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In Snowdonia, A Pair of Artists’ Humble Bungalow Gets a Japandi Makeover

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In Snowdonia, A Pair of Artists’ Humble Bungalow Gets a Japandi Makeover

March 1, 2024

Artist Richard Zinon learned pottery in Japan, and carpentry, painting and sculpture in Italy; he’s also a trained chef who has worked in restaurants in different countries. Is it any wonder then that his little bungalow, nestled deep in Snowdonia National Park in Wales, would be a paean to artfulness and craftsmanship?

Zinon and his partner, Nuria Maria, a fellow painter, treated the 1929 structure like a blank canvas, deftly filling it in with design references to their travels while showcasing the beauty of natural materials. At 689 square feet, the two-bedroom home is small, but it feels open and airy thanks to high ceilings and new picture windows that frame the verdant views.

Join us for a tour of their elegant house in the woods. (The couple recently sold this property on The Modern House, which is where we first spotted it.)

Photography by French + Tye, courtesy of The Modern House.

inspired by his time in japan, zinon chose to clad the exterior with shou sugi  17
Above: Inspired by his time in Japan, Zinon chose to clad the exterior with shou sugi ban Japanese cypress planks.
inside, the couple opted for a mix of japanese wabi sabi style and clean lined  18
Above: Inside, the couple opted for a mix of Japanese wabi-sabi style and clean-lined Scandi design. Here, they relax in the open kitchen and living area. The chairs are vintage Pierre Jeanneret.
the oak floorboards are salvaged from a \15th century mansion. &#8\2\20;i r 19
Above: The oak floorboards are salvaged from a 15th-century mansion. “I reconditioned every board, getting to know the wood piece by piece,” Zinon told The Modern House.
&#8\2\20;i also managed to salvage the cedar from the original timber cladd 20
Above: “I also managed to salvage the cedar from the original timber cladding and used it to craft the kitchen cabinets,” he shared.
a dual sided fireplace separates the public space from a hallway that leads to  21
Above: A dual-sided fireplace separates the public space from a hallway that leads to the two bedrooms.
the hallway with a perfectly placed   window. &#8\2\20;for me, a good inter 22
Above: The hallway with a perfectly placed picture window. “For me, a good interior is confident in its shape and simplicity, with a pureness that gives peace and comfort but still fascinates and inspires in a quiet way. The beauty lies in the details, history and origin,” Zinon told The Modern House.
the view from the hallway to the main bedroom. on the walls is bauwerk&#8\2 23
Above: The view from the hallway to the main bedroom. On the walls is Bauwerk’s Seed limewash color. “The walls are traditionally lime-plastered, which was a long and painstaking process involving the layering of hemp and lime,” he said.
one of maria&#8\2\17;s paintings graces the bedroom wall, echoing the green 24
Above: One of Maria’s paintings graces the bedroom wall, echoing the greenery just outside the window.
the couple used the other bedroom as a dressing room. 25
Above: The couple used the other bedroom as a dressing room.
the stunning view from the terrace. 26
Above: The stunning view from the terrace.
the rectangular bungalow was redesigned with large windows to take advantage of 27
Above: The rectangular bungalow was redesigned with large windows to take advantage of the views. (Compare with the smaller windows in the neighboring structure.)

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Frequently asked questions

Where did Richard Zinon learn pottery?

Richard Zinon learned pottery in Japan.

Where did Richard Zinon learn carpentry, painting, and sculpture?

Richard Zinon learned carpentry, painting, and sculpture in Italy.

What kind of chef is Richard Zinon?

Richard Zinon is a trained chef who has worked in restaurants in different countries.

Where is Richard Zinon's bungalow located?

Richard Zinon's bungalow is nestled deep in Snowdonia National Park in Wales.

How did Richard Zinon choose to clad the exterior of his bungalow?

Richard Zinon chose to clad the exterior with shou sugi ban Japanese cypress planks.

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