Designed as a collaboration between Mitchell and the client who is a Hong Kong based Architect, this building was to be rented as high end, short term accommodation; and the first of a series of buildings. Set in the West Coast bush, the aesthetic concept was a reinterpretation of a historic gold miners hut, but with all the modern facilities to warmly welcome modern day travellers and encourage them to have a uniquely West Coast and New Zealand experience.
The judging panel had this to say about the project: "Like its mining predecessors, this cabin was to have as minimal touch on the land as possible. A durable concrete floor suspended on only a few concrete piles with no formal landscaping promotes the aesthetic of simple living. All detailing has been meticulously left minimalist to blur the line between interior and exterior, drawing guests further into their bush experience. The full timber interior surface of the Xlam is left exposed and clear finished to represent the historic miners hut aesthetic.
The interior is intentionally underlit to promote a relaxing environment at night and draw the focus to the central fire and pendant light that mimics the playful shadows of the bush seen during the day. Mass timber construction, in the form of cross laminated timber (CLT) was chosen for its prefabricated off-site construction, thermal performance and negative embodied carbon. The geometry of the exposed CLT structure was critical to get right to ensure elegant detailing on both the interior and exterior faces. The aluminium cladding is fully custom folded with all trays to the top portion of the roof fluted to accentuate the form of the building and ensure minimalist detailing. A truly amazing project, worthy of the highest accolade."