House in Northland

House in Northland

Architect
Cheshire
Location
Northern Bay of Island, New Zealand
Category
Housing

House in Northland

Cheshire as Architects

The building is a lodge located on a beautiful piece of coastline in Northland having high heritage and landscape values. We were thus interested in a making a building that, from the outside, would start to relax into the land over time and take on some of the colouring of the surrounding trees and landscape. Inside we were keen to develop a powerful sense of enclosure that would bring together the extended family holidaying there yet, we needed to allow the spaces to become part of the unique mix of farm and seascape.


The building form is composed of two parallel gabled blocks running across the site contour, the lower block being two stories high and the single story upper block split to form a semi enclosed courtyard. Living activities are arrayed along the seaward face of the two storey block and four bedroom suites are located at the extreme ends of the blocks offering privacy and engendering a unique character to each dependant on its rural or seaward aspect.


Throughout the building the robust, massive and mute is contrasted with softer more responsive materials. Within this schema heavy concrete construction forms a buttress against the hill slope and timber is used to offer a softer and warmer surface to both hand and eye. Thus where one touches the building, at handrails, capping and balustrades, one rubs against oiled timber and where we want to increase the sense of warmth, enclosure and companionship timber lining is employed.

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