A Mediterranean-style home is both simple and elegant. This architecture style features traditional stone and tile throughout the house, high ceilings, and gardens. While the interiors of Mediterranean-style homes are typically simple, you can add touches of elegance by incorporating unique designs and details. Keep reading to learn more about Mediterranean interior design. Listed below are some key characteristics of a Mediterranean-style home. They are considered a classic style yet are suitable for modern-day homes.
Mediterranean-style homes are simple yet elegant.
While most people associate Mediterranean-style homes with warm climates, they can be found in many locations. These homes were first popular in the early 20th century. They have simple, elegant designs and are characterized by earth tones. However, Mediterranean homes can present some unique challenges, depending on where they are built. Because of these issues, it is wise to seek professional help from an experienced buyer’s agent when looking for a Mediterranean-style home.
While white is a great color choice for Mediterranean decor, it can be challenging to keep clean and maintain. Hence, consider adding a few accents that are simple yet elegant. Try using rustic wood mirrors, carved boxes, or small stools to create a Mediterranean-style home. In addition, use a variety of natural elements, such as wood, stone, and textile. If you prefer a more luxurious feel, you can add metal and wrought iron accents and decorative items such as chandeliers and lamps.
To bring the Mediterranean style to life:
- Start with the living room.
- Make sure the room has large windows and east/west exposures.
- Invest in some large, bold furniture pieces to create a dramatic impact.
For example, a large sofa with oversized cushions can be a significant statement piece in a living room. The large furniture pieces will also minimize the amount of decorating time required. You can also buy similar accessories and plant vases to tie the two areas together.
They feature traditional stone and tile.
Combining traditional elements and modern flair is a hallmark of Mediterranean-style homes. These designs emphasize open floor plans and indoor-outdoor living. Some styles also incorporate Spanish and Italian design elements. Standard features are stone or tile flooring, wood floors, and ceiling beams. The kitchen is usually the activity center, with many counter spaces and traditional rock and tile finishes. A small balcony or a terrace can add to the ambiance of the outdoor space.
In Mediterranean-style homes, floor and wall tiles are typically white, but you can opt for different patterns for an eye-catching effect. For example, the entryway floor may feature Spanish-style mosaic tile, while the bathroom could have traditional Moroccan-style tile accents. Tile is usually found on the floor, except for the ceiling, so this variety will be even more eye-catching. Often, patterned tile is used throughout the home to create a sense of playfulness.
Traditionally, Mediterranean-style homes are built to mimic the architecture of Italian and Spanish coastal towns. The style’s fusion of Spanish and Italian designs originated during the Roaring Twenties, a period of leisure and prosperity that led to the rise of seaside resorts in the United States. The style was later developed and advanced by notable architects and designers. Today, you can find many examples of this style in sunny climates and coastal areas.
They have high ceilings.
Known for their rustic charm and high ceilings, Mediterranean-style homes were initially constructed in the early 20th century for use in hotels and public buildings. Today, they’re widely available in various residential styles, and they are often more significant than other types of homes, making them perfect for entertaining and family life. Famous examples of Mediterranean-style homes include those designed by John Lautner in Malibu, Richard Neutra in Los Angeles, and Giancarlo Del Toro in Santa Monica.
Tiles and mosaics are essential to design elements for Mediterranean-style homes. The Local Flea recommends brightly colored tiles. Colors for mosaics include lime green, navy blue, soft lavender, and warm red. Tiles and mosaics are an excellent way to add color and pattern to any room. Whether designing a bathroom or a kitchen, these elements can help transform any space into a Mediterranean oasis.
Another common feature of Mediterranean-style homes is their high ceilings. The high ceilings are a great way to create a sense of spaciousness and natural light in the house. High ceilings allow you to enjoy the view outside from wherever you sit. The floors are typically tile or stone. You’ll also find symmetrical exterior designs and pillars throughout the house. While Mediterranean-style homes usually have a symmetrical exterior, you can expect high ceilings inside.
They have gardens
The exterior features terraced levels, limestone walls, and natural stone paving in a Mediterranean-style home. In the garden, mosaic details adorn the walls, step risers, and patios. Dry stone walls speak to the landscape and talk about the place. These structures also offer shade and reflect the light. In addition, Mediterranean climates are often dry, so it’s essential to have systems that provide shade.
Besides their gardens, Mediterranean-style houses have other distinctive characteristics. The exterior of a Mediterranean-style home typically features neutral colors, though some may choose to use brighter colors for their bodies. In addition, the landscaping of a Mediterranean-style home may be colorful, too. The colorful plantings tie the house and landscape together. The homeowner chose to grow flowers, greenery, and trees at various garden levels so that the home would draw attention to the house itself.
The exterior of Mediterranean-style homes is as important as the interior design. Most homes feature a generous outdoor space because the Mediterranean lifestyle is centered around the outdoors. The majority of coastal and rural Mediterranean houses feature large outdoor spaces that may be divided into separate sections. These may include a terraced area, a formal garden, and an orchard. Some Mediterranean-style homes have swimming pools, as well.
They are suited to warm climates.
While Mediterranean-style homes are traditionally associated with warm climates, they are well-suited to various other locations. While they are still prevalent in warm coastal regions, they are also found across the U.S. and in six of the seven continents. Consider its sustainability if you’re thinking about a Mediterranean-style home in a warm climate. These homes can be built with environmentally-friendly materials, lowering your energy bills.
Another benefit of Mediterranean-style homes is their open layout, emphasizing a natural flow from inside to outdoors. Large plots of land can accommodate functional outdoor entertainment areas, making entertaining easy and comfortable. The color palette is warm and earthy, making it suitable for warm climates. Indoors, you’ll find ample light in a Mediterranean-style home. The rooms flow smoothly from indoor to outdoor areas so that you can spend a lot of time outdoors with your family.
Most Mediterranean-style homes are one to two stories with a large, symmetrical exterior. The front door is typically in the center, flanked by tall wrought-iron gated windows. Designed with an emphasis on bringing the outdoors inside, Mediterranean architecture features symmetrical courtyards, open living areas, and sloping roofs. The roof is typically made from red clay and is shaped like a half-tube to catch cold air.
They are eco-friendly
When it comes to building a home, choosing a Mediterranean style can help you build a sustainable home. Rather than using fossil fuels to heat and cool a house, these homes use biodegradable building materials. Their exterior features include large windows, low-pitched, tiled roofs, stucco or brick siding, and plaster-finished walls. They also feature natural materials, including stone, wood, and plaster, allowing cooler inside temperatures. However, Mediterranean homes can be minimal in design and can feel claustrophobic.
The Spanish-style home is a prime example of a Mediterranean-style home. It features smooth stucco walls and Cantera stone and clay tile accents. The exterior features Spanish-style entry courtyards and arches. It also features reclaimed wooden doors and a square in the middle. At the same time, the cover features traditional elements, and the interior features contemporary materials and finishes. The home’s interior is typically recycled materials and features an outdoor living space with lush, tropical plants.
For the exterior, Mediterranean homes typically feature neutral colors with accents of vibrant colors. These colors may be found on the stucco, roof, doors, and trim. Colorful plantings tie the bright Mediterranean house in with its surrounding landscape. The homeowner chose colorful plants and flowers on every level of the home. The garden space features decomposed granite and terracotta tile. All these materials are low-maintenance and eco-friendly, and the homeowner was able to select the exact colors for his outdoor space.