The Brown Beach House Croatia is a 25-room and suite property — fusing Mediterranean-inspired design and resort aesthetic with a luxurious full-service spa — along the Adriatic Coastline in Trogir, Croatia. Trogir, considered a popular yachting destination and ancient harbor town, is also deemed a UNESCO World Heritage site. Being just five kilometers from the Split airport, the Brown Beach House Croatia has a convenient location within the city. The property sits within a meticulously restored edifice built in the early 20th century that once housed Dunhanka, a landmark tobacco storage facility. Amsterdam-based designer Saar Zafrir’s overall goal was to maintain the feeling of the era in which the building was originally built in 1900, but to design it with a modern flare.
The poolside area of the resort, as well as the lining of the pool, was constructed with black and white marble, inspired by the grandeur of the Roman Empire that held control of Trogir throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. “The client was initially afraid that the marble would damage after a period of time, but I worked with the marble company to find the exact fit that would sustain wear and tear,” said Zafrir. “The building was originally built in the year 1911, so the marble feels authentic to that time period and makes it appear as though the swimming pool was built with the building.”
Ultimately, Biancona and Nero Marquina marble — supplied from a local supplier, Petro-Camen — were chosen for the project. Overall, a total of 300 square meters of stone was used for the 7- x 22-meter pool. Each piece was 30 -x 30 cm. “The Biancona has the same color as the building,” said Zafrir. “It is a cream color that adds continuation and a mirror effect.”
According to the architect, the installation of the marble was similar to the installations of ceramic tiling. The pool had to be as level as possible and a waterproof mortar was used. “The regulation for the swimming pool area demanded anti-slip flooring, which made it very difficult to find a stone that would be suitable,” said Zafrir. “After much research, I found a company in The Netherlands that makes coating for the floor, providing an anti-slip protection. The anti-slip treatment to the stone took just 48 hours.”
Today, the restored property reincarnated as the Brown Beach House Croatia features stylish rooms comprised of one- and two-bedroom suites with custom furnishings and an exterior/interior design concept. Zafrir’s conscious approach to aesthetics combines a calming natural color pallets and wooden tones, classic-yet-contemporary furniture and vintage pieces surrounded by local flora, which when combined, create a cohesive, timeless look and home-like feel. After six months, the renovation was complete and the resort presented a refreshed atmosphere for its guests.
Brown Beach House Croatia
Designer: Saar Zafrir, Amersterdam, The Netherlands