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The timber Hut on Sleds can be moved to chase the view

A woman watches out from the window of Hut on Sleds while a tractor is driven by a man
A woman doing upside down in the timber wall
Timber hut on Sleds at night with lights on

The Hut on Sleds was designed as a moveable holiday retreat. The home sits within the coastal erosion zone of Coromandel Beach, New Zealand and all buildings must be moveable – so Crosson Architects took this literally and the timber structure can be moved by tractor inland, or across the beach and onto a barge.

Timber structured kitchen area with wooden dining set
View of the timber interior structure fireplace with loft

The compact 40sqm timber retreat has manually operable window hatches which open to let in the mesmerising beach views and form awnings to provide shade from the summer sun. They can be winched shut to protect against the elements when not in use.

The owners design brief sought a sustainable holiday home and this is evident in the small footprint, extensive use of timber, rain water tanks, worm waste system, grey water tanks, manually operated window shade mechanisms and it treds very lightly on the site. The Macrocarpa cladding is unfinished and has been left to weather naturally and it blends unobtrusively into the landscape of the sand dunes.

The women were opening the timber window of this movable home on Coromandel beach
metallic steering wheel
Open in half operable timber window of hut on Sled

Sustainability specs:
– Small footprint
– All timber structure, cladding, lining and joinery
– Timber is unfinished and raw
– Rainwater tanks
– Worm tank waste system
– Grey water tanks

Back view of the Hut on Sleds with water tanks and view of the ocean
Inside the hut on sled overlooking the beach is a fireplace with a red armchair.
Open shower room
A timber-structured bedroom with a mini skylight
Hut on Sled view from the seashore
From the architect:

The hut is a series of simple design moves. The form is reminiscent of a surf lifesaving or observation tower. The aesthetic is naturalistic, the unpainted timber evocative of wind and sand-blasted timber beach-side structures. The fittings and mechanics are industrial and exposed, the structure gutsy and expressed.

The clients sought to explore the real essence of holiday living: small, simple and functional. The normal rituals of daily life – cooking, dining, sleeping and showering – are all connected to the outside.

Images courtesy of Crosson Architects. Photography by Jackie Meiring

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