Remarkables View Cabane

Modern Cabin in Queenstown

This gorgeous new home in the Remarkables Views Development in Queenstown is proof that you don’t need a large site (or a large budget) to create a dream home with amazing views.

The Brief

For this new home design, our clients asked us to create a modern version of the traditional ski chalet. As soon as we heard that, visions came to mind of people snuggling up in front of the fire or sitting out on a deck enjoying the view.

The client also requested that we make the most of the steep site on Queenstown Hill and maximise the incredible views out to Lake Wakatipu and The Remarkables.

The site is relatively compact, yet it faces northeast and has magnificent views towards the lake. So we knew that the orientation of the home would be based around those views. Access to the steep site from the road brings you to the upper level, with a second story below, cascading down the hill.

The Design

Coming into the home on the upper level, you enter the kitchen, dining and living rooms which all face north/northeast, to enjoy the view. There are two outdoor decks on this level – one off of the master bedroom as well as a spacious corner deck from the kitchen and dining room.

We intentionally positioned this larger deck on the corner in order to create some shelter from the Queenstown weather. An outdoor fireplace here creates an inviting area where residents can entertain or relax outside all year round, even when there is a cold wind from the lake.

The corner position of the main deck also enabled us to keep some of the building costs down. Not only would a deck straight off the living room at the front of the house have required a very tall (costly) structure to support it, but it would also be rather exposed to the weather.

We were also quite intentional with the position of the decks in order to avoid sheltering the bedrooms on the lower level. When you build on a hill, it’s tempting to put a deck on the upper level over the lower-level bedrooms. What happens with that sort of design, unfortunately, is that you reduce the amount of natural light in the bedrooms. So we avoided this by putting a corner deck on both levels, as well as a veranda off one of the lower level bedrooms.

The gable design is skewed to the side, off centre, to give the home a modern look and to enable us to work with the site restrictions. It gives us great ceiling height in the living room which, together with tall vertical windows, brings a lot of light into the home.

The Result

We’ve accomplished a lot with this modest home, maximising the site as much as possible. With three bedrooms and one and a half bathrooms, we’ve got a versatile home large enough for a couple and visiting guests, or a family with one or two children.

The design makes most of the sun and the views over the lake, and provides some nicely sheltered outdoor living spaces that can be used all year round.

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