This month’s Destination Design takes us to Dar HI, an eco-lodge on the tip of Northern Africa, in the south Tunisian desert. The boutique hotel is the second collaboration (the first is a guest property in Nice) between French businessmen Philippe Chapelet and Patrick Elouarghi and French designer Matali Crasset.
Like the architecture of the region, the building is surrounded by a wall, and follows the shape of the landscape. It’s a bit of a getaway, as it’s not accessible by car. However, there are massages aplenty, organic food, and a rooftop pool.
Crasset conceived three distinct areas: the pill houses, the troglodytes, and the dunes. The pill houses have exceptional views, from a panorama overlooking the horizon of the salted lake, to a view of the palm grove. Down below, one can see the public areas, which have the feeling of a small village square. The three areas called troglodytes are constructed of small bricks from local town of Nefta. They have their own private terraces, but are linked together by a circular area from one to the other. They’re ideal to book for families or friends traveling together. The three areas called dunes are at sand level, with architecture inspired by forms that could have been sculpted by dessert winds. They are all different: one has a loggia and an indoor garden, one has an external terrace and a large window with a view of Nefta, and the third looks onto the date grove with an independent room and an alcove wooden terrace.
Are you packed yet?
What: Dar HI
Where: Quartier Ezzaouia, 2240 Nefta, Tunisia
How much: Starting at 270 € for a single.
Highlights: When you enter you don babouches (Tunisian slippers), there’s a hamman (steam room like a Turkish bath), and a rooftop pool with incredible view.
Design draw: The experience of local desert architecture (except it’s really an upscale spa). And, of course, design details that are quintessentially Matali Crasset.
Book it: Online reservations or call 00 216 764 327 79.
Photos by Jérôme Spriet.
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