What was the inspiration to build and open the villa to the public?
I built the villa in order to have a home in which I can go to relax by the pool any day of the year…that’s also a direct flight away from New York City. However, heading South that many degrees of latitude requires time and so I enjoy perhaps 10 visits a year. The other 42 weeks the house hosts weddings, family reunions, special birthdays, gatherings of friends, and corporate retreats. Having a full house is great for the villa and great for the staff.
Would you describe it as the house of your dreams?
Absolutely. it is truly a magical place and a one-of-a-kind property. Every time I’m there, the outside world, with its incessant demands and concerns, recedes to a comfortable distance. I’m able to relax and enjoy the beauty of the house and the Caribbean, and to really connect with the friends and family I’ve invited along for the trip.
To you personally, what is the highlight of the property?
It’s difficult to choose just one highlight, but from amongst many, the pool is my favorite. Architecturally, it balances the structure of the house, extending almost 50 meters to three infinity edges that blend it seamlessly with the Atlantic ocean beyond. The dark blue tiles absorb the sun’s heat and reflect the sky in the same way as the ocean, making the pool seem like part of the natural setting. Most days you’ll find everyone in or around the pool; the sun is why we’re there in the first place! And last, but not least, the pool is located in very close proximity to the bar…
The villa looks really amazing. Please tell me a bit about the architect and the architecture of the villa. How would you describe the style of the villa and its interior?
The villa is in the modern architectural style, most famously exemplified by Franklin Lloyd Wright–an holistic approach with a distinct focus on blending structure, materials and purpose with the natural beauty of the location. The architect, Jasmit Rangr, of Rangr Studios in New York City, spent almost three years and close to 25 visits to the Dominican Republic to complete the design and construction. The villa’s interior naturally follows the palette of materials and textures used in the architecture: Brazilian hardwood ceilings in the same wood as the window and door frames, custom cabinetry, bars & dining table; and native, white travertine walls and floors that flow seamlessly from outside in.
Please tell me a bit about the facilities and the services you offer.
Having resided in other luxury private villas, we wanted to be sure that Casa Kimball provides our guests with a quality experience and full services by attentive and friendly staff. Meals are always a big part of any vacation experience and they are executed perfectly by our Chef and kitchen staff. The tri-lingual villa manager is available for planning prior to arrival and is there to personally assist with and oversee any of the details required for the duration of the vacation.
What would you describe to be the spirit/essence of Casa Kimball and your philosophy?
The guiding vision behind Casa Kimball is to provide elegant relaxation with an architectural structure that embraces the natural beauty of the setting. I remember very well sitting on the cliff edge with my architect over the year that we worked on the design. Facing a sweeping vista encompassing over 180 degrees of horizon, with the ocean breeze on our faces and the crash of the waves below, I asked him to replicate the feeling. And he did. Our wonderful staff completes the picture. They provide just the right balance of refined, professional service, mixed with a warm friendliness distinctive of Dominicans; you really are free to relax without a care in the world.
Please tell me a bit about the location where Casa Kimball is located. What do you particularly like about the area?
Casa Kimball is located on the sweeping North Coast of the Dominican Republic, perched on a 15m (45ft) cliff that juts into the Atlantic ocean and is cooled by steady ocean breezes. There is a pathway leading down to a sandy, deserted beach–one of three in the gated community. What I like best about the area is that it is unspoiled by tourism: crystal-clear lakes and wide open beaches, discretely situated villas and European boutique hotels, friendly locals and outdoor merengue bars in the nearby town. It’s the essence of relaxed Caribbean beauty.
With all the facilities of the villa and the amazing setting it is probably very difficult to even leave. What would you recommend not to miss in the area?
No visit to Casa Kimball would be complete without a trip to one of the most gorgeous beaches in the Caribbean: Playa Grande, just 10 minutes from the villa. Enjoy a “coco loco”, made by removing the top of a coconut and adding rum & grenadine or a pina colada made from a pineapple. Next to the beach is the Playa Grande golf course, designed by Robert Trent Jones, Sr. with 10 of the holes situated on dramatic 60ft bluffs. Or, go cliff diving and embark on a SCUBA tour of the limestone caverns of nearby Laguna Du Du. Finally, I always enjoy a night out in the town of Cabrera, dancing merengue, salsa & bachata in the local bars.
You are also offering a lot of different activities. Please tell me which ones and what are some of the more popular among your guests?
Definitely the local tour or the beach dinner with bonfire at Playa Grande.
On the local tour, guests enjoy a few hours sightseeing to our local waterfall, passing through our town park on the way to an oceanfront Bohemian bar to sample some Mama Juana. From there, continuing on to Laguna Du Du and Lago Azul to view beautiful natural spring fed lagoons decorated with stalactites and stalagmites, including a cliff jump or 2 into the fresh, crystal clear waters. Then moving on to frolic in the waves and enjoy a gorgeous vast stretch of Dominican beach at La Entrada. Cold beers and rum cocktails are available at the beach kiosks.
At Playa Grande, groups can enjoy a sunset shore dinner of fresh fish, seafood and other typical Dominican cuisine. A live Dominican merengue trio band kicks off the evening and the bonfire while guests either lounge on beach blankets and pillows or dance a merengue or two while enjoying the sounds and atmosphere of the Caribbean.
How would you like your guests to remember their stay?
I would like that our guests remember the diligent attention and friendliness of the staff, the excellent dining, and the seamless service. I would like that they remember deepening their friendships and strengthening family ties. And, I would hope that they remember their stay as a time spent apart from the cares of their daily lives, in a setting that photos simply do not do justice.