Sugi House, Wanaka, NZ Real Estate, Wanaka Holiday Home Building, New Zealand South Island Architecture Photos

Sugi House in Wanaka, NZ

11 July 2022

Design: Condon Scott Architects

Location: Wanaka, Otago region, South Island, New Zealand

Sugi House Wanaka New Zealand

Photos © Simon Devitt

Sugi House, New Zealand

It was on a Japanese ski trip that the owners of the Sugi House came to appreciate the efficiency of small spaces. Staying in a compact two-bedroom vacation home in the mountains, they saw that a small, carefully designed house could be comfortable and pleasant to live in.

Sugi House Wanaka NZ

Based in Singapore, the family of five took annual trips to Wanaka, usually staying with extended family in an existing four bedroom house on this lakeside site. The idea for Sugi House was conceived to allow for a degree of separation on their trips.

Sugi House Wanaka New Zealand

After seeing the Kirimoko Tiny House by Condon Scott Architects, the homeowners engaged architect Barry Condon to bring their new holiday house to life. To Barry, delivering on a Japanese aesthetic meant creating something simple and unobtrusive.

Sugi House Wanaka NZ

“The aim was for a refined, precise and crafted aesthetic. We have used this mindset throughout, allocating only as much space as is required to each function. The timber panelling and alignment has been carefully thought through to extend the sense of space indoors.”

Sugi House New Zealand

The floorplan is tight but carefully considered. The lower floor contains a double-height living and kitchen space separated from the kids’ bathroom and bedroom by the staircase. Upstairs is a double bedroom with ensuite, an office and storage. “Built-in storage spaces were optimised – including shoe racks, hidden cupboards, draws within the steps of the stairs, and built-in shelving in the upstairs loft,” says Barry.

The interiors deliver on the requested Japanese, minimalist look, with black fittings and joinery contrasted against the timber linings, a sculptural ceiling fan, and flush cabinetry. The wet room style of the compact bathroom is reminiscent of a Japanese spa with floor to ceiling, stone-look tiles.

Sugi House Wanaka NZ

The house also has a strong materiality externally, with a singular cladding and roofing material of warm cedar shingles, which has the added benefit of being low maintenance. As the house faces the street, glazing is restrained and aimed towards views to the west of Mt Roy. The southern facade is free of windows to prevent the gaze of neighbours as they approach from the access way.

Sugi House Wanaka New Zealand

“With some judicious planting on the street, we made the outdoor terrace area quite private, an extension of the living space in the summer with the doors open,” says Barry.

Sugi House Wanaka NZ

Due to a high level of insulation and the small footprint of the house, a Stovax wood fire provides enough heating to cut through even the chilliest of Wanaka’s winter days. The house was constructed using SIPS panels, with some Passive House techniques employed.

Sugi House Wanaka NZ

“SIPs are taped, sealed and wrapped in a secondary layer of building wrap plus plywood to maximise thermal efficiency,” says Barry. “The house and the areas of glazing are orientated to maximise solar gain, with minimal openings on the remaining sides of the house to preserve the thermal envelope. Windows are double glazed low-e glass, argon filled and thermally broken to prevent moisture retention and heat loss.”

Sugi House Wanaka New Zealand Sugi House New Zealand

The result is a relaxing and stylish home-away-from-home for this jet-setting family, a place to comfortably reconnect with their loved ones on the other side of the world.

Condon Scott Architects is an award-winning, Wanaka-based practice that has completed over 600 residential and commercial projects in the Otago region over the past 30 years.

Sugi House New Zealand

Sugi House Wanaka New Zealand

Sugi House in Wanaka, NZ – Building Information:

Design: Condon Scott Architects –

Project size: 90 sqm
Completion date: 2020
Building levels: 2

Sugi House New Zealand

Photography © Simon Devitt

Sugi House, Wanaka New Zealand images / information received 110722

Location: Lake Wanaka, New Zealand

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