An All-Year Cabin For A Large Family In Norway

Reiulf Ramstad Arkitekter have designed the V-lodge, an all-year cabin for a family in Buskerud, Norway.

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The architect’s description

This all-year cabin is located in the mountains above the village Ål, amidst cross-country ski tracks in winter and hiking tracks in summer. It is well suited for the family of five and designed to accommodate changes in family composition and a mix of generations in the years to come. The project has had a particular ambition to adapt to the existing topography and natural surroundings, while taking advantage of the beneficial opportunities of the site.

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Simplicity and restraint characterize the lodge in its form, program and materials. The building consists of two bodies united in a V-shaped plan with a south-facing glazed wall at its chamfered intersection.

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The main branch accommodates the entrance hall and combined dining, kitchen and living zones, orientated in parallel with the contours of the topography. The second branch contains a bathroom, three bedrooms and a youth lodge at the far end, each on stepped levels in alignment with the falling terrain. The exterior is entirely clad in pre-patinated heart pine on the walls and pitched roofs, providing a homogenous skin that blends in with its surroundings.

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The interior is simple, but refined: walls, ceiling and fixed furniture is finished with bare plywood sheets, and the combined fireplace and kitchen counter is cast in-situ concrete. Glazed openings from floor to ceiling provides ample daylight and transparency to the outside, culminating with the glazed section at the joint of the two branches.

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While admitting the high sun above the forested crest, its focal point is the forest floor at the base of hill. A comfortable sitting niche provides the optimal place for relaxation and contemplation.

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Each bedroom is accessed through sliding doors along a narrow hallway of steps descending with the terrain and ending at a youth lounge with views through its glazed gable end wall.

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The cabin’s gentle intervention on the site creates small microclimate zones with beneficial sun conditions for outdoor activities and easy access from the interior.

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Its form reinterprets local and national building traditions, with materials that match and complement the montane birch forest and quality of light.

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Architect: Reiulf Ramstad Arkitekter
Photography by Reiulf Ramstad Arkitekter and Soren Harder Nielsen