Wallpaper House

The house, which was designed by Swedish architect Thomas Sandell for the Wallpaper magazine, was exhibited at the Milan Furniture Fair in 1998. It was then transported to southern Spain and re-erected on a hillside near the coastal town of Tarifa. It is situated between rocky terrain and a pine forest — with sweeping views across the Strait of Gibraltar to Africa.

In the wooden house, which the architect calls the “inside outside house”, the boundaries between interior and exterior are blurred. The rooms merge into one another and are grouped around a central courtyard. On one side is the living space with a sitting and dining area and the (simple) kitchen. The living room has a monopitch roof rising towards the sea and a large window with a sweeping view of the water and the terrace in front. The other side of the house accommodates an open sleeping area (with a double bed and two single beds) and the bathroom. The alcove beds have curtains to ensure privacy and small windows affording views of the hills. Another bedroom (separated by a door) opens onto the courtyard with large sliding windows. This patio is an additional outdoor room — equipped with a large barbecue, it turns into a kitchen in fine weather.

Translucent acrylic glass walls, wooden floors with patina and minimalist furnishings with vintage pieces give the house a casual, very relaxed atmosphere. The motto is “back to basics”, but you don’t have to do without a hot shower. Water (directly from a spring) is heated with gas; electricity is generated by solar panels on the roof.

What to do

Water sports (Tarifa is a surfer’s paradise), horse riding, mountain biking, hiking; whale, dolphin and bird watching; visits to the Roman ruined city of Baelo Claudia or to Tarifa with its old town.

Why we like this house

A simple but special retreat in the middle of nature with a beautiful view of the sea. The house is secluded, but the beautiful beaches and Tarifa’s bustling city life are not far away.

This house is great for

Ideal for couples, families and nature lovers looking for something offbeat. The house can also be rented together with the Little Stone House a little up the hill, then there is room for two families or a small group of friends.


Region ES – Spain, Andalusia, Tarifa, La Peña
Name Wallpaper House
Scenery Between the sea and the mountains in a magnificent panoramic setting
Number of guests Max. 6
Completed 1998
Design Thomas Sandell, Stockholm
Published The Sunday Times (April 2023)
Architecture Modern
Accomodation House
Criteria 1-6 (house/apartment), Beach, Family, Garden, Hiking, Mountains, Sea
Same PartnerLittle Stone House

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