Space of the Week: Lindy Rama-Ellis’ Balinese Paradise

Lindy Rama-Ellis’ grown-up approach to beachside living has been honed by years of living the island life, and the design of her new haven straddles the best of the indoor/outdoor divide.

By Yeong Sassall via Vogue Living

“After years of living in Bali, the novelty of the whole outdoor living vibe has worn off,” confesses Lindy Rama-Ellis, as she opens the doors to her new Bali home in the beachside village of Pererenan. “I wanted the house to be able to open up, and then close, to pump the air conditioning,” she adds. “Essentially, we wanted a modern house that felt comfortable to live in.”

It’s an intriguing evolution for Balinese-Australian Lindy who has spent years living on the idyllic Indonesian island and is arguably the expert when it comes to weathering the ups and downs of the Balinese lifestyle. “I was over having outdoor bathrooms with the occasional visitor from the wilderness popping in,” she explains, before adding, “all our bathrooms are enclosed now.”

Rama-Ellis’ call for modernity was aided by the help of Spanish-born architect Felipe Gonzalez of Sukyf, who was called upon to design a cosy and contemporary space to suit the needs of a family of six. But, as with so many others this year, Covid-19 threw a surprise spanner in the works. “We moved in right before lockdown, expecting to finish off throughout the year… But Covid has put a hold on all of that!”

The villa is located within walking distance of the surf beach Panti Pererenan, right next door to the famously expat-packed Canggu. “The area has become super busy – especially during Covid, which is odd,” says Rama-Ellis. “So many new cafes and restaurants have opened up; I think people have wanted to move away from the tourist spots like Canggu and Berawa,” she muses. At any rate, the locale suits Rama-Ellis just fine. “Pererenan is still the perfect mix of village, locals and expats.”

While Rama-Ellis confesses that their biggest challenge was financial: “We found it hard managing expectations and budgets”, her time living Bali has given her the upper hand when it comes to sourcing pieces to add the finishing touches. “We had a lot of our furniture custom made from Souq Bali and had some beautiful pieces of artwork flown over from Lumas Gallery in Melbourne.”  

Through vivid use of colour and warm timber finishes, the home is sleek and inviting, with just enough features to keep her children happy. And – just as importantly – it allows for the seamless flow from outdoor to indoor that’s so specific to Balienese interiors. “The kids love the glass window that allow you to see into the pool,” says Rama-Ellis.

The master bedroom – originally intended as an adult sanctuary to escape from four children – is a clear favourite for Rama-Ellis, thanks to its spacious sitting area and expansive dressing room. But, like the timeless of the build, things didn’t exactly go according to plan. “Although this was supposed to be for adults, for some reason the whole family ends up in there anyway!”

Nevertheless, her new home is “the perfect family home for where we are right now in our life – it’s manageable and comfortable, and most of all, our home.”

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