The “Hutznhaisl” – An Elemental Concrete Retreat In The Mountains Of Saxony

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(via) The “Hutznhaisl” or “hut” on Germany’s Fichtelberg Mountain in the Ore range of Saxony is pretty striking. Designed in 2010 by Berlin’s AFF Arkitekten, it’s purposely Spartan, made of formed concrete with floorboards cut from local spruce, and appointed with what few things you bring with you. It sleeps six to eight people, so perfect for a group a friends and a couple of families. I’d want mine close to home on one of the North Shore mountains, ideally Hollyburn Ridge. Years ago when I was a Leader with Scouts Canada (true story), I was lucky enough to spend freezing evenings in the Boy Scouts cabin thereabouts. There were so many kids up there running around screaming that us grown ups never really had the chance to be in the place, enjoying its remote peace and quiet. When I look at these pictures, I can imagine the tranquility that wasn’t available to us on those trips. They not only evoke the same anxieties about cold and vulnerability, but also the same elemental warmth that comes in those increasingly rare times when needed shelter is found and a fire is started. The balance struck isn’t “cozy” in the traditional sense, but there’s an undeniably enjoyable edge to the security of it. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.

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