The Netherlands Countryside Villa

What’s intriguing about this house, a modern family villa, is that about a third of its space is to be found below ground level, and – from the outside – it has little in the way of ‘wow’ factor. As such, the extent of the surprise waiting within its walls is all the more striking. The basement spa area features pool, sauna, jacuzzi and hammam plus light- and fragrance-therapy areas, all designed with Kuster’s feel for understated glamour. Upstairs, the cinema plays with 3D-effects through its use of padded velvets and satins on the wall and the quietly opulent golden velvet sofas. Elsewhere, the owner’s passion for the east is conveyed through the muted colours, simple graphic shapes and air of serenity that the house conveys. “Our brief was to make every space, every detail, in this house count – from the doors, many of which we covered with croc-effect leather, to the fabulous smoked-glass balustrade of the staircase, which dominates the house. Outside, too, comfort is at a premium: a terrace area boasts inbuilt heating, allowing the owners to enjoy the view over their garden throughout the year, even given the vagaries of the Dutch climate.

“This client is the sort I fi nd so inspiring to work with,” says Eric Kuster of the house’s owner. “He pushes you all the time to move beyond your comfort zone, inspiring you to approach challenges in wholly new ways. His energy pushed our team on to even greater heights, and we were all thrilled with the end result.”