For those in need of a break from all the hubbub of city life, look no further than this super simple off-grid Four-Cornered Villa set in the wilderness of Finland. Designed by Avanto Architects, the minimalist cross-shaped retreat sits on a horseshoe-shaped island and takes in a different view from each of its four sides. The exterior is painted black to blend in with the surrounding forest and the interior is basic and white. Heated by wood, the small villa is totally off-grid and sources its own electricity from the sun using solar panels.
The 78 square meter cabin was designed by Finnish architect Ville Hara with partner Anu Puustinen, who together comprise Avanto Architects. The simple home is laid out in the shape of a cross, and the wings hold a bedroom, a living room, a dining room, and a kitchen. Each corner has a large window that soaks up sunlight and offers a different view. The black exterior soaks up the sun and blends in with the forest, while the bright white interior helps reflect light through the space. Most of the furnishings are handmade or salvaged, and the wood interior (spruce for the ceilings and walls, pine for the floors) is finished with a Wood Wax Finish in white from the German company Osmo.
A separate building houses a 24 sq meter wood-fired sauna and bathroom, and the home itself is also heated solely by wood via wood fireplaces made by Danish company Scan. The home’s minimal electricity needs are provided by the sun, and the off-grid cabin also does not have running water, it makes use of what is available on-site. During the summer, when the cabin is used the most, a vegetable and herb garden provides some food, and fish can be caught in the nearby Vaskivesi Lake. The Four-Cornered Villa is super simple by design, low-impact, and the perfect peaceful retreat in which to slow down and enjoy nature.