Sneci isn’t your typical summer home, considering it doesn’t even come with a foundation. Then again, a foundation isn’t needed for this floating escape located on Lake Tisza in Hungary. The clients, Réka and Balázs, live in a small apartment in Budapest where they enjoy an active social and professional calendar. But when they went looking for a place to get away from the hum of busy days, they sought out a unique summer experience. That launched the idea of a small houseboat where they could fully immerse themselves into a region they love.

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wood houseboat on lake

The couple took their idea to Hungarian architect Tamás Bene, who said, “As an architect, I found it highly interesting to conceptualise and design a living space that has no tangible groundwork or foundations.” In order to match the houseboat with the area, Bene considered the massive, humanmade lake, which also acts as a nature reserve housing copious wildlife, including over 100 species of birds. With this in mind, Bene said, “We aimed to design a boat capable of assimilating into these surroundings, one that may become part of this scenery.”

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wood houseboat docked near tall grasses
wood houseboat with angled body

The design is heavily inspired by traditional fishing boats in the area. Structurally, Sneci is composed of aluminum, which extends to the exterior of the structure with aluminum cladding surrounding the vessel. Complementing this material choice is the heat-treated thermowood that adorns the roof, decking and rear wall.

houseboat interior with wood walls and circular windows
On the left, kettle on a hot plate. On the right, small white bed near large window with lake views

Inside, the comforts of home include a kitchenette with seating that folds down to create a double bed. Natural light flows into the space through a panoramic window, large porthole windows and a sliding door that provides access to the back deck. In a marriage of coziness and natural elements, the interior walls are clad with a combination of redwood and thermowood.

aerial view of timber and aluminum houseboat with solar panels on the roof
houseboat sailing along a lake

The tiny, floating home is powered by two solar panels mounted to the roof. These solar panels provide sufficient off-grid electricity to power the front and rear headlights, interior lighting and a small fridge.

+ Tamás Bene

Via Dezeen

Images via Balázs Máté