Harbour Island, The Bahamas
I’m always excited to learn about vacation rentals owned by designers (this Travel + Leisure piece I wrote about designer’s own homes you can rent could use an update). Last week, during Remodelista’s dedicated coverage to the summer vacation rental, this list of their 33 favorite spots included a handful of places that have been featured on designtripper, as well as this breezy high-low beaut I’ve never seen before. Awash in the kind of lived-in, always-been-there details only a seasoned designer can pull off so effortlessly, the Salt Box is an old Bahamian cottage that interior designer Tom Sheerer brought back from the brink.
With reverence to the loyalist architecture and original materials — that weather-beaten, whitewashed-looking coral limestone and local Albaco pine — Scheerer’s renovation is an unaffected ode to the rustic charm of this 200-year-old cottage. There’s an old stone hearth in the kitchen and paint peeling from the clapboard shutters. Thonet bentwood chairs, a clawfoot tub and iron canopied bed command a simple elegance, and the rest is in the prime location: the middle of the historic Dunmore Town and a short walk to Pink Sands Beach. Book it at vrbo.com (sleeps six, $3,000 a week); I plan to.
Harbor/Windemere Islands, the Bahamas
Daughter of famed color-wielding interiors icon David Hicks, India Hicks has made a name for herself in the design world–and is probably most recognized for her admirably considerate judging on Top Design. Her own aesthetic–a thoughtful mix of traditional European style mixed with island influences–is artfully played out in the collection of beautiful homes she owns (and rents out to visitors) in the Bahamas, where she currently lives full-time with her husband and four children. As you can imagine, we’re not talking sterile rental units lacking all forms of personality. These beauties are pure, unrestrained Hicks.
“Nestled in a grove of over 200 palm trees just above the pink sand beaches, our guest houses have been designed with the same care as our home,” says India. “Reflecting the comfort of classic West Indian style, both the Guesthouse and Cricket Pavilion feature somewhat of a curation of treasures gathered from our travels.”
The personal detail lends a welcoming sense of intimacy amid the exquisiteness. A collection of shells against an inspiration board reads like a little vignette window into their stylish, carefree lives.
Three colonial homes on Harbor Island; one modern one, which was originally decorated by David Hicks, on Windmere Island. Rent them at hibiscushillharbourisland.com.