Andalusian Courtyards – History and Beauty

January 17, 2020
If you have an Andalusian courtyard, it's time to make the most of it by decorating with the right furniture, colors and plants.

Andalusian courtyards are spaces that are full of light and color where decor takes the front seat. These spaces can really change a home. So today, learn about the history and beauty of  Andalusian courtyards.

The cultural history of Andalusia, a province in southern Spain, is especially rich. Many different civilizations have passed through the region, leaving behind traces of their own history to create a one-of-a-kind paradise. You can appreciate the mix of cultures in typical architecture and decor.

There’s a perfect blend of two different styles: Mediterranean and Middle Eastern decor. Together, they create a wonderful harmony of colors, shapes, and designs.

The origins of the Andalusian decor style

andausian courtyards origins

The style of Andalusian courtyards hails from wealthy homes in Ancient Rome. These homes featured courtyards full of natural light and water. After the Muslims conquered Andalusia, they used the courtyards as the heart of the home, surrounding it with other rooms.

Over time, these courtyards became meeting areas for families or neighbors. But what’s so special about them? What is it about them that enchants us?

Andalusia portrays art and history.

Advantages of having an Andalusian courtyard

Andalusian courtyard advantages

These courtyards go a long way back in history. But you can still find them today in the towns and cities throughout southern Spain. These special spaces actually boast great advantages for homes.

  • Heat relief. Andalusia sits in the south of Spain, where the sun shines bright and long. The courtyards can provide an escape from scorching temperatures.
  • Allow for ventilation and keeps heat from entering the home. Meanwhile, during the winter, courtyards help protect homes from drafts and the cold while keeping the heat from spilling outside.
  • Andalusian courtyards usually have while walls to prevent them from absorbing too much heat. The sun’s rays bounce off instead, creating a cooler space during the hot months.

There are all kinds of Andalusian courtyards. They can be used by small and large families. Or there are also public and private courtyards, old and contemporary styles, all kinds of sizes, etc. But they all have one thing in common – white.

Andalusian earthenware, an essential element

andalusian courtyard ceramics

Thanks to its Middle Eastern influences, Andalusian courtyards commonly display beautiful mosaics. The colors are truly an impressive sight to see. The palette usually includes white, blue, green and yellow. Where can you find these decorations in a courtyard?

  • On the walls – walls are typically lined halfway with earthenware mosaics. The shiny material reflects light, creating a well-lit setting.
  • On the floor – unglazed ceramic tiles are a popular choice for floors. But many people also combine them with glazed pieces that are called “olambrillas. These small pieces usually depict hunting scenes or floral designs.
  • Other decorative elements – functional earthenware pieces are another common element in Andalusian courtyards. Such pieces might include plates, pots or religious images. Many people use these decor accessories to dress up their courtyards.

Fresh and joyful decor with flowerpots

Andalusian courtyard flowerpots

An Andalusian-inspired courtyard can’t skimp on plants and flowers. Wherever you look, there should be plant life. Aside from bringing in color and joy, flowers offer fragrance and fresh air.

Aromatic herbs are another common decor detail as well. They normally sit in earthenware or metal pots that hang on the wall.

Popular flowers for these spaces tend to be the best blooming kinds such as geraniums, Pelargonium pletatums or carnations. In addition, fruit trees such as orange, lemon or palm trees are also popular for big courtyards.

Wrapping up, Andalusian courtyards are excellent spaces to let your decor unfurl. Turn your courtyard into an escape from daily stress.