Not only is El Alarife a bold modern design, and therefore quite different to our other houses, but it is also the work of one of Spain’s best known architects of recent decades. So, not surprisingly, distribution, light, and space are major features; but so too is its location; just 90 metres away from Cala Encendida, an attractive cove at the southern end of the main Roche beach, the house sits on slightly higher ground than its neighbours, and there are lovely sea views from the first floor rooms and terrace. It is without a doubt one of Roche’s best designed houses, and has been very appropriately named as al’arif in Andalusi Arabic meant architecht or master of works.
El Alarife is particularly suitable foreither large families or even two families (it sleeps ten, with a wing for teenagers should you wish, and it is no more than a skip and a hop to the beach); but it is also a house for groups of adults looking for a bit more than just a beach house. Quite and austere from the outside, it lacks no creature comforts inside. The owners have complemented the building’s design with their use of pastels and a reduced amount of well-chosen furniture and objets dárt. All the main rooms on the ground floor (sitting room, dining room, and even, partially, the kitchen) look on to the terrace, pool, and garden; and the two bedrooms on the first floor have sea views. One terrace gets the morning sun and is protected from the poniente wind, and the other gets the evening sun and is protected from the levante. The entrance doors too have been positioned so as to allow for just the right circulation of air, rather than gales, when either of the region’s two winds is blowing. And there are electric blinds in every room and electric terrace roofs that can be adjusted to generate just the right amount of light and shade, even on the brightest Costa de la Luz days. It is a wonderful design, and in fact the last ever design, by its architect, Estanislao Pérez Pita, whose work was exhibited internationally, including in the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and who won Spain’s National Prize for Architecture for his renovation of the National Library in Madrid.
El Alarife is built on two floors: the ground floor contains the airy, light sitting room, with big glass doors opening on to both terraces (the morning terrace and the main terrace). It also displays a stylish wood-burning stove for the damper autumn and winter evenings. The dining room also opens on to the main terrace, and is next to the kitchen, which, while not large compared to the size of the house, has everything you will ever want, including a professional oven and hob (the owner is a keen cook and the kitchen has been equipped accordingly!) Off the far end of the dining room is the bedroom wing, with its three bedrooms (one double, one twin, and one with bunkbed) and two bathrooms. This wing also has separate entrances, both at the back of the house and from the terrace. The stairs from the front hall take you up to the first floor, with its comfy TV room, the main suite, and the guest suite. All have sea views and access to the first floor terrace. Three of the bedrooms, like the sitting room and TV room, have ceiling fans.
The property is just 90m from the beach and 300m from the nearest beach restaurant. A walk of about 500m will take us to the local shop, pharmacy, a couple of bars and restaurants, and childrens’ playground. Roche also has its own tennis and padel courts and five-a-side football pitches. In the summer months, there are several beach bars/restaurants to choose from within walking distance, some of which are now staying open all year. A 5-minute drive will then provide you with a far larger selection of both bars and restaurants. The area offers an endless list of activities, information on which you will find here on our website, our Instagram and on our Facebook page. And if you book with us, we provide you with detailed information on all our recommendations, details on local amenities, and our up-to-date guide to the best of everything! You could spend a wonderful holiday here without a car, and just hire bikes; but, assuming you will have a car, it’s 15 minutes to Conil, 20 minutes to the hill-top village of Vejer, 30 minutes to Cadiz, 40 minutes to Tarifa and Jerez, and 90 minutes to Seville, all of which are well worth visiting.