Contemporary design and tradition can combine to create a transformative experience when you are willing to work within the limits of an existing structure with limitless creativity. The House in the Woods is the result of such thinking. The residence was initially constructed in the 1970’s and has had three seamless additions since. The most recent transformation originated from the client’s desire to have a traditional Japanese bathing experience within the residence.
Japanese culture ritual for bathing starts with a path to either a bath in a garden, or a traditional teahouse. It also requires a space for cleansing before soaking. The soaking tub is often made of Hinoki cypress wood that has several properties that benefit the body. This experience translated to design opportunities that are celebrated at the House in the Woods.
The most notable design feature is the transition from the master bedroom area to the tree house. The suspended glass-enclosed walk is pivotal. It allows you to step away from the daily routine in the home to cleanse your body and mind. Putting this walkway on the second floor offered a unique opportunity to create a new take on this ancient experience. It also removed the soaking area from the home in a way that connects you with nature and immerses you among the trees.
The actual Hinoki tub, which is imported from Japan, is situated within the Tree House. It is separated from the bathing area and the entry hallway by reflective black glass. There are floor to ceiling windows on three sides giving you the sense that you are relaxing amongst the trees.
The House in the Woods now includes a space where simplicity in design enhances relaxation and rejuvenation for the user. This design is a contemporary celebration of a longstanding tradition.