What is it about tree houses that we love so much? Their playfulness, the escapism they offer, and the platforms they provide into nature all come to mind. We have written about the 4Treehouse by Lukasz Kos before, but when we saw it again in this month’s Dwell, the gorgeous glowing image stopped us in our tracks. Posing as a Japanese lantern on stilts, Kos’ creation floats within the fir trees on Lake Muskoka, Ontario, Canada.

What’s more, the design frames spectacular views of the forest, from inside, out, down and up!

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Letting the existing trees set the parameters of the project, the tree house was constructed around the base of four existing trees, rather than stretching between them. The project was an exercise in minimizing impact to the trees, site, and nature itself. A swing was suspended from the four trees, forming the structural foundation for the tree house. The result is a delicate balance between the slat wall enclosure and the swaying trees.

The tall, tube-like structure allows for visitors to ascend up along with the trees. There are three – yes three! – levels which vary in transparency, letting light both in as well as out.

Lukasz Kos is a cofounder of Testroom, a Toronto-based architecture and design firm.

+ Testroom Via Dwell