Lila Bamboo Villa Photos

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The villa’s tiered roof, which allows natural ventilation, rests on columns of giant bamboo poles lashed together and set on large rocks. Living and dining areas are on the ground floor. The three bedrooms—all with ensuite bathrooms, natural toiletries, walk-in closets, and canopied queen-size beds hung with mosquito netting—are on the second and third floors. Asian carpets, antiques, and textiles create oriental sumptuousness amidst the organic materials of the house.

In the entrance foyer is a shrine to the elephant-headed god Ganesh set in a niche of river stones. Black river stone walls give the ground floor a dark glamour (which some may find simply too dark, although light blasts in through sliding glass walls, and the ceilings are high). Floors are of suede-like adobe. Sofas of giant black bamboo flank a recycled teak coffee table and the big timber dining table (seats up to twelve) has free-form benches and baroque armchairs. Also on the ground floor is a bathroom with shower, and the large professional kitchen. A patio with table and lounge chairs lets you enjoy the morning light by the stone-lined swimming pool stretching along the east side of the house.

The second floor, up a beautiful, broad spiral staircase, has a large living area and long balcony. The honeyed mood of this room comes from the antique furniture, warm tea-colour bamboo, and thick red carpets. The two bedrooms on this floor have sliding glass walls overlooking the garden, study desks, big carpets, antique painted teak panels, and large bathrooms with rain showers. Alix’s room, as it is called, is masculine and trim; Sophie’s has furnishings in soft, pretty colours.

The third floor is one large light-filled room, with pale bamboo, sliding glass walls, a walk-in closet and large bathroom. The furnishings are white or pastels. The regally centred bed has a timber frame inlaid with mother-of-pearl. There is a large sofa, big glass-topped desk, antique dressing table, and several nooks for study or meditation are lined with precious-looking 19th-century books. The bathroom has a rain shower and a big bathtub of carved pale stone; the WC is in a walk-in niche with shelves of art objects.

An adobe wall encloses the villa’s broad lawns. There is a comfortable pool pavilion with cushions. Two paths lead to a small river in a shady glade, with several places to sit and enjoy the air.

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