George Sebastian Villa
In the 1920s, Hammamet was a fashionable location amongst the elite, who were drawn to the area for its unspoilt scenery, Mediterranean climate, local produce and handcrafts. George Sebastian was one such visitor, and he fell in love with the place. He decided to build a villa, a home where he would spend the winter months in Hammamet. The villa was designed by the American Architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. Construction ensured over several years in the 1920s, which is not surprising given the scale of the construction, set on 42 acres of land.
Karl Gheorghe Sebastian was born in 1896, near Bucharest, and built a life for himself amongst the rich and famous, as well as the aristocracy of his time. As a result of his lifestyle, he was fortunate enough to marry into wealth, which made him a millionaire. He settled in Paris, but put Hammamet on the map when it became his winter residence. He was attracted to the beauty of the bay and the white, square houses with magnificent wooden doors that gleamed in the sun against the backdrop of a pure blue sky.
The white exterior nestled above the sea wall provides visitors with a striking first impression. As you walk through the almost empty villa, apart from the occasional pieces of furniture, imagine what it would have been like to live in this extravagant home. Its marble floors, high ceilings and horseshoe archways will captivate you. With its clear blue swimming pool, and sunken marble Hammamet baths for communal use, relaxation would have been simple here. The large reception rooms would have been ideal for entertaining guests and throwing elaborate parties. In the private quarters, bedrooms were also carefully designed, with ornate cupboard doors, slate floors and plenty of natural light. You will find a restored amphitheatre, orchards and a beautiful sea view in the garden.
Today, the villa, now known as the International Cultural Centre, used for galleries and receptions, is one of Hammamet’s gems and a popular attraction. Visit the George Sebastian Villa and other great attractions, such as The Great Mosque, from the Radisson Blu Resort & Thalasso, Hammamet.