Nestled between the coast and the bushland of the South Island of New Zealand, a tiny settlement of 30 homes has now welcomed another escape within its handful of houses.
An unbeatable location
The owner originally discovered this area halfway between the two larger cities of Invercargill and Bluff while visiting a friend’s family home and spent a couple of years camping in the area in order to understand the land before she began to design the home, even climbing trees to imagine the possible first-floor views.
This area of New Zealand has a landscape rather unlike many other places, with winter winds so raw that it’s better to be a little further from the water’s edge, as the owners of this house decided to do. The home is designed to disappear like camouflage when viewed from any angle, into the tree canopy or the undergrowth, while the bunker-like shape allows for protection from the harsher wind.
The entrance is carved out of the two central wedge shapes, with the roof dropping down almost right to the floor on one side and from there splitting into the two halves. The home allows for 100 square meters of living space as well as extra storage for beach and watersport accessories.
But while the home may seem to retreat down into the earth, on the open side large elements of glazing allows for sweeping views of the stunning landscape. The home follows the core elements of a traditional kiwi ‘bach,’ with wooden interiors, a warm feeling and somewhat vintage-feeling kitchen elements. Heated with a woodburner and sheltered from the winds, there could only be few places in this harsh landscape that feel quite so calm and comfortable.