Warm wood meets cold gray tones – A holiday home in Norway

Fjords on the coast, high mountains, green forests – Norway is especially known for its amazing and varied nature. If you would like to treat yourself to a noise break, drive to this country in the far north. Today we show you such a retreat that rises above a fjord and from which you can enjoy an incredible view of a forest. The project “Malangen Retreat” is located in Tromsø in the north of the country and was completed by the architecture firm Snorre Stinessen in 2017. The holiday home is designed so that the owners have enough space to welcome their friends and family while maintaining the privacy they need. It is a cozy house with an incredible design where warm wood meets cold gray tones.

The house consists of a main area and an annex separated by the central courtyard. You enter the house through a large sliding door made of oak, which has a geometric pattern. To adapt the architecture to the cold climate of the area, this room also serves as a conservatory with a kitchen and a fireplace. From here you can also reach the main building or the annex.

The house is distributed in separate volumes to provide a higher level of privacy and also to improve the connection between indoor and outdoor. The main living area and the extension each consist of two structures. In the annex there are the service rooms, a relaxation area with sauna, guest rooms and an entertainment room. The sauna is equipped with a floor to ceiling glass wall, which not only lets in plenty of natural light, but also opens up the view of the forest.

In the main part there is a children’s room, a small living room (in the first box) and the bedroom and the main bathroom (in the second). A few steps lead down to the open kitchen with a seating area overlooking the fjord. From this kitchen you can access the south-facing outdoor area, where the family enjoys their dinner on warm summer days.

All construction volumes are covered with cedar wood inside and out. The wood panels were treated with ferrous sulfate and kept outside for months before assembly for even patina. For the interior surfaces, the architects have used oak without sapwood to achieve a warmer contrast with the exterior. All interstices have a concrete floor to emphasize that these spaces are otherwise connected to the house and nature. The ceilings in these rooms are all covered with oak, which naturally turns black due to the high content of tannin due to the iron sulphate treatment. The black blankets visually set off and at the same time provide for a somewhat gentler acoustics.

Most of the furniture that we see in this holiday home, for example the table and the bench in the dining room, the beds, the cupboards, the fireplace and the sliding door in the conservatory, have been individually designed by Stinessen.

For the decoration, the architects chose soft carpets and soft blankets to give the rooms more warmth. The pendant lights made of wood set beautiful accents. However, the focus is on the use of wood and the connection with nature.


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