Alumbrera

Though Monica and Walter would go on to give me an excellent recommendation (they were very generous this way) to my third and longest running client on Mustique: The Lundin family, it was actually Eva Lundin’s adorable Jack Russell terrier Babe who made the initial introduction. Since Alumbrera was right below Yemenjá, I used to always see them walking together when I was out on runs. When I saw them one night at Basil’s, I finally introduced myself.

Eva’s husband Adolf Lundin had created a name for himself on a global scale as a self-made Swedish billionaire who’d taken many risks and reaped many rewards for himself and his investors, first in mining and then in petroleum. By the time I started working for them, Adolf had been diagnosed with Leukemia so he and Eva were spending a lot more time at their stunning home on Mustique, a massive villa that sits atop a cliff overlooking the famous Macaroni Beach. They’d named their island paradise Alumbrera, after one of their copper mines.

Eva said that Monica had told her all about my wonderful work on Yemenjá and would love it if I could ‘come over and look at a few little things’. Alumbrera is an extraordinary villa, and the Lundins were one of the island’s most beloved and respected families so I was thrilled at the idea of working with them on a project of any scope.

True to everything that I had heard about them, the Lundins were some of the sweetest, most generous people I’d ever met, so much so that they didn’t want to say anything negative about the designer who had been working on the house previously. But when I arrived at the house to meet Eva, I was somewhat shocked.

The giant indoor/ outdoor living room of Alumbrera is the most prominent space in the Lundin’s home but the way it had been designed, it looked half-finished. There was a large woven rug that was only covering two-thirds of the floor and the lighting in most of the house was so awful that Eva had to carry around flashlight to be able to see anything! Despite the not-quite-realized décor, I could immediately see the potential of the house.

Little did I know that what began as a project of fixing ‘a few little things’ would become the never-ending job on Mustique, that I would move from designing one room to another for the next eight years of my life.

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