An Isolated Holiday Bach in New Zealand’s South Island | Home Design Find

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An Isolated Holiday Bach in New Zealand’s South Island

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A typical Kiwi bach or holiday house is sited at the Bay of Many Coves overlooking a glorious view in New Zealand’s Marlborough Sounds.

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The clients had a very old wooden cottage on the site that had to be demolished first.

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The site was very isolated. The only practical way to reach it was actually by boat, barge or by helicopter, which made construction challenging.

A single story steel and timber framed structure with skillion roofs was the most effective solution.

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The clients brief was relatively simple: open plan kitchen, dining, living area with fireplace (wood burner), three double bedrooms, all with a good orientation and view, separate studio – office area, laundry-changing room after diving with exterior shower, main complete bathroom and a separate toilet.

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In order to better understand the family’s needs and find the special views and most-loved vistas, before demolition, the design team spent a weekend in the old cottage with the family.

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So they were talking, walking, eating, drinking, fishing, and photographing, sketching and measuring, refining the brief.

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The experience helped them visualize and experience the site’s constraints including access, orientation, context, services, topography and vegetation and obstructions.

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By contrast with the old wooden cottage, the use of plenty of glass is prescribed, double-paned to moderate the interior climate, while offering views and a daily wash of sunshine through every part of the house.

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The open plan living room becomes the heart of the home set in the lush tropical surroundings.

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Studio MWA also rotated the new building to capture a better orientation and view, and pushed the new building back into the hill, to create a retaining wall to shore up any possible erosion in the future.

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