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Final touch: gingerbread.

Mary Ann's Tropical Building Page

Report #18:
October 9, 1998



Since our September 9 report about building on a Caribbean island, we have been working on the following:

Hints: Click on any small picture below to see it larger and visit the Site Map for previous and future progress reports, house plans, bookstore and references.

Finished the Guest Villa

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From the back.

The verandah of the guest villa is finished off with victorian gingerbread.

The gingerbread is molded plastic from Fypon,. They have a catalogue on their web site that you can download.

The western side of the villa gets lots of sun and little wind. So we let the cistern overflow here and planted bananas, which are doing very well.

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Gingerbread and view.

The porch has two "wicker" rockers by Lloyd Flanders, which are actually made of recycled newspapers, aluminum, and plastic.

They look like painted wicker, but they are almost indestructible. We've had ours outside for 7 years with no signs of deterioration.

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Bananas and new trim.

The gate into the courtyard is a mahogony door found at a lumberyard in St. Martin. We cut a round port hole and a shallow arch on top, and installed a lockset, the same old-fashioned lockset that we used on the teak doors of the guest villa. These locks came from Wilson Brass in Chile and were purchased from Andes Caribbean in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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Sofa bed and love seat.

We have had the furnishings for quite a while. The wood furniture came straight out of the "country style" home that we built in Canada, and the sofabed/loveseat set was purchased at a going out of business sale in St. Thomas about a year ago and shipped to Anguilla on the MV Karma inter-island freighter!

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With flowers and a view.

The sofabed plus the queen size bed in the sleeping room on the other side of the partition, allow this villa to handle a family with children in a pinch.

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TV Cabinet and Desk.

The TV cabinet doesn't have a TV because we discovered the extra TV was broken when we finally took it out of storage to use it. Eddies Electronics in The Valley is trying to fix it (down the alley beside City Liquors).

The desk area has phone and data connections, which will be networked to the office building.

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Kitchen corner.

The kitchen is small -- just large enough to prepare breakfast and a snack.

Who wants to cook?

Lost Geoff, Prepared for Georges

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Geoff and Lucky.

This picture shows Geoff Syms-Davies having his last lunch in Anguilla at the airport with Griff and Johanne and other well wishers.

For the last year the Beachshack site has been lucky to have 85-year-old Geoff Syms-Davies (and his dog "Lucky") as the official gofer and shopper (Geoff has the patience required at some supply places in Anguilla...).

But now Geoff has sold his house (using a web page) and gone to Canada to live near his daughter's family. We will all miss him!

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Boarding up new windows

Shortly after Geoff left, Anguilla was threatened by Hurricane Georges, forcing us to board up the clubhouse, marking up our beautiful new stucco. (The guest villa has the hurricane shutters installed already, which we shut!)

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Boarding up the doors.

This picture shows the final stucco job on the club house and the boards over the doorway. Eventually the downstairs windows will have wooden "Bahama" shutters, hinged at the top and painted turquoise.

The upstairs windows which are aluminum security louvers, were not boarded. They should be strong enough to survive a hurricane by themselves. These are Marva windows from Puerto Rico.

Luckily Hurricane Georges was not really a test of their water-tightness, since we never had the combination of high winds and torrential rains at the same time during the storm.

Drop Ceiling in Conference Room

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Installing the drop ceiling.

The main conference room of the clubhouse has a drop ceiling.

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The Finished Ceiling.

The final ceiling will absorb sound and hide the lighting, as in most offices!

Solar Hot Water and Palms

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Palms for the entry.

The entry to the the office has a small courtyard which is now graced by two palms, part of the shipment we received last January and which we have been holding in our shade house.

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Solar Water Heater.

Like many people in Anguilla, we selected the Solar Hart brand solar hot water heater for the office.

The guest villa has a small electric hot water heater. One design mistake we noticed when we spent our first night in the guest villa was the placement of the noisy water pump in the back utility room. Because this room is really inside the villa, and even open to the rest of the building, the noise of the pump is quite loud. Since there is no obvious place to move the pump to, we may solve the problem by using the pump in the office and pipe pressurized water down to the guest villa.

Mexican Tile and Other Finish Work

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Emo lays the tile.

Emo, who also did our guest villa tile, is installing the Mexican saltillo tile on the floor of the verandas.

Upstairs there will be just a trim of Mexican tile around the edges and the center portion of the open porch will have poured concrete 'tiles'. More on this later...

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Lattice windows, stairway.

Completing the openings around the lattice windows in the stairwell using Marbletite stucco.

Starting the Main House and a Pool!

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Main house cistern forms.

Work has started on the cisterns and foundation for the main waterfront house at Beachshack.

We are also planning to put in a pool. It this picture you can see the forms for the cistern; the pool will be to the left of that and wrapping around the living room pavillion in an L-shape.

We are looking into self-cleaning and self-chlorinating pools. Please email us if you have any practical experience with these subjects.

Here are three useful books on swimming pools:

Click here for other books on tropical building.

Site Map: Links, Plans and Other Info

Latest News from our Construction Site

Past and Future Progress Reports

Plans of the Main House

Plans of the Technology Center

Plans of the Guest Villa

Tropical Construction Bookstore

Links to Related Sites

Building Material Sources

Beach Shack Contact:

Mary Ann Green
Box 931, Shoal Bay, Anguilla, West Indies
Fax: 264-497-3295
[Home] [Mail] URL: www.beachshack.ai
Email: maryann@beachshack.ai