Two Hulls House

Two wood-clad cantilevered appendages stretch out over rocky cliffs to take in views of the ocean in this Nova Scotia residence inspired by ships. Reminiscent of sea vessels put up on cradles for the winter, the twin telescopic pavilions not only extend the home closer to the ocean, but create protected outdoor spaces between and beneath them.

Two Hulls House side view

Two Hulls House from behind

Two Hulls House by MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects is a full-time home for a family of four with timber skins that extend out over the glazed ends of each section to provide covered porches. The architects envisioned the illuminated ends of these two appendages glowing like lanterns to anyone who might see them from the sea or shore.

Two Hulls House living room

One of these volumes is the ‘day pavilion,’ holding the living spaces, while the opposite is the ‘night pavilion,’ containing the bedrooms. The third section of the home, containing the entry foyer and kitchen, runs perpendicular to the others, providing a view down the coastline. The home is elevated on a concrete seawall to protect it from rough seas.

Two Hulls House wood screen

The interiors are bright and open, full of the same pale timber cladding as the exterior, which covers the ceilings and also makes up large sliding doors that open or close off various parts of the home as desired.

Two Hulls House living room stairs

“This is a steel frame house, with a wood skin. Its white, steel endoskeleton resists both gravity loads and wind uplift. The 32′ cantilevers and concrete fin foundations invite the sea to pass under without damage. The wooden rain screen consists of 8″ vertical, board-on-batten on the two ‘hulls’, while the linking piece is a monolithic block of weathered wood inside and out, clad in 4″ horizontal shiplap.”

Two Hulls House from below
Two Hulls House beach view

“The lantern ends dematerialise by eliminating the 1″ channel joints. The fenestration of the ‘binocular’ ends is minimalist curtain wall with structural silicone. The side elevations contain storefront glazing. The concrete floors contain a geothermally heated hydronic system. This sculptural, yet calm and mature project contains generous white volumes on the interior, and exhibits the ironic monumentality of boats on the exterior.”