the British Arts and Crafts movement and its celebration of the handmade. Cargo is a master at mixing things up—hence the Aubusson tapestry in the corner—and does a lot of shopping at flea markets: “I’ve found that breaking the budget is almost never required to get the result you’re after.”

The suspended wood-burning fireplace is the Doria by Spanish line Traforart (it’s available in the US from Fiamma, which also offers a gas option). The runner is made from local vintage grain sacks.

the &#8\2\20;herbarium wall&#8\2\2\1; is composed of century old french 12
Above: The “herbarium wall” is composed of century-old French pressed botanicals. The Chesterfield sofa is from designer Mercedes Urquiljo’s Madrid shop and the slipcovered sofa is Ikea’s Holmsund sleeper.
in the front sitting area, twin french antique armchairs in stripped down uphol 13
Above: In the front sitting area, twin French antique armchairs in stripped-down upholstery stand on a hide rug made from one of the property’s own Cachena cows, a Galician breed Moraime hopes to help revive. The Josef Frank linen lampshade was custom made by Olofane of Madrid.
wide plank pine floors, exposed rafters, and a wall of knotty wood paneling len 14
Above: Wide-plank pine floors, exposed rafters, and a wall of knotty wood paneling lend the space a luxe cabin feel. The iron butterfly is by Spanish sculptor Cristóbal Martín. The vintage round iron table coffee table is a repurposed plant stand—in every room elements of the garden are subtly introduced by homemade bouquets and floral patterns (such as the Svenskt Tenn Bamboo Bird pillows).
the pine continues into the kitchen where it&#8\2\17;s modernized with coun 15
Above: The pine continues into the kitchen where it’s modernized with counters of saw-cut Spanish Silvestre Granite and a sink that’s nearly 10 inches thick. Says Cargo, “The house was designed around the idea of country pleasures: waking up to the mountain view, taking in the garden from every window, breakfast by the pool, and doing dishes in a sink of solid stone.”
cargo combined the kitchen&#8\2\17;s main building materials, pine and gran 16
Above: Cargo combined the kitchen’s main building materials, pine and granite, in a geometric pattern on the floor.

The range and extractor hood are from Ikea. The large framed photo is from Jesús Moraime’s “Gardens of Lisbon” series.

on vacation in majorca, moraime visited the bujosa textile workshop and returne 17
Above: On vacation in Majorca, Moraime visited the Bujosa textile workshop and returned with a handwoven traditional Majorcan fabric known as Telas de Lenguas (Fabric of Flames). Cargo used it to upholster vintage French dining chairs:”I love using handmade things because you sense the time, care, and skill that went into their making.”
the upstairs has three bedrooms, two baths, and a small living room. note cargo 18
Above: The upstairs has three bedrooms, two baths, and a small living room. Note Cargo’s use of white linen curtains throughout that he finishes with an edge of dark natural linen: “It’s a decorative trick that keeps the white from looking dirty too soon.”
the bedrooms all have raftered ceilings. the house&#8\2\17;s wood framed ro 19
Above: The bedrooms all have raftered ceilings. The house’s wood-framed round windows are a detail that Moraime took from old barns. The striped blanket is Moroccan and Moraime gets all the bed linens in Portugal.
william morris&#8\2\17;s fruit wallpaper patterns a room with twin bamboo  20
Above: William Morris’s Fruit Wallpaper patterns a room with twin bamboo beds designed by Cargo and fabricated by Spanish cane furniture company Tiretta Living. (Take a look at our 7 Favorites post for more sourcing ideas.) Similar Mexican embroidered Otomi Pillows are available from L’Aviva Home.
walls throughout are unpainted plaster and the wooden doors are left natural. 21
Above: Walls throughout are unpainted plaster and the wooden doors are left natural.

The kitchen’s thick Silvestre granite counters reappear in the bathrooms, which have raw brass faucets affordably sourced in Morocco. The striped sink curtain covers a wooden storage shelf. (Thinking of cabinet curtains? Go to Kitchen of the Week, Dutch Modern Edition to see another example that we love.)

the blue and white tiles are leftovers from moriame&#8\2\17;s baixa house i 22
Above: The blue-and-white tiles are leftovers from Moriame’s Baixa House in Lisbon. (See Steal This Look: A Portuguese Bedroom with Vintage Charm.) We like the tidy pyramid as a way to store extra TP rolls.
unusual (but harmonious) bedfellows: a vintage german school chart, grandmother 23
Above: Unusual (but harmonious) bedfellows: a vintage German school chart, grandmotherly embroidered stool, and French farmhouse wardrobe.
a pergola for shady outdoor living rises next to the granite framed swimming po 24
Above: A pergola for shady outdoor living rises next to the granite-framed swimming pool on the southern side of the house.
go to casas del naval for details about renting las encinas. moraime&#8\2\1 25
Above: Go to Casas del Naval for details about renting Las Encinas. Moraime’s cottage is also available and a hidden stone cabin is in the works. Cargo’s website will be live soon; in the meantime, follow him @gonzalezygonzalezstore.

Browse our Rental House archive for more getaway ideas, including:

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