Ibiza living

Meet the team – Terravita

Ibiza conscious landscaping, construction and architecture firm Terravita are at the heart of the island’s sustainability movement.

Ibiza conscious landscaping, construction and architecture firm Terravita are at the heart of the island’s sustainability movement.

For this dedicated team of designers, a building that leaves a small environmental impact is equally as important as making your home dreams come to life. With a specialist team team of professionals who have championed sustainable, energy efficient architecture since the company was launched, they specialise in ticking all the boxes that come with beautiful, green design. Here, we meet the specialist team of Terravita landscape architects: a group of inspiring and passionate individuals who boast a unique insight into what makes this eco-friendly group tick.

Jason Watson Todd

Born and bred in Ibiza, Jason has an esteemed island heritage. His father was a respected art dealer, and his mother, a co-founder of the acclaimed Las Dalias hippy market. He describes spending his childhood on the island as a “real privilege”, so it’s no surprise that after a brief sojourn abroad to study, he longed to return to his Balearic home. This is when he set up Terravita, with the sole aim of “transforming landscapes into works of art that are in harmony with the natural landscape”. Jason credits the success of Terravita to the passion of its team members, who each bring something unique to the fore and in the process, bring challenging briefs to life. “Building a garden on a small island off Ibiza was one of my favourite projects,” he explains. “The logistics of getting to and from the site were difficult, as was getting materials onto the island itself. But the end result was inspirational and very rewarding, and testament to what you can achieve when you work with a truly dynamic team.” His dream project? “To create an outstanding landscape where the design and environment is in balance, creatively breaking boundaries.”

Antonio Gázquez

“Since I can remember, I’ve been in love with art,” says Antonio with a flourish. Born in Burgos in Spain, Antonio came to Ibiza four years ago in search of a destination that demonstrated an open mind to contemporary design. “As a child, I was always thinking about art and winning prizes for it at school,” he explains. “Then I discovered sculpture, and with it, an unstoppable urge to break the limited perceptions of its modern-day practice.” With landscaping experts Terravita, Antonio is able to do just that. Here, “there is freedom for creation,” he says. “Landscaping is the art of creating artworks through nature itself using composition, rhythm, colour and balance. That’s what makes each project a dream.” He has big plans for Ibiza, revealing that his ideal project would be the creation of an island meeting point where “beauty, sustainability and respect for the environment” all converged.

Kit Maplethorpe

Kit studied technical architecture at Leeds University in the UK, and after some initial skepticism about moving to the island four years ago, he was soon converted. “I was brought up on a big farm,” he explains. “So nature and the outdoors have always been a part of me. I guess it’s not surprising that ever since I arrived here, I’ve never looked back.” This love for the island can also be attributed to working on projects like the redesign of the beautiful Agroturismo Ca Na Xica in San Miguel. “This was a real turning point for me,” Kit enthuses. Largely because it involved “introducing sculpture and art, and maintaining a strong concept running throughout our designs.” For Kit, the joy of the job means “the ability to be creative and not held back, as well as the ability to design freely”, which is why his partnership with Terravita has proven to be the perfect match.

Isobel Davies

Like many before her, Isobel describes her attraction to Ibiza as a “magnetic” pull she was unable to withstand – an attraction that led her to move to the island permanently at the beginning of 2016. “Now I never want to leave,” she smiles. She grew up in the lush countryside of Dorset in the UK, and this love of the outdoors forms a fundamental factor in her passion for landscape architecture: “The great outdoors is where I’ve always gone to escape the world,” she says. “It renews my senses and completely calms me, and it’s something I couldn’t be without. That’s why we’re so lucky to work on some breathtakingly beautiful sites in pristine natural environments.” Isobel had an illustrious education, training at the London College of Art and the Architectural Association, among others, and this has given her the expertise required to creatively design for the many projects Terravita has running at one time. Her favourite is a project the company recently completed: “It was a mix of funky planting and very cool contemporary structures,” she explains. “It was a lot of work on the design side with computer renders and VR, but when we finished, the client loved it and that’s what it’s all about.”

Cristina de Miguel

Cristina’s close relationship with landscape began as a child, when she would go fishing and foraging with her grandfathers in the campo surrounding Segovia in Spain, where she grew up. “It’s kind of like a drug to me,” she says. “I need constant contact with nature because somehow it feeds my soul.” She brings this fervent passion to all her work, which is exactly why she relishes challenges that arise with her job. “The possibilities we have for rebuilding landscapes and restoring nature are endless,” she explains. “So creating new spaces for people to enjoy, admire and relax is what I love.” Having moved to Ibiza with her family in 2006, she’s worked on many projects, but one of her favourites with Terravita is from just last year. “We worked on an old finca near San Juan,” she discloses. “It was full of history and magic, which was great but it was a real challenge to redesign a landscape and create a garden that could heighten the finca’s existing features. The end result was amazing.” She takes great pleasure in finding solutions to implement sustainable principles alongside the client’s objectives and goals for the property.

Alexandra Pop

Originally from Romania, Alexandra studied in various European cities including Vienna and Barcelona before finally landing on the shores of Ibiza, a place she now calls home. “Ibiza is a unique place full of contrasts,” she smiles. “It’s just full of Mediterranean charm.” And she’s equally passionate about her role at Terravita, which allows her “the freedom to put creative, crazy ideas down on paper, and then see them materialise,” not to mention the unique amalgamation of “architecture, landscape and art.” “One of my favourite Ibiza projects was in the San José area,” she says. “It was a complex, bold design with a unique wild planting concept. Structural plants made focal points in the garden, while grasses complemented them with their dreamy, soft appearance. The transition of different species from one garden area to another was hugely important for the project’s flow.” Using nature to help us recharge and find peace is a key element of all her designs. In fact, her dream project would be a community garden; somewhere people could foster “a sense of connection to the environment, on a social and therapeutic level.”

Visit the White Ibiza house and garden guide to read more about Terravita