Located in Fort Vuren, The Netherlands, this abandoned war bunker turned holiday home is not your everyday vacation retreat. But what a place to go to and unwind! At only 3Wx3Lx1.8H meters, covered by a grassy hill and surrounded by an untouched landscape of trees and wildlife, this holiday home has all the makings of a fairytale. It was designed by B-ILD architects and built by contractor Bouwbedrijf Den Toom Heikop.
From just a short distance away, the home disappears from sight leaving only an elevated outdoor living platform to mark the location. Believe it or not, this deck is the same size as the interior space. And the wood decking is almost the same as the planks used to create and hold the thick concrete walls that form the bunker. It’s a clever ode to the original construction.
The hill covers all but the front facade. A passageway has been carved into the natural landscape, leading to the main – and only – entrance.
There is actually a covered front porch area that conveniently offers shelter while you fumble for your keys to open the glass door.
A teeny tiny window in the porch area lets those inside peek at who’s outside.
The window exposes just how thick the concrete walls of the structure actually are.
Just inside the door is the kitchen. The stainless steel unit incorporates one shelf below counter level, the counter and a long linear storage cabinet up above.
From the door looking in, the sparse kitchen appears to be the only feature of the bunker.
A short hallway leads from the kitchen to the dining, living and sleeping areas. The opening to the multifunctional space is cut out of the concrete and framed in thick timbers.
The timbers framing the hallway opening are the same as those used on the entryway. Both feature rusted metal hardware bolting them in place because after all, they are an integral part of the concrete structure. Without them it all comes tumbling down without any huffing or puffing!
To make the most out of the open-plan living area, the architects drew inspiration from Le Corbusier’s “Le Cabanon” and designed all the pieces to include more then one function. All adaptable and custom made, the wood furniture maximizes the potential of what little space there is.
The dining table doubles as an office desk and the stools that surround the table are also used as stepping stools – and as bedside tables in the evening.
The beds double as both sofas and storage.
Even the vertical space was maximized in the sleeping area.
The stools that surround the dining table are repositioned to use as a step up to the top bunk.
With only the one tiny window, the lights within the dining cabinet are designed to take on a faux window aesthetic.
It’s simply amazing that B-ILD was able to create this holiday home out of such a tiny space.
The inside to the outside is such a yin and yang moment. Small and confined to expansive and exhilarating, the sky is literally the limit.