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Hut on Sleds, Whangapoua, New Zealand by Crosson Clarke Carnachan Architects

Commended: Resembling a modern beach hut, this compact holiday retreat can be moved with the shifting dune landscape

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This modern version of a traditional seaside hut sits on the edge of a beach on the Coromandel Peninsula, on New Zealand’s North Island. As the site lies within a coastal erosion zone, all buildings and structures must be removable. The house/hut sits on a pair of thick timber sleds to enable it to be towed back up the site or across the beach.

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Long section

The simple form and raw materials recall beachside artefacts such as a lifeguard observation tower or fishing hut. Mechanisms and fittings are unapologetically industrial, the structure gutsy and exposed. The holiday retreat, which can accommodate a family of five, is like a large cabinet, designed to close up against the elements when not in use. When shuttered, the rough macrocarpa cladding blends into the landscape.

The rear is clad in ‘flat sheet’, a cheap metal cladding used in local holiday homes. a double-height shutter winches up like a concertina to form an awning, shading the efficiently planned interior. The jury liked the project’s modesty, economy and response to context.

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Steel-framed doors open up to the landscape, connecting the rituals of everyday life with nature

FACT FILE

Architects: Crosson Clarke, Carnachan Architects
Kitchen: Customtone Kitchens
Door closers: Dorma
Photographs: Jackie Meiring

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