As a boy growing up in Vermont, Jason Flinn was used to chasing the sun. Its rays and warmth were maddeningly elusive, so that when the sun did shine, he wanted to be immersed in its glow. His love of that is one reason why he and his longtime partner, the noted designer and antiques dealer Serge Castella, moved to Spain’s Costa Brava and where they have lived and thrived for decades. But in a region of the Iberian Peninsula where the sun is ubiquitous, most of the inhabitants often seek refuge from its harshness and glare.
“We saw this house, oddly and luckily situated in the rolling hills of the region, and knew even from the road that it was right for us,” Flinn recalls. The circa-1960s Modernist house appeared in the landscape seemingly as a prime example of California’s classic Case Study modular houses of the period — one-story dwellings that were designed to be affordable and adaptable to post-War families. Like those houses, this one, too, had wide overhanging roofs that created expansive shaded terraces and porches beneath. “Our house allows us to be outside, where you want to be all the time in Spain,” says the Spanish-born Castella, “but protected by the shade of the roof. All the houses we kept seeing when searching for something close to Barcelona but in the countryside were either old stone farmhouses, ruined castles, or unimaginative, over-the-top suburban-style spec houses. Here was our answer to be not so much contemporary but contemporal, if that’s a word.”
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INTERIOR DESIGN BY SERGE CASTELLA AND JASON FLINN
PRODUCED BY MANOLO YLLERA
PHOTOGRAPHY BY PATRICIA KETELSEN
WRITTEN BY DAVID MASELLO
This story appeared in the Fall 2016 issue of MILIEU.
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