​​Interview: Casa Donoma, Ambre Israel's contemplative refuge

Step into Ambre's sanctuary where she's aimed to share the beauty of Comporta, and her love for yoga, with all those who seek to go back to their roots.
Interview: Casa Donoma, Ambre Israel's contemplative refuge
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To reconnect, to yourself and to others, you need the right setting. To detach yourself from a frenetic daily life, slow down, and essentially, you’ve to find this magical place in line with your philosophy of life. Yoga instructor, entrepreneur and creator of the Mahala Essence brand, Ambre Israel found it, with her husband, over 10 years ago in Comporta.

At that time, this small fishing village wasn’t the Portuguese hotspot that we know today. At the heart of a nature reserve, Ambre has managed to perpetuate this soothing and authentic atmosphere. Casa Donoma finds the balance between refined luxury and subtle touches of exoticism.

Casa Donoma is faithful to the philosophy of its owners: taking the time to do things right. This is why this project mirrors them and perfectly reflects their values. While it has been more than ten years since the couple acquired this magnificent land in the middle of nature, it’s only recently that the house was finally built. They were so captivated by the region and its landscapes, and so the construction had to harmoniously fit this.





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“I discovered Comporta through Portuguese friends about 15 years ago; in its pure and wild state, long before it became the glamorous and sexy destination everyone is talking about now. That's really what enamoured me and my husband."

What makes the charm of Casa Donoma is this unique feeling of being lost in the heart of nature.  In the garden, the wilderness runs free and curious visitors often show the tip of their noses such as rabbits, foxes, and squirrels. A little further, there is the unique landscape of the province of Brejos bordered by rice fields, which are best explored by bike.

Yoga has been a daily practice for Ambre for many years. Trained and qualified, she shares her passion during retreats in Casa Donoma where she draws on the positive energies of the house. As soon as you enter its walls, a feeling of calm envelops you. The motif of the decoration is “less is more”. The white walls are warmed up by the touches of wood and natural materials, as imagined by the real mastermind of the vision, architect Isabelle Stanislas, a close friend of Ambre.





“It is a magical place with a calm energy. It is both a family home and a place of rest, where these two desires have come together. ”

In addition to its very zen atmosphere linked to the practice of yoga, Casa Donoma is a place conducive to large families. The huge rooms allow different generations to gather and create unforgettable memories. This is surely why it’s so difficult to leave this place; which gives us the wonderful gift of reconnecting with others and ourselves.


The addresses of Amber Israel:

  • Gomes Mercearia, an institution of Comporta
  • Gomes Padaria, a bakery with a multitude of local breads and pastries
  • The Cavalariça restaurant and its unique setting
  • Sublime Comporta’s breakfasts
  • The Caju concept store in Carvalhal

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Comporta and Melides are just a quick 20 minute drive away from each other, which have both built a thriving creative community. The region has a unique style with their homes: everything is sunny, breezy, and dreamy, with a soothing colour palette that boasts woven-straw accent pieces. It is casual seaside chic, with no fuss whatsoever, allowing you to let loose and shed inhibitions, and strip down to what’s essential.

Villa Carragueira

Villa Carragueira

Villa Carragueira

Villa Carragueira

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