These modern retreats lend themselves to the Japanese practice of shinrin-yoku, or forest therapy.
Ready for a retreat? From coastal dwellings to forest hideaways, our editor’s top picks of the week are
From the architect: “An artist and an avid gardener/yoga enthusiast, the Mill Valley Cabins residents were looking to situate their growing retirement pursuits in spaces that would capture the imagination. The steeply sloping site that had long been their home offered seclusion and inspirational views within a woods of impressive pines and redwoods. Dividing their programmatic needs into separate cabins allowed the two small structures to be placed lightly between existing trees with minimal re-grading of the site and gave each a different view of the woods. The planted roof of the lower building provides a quilt-like garden for the artist to look down upon. The green roofs blend with the hillside and provide a canvas for the client’s love of gardening. The simple and modern interiors of the studios offer spaces for quiet reflection among the trees.”
From the architect: “A waterfront guest house, showcasing sustainable design; designed to inspire and educate others to follow a sustainable design path. The Barn Gallery is a place for us to promote our ideas, network with like-minded professionals, and to showcase and enjoy local artists. The Barn Gallery faces southwest to a secluded waterfront bluff, and is surrounded by 4 acres of woodland and a private meadow.Collection and filtration of rain water, and a focus on natural landscaping are integral parts of the Barn Gallery sustainable design philosophy. The rain garden (bottom right) functions as a natural filtration system for stormwater runoff headed to the channel below, and is one of the most talked-about features.”
From the architect: “This house is situated on the inner Vyborg gulf shore. A regular flat site faces the sea in the north and touches the water edge. Due to local law and site restrictions, the house had to be built in the back of the plot, on a rather small area. Inspiration for observing the sea, along with the site restrictions, formed a compact, three-leveled house.”
From the architect: “This is a house for the family of two artists in Roschino, sixty kilometers from Saint-Petersburg. The house is located on the edge of a settlement, just by the forest. The plot is a bit sloped, it is completely covered with conifer trees. The position and dimensions of the building are predefined by the environment. A long narrow volume of the house is placed in such a way to preserve all the flora and fauna onsite.”
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