Wabi Sabi in Saint Tropez: Finding Beauty in Imperfection

Wabi Sabi in Saint Tropez: Finding Beauty in Imperfection

Simplicity, imperfection and transience. These are the fundamental values of the Japanese style and cultural philosophy, known as Wabi Sabi, which has captivated the international world of interior design in recent years. With such celebrity design trends such as earthy luxury in Saint Tropez, which follows similar organic principles and palettes as Wabi Sabi.

What is Wabi-Sabi?

ramatuelle luxury villa rentals interior design parasol
Villa Parasol in Ramatuelle

Much more than simply a new interior design trend, Wabi Sabi is an all-encompassing way of life that finds beauty in the natural cycle of life, growth and decay. Applying the essential elements of imperfection, simplicity and transience to a range of sectors in one’s life such as relationships, self-improvement, career growth and even art, allows for the balance and beauty which Wabi Sabi endorses.

What are the key elements of Wabi-Sabi design?

cap tahiti terra cotta villa rental st tropez
Villa Terra Cotta in gated domain Cap Tahiti

The 6 guiding principles to this Japanese design and way of life are:

  1. Simplicity
  2. Authenticity
  3. Contentment
  4. Transience & Detachment
  5. Spontaneity
  6. Return to nature

The genuine forms and principles of Wabi Sabi design have been applied in a selection of villas for rent in Saint Tropez, creating zen-like living spaces which simultaneously relax the mind and ignite creativity to their guests which vacationing in Saint Tropez

What kinds of materials are commonly used in Wabi-Sabi interior design?

Wabi-Sabi interior design prefers the use of imperfect, weathered materials in its decorative elements. The ‘lived-in’ look is a large part of its elegant charm and serene aesthetics. The kinds of materials used in Wabi-Sabi include: stones, natural wood, clay and earthenware and bamboo. Any linens or fabrics of the space will be in natural fabrics such as linen and cotton.

What famous designers have embraced Wabi-Sabi in Saint Tropez villas for rent?

la ferrera capon st tropez designer villa
Villa La Ferrera and its natural surroundings

Internationally acclaimed designer and architect India Mahdavi uses a fusion of Wabi-Sabi, boho chic and slow living in her unparalleled designs on luxury rental villas in Saint Tropez. Villas Matisse and La Ferrera in the St Tropez House collection are two large, off-market estates which have been transformed into havens of creativity and peacefulness thanks to the vision of India Mahdavi.

Mahdavi’s one-of-a-kind style is characterised on her website which explain “in the asymmetry, the roundness and the graphic oppositions, know-hows revere the beauty of imperfection. India Mahdavi, who keeps a copy of the ‘wabi-sabi’ on her bedside table, performs this essential practice in the cutting of a lacquer tray, the assembly of rattan stalks in the shape of a sun, or the firing of ceramics through the emblematic bishop collection.”

wabi sabi natural design luxury villa for rent
Natural stone used at villa La Ferrera
villa matisse sea view st tropez rental villa
The view from villa Matisse

How can Wabi-Sabi design enhance your stay in your St Tropez villa?

The atmosphere of a Wabi-Sabi inspired rental villa is one of relaxation and peacefulness. The uncluttered spaces, natural materials and subdued colour palettes are all conducive to a serene stay in St Tropez.

The natural elements and surroundings, such as large and lush gardens or sea views, also help in creating a stronger connection to nature, creating an almost retreat-like atmosphere in the St Tropez rental villa.

Why is Wabi-Sabi a popular design choice for rental villas in St Tropez?

The Wabi-Sabi design has become a very popular design choice for rental villas in Saint Tropez for a wide range of reasons. These reasons speak to the preferences of the new type of luxury traveler who is seeking, above all, a tranquil, authentic and organic type of environment to enjoy during their holiday experience. Wabi-Sabi is the perfect type of design to embrace the luxurious simplicity and enhanced connection to nature and tranquility that guests are in search of.

Many villas have also incorporated yoga rooms and spaces, meditation rooms and message rooms in their amenities in order to cater to the philosophy of mindfulness which Wabi-Sabi endorses.

Are there similar designs to Wabi-Sabi which are also popular in villas for rent in St Tropez?

voss lamoutte japandi interior design villa rental
Villa Voss in La Moutte, St Tropez

Yes, there are several simplistic design philosophies that embrace natural colors and materials like Wabi-Sabi.
Japandi design, for example, is a hybrid interior style that combines Japanese and Scandinavian aesthetics. It incorporates the best elements from both styles, resulting in spaces of minimalism, functionality, and natural beauty. Villa Voss, with a Scandinavian owner, perfectly embodies the elements of Japandi interior design.

Hygge is another design concept that aligns with the Wabi-Sabi design philosophy. Originating in Denmark, Hygge aims to create living spaces that evoke feelings of cozy contentment, warmth, and simplicity. Like Wabi-Sabi, it is as much a lifestyle and philosophy as it is a design style.

Boho chic is another design style that is particularly popular in Saint Tropez and embraced by its top beach clubs. It promotes the use of natural, raw, and sustainable materials in design. This approach to interior and fashion design pairs perfectly with the rustic glamour of Saint Tropez.

Have celebrities begun adopting Wabi-Sabi interior design in their homes?

Yes, Wabi-Sabi interior design has indeed found its place in the homes of various celebrities and influential people around the world. This Japanese philosophy of mindfulness and simplicity resonates with those who appreciate ‘slow living’ and the broader lifestyle trend of naturalness. This type of organic, simple living is also evident in the rising popularity of the celebrity design trend of ‘Earthy Luxury’.

Celebrities often seek out interior design styles that offer a sanctuary from their hectic, public lives, and Wabi-Sabi provides just that—a peaceful, restful, and grounded atmosphere. This approach to interior design allows for spaces that feel deeply personal and connected to nature, qualities that are particularly appealing for creating sanctuaries away from the public eye.

Which rental villas in St Tropez display Wabi Sabi design?

There is a selection of unique luxury villas for rent in Saint Tropez whose designers have wholeheartedly embraced the essence of Wabi-Sabi design. Discover the top villas in the St Tropez House collection with Wabi-Sabi design:

designer villas wabi sabi japanese

Off-market Masterpieces

off market villas for rent St Tropez

The St Tropez House collection features a select number of off-market villas that exemplify the Japanese Wabi-Sabi design. Located in serene residential areas such as Le Capon in Saint Tropez, the tranquil and lush green surroundings of these majestic estates provide the perfect backdrop for embracing the Wabi-Sabi philosophy. These villas allow residents to connect with natural beauty and find luxury in simplicity and imperfection.


villa rent parasol pampelonne

Villa Parasol is a beautiful 5 bedroom villa located within close proximity to the famous sands of Pampelonne beach. Situated on a sprawling 8,000m2 of lush green land complete with towering pine trees, this villa is the perfect Wabi-Sabi styled villa to spend a relaxing holiday in Saint Tropez. It comes completed with a private cinema room and gated swimming pool ideal for children.

Terra Cotta

terra cotta cap tahiti wabi sabi design

Terra Cotta is a neo-provencal villa located in the esteemed gated domain of Cap Tahiti, walking distance to Tahiti beach. This elegant 250m2 villa is surrounded by unparalleled natural beauty including lush green gardens and a panoramic sea view. It’s simple interior design uses natural materials and neutral colour palettes to create a serene ambiance for guests.


vibes organic interior design pampelonne villa rental

Vibes is a Provencal-style villa located within close walking distance to the best beach clubs of Pampelonne. Its relaxed ambiance and choice of raw materials and furnishings make it the perfect place to enjoy a tranquil holiday in Saint Tropez with family and friends. This villa features 5 guest bedrooms and a large swimming pool in the large 6,000m2 garden.

La Source

la source villa forrent st tropez

La Source is a picturesque, 330m2 Provencal villa located in La Belle Isnarde, Saint Tropez. This 6 bedroom villa is surrounded by greenery and typical Provence scenes and features a beautiful outdoor covered terrace to enjoy a bbq with friends. The use of original terracotta tiles, natural wood and stone create an atmosphere of warmth in this rental villa.


rent wabi sabi villas st tropez
Voss is a chic 300m2 luxury villa located in La Moutte, St Tropez. This 6 bedroom villa is the epitome of Japandi and Wabi-Sabi interior designs. The open, sunlit spaces of this villa coupled with the immense garden set against the backdrop of vineyards make this a beautiful and private place to enjoy a Saint Tropez getaway this summer.

How can you incorporate Wabi-Sabi design into your own home?

Incorporating Wabi-Sabi into your home is all about accepting and embracing its main principles of simplicity, naturalness and the beauty of imperfection. A great way to bring this design style into your home is by using functional items made of natural materials as decor and using an earthy colour palette over artificial, bright colours.

Reducing clutter and opting for the ‘less is more’ in all aspects of your interior design will also leave the space looking more clean and simplistic. You can also create spaces dedicated to mindfulness and slowing down during your busy day, such as a meditation or yoga room. This also fosters the main philosophy of Wabi-Sabi design.

saint tropez house emilia jedamska

To learn more about the wide range of designer villas for rent in Saint Tropez, contact Emilia Jedamska of St Tropez House or visit the St Tropez House website & Instagram page.

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