A great mystery to me, ever since I was very young: Why do some people have rooms in their house they simply don’t use?
If you don’t have one, you’ve been to a house that does, and you’ll know what I’m referring to. It’s often a dining room of sorts, though the host family never eats there. The furniture is heavy, the tablecloths unchanged since the Cold War. Until the night before guests arrive, it’s all covered in a film of dust.
Unwanted rooms are, in my opinion, unnecessary. And the Bach Family House, built by Cymon Allfrey Architects in a mineral springs-rich region of New Zealand, is all the validation I need that others tend to agree.
Bach (6 images)
The Bach is anchored by three pared-down buildings: a dark, stained cedar house with a fireplace, kitchen and bedroom; a junior version of the same idea; and then an unfinished cedar sleepout tower called “The Folly.” Each is finished with simple hues and strong timber, and each gravitates towards the center courtyard, which features a sunken terrace, outdoor eating area, a tub, firewood, a grill … even a swing.
One can’t look at that outdoor area and not see the words FOR USE in great big bold letters. Constant, beloved, enduring use. Just wish I knew someone who lived here.
Find more info on the project here.
Images: Stephen Goodenough