Casa Arte is a beautiful villa rental for sunny holidays with friends and family located on two hectares of private land and minutes away from deserted beaches on the Algarve.
What is the story behind Casa Colina? How did it all start?
It was more or less a coincidence. We had a real estate project in Germany, an old building in Cologne, that we had our hearts set on. But at some point, it just fell through. I always had it in my mind to do something in the south, although my partner was originally against the idea. We looked at a few places — Sardinia, Ibiza — but there was never any spark.
Then while we were in Namibia, we decided to have a look in Portugal (I’m Portuguese). In Portugal, I know the language and the formalities. But I also know that my father is always repairing properties and what it means in terms of work.
We toured Portugal for three weeks, starting in Porto, and visited family in the north, then came back via the Algarve, Troia and Comporta to Lisbon. Our hearts got stuck in the Algarve where there was life, even in the winter. We liked that there were bigger cities, places like Portimaõ, Faro and Olhão. And it’s not called the Algarve (“Gateway to the sun”) for nothing, with 320 days of sunshine a year.
We found the house by chance on Facebook and flew straight down to view it on the weekend. It is very difficult to buy in Portugal — it’s hard to find a property and the Portuguese are tough sellers. We wanted to buy the land around Casa Colina, so we would have independence forever, but there were difficulties with the negotiations.
The previous owners of Casa Colina were English, so the Portuguese touch was missing and we wanted to bring back that tradition. We liked the Santa Catarina tiles, which were already there — they were an eye-catcher for us. We felt that it had the potential to be renovated and modernised. The Casa Colina experiment was really very pleasant and although we are based in Germany, we found very good craftsmen with whom we worked well.
How would you describe the atmosphere in Casa Colina?
It’s an easy summer house, with lightness and colour. The materials are really beautiful and it’s designed so the doors can always be open in the summer months so you can live both inside and outside.
Casa Colina is also a source of energy because it’s very quiet in the countryside and you don't have many neighbors around you. You can spend the whole day by the pool with a book and just let your soul dangle.