Located not far from the Swiss city of Chur, this getaway cabin rests firmly within Alpine mountain ranges. Designed by Georg Nikisch and Selina Walder, the compact residence is constructed almost entirely of concrete, but utilizes intelligent sculpting to create the illusion of wood from afar. Aside from this deception, the architecture of the house is fairly restrained and minimal, with traditional peaked-roof lines and two large windows and a skylight providing light. Inside, concrete sections make up almost every surface and decor piece, from the cottage’s bathtub to its fireplace. Again, minimalism rules the day, resulting in a quiet, slick escape from the complexities of day-to-day working life. The cabin’s design successfully transforms a fairly conventionally-shaped plan into a truly unique, slick vacation home for two.
The cabin is meant to resemble a traditional Swiss barn in general shape, with a low-sloped roof and uncluttered lines. Its concrete and glass construction provides contrast from the conventional design and differentiates the building from less modern structures.
The concrete finish used on the exterior walls of the cabin is carefully patterned to look like weather-worn wood planks from afar. The concrete also deteriorates much less severely over time than wood, which is important for a weekend getaway which can’t be maintained constantly.
Inside, the concrete turns from textured to smooth, making up all of the cabin’s walls and ceilings as well as much of its furniture. The single-color material choice is combined with an extremely clean design to create an interior that comes off as ultra-minimal and functionally attractive.
The cabin includes only two major rooms, a living room and this combined bedroom and bathroom. The tub is built into the structure of the dwelling, carved out of a wide lip underneath the window on one side in a similar manner to the living room’s bench.
The only concentrated splash of color in the cabin (aside from the front door) comes in the form of a light wooden panel along the bedroom wall. A sliding set of privacy curtains (with tracks set into the ceiling) provides cover over the window.
Each windowsill also breaks up the grey just a little bit, with thin strips of wood.
Georg Nikisch and Selina Walder