ISSUE 35  |  The Last Gasp of Summer

A Portable Beach Cabin, Sleds Included

August 27, 2012 10:30 AM

BY Julie Carlson

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New Zealanders call them “baches”: small, simple wooden vacation houses for no-frills holidays by the sea.

One definition of a bach is “something you built yourself, on land you don’t own, out of materials you borrowed or stole.” Auckland-based architects Crosson Clarke Carnachan take the bach concept a step further, adding portability to the equation by anchoring the structure on two steel sleds. Located in an erosion zone on the Coromandel Peninsula, where houses must be mobile, “the house is a response to the ever-changing landscape that lines the beachfront in this coastal erosion zone,” the architects say. To see more of the firm’s work, go to Crosson Clarke Carnachan.

Above: The cabin is clad in macrocarpa wood and blends into the landscape.

Above: When the owners are away, the cabin can be closed off completely to protect against the elements.

Above: According to the architects, “The hut comes to life when the enormous shutter on the northeast side winches open to form an awning.”

Above: The industrial-strength winch.

Above: The interior is simple and compact.

Above: The family’s three children sleep in a triple-tiered bunk room.

Above: A ladder leads to a mezzanine bedroom.

Above: Throughout the cabin, the architects used industrial fittings and fixtures.

Above: The tiny sink is tucked into a corner bath.

Above: A view of the bach installation.