Plaza Andalucía - CASA UNO

The House

LIFE AT CASA UNO

Nicholas Tresilian, Classic FM founder/broadcaster and art historian, with his late wife the photographer Fay Tresilian, designed and built CASA UNO out of an ancient farm-house to be an enchanting place to inhabit: `magical’ and `paradise’ are words we often hear exclaimed about it by new arrivals. But CASA UNO is also at the centre of a web of lovely places to visit – starting with its own home village of Las Pinedas. Here is just a short summary of some of the pleasures it can offer you.

* CASA UNO itself is made for outdoor living during at least 9-10 months of the year (Andalucía boasts 320 days of sunlight per annum). There is an all-day-sunlit patio, a sunroof with a shady awning and BBQ, covered colonnades to all the downstairs rooms and a fully-shaded outdoor eating area round a magnificent Moroccan table, overlooking the walled and gated 8 metre pool. Solar heating extends the swimming season in the pool from early April to late October. Internally the house is proofed for all weathers: double-glazed and double-walled, with full air-conditioning for high summer, which also heats the rooms in the short winter. There are ceiling fans in all rooms and a wood-stove for the seasons in between. There is a large family kitchen/dining room, a sitting room with TV/DVD/radio etc. and an extensive if eclectic library. The bedroom wall hangings and covers are from Fez. The pool can be floodlit by night. A fountain plashes musically. Moroccan lamps light up for supper.

* LAS PINEDAS is a small working village founded some 200 years ago as part of the re-colonisation of Andalucía, consisting essentially of two parallel streets and a village square with a simple Church – CASA UNO is in the square, looking across to the Church. The village has a small self-service store and a single bar which is very rustic, but the landlord's wife is a wonderful cook and we often eat there. The village lies on the Southern foothills of the Guadalquivir valley and there is invariably an evening breeze even on the warmest days.

* The local market town is LA CARLOTA about 3 miles away, where all the normal necessities of life can be obtained in abundance, with two big supermarkets and a multitude of small shops selling fresh fish, meat and vegetables - plus cafes, tapas bars, restaurants etc. There is also an excellent emergency medical service with helipad.

* La Carlota is by-passed by the main SEVILLE-CÓRDOBA motorway (freeway), providing rapid southwards access to Jerez, Cadiz and Portugal, and northwards to Madrid (however the AVE trains to Madrid are quicker than any motorway - the journey to/from Cordoba takes under 2 hrs). A new A45 motorway also now runs all of the way down to Málaga and the Mediterranean coast.

* Using the excellent motorway network, Córdoba is 25 minutes from Las Pinedas, Seville airport 1 hr, central Seville 1 hr 20 mins, Málaga 1.5 hrs, Málaga airport 2 hrs, Granada 2 hrs (add 20 minutes for the Alhambra).

* Each of the great Moorish cities has its ancient wonders: CÓRDOBA has the Mezquita, an immense mosque dating from the 8th century which effortlessly swallowed the Catholic Cathedral later built within it - for nocturnal visits go to www.elalmadecordoba.com; SEVILLE's Alcazar is a Moorish palace built for a Christian king with glorious Moorish gardens. The nearby Cathedral rivals in size that of Mexico city and contains the tomb of Christopher Columbus; the Alhambra at GRANADA is the last and most exquisite of all Moorish palaces - but access is nowadays rationed and you need to book well in advance for an entry time.

This is just a start. There is a great deal more information about our village, the surrounding landscape, the culture, the gastronomy, the towns and cities of the region - and also an extensive reading-list on Andalucía and wider Spain - in the downloadable Gazetteer (see the menu bar on the left). The Michelin Green Guide to Andalucía makes a good companion for monuments and their opening times.

covered eating area

covered eating area
Covered eating area

Kitchen & dining room
Kitchen & dining room