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Timber Design Awards

Tarawera Cabin

Tarawera cabin aims to capture the original spirit of camping and bach”ing”.

Tarawera cabin aims to capture the original spirit of camping and bach”ing”. Before the holiday mansions arrived, there was a time when you escaped the city for a weekend, to reconnect with nature in a way that was relaxing, casual and simple. On holiday, you’d gladly brush the grass off a dropped sausage, before devouring. There was also a level of uncomfortable that was appealing. You controlled temperature by wearing more or less, you shared a single shower or bath, that was sometimes warm with 8 other people, and that was perfectly acceptable. Luckily, our clients shared similar visions, and so started a conversation that was the benchmark for all design decisions to reference. Finding the balance between connected, relaxed and casual, with a little dose of uncomfortable that was perfectly acceptable.

When it came to the interiors, we wanted to remain true to the tradition of bach building, when they were built of timber, found materials, simple, robust and unadorned. Radiata plywood ticked the box on many levels for us. Cost effective, warmth, take knocks and was unsophisticated. We decided to extend this to all the built-in joinery, entertainment unit, shelving, kitchen, vanities, wardrobes, utility room and the bunks. The structure is all timber, resisting the engineers request for steel portals, we insisted a solution be found in timber. Glulam portals with steel rod braces, glulam posts and beams for verandas and custom grooved plywood exterior cladding. Locally engineered and manufactured “Verda” decking used on the central veranda, all sitting on a TC3 engineered timber sub-floor. The wardrobes are built in suitcase benches with a couple of drawers under and a curtain front. Turn up, live from the suitcase, pack up and gone. A level entry shower of teak slats over a stainless tray allows for a bath on casters to roll in and out onto the deck.