Biv Punakaiki

Mitchell Coll Fabric
  • Category undefined
  • Floor size 46m2
  • Year completed 2022
  • Location Punakaiki, West Coast
  • Awards 2022 Supreme Winner for Residential Compact New Home up to 150m2
  • Photos Stephen Goodenough


The form takes cues from many of the exterior chimneys repeated on historic gold miner huts.

Custom folded aluminium cladding accentuates the form of the building and ensures minimalist detailing.

The balance of minimal but luxury facilities keep the focus on simple living. Spaces are intentionally underlit to promote a relaxing environment at night.

The mezzanine can house an extra bed or is a place to relax, stargaze or watch the rain come down. The sky facing skylight represents the top of a smokestack.

The open plan layout and large amount of glazing offers guests an all-encompassing experience.

This modern cabin warmly welcomes travellers and encourages them to have a uniquely West Coast experience.

The bush was kept as close to the cabin as possible to filter light and allow as much of the natural colours and shadows from the bush to be cast in the interior walls of the cabin.

Project Description

Designed as a collaboration between Mitchell and the client who is a Kiwi architect based in Hong Kong, 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.

ADNZ judges comment:

"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."


ADNZ Supreme Winner

ADNZ Colin Stanley People's Choice Award

ADNZ Residential Compact New Home up to 150m² National Winner

ADNZ Residential Interiors National Finalist

ADNZ Residential Compact New Home up to 150m² Regional Winner

ADNZ Residential Interiors Regional Winner

Best Awards Residential Gold

Here Magazine New House Finalist