Mawhitipana Beach House

Jo MacKay and Sam Curtis of MacKay Curtis Architecture were approached by the owners of this home with a simple brief: sun and views. They responded with an idea centred around connection to the outdoors and comprising a long deck with a glass box for living, over which hovers a timber box for sleeping.


"In an ideal world the glass wouldn't even be there" says MacKay. "That was the pure idea - an outdoor camp - and actually we got very close to that."


The petite house has been delicately inserted between a native pōhutukawa and beneath its branches, with the arms appearing to tumble over the roof. Stairs wind up from the parking platform at the bottom of the section, the trees creating archways and framing the house as it comes into view. There are places to pause on the ascent and take in the site's natural beauty. Native planting has grown to soften the retaining walls and steepness of the section.

Featured Brands Simon James Nonn Mattiazzi
Architect MacKay Curtis
Photographer Simon Wilson