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Forest Cabin, Prague, Czech Republic by Archicraft

Project name:
Forest Cabin
Architecture firm:
Prague, Czech Republic
Petr Polák
Principal architect:
Lenka Bartoňová, Miroslav Krátký
Design team:
project documentation – 3AE
Project documentation and turnkey construction: 3AE
Interior design:
Built area:
Built-up area 48 m²; Gross floor area 100 m²; Usable floor area 67 m²
Site area:
590 m²
Design year:
Completion year:
Civil engineer:
Structural engineer:
Environmental & MEP:
Tools used:
Timber – the supporting structure of the house, windows. Aluminium – facade and roof. Stainless steel – chimney. 1 Oak – flooring. Thermowood – facade and terrace
Residential › Cabin

Archicraft: In spring 2020, a refined couple came to our studio with a vision of a modest house that would provide them with a peaceful retreat in nature, an escape from the everyday hustle and bustle of the city. A comfortable place where the trees rustle instead of the trams and contact with nature is immediate. The area they have chosen for their cottage has a unique atmosphere. It is not a comfortable asphalt road that leads to the place, but a quite harsh road, which in itself transforms the perception.

Further away from the worries of the big city, closer to nature, we switch to a different mode. The local regulations defined the maximum building area and height of the building, limiting the client’s brief. The archetypal form of the cabin was chosen with respect to the built environment and its verticality emphasises the contrast between the stability of the earth and the freedom of the sky. There are beautiful tall conifers in the surroundings which fascinated us and whose pattern is reflected in the facade. It is made up of dark aluminium shingles and its shape resembles a pinecone.

The aluminium surface of the façade guarantees easy maintenance and durability and fulfills the essential requirement for practicality. Belonging to nature is supported by the glass sliding surfaces that connect the living area of the interior with the surroundings and also wonderfully expand the feeling of space inside the cottage. The large windows not only bring a beautiful view, but also plenty of light for the investor, who enjoys painting in her cottage.

The brief was to create a space that exudes the cosiness and warmth of home. Therefore, oak was used extensively in the interior, specifically for the flooring, fireplace wall, dining table and chairs. The structural CLT spruce panels remained visible in the bedroom and staircase. This natural material brings a warm feeling of home to the interior and saves on tiling costs. CLT panels also have advantages in structural properties - the small structural depth allows for large spans and has a high load-bearing capacity. Their small thickness combined with good thermal insulation leads to a more spacious interior.

The construction was completely designed and realized by 3AE, a company specialized in wooden buildings made of solid panels of Czech wood. The main theme of the cottage is well-being and relaxation and the operational needs had to be subordinated to this. We integrated the kitchen into the living area so that it would act as a natural part of it. Therefore, we placed a bookcase above it, growing into the ceiling, and for the cabinet parts we chose a unifying oak wood motif with the same profile as the wall by the fireplace. The dining table was naturally incorporated between the kitchen cabinets.

The cottage is a synergy of contemporary design, respect for nature, and practical use of space. Even in a small area, it is possible to create a space for comfort, relaxation, and artistic creation. Despite its miniature size, the original nearby cottage was a place where the owners felt content. So, when designing the new cottage, the owners had confidence from the beginning in a small space that was welcoming and cosy.

About studio / author


The Prague architectural office Archicraft, led by Tomáš Cieśla and Miroslav Krátký, has matured into a studio with a comprehensive practice. Its projects in the field of residential housing, offices and gastro operations, as well as the design of public spaces and buildings, are worthy of attention for the originality of the designs and because they do not submit to self-serving ego-elements, but accentuate Details, Emotions and Functionality. For fifteen years now, however, other letters of the alphabet have also been essential to them, such as Authorial input in the most inspiring solution; The solidity of interior elements designed to fit; Sensitivity to the client and his needs; Graphic articulation of the space promoting its visual legibility... and so we could go on to Z.

Is a Czech family-owned company specializing in individual architectural design, projection, and building of low-energy and passive houses. It deals with houses from the architectural study to the handover of the keys, including interior design and landscape architecture. 3AE builds houses from massive wooden panels, which are made in the Czech Republic from Czech wood. Solid wood is used as a decorative element in the interior. Structurally bold and modern buildings with large glazing are possible from this system. The company has been operating for 12 years and has built over 130 high-quality houses.

By Liliana Alvarez

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