par Hannah Booth – theguardian.com – 01/08/2016
This elegant home on the coast is the perfect summer house – where inside and outside mingle (Cette maison élégante sur la côte est la maison d’été parfaite – où intérieur et extérieur se mélangent)
The large central courtyard with its chequerboard floor. Photograph: Nicolas Schimp/Living Agency
South of Agadir, where the Atlantic coast turns wild, buffeted by the sea, is Monique Henon’s tranquil hideaway. Built on a fertile plain three kilometres from the sea, on the edge of the Souss-Massa national park, it was designed by Henon herself, a former fashion designer, in the style of local houses : a basic whitewashed cube on two levels, with sheltered terraces and central courtyard.
With their tiled floors, sofas, parasols, cane furniture, lamps and tables, these outdoor spaces are more akin to rooms. “They are living spaces as much as the house itself,” she says. “Of course, the climate in Morocco makes this easy-going, outdoor life possible.”
Inside, black and white dominates: white walls, with monochrome furniture, tableware, lamps, framed photographs and rugs. The white double front doors have panels inset, painted black, and walls in the hallway and bathrooms are tiled to shoulder height with striking geometric black and white tiles.
Her home is filled with a mix of pieces bought locally – mostly the cane furniture – and in Marrakech, ranging from metal serving plates to tajines, lamps, paintings and curios, displayed on white-painted open shelving. “I love shopping in the souk: I love the choice there, as well as the food, the crafts, the herbs and spices.” Some larger pieces of furniture have followed her from her home city of Brussels, and she is a big fan of design company Emery & Cie.
The kitchen features simple white cabinets with black worktops, made by local carpenters. Henon found the large aluminium platters in Marrakech. Photograph: Nicolas Schimp/Living Agency
And when she’s not trawling the markets of Marrakech? “I garden, I read, and I’ll have a drink on the terrace under the pink bougainvillea as I watch the sun go down.”