Our favorite cabins are often the ones hardest to spot. Take, for example, Ian MacDonald Architect’s recently completed Go Home Bay Cabin: a gorgeous green-roofed cabin in the Niagara Escarpment that’s nearly imperceptible in the rocky Canadian landscape. Located on a forested island in southern Ontario’s Georgian Bay, the year-round family retreat offers envious views of Lake Huron while sitting lightly on the land with a minimal environmental footprint.
Accessible only by boat, Go Home Bay Cabin is deliberately obscured from view to create a sense of anticipation for visitors as the home gradually reveals itself beyond a juniper meadow and the veil of tall white pines. The low-slung cantilevered cabin is set atop concrete piers, which makes the structure appear as if it were floating and helps minimize site disturbance. Charcoal-colored cedar shingles clad the boxy building and, coupled with the green roof, helps recede the cabin into the forested landscape.
In contrast to the dark facade, the interior is lined with honey-colored fir with wooden furnishings and exposed timber ceiling beams that lend warmth to the home. Full-height windows surround the home to let natural light and ventilation in and to frame beautiful bay and forest views. A galley kitchen as well as the living room and dining area are strategically placed to face west to take advantage of bay views, while the three bedrooms are tucked away in the east side. In addition to the insulating green roof, deep roof overhangs and exterior sunshades mitigate solar heat gain to minimize energy consumption.
Images via Ian MacDonald Architect