It is a well-known fact that Finns love to spend time in summer cabins amidst nature. Even so much so that having a cabin in the centre of Helsinki is possible.
The 14 m² city cabin for our family of four was built in Lauttasaari in Helsinki – two kilometres away from our workplaces and schools. We wanted a place that would be easy to go to and, if necessary, from where we could go home to take a shower or deal with urgent matters.
A way of life that saves time and the environment has become a trend among young families in the Helsinki region. A city cabin represents ecological vacationing at its best. A small cabin in the heart of the city has low costs and reasonable energy consumption.
Even though the cabin is close to the city centre, it offers the feel of being in the middle of nature. There is a narrow path leading to the cabin that offers a view out to the sea.
At the design stage, we closely studied the spatial solutions of boats and caravans, and noticed that 14 square metres comprises a large space compared with sailing boats. We divided the space into a combined entrance and kitchen, from where there is a small step – in the Japanese fashion – to the living and sleeping space.
The living room sofa can easily be transformed into a bed for three. The fourth sleeping place is in the loft space. The kitchen can be turned into a homework space for the children. In addition, we applied the economical use of space to placing storage space inside furniture and under the raised floor in the living space.
The city cabin is a prototype that is under development for industrial serial production.
Project in brief
- Location | Lauttasaari, Helsinki
- Purpose | Summer house
- Architectural Design | Verstas Architects
- Contractor | Finnlamelli Oy
- Total area | 14 m2
- Year completed | 2010
- Photographs | Andreas Meichsner
- Text | Riina and Jussi Palva