Our History

The creative genius behind many of Villa Rustica’s architectural features is renowned Australian painter, Ken Johnson. Working on the property for more than a decade in the late 20th century, Ken introduced influences from his global travels. Rajasthani sandalwood columns mix effortlessly with Roman arches and a Moroccan bathhouse – together creating striking spaces that maintain a sense of warmth and welcome.

“I like to be transported when I go to someone’s house and that’s the effect I wanted here.”

Ken Johnson

The main villa features the warm, faded patina of golden stucco walls. Inside, lofty high ceilings and the richness of aged timber floors set the scene. Each room boasts its own uniquely charming outlook – be it the compelling Moorish courtyard or the gentle rolling hills that surround this idyllic property.

Well before their first visit in 2014, Jane and Greg were entranced by this estate. “This house was featured in a local newspaper when Ken was selling up,” says Jane, “and I fell in love with the beautifully mottled walls and the exotic character of the property!” However, another couple purchased the property with plans to stage weddings and hold corporate retreats. When their circumstances changed, the property was returned to the market and the timing was exactly right for Jane and Greg.

“We wanted a house with two art studios as Greg is a ceramicist and I make mosaics,” reminisces Jane. “On our first inspection, we could imagine sharing our skills by holding artist retreats and workshops in this beautiful setting.”

Today, five amazing years and three renovations later, Jane and Greg revel in their creative studio spaces. The revitalized Villa Rustica is very much their “home” and they are proud to continue the villa’s long association with the arts.

You can read more about their artistic life and happenings at Villa Rustica on the journal.

“Visiting Villa Rustica is like stepping back in time. To wander through gardens dotted with sculptures and jewel-like mosaics, and then to be served food in exquisite handmade plates and platters, is a truly uplifting experience.”

Judy & Colin Marriott

Villa Rustica

Let's Get Creative.

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Villa Rustica

Let's Get Creative.