take in pastel-hued colonial buildings, arcades, wooden balconies, and
interior courtyards. In Barbados, you come across Georgian townhouses
built of coral limestone cut from ancient sea cliffs. Candy-colored, Dutch-gabled
facades jostle each other along the narrow streets of Curacao. In
Montego Bay, brightly painted cottages surround a cobblestoned town square -- the
perfect place to take refuge from the tropical sun with a tall, cool drink.
|The Caribbean is a lively array of cultures, set like jewels in a
landscape of white beaches, blue mountains and emerald jungle. Along with
steel drums, relaxed island culture, and cuisine both spicy and sweet, the charm
and vibrancy of Caribbean design make an indelible impression.
While many of the basic forms are European -- Dutch, Jacobean, Spanish baroque --
the colors are as vivid as the natural landscape. Houses in shades
of mango, lime and dazzling whitewash glow alongside jewel-toned orchids and
clear blue ocean. Perfectly manicured green lawns give way to pure
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|Caribbean design reassembles diverse indigenous, African and
European elements to suit a tropical environment. Steep gabled roofs
and low facades deflect powerful tradewinds. Gingerbread fretwork, wide
verandas, and shuttered windows shade interiors from the island sun.
Materials like coral and palms come from the local landscape; the region's history as a
crossroads adds ballast bricks from colonial ships, hardwoods and
Simplicity with a touch of colonial elegance provide the foundation
for a Caribbean style room. Furniture in white wicker, of course,
and mahogany. Floors of natural tile or hardwood, and walls in bright white or
tropical color. Shutters (if possible, on three-part jalousie windows) and
ceiling fans are a necessity -- as are white linens and a mojito at your
Elements of Style:
||Fabrics: Colorful table cloths with images of
regional items such as fruits, hibiscus flowers and sea
life. Light weight, sheer cotton, blowing lazily in the
wind, hang from most windows. Colorful batique fabrics are
worn as sarongs and accents to island dress.
Walls: Lime washed walls, and strong color over
stucco wall surfaces. Indigenous woods are used as
paneling for the more stately colonial homes. Contrasting
colors, such as blues and coral tones, accent trim and
Floors: Rough, bleached pine floors are covered
with sisal carpets or cotton rag floor throws. Tile and
stone are common choices, easily cleaned with a bucket of
water and an aggressive mopping.
Design Style features
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