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Karangahake House

Year: 2019
Client: Private

NZIA 2021 Winner Waikato Small Project Architecture Award

Dezeen 2020 Longlist Rural Project Architecture

Hugged by the Karangahake forests and the Kaimai Ranges, through the last bridge towards Waihi from Paeroa, this farmland home reminds us of the essence of living simply, the importance of our environment and quiet family moments. It signifies a humble architecture bravely holding its own on the hilltop, a return to our collective necessities of shelter, gathering and freedom.
Warm cross-laminated-timber floors, along with fully lined ply walls and ceiling, create a cosy enclosed atmosphere reminiscent of classic tramping huts. We wanted to create an intimate and easy family home, complete with mezzanine loft space for impromptu friends and family. The ‘outdoor room’ provides a protected interstitial space connecting the Eastern and Western environments, with soft filtered light above, the large barn slider closes you off to a sense of solitude towards the forest below.
Rebelling against wasteful and arduous construction processes, the cost-saving and efficient prefabricated floors, walls and roofs were assembled on-site within only 4 days. The crucial idea of sustainability was further achieved through the carefully selected materials and finishes, weathertight linings, and smart efficient ventilation systems. These ideas continue our increasing awareness towards an architecture that leaves the landscape untouched.

Photography by David Straight