With its pristine beaches, rolling plains and cork oak forests, Portugal’s Alentejo region is rated as one of the most unsullied corners of Europe.
The perfect spot, then, for Evelyne Tissier and Claude Martin to concoct their antidote to Parisian bustle: a vernacular ‘beach house’ cast in cool concrete by Portuguese architect Manuel Aires Mateus.
‘I liked the idea of having a little hamlet on a hill,’ fashionista Tissier tells us of her rural escape, situated an hour south of Lisbon close to the hills of Serra de Grândola.
The retreat combines a main residence – featuring communal dining and living space and an en-suite bedroom – with three independent casitas, each offering an en-suite bedroom and sea-facing terrace. Outside lies a heated pool and lemon, orange and olive groves.
Tissier’s creative coterie shaped the vision: fashion designer Bill Gaytten picked the spot and photographer Matthieu Salvaing suggested imprinting the concrete with wood to create an organic relief.
Vast glass doors showcase the natural setting, while spartan interiors sport vintage pieces such as José Espinho’s 1950s sideboard, sourced from Setúbal-based dealer Antonio ‘Le Brocanteur’
When the tranquillity gets too much head 20 minutes west to Praia do Carvalhal for decent surf and grilled fish at O Dinis.