Italy, Architecture –

World-famous dancer with the Paris Opera Ballet, SYLVIE GUILLEM, lives in a stunning villa designed by architects Junko Kirimoto and Massimo Alvisi

French native Sylvie Guillem was the top-ranking female dancer with the Paris Opera Ballet from 1984 to 1989, before becoming a principal guest artist with the Royal Ballet in London. Sylvie lives at Villa Guillem with her fashion/dance photographer husband, Gilles Tapie
Villa Guillem consists of two restored old farmhouses. The photo shows the main farmhouse with the east facade and the annex
Tha main farmhouse – dining area. Restored antique suspension lamp in wood
The main farmhouse – a touch of Japanese elements

VILLA GUILLEM was once a group of two neglected farmhouses, which were brought back to life by ALVISI KIRIMOTO ARCHITECTURE STUDIO. The buildings from early the 20th century are now home to former renowned dancer with the Paris Opera Ballet, Sylvie Guillem, and her husband, Gilles Tapie. Architects Junko Kirimoto and Massimo Alvisi of the Rome-based design firm defined Villa Guillem by its relationship with the environment as a substantial part of the project design.

Architects Junko Kirimoto and Massimo Alvisi paid attention to the external spaces of the villa, which have been laid out with great respect for the terrain and maintaining the natural features of the landscape
The property, covering an area of about 27,000 square metres, is characterised by great slopes and contours carved out by the forces of nature
The main farmhouse (the villa) – The west facade
The staircase is made out of an iron framework and wood salvaged from the old beams that formed the roof of the farmhouses
The double height space of the living room with gable roof, chestnut wood beams and rafters
The main farmhouse (the villa). L’ingresso alle camere da letto degli ospiti al piano superiore.
Doors | designer: Alvisi Kirimoto, material: oak wood salvaged from old beams
Main dining area


The villa nestles on a 27,000-square-metre property in Lazio and employs natural and locally sustainable materials such as terracotta, tufa stone; and the recycling or reusing of all existing wood beams.

The farmhouse to the south, the villa of 290sqm gross floor area, constitutes the residence proper. The farmhouse to the north, comprising 320sqm, accommodates the art workshops of Sylvie Guillem and Gilles Tapie as well as a small apartment for the caretaker on the upper floor. Though distinct in their programmes, the two buildings have a similar appearance, the architects adopting a similar strategy to renovate them both.

Alvisi Kirimoto utilised materials that are natural and salvaged: the floor is of terracotta tiles laid on mortar without glue, with listels used in the common spaces and tiles of traditional shape in the bedrooms and bathrooms.


Compiled by Carol Kraal. Text courtesy of Alvisi Kirimoto; photography by Luigi Filetici. Sylvie Guillem photographs courtesy of her Facebook page