Challenged to develop a residence that would victoriously face the cold winters and hot summers in Taupo Tauranga, New Zealand, Dorrington Architects created the Rutherford House. The holiday refuge is made up of four visually distinct units: two black cedar-clad bedroom blocks, a concrete base and a white volume where the living area and kitchen are accommodated. Boasting large windows throughout, the home is defined by a great level of openness. All interiors are minimalist, as if aiming to draw attention on the peaceful neighboring landscape outside.

According to the architects, “the concrete base provides the required floor level rise, creating intermediate zones between inside and outside. Raised decks from both the living room and snug articulate elevated, and in the case of the front deck, covered outdoor spaces. The living space arrangement suits the extreme climates of the location, activities and varying degrees of privacy.” A top level sitting room is said to offer a private sanctuary for the owners when entertaining family and friends. Do you think this home makes for a welcoming holiday retreat? [Photography by Emma-Jane Hetherington]