Interior Philosophy co-owner Mandy Mayers fashions an Alys retreat with Moroccan-inspired details that pair perfectly with Florida’s crystal-blue coast.
You won’t find seashell decoupage lamps or tiki torches at this chic Florida retreat. Atlantan Mandy Mayers—who co-owns interior design firm and shop Interior Philosophy with Jessica Roan—equipped her family’s Alys Beach oasis, nestled along the coveted 30-A highway, with character-rich design details that both maintain the relaxed cadence found in Mediterranean abodes and push the envelope aesthetically.
Unexpected structural details, executed by Alys Beach Town Architects Erik Vogt and Marieanne Khoury-Vogt, and a profusion of layered textures, materials and patterns infuse this Florida vacation home with laid-back sophistication.
While the revered retreat, completed in 2014, is tucked right off the Gulf of Mexico, visitors will feel transported to an enthralling global locale upon stepping inside. “We fell in love with the location, as the property was on the Gulf Green,” says Mayers, who previously owned a home down the road in Watercolor and decorates for clients in the area along with business partner Roan.
The lot’s previous owners had begun house plans for the property with Erik and Marieanne that were beautiful but more contemporary than Mayers’ taste. The architects tweaked the layout to reflect Mayers’ softer vision, adding unexpected details to garner an approachable Moroccan aesthetic.
The 3,400-square-foot home’s white stucco walls are evocative of those found along the Mediterranean—as well as the 30-A—coastline. White oak fills the four-bedroom, four-and-a-half-bath home in both the floors and the living room’s dramatic ceiling, where more than 1,000 oak pieces were sandblasted and assembled to create stunning square details.
Remarkable design elements, in fact, abound, including the powder room sink: In lieu of a run-of-the-mill bowl, Mayers and her team sketched a star design for a simple yet substantial addition. In one of the master bedrooms—all of the home’s four bedrooms were designed with adjoining bathrooms—the vaulted ceiling features rounded beams that were hand-chiseled to look distressed and not perfectly curved.
Along with dreamy design details, Mayers and stylist Jill Sharp Weeks outfitted the abode with eclectic finds, such as woven baskets, nubby throws and patterned accessories sourced from Atlanta-based Interior Philosophy, for a Moroccan environment that feels playful yet refined.
But what’s an enchanting beach house without a view? Throughout the process, Mayers made it a point to spotlight the Gulf Coast right out the door. From the placement of the pool on the roof to the height of the kitchen sink window (Mayers is 5-foot-3) to the positioning of other windows in spots with prime views—including the bathrooms—she gave the landscape outside as much attention as the interior finishes.
“When we first sat down with Marieanne and Erik, we said that our first priority was to maximize the views,” says Mayers. “We definitely achieved that goal.”