The Open House programme is presented by the Barbados National Trust.
Gardenia, St. James is this week’s Open House.
Gardenia was designed for Cecil Duckworth, CBE, a mechanical engineer whose innovations made him a multi-millionaire in the 1992 sale of his company, Worcester Engineering, to the German giant, Bosch. Mr. Duckworth and his wife wanted to share their good fortune with their close friends by involving them in the design of a holiday home they could all enjoy here. Top Barbadian architect Larry Warren designed it for them, and now Gardenia presents a stellar example of the splendid houses which gave the name “platinum coast” to the shoreline of St. James. Its architecture fuses classical and plantation house styles, old and new elements, to create a timeless house with grand and graceful proportions. Working with the celebrated British tastemaker, Suzy Hoodless, the current owner made changes to give it more of a Caribbean vernacular feel and to create an edgy glamour. This mystery owner’s taste and background make this a sophisticated but informal personal home, not just a property on the luxury rental market. The eclectic décor combines traditional and modern pieces, mixed with bespoke upholstery and well-crafted, one-off finds from around the world. Scandinavia, China, India, Italy and Central Asia are all represented. Set in over three acres of luxuriant, terraced grounds, Gardenia is also a garden-lover’s paradise. There is further drama in the layout, with a direct view to the sea from the soaring entrance hall, and open-air living at every turn.
There will be books and refreshments—including Prosecco—on sale.
Violinist Shawn Holder will play classical and modern pieces and there will be a Lively Lecture.
Gardenia is located in The Garden, St. James, on Highway 1, the west coast road. It is north of Holetown and shortly north of Mt. Standfast. Parking will be near the Weston Fish Market and a shuttle runs the short distance to the house. Look for Open House parking signs.
General Bds $35.00
Children under 5 Free
BARP, AARP and CARP Members Bds $30.00
Members of the Barbados National Trust Bds $25.00 upon presentation of membership card. Also applicable to reciprocating Trusts and Societies members.
Children 12-17 y.o. and Students (BCC, UWI and Polytechnic with ID): Bds $15.00
Dress nicely casual.
No pre-booking is needed. Just follow the directions – look for the signs.
Call the Barbados National Trust at 426-2421 for more information and to ensure that the viewing is on as advertised.
Barbados National Trust Open Houses
The Open Houses Programme is a Winter Season Tradition in Barbados presented by the Barbados National Trust (BNT). It allows visitors and residents alike access to some of the island’s loveliest houses. Discover more about our island’s diverse architecture and history.
The programme includes all types of houses – from the grand old plantation houses rich with centuries of history, to the newer, luxurious Bajan-style villas.
Grounds and gardens are part of the attraction. Sip your rum punch in stunning tropical settings.
The BNT sets up a bazaar with books and crafts people. Refreshments are on sale.
In addition, they provide historical and architectural information which you can take home with you at no additional cost.
At 3:15 pm, short lectures are given by the BNT’s experts on heritage. These are:
Prof Henry Fraser – a past president of Barbados National Trust and the author of ‘Historic Houses of Barbados’ and ‘Treasures of Barbados.’
Mr. Peter Stevens – BNT’s current president.
The Barbados National Trust was founded in 1961 to preserve our unique heritage – be it historic buildings, place of natural beauty or out flora and fauna.
It’s a very active Trust and was recently successful in achieving UNESCO International Heritage Site status for Bridgetown and its Garrison.