One of the key considerations for this project, from the outset, was to ensure extensive flora on the site was preserved and the home was designed in such a way as to be part of the flora rather than trample it. Key trees and plants, many of which had been planted by the family over two decades, were identified from the start of the process and designed around. The site is positioned overlooking Taylors Mistake, with views of Godlley Head and beyond to the rest of Banks Peninsula.
A change in family circumstances led to the need for a new one and a half bedroom small dwelling within the site's garden, and the site was subdivided to accommodate it. The essence of the design was to not only maintain the maximum number of plants, but also to enhance the unusual opportunity of living within them. For the building itself, we decided to raise it out of the land in order to touch and disrupt the land as lightly as possible, as well as negotiate the steep gradient.
Taking the building out of the ground level and towards the sky meant the home sits among the treetops, just beneath the canopy, giving it treehouse-like qualities. In turn, this means its inhabitants are afforded a unique perspective of living among the birds and trees. Observing the sway of trees in the breeze, watching the play of light through the leaves, and waking up to birdsong: these are the rewards on offer here. This opportunity to view nature from a different perspective becomes an opportunity to view life from a different perspective and produces a calming effect.
A black steel frame substructure mimics the tree trunks around it to camouflage itself among the foliage while a six metre wide deck connects the dwelling to the land, and doubles the effective living space. The result is an elegant bach which contains one purpose-built bedroom with a library that doubles as accommodation for visitors.