More like a living room than a home away from home, this Finnish summer hut was designed to supplement and provide relief from the everyday living space of a family living a few miles away in Helsinki.
The result, called “City Cottage,” is a little relaxing, sitting or sleeping, area with a bit of lofted storage for the inevitable stuff you want to get out of your way and a kitchen area for light cooking (convertible to a homework area for the kids) – no need for a shower, though, with home close at hand.
The entire structure is set up off the ground and could be moved intact as needed, but otherwise sits in a simple small plot of forests with other traditional Finnish retreats around it. Designed by Verstas Architects with photographs by Andreas Meichsner.
“It is well-known that Finns love to spend time in a cottage and amidst nature. So much so, that spending time in a cottage is possible even in the center of Helsinki. A 14 sqm cottage for the 4-person Palva architect family was recently built in Lauttasaari, only two kilometres from the family home and the parents’ work place.”
“‘This is a way of life’, says Jussi Palva, ‘We wanted a place that would be easy to go to, and if necessary we could go home to take a shower or deal with urgent matters. Because our home is so close by, it’s also possible to leave unnecessary stuff at home and bring things to the cottage only when necessary.'”
“A way of life that preserves nature has, during the last few years, become a trend in the Helsinki region among young families with children; a 14 sqm city cottage is ‘ecological vacationing’ at its best. ‘Because the cottage is small, its building costs are reasonable and the use of electricity is so sufficiently low that it can operate with solar energy, even though the cottage is suited for winter use’ explains Jussi Palva. ‘And of course a localized lifestyle where you don’t use a car or fly away on holidays is also ecological.'”