matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france

‘hi bride farm’ by matali crasset opens in the Luberon 

 

After HI Hotel, HI Matic, and Dar HI, businessmen Philippe Chapelet and Patrick Elouarghi team up again with French designer matali crasset to open a contemporary agrotourism site in Villelaure at the heart of Southern France‘s Luberon massif. Dubbed ‘HI Bride Farm’, the project takes cues from its local culture, where fertile land plays host to grape and olive production. In this continuum of projects undertaken by Philippe, Patrick, and matali, each corresponding to an era, the ‘HI Bride Farm’ is a coming together of all different times. Neither focusing on the past nor being fascinated by the future, it is the result of a process of reflection and collaboration lasting 20 years between all three. 

 

Eight rooms, two studios, two houses, amid an olive grove, vines, a pond-style pool, a vegetable garden, and a forest comprise the HI Bride Farm, like an estate in which to experience a contrast between the contemporary style and a historical, natural setting. HI Life has found something here in which to take root and develop,’ writes the team.

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
all images © Anthony Lanneretonne

 

 

hosting six programs in harmony with the rural landscape

 

The ‘HI Bride farm’ by matali crasset (see more here) features six distinct programs which function like organs within the same body: Ferrier Tower, the ‘Heart’ of the farm, Casa Hi, Hi Go House, Hi-Lo Pool, and HAM (Feeding Shed). The first part of the farm unfolds as the Ferrier Tower, a 12th-century structure that has consistently overlooked the estate like a watchtower and has now been brought back to life.

 

By restoring the tower, an old passageway that was previously blocked is now opened up — creating a new connection between itself and the farmhouse. The rooms then naturally took their place in the tower; two rooms on the ground floor, HI.biscus & HI.oud, open to the tower’stower’s historic terrace where nature is most present. Meanwhile, a spiral stone staircase leads to eight guest rooms which unfurl amidst wall paintings in bright colors and full of perspectives, whitewashed timber beams, and vaulted 15th-century stone arches.

 

Each space is unique, generously designed to benefit from the serene setting and the views, the coolness of stone, and the warmth of wood. Attention to detail, but also simplicity: metal hand lamps hanging from the bedside, dispensers of ”eternal sap’ fragrance, light wood shutters to take advantage of sunlight or opt for darkness depending on the moment or season, wall drawings designed by matali, conducive to contemplation or daydreaming. Here one experiences what living in reactivated heritage offers through sensations, between respect for the past and the energy of the present,’ describes the team.

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
large windows framing scenic views and bringing in ample daylight

 

 

We move from the tower to the heart of the project — the farmhouse itself. Comprised of two spaces with vaulted ceilings, basking in natural light, this vast building hosts the farm, which clings to a sandy granite hill. Its honey-colored walls are marked by arrow-slit openings and four large windows emphasizing new architecture designed by matali, contemporary arches extending a welcome and opening out to an undulating landscape with vines, oaks, and olive trees.

 

On the ground floor, reception, kitchen, and reading areas framed by sanded walls with smooth concrete floors open out to invigorating nature: On one side, the view of the village of Ansouis, seemingly within arm’sarm’s reach on the opposite hill; on the other, the valley of Villelaure appears with its depths and reliefs. The kitchen is central, sporting a large table to be shared for meals or as a laboratory where workshops are held near huge picture windows immersing visitors in surrounding nature.

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
bedrooms imbued with colorful whimsy

 

 

Slightly apart but adjacent to the farm, Casa HI recalls a refuge of Spanish inspiration, even nodding to Ibiza. This is where goats, sheep, and pigs found shelter; it is also the place that once hosted silkworms on the upper floor. Today, the space includes two superimposed cocoons, with delicately appointed bedrooms and kitchens. Furthermore, large windows on the ground and first floors invite guests to curl up cozily while immersing themselves in nature. An external stone staircase adds charm to the refuge, while a charming terrace hosts, within reach, a series of olive, fruit, apricot, and fig trees.

 

In time, Casa HI will be home for orchard life when the fruit trees have grown at their own pace, making it possible to feel the region’sregion’s fertility even more intensely. In addition, the trees and plants of the garrigue, wild thyme, juniper, and other wild plants are close by for anyone wishing to appreciate their fragrance and get close to them like a botanist,‘ note Chapelet and Elouarghi.

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
where old and new meet

 

 

Next up is HI-Go, a fully renovated farm building, the largest on the estate and looking out towards the olive grove and vineyard. It is an autonomous, highly contemporary house with an expansive ground floor and bedrooms on the upper floor; at its center, a conservatory buzzes with green life. The old vine-growers’ house now exudes Japanese aesthetics, with indoor plants, warm wood, and tall windows overlooking the olive grove, inviting its interiors to melt into the surrounding pastoral scenery. Set on a riverstone floor and wood shavings, a huge tree trunk serves as a pillar for the stairs, surrounded by a metal structure designed to this effect. This striking combination, along with gigantic plants matching its height, brings about an otherworldly feeling.

 

With an open kitchen and its pantry, a sitting room where light filters through shelves of books and games, HI-Go immediately becomes home to those living here. On the upper floor, two bedrooms and bathrooms have been expertly designed as two entities echoing one another, each with its spirit. A high-level terrace with a dais for shade overlooks the olive grove, offering a direct view of the Luberon mountain and the village of Ansouis. On the ground floor, the house is extended by a vast outdoor terrace, and the entire setting is an invitation to invent one’sone’s own pace for living, in connection with the rest of the farm or more autonomously, as one wishes.

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
bringing in bold colors and modernism

 

 

Lastly, HI-LO is the HI Bride’sBride’s agricultural pond set at the forest’s edge like an isle of well-being. Fed by a natural spring, this agricultural pond has been redesigned, refashioned, and reshaped by matali crasset, modernizing its allure with bold colors, a central pentagon, and furnishings. ‘At the edge of the forest, overlooking the farm, one can enjoy bathing as if in a leafy river. A restful place with its stone island almost submerged, the pool is also a backcloth for meditation, a deep connection with nature and the elements,‘ the duo explains. Still to be done is the transformation of the hangar into a HAM (‘hangar à manger’ or dining hangar). The hangar is the ultimate modular space, capable of hosting dining activities, farm production, lectures, and celebrations.

 

In the farm building, space is devoted to the sale of farm products and to a selection made by the team of products from here and elsewhere, in the HI tradition always proposed by Patrick and Philippe since their World Grocery Store, their first adventure in Paris in 1994. The store can be described as one of all kinds, with a highly personal selection of products from the HI Bride farm, its wine and olive oil, producers or designer objects from the nearby region, bearing witness to the estate’sestate’s activity and the richness of this land so very long in action. The HI Bride Farm thus sheds light on local resources and expertise. 

 

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matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
‘HI Bride Farm’ is the latest collaboration between crasset, Chapelet, and Elouarghi

matali crasset weaves bold colors + modern flair into agrotourism hub in southern france
vaulted openings across the farmhouse

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