Project
28.04.22
Mahuika - Cowes Bay by Daniel Marshall Architects

Located on the ever-scenic coast of Waiheke Island, Mahuika sits isolated, far off the main road at the end of a beaten goat track looking out onto Cowes Bay in the Hauraki Gulf of New Zealand.

 

Colonisation saw the burning and clearing of the native forest in the bay during the late 19th century.  A grand villa which once stood on the same grounds, unrecognisable and reclaimed by nature left it deteriorated beyond repair.  Weeks before completion of this project - a fire tore through the house once more.  Daniel Marshall Architects tackles the unforgiving task of rebuilding, restoring and reviving the life behind this home.

 

Following the track, visitors are immediately immersed in the dense Auckland bush before emerging to find the cedar-framed structure, with the sea, bush and creek as its view.  The materials were a limited palette, dark cedar for the bedroom pavilions, low reflective glass and concrete for the living pavilion.  A local stone wall which hides the boathouse and supports the parking area above which also serves as the entrance to the house.  Daniel Marshall Architects honoured its history by naming the home after the Māori Goddess of Fire, giving the project the strength of ancient narrative and an invigorating sense of renewal.

 

"The ridges of a hill.  A forest clearing.  A lost stream.  The sea coast."

 

Blending into the backdrop of the thick bush, Mahuika embraces the theatricality of its natural environment, a quiet triumph to harmony and habitat. 

Photographer Samuel Hartnett

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