We’ve featured plenty of swoon-worthy cabins, but this one perched high on a steep forested slope is truly outstanding. Peering out from a hillside blanketed in greenery, this isolated and daring retreat overlooks breathtaking views of southern Chile’s blue-green Todos los Santos Lake, surrounded by snow-capped mountains, and native forests. Chilean studio Apio Arquitectos designed the 1,300-square-foot cabin to tread lightly, both physically and visually, on the lush landscape.
Located above the rocky south shore, the House on Todos Los Santos Lake serves as a single-family weekend getaway. The precarious and steep site required a careful construction system and use of lightweight materials that could be put together by hand rather than heavy machinery. To avoid excavating the slope, the architects installed a framework of pillars and steel beams to raise the house high in the air and minimize contact points with the hill.
The facade is wrapped in water-resistant, easy-to-assemble metal plates painted black to recede into the backdrop. In contrast to the metal base and exterior, the interior surfaces are clad in unpainted natural wood for a cozy and warm character “typical from southern Chile.” The dwelling is organized around a large central living/dining/kitchen space flanked by bedrooms on either side. Bathrooms, closets, and a secondary bedroom are tucked in the rear nearest the mountain.
Residents can enjoy spectacular landscape views through the cabin’s floor-to-ceiling glass windows or from the covered outdoor timber deck. All the cabin furniture was constructed from the leftover wood and metal building materials. Home Control Facilities installed energy-efficient LEDs throughout the home.
Images via Apio Arquitectos