Everyone feels the need to get away from it all sometimes. That can be defined many ways, but for the clients of this project, it means having an off-grid location where they can decompress and immerse themselves in nature.
The location was an easy decision, set overlooking Awaawaroa Bay. But when deciding on a design, the owners looked to Auckland-based Cheshire Architects. In serving the desire to keep the lodging casual and informal, the team presented a plan that creates a single home in three separate volumes. Although they don’t share any walls, the buildings do share a common courtyard, keeping everyone together yet allowing for some separation. There are cozy spaces for two or enough room to host 20 people.
Inside the main volume, a pitched living room ceiling is made of wood, and a large couch is built into the space. A wood stove drops into the center of the room to provide visual interest and heat. For meal-time gatherings, a massive table, supported by boulders with rustic appeal, extends out of the house and into the courtyard, connecting the spaces together for indoor/outdoor living. The two additional buildings offer copious sleeping options and are simply draped with canvas over the wood frames for minimal site impact. Large windows bring natural light and breezes into the spaces, which resemble yurts. One hut offers bunk beds that will sleep up to 10 people.
In a statement, the architects said, “Comprising a single gable and a couple of sheds, this little home was conceived carefully, built simply, and dressed informally. We hoped this would be enough to slough away the memory of the city entirely.”
It’s not difficult to imagine spending vacation time in this cozy abode. Although simply built, it features striking interior design elements with expansive seating, creative storage solutions and an open invitation to merge indoor and outdoor spaces. Off-grid features include solar panels, a rainwater collection system and a septic effluent wastewater system.
Photography by Jackie Meiring via Cheshire Architects