Merry-Go-Round by Bureau Ira Koers


Amsterdam studio Bureau Ira Koers have completed a holiday home on the edge of Dwingeloose Heide (Dutch heath) in the Netherlands.

Called Merry-Go-Round, the house has narrow floor-to ceiling windows on all sides, which can be covered with shutters.

The interior is divided into eight rooms, connected by a passageway around the edge that opens up to the surroundings.

The project was commissioned by Stichting Arthouses.

Here's some more information from Bureau Ira Koers:



Although ideas about recreation and the design of the landscape have changed over the years, the typology of the holiday cottage has hardly altered at all.

Ever since the recreational outing of several days or more came into vogue in the sixties, we have seen the same mini-version of the standard home.

Whereas the confined space of a boat or caravan has led to clever design solutions, the country cottage has never developed an identity of its own.

The design of the Merry-Go-Round gives new meaning to the holiday cottage by taking the traditional floor plan with its rooms opening onto a central hallway and turning it inside out.

The rooms are replaced by eight open alcoves in which furniture, colour, light, material, lines of sight and views of the outdoor surroundings are bundled into one compact, fixed interior.

The alcoves are connected by a corridor that runs all around the perimeter of the dwelling and opens onto the landscape.

By adjusting the façade, which is comprised of shutters, the vacationing residents of the Merry-Go-Round can determine the view and their privacy themselves.

Merry-Go-Round is one of the five realized Arthouses and is located on the edge the famous Dutch heath (Dwingeloose Heide).

Initiated and commissioned by the foundation Arthouses it is the realization of permanent ArtHouses intended for holiday tourism.

The Dutch Province Drenthe has to apply the LEADER initiative to integrate arts and recreation in the Dutch landscapes.

Project: Rentable holiday home on the Dutch heath
Client: Stichting Arthouses
Location: Bungalowpark Lanka, Anholt 11, Ruinen, The Netherlands
Design: Bureau Ira Koers
Contractor: Bouwbedrijf Geerts
Engineers: Kr8 architecten
Design: April 2005 - January 2008
Construction: February 2008 - August 2009
Volume: 55 m2 / 143 m3
Costs: 100.000 euro
Photographs: Bureau Ira Koers

Posted on Tuesday October 13th 2009 at 12:10 am by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • ….such an elegant design…I’m amazed that the interiors do not have a clear conection with the outside of the house.
    Also I would love to see how people get there, I think it’s important to tell us something about the context and how it works with the building itself.
    It’s so anoying when architects see the architecture as an object, insted of putting the subject in it and see how both work.
    Love the shower!…I think its “cool” ;)

  • tornasol

    the best!!!!!… remember me Jae Cha’s works in Bolivia… with different budget and program, of course.

  • rodger

    i feel claustrophobic in this prison cell of a project.
    this is more interesting as a plan exercise than as a real building.
    ….. and for gods sake, why use nasty plywood as a wood panel? it makes your project beyond redeemable for any reason.
    so wrong on so many levels.


    Is this a high end retail store or a cottage. It seems to bring in a whole artificial sense of being into a beautiful natural area.

    Nice building, wrong context.

  • tmac

    looks cozy!

  • great concept with a beautiful design … maybe its too lovely to go out ;)

  • C-23

    Love the bathroom, little privacy in whole of the house though.

  • m

    wow, great!

    don’t see what’s wrong with the context by the way

  • gillesr

    I love the interior concept and plans, but the facade seems a bit too overdesigned or urban for the context.

  • This is a weird one. It is strange that with such a proposition (a pavilion) and in such a context, there is no sense of a real interior. Rather, one is left with a series of booths or half-spaces constantly undermined by the circulation zone. That zone is nothing as charming as the enfilade of a hôtel particulier, nor does it reinforce the character of the spaces it cruises through. Sadly. The picture of it in the woods with the shutters closed is nice, but is that not when the house is closed, too?

  • The vertical windows makes the house seem longer, and their shadows on the floor makes the space seem wider. Nice house.

  • sktles

    i think this house needs a little bit more storage space.
    nice solution for the bathroom

  • I love this – the plan concept is brilliant. I think the facade works wonderfully, as its rigid verticality provides a nice counterpoint to the organic verticality of the trees. My one critique is that I wish the living areas weren’t so rigid – I want the furniture to be able to provide a more flexible solution. But I still want one – great project.

  • b.l

    nice but/i think this house needs a little bit more light in.its beter-to have more wide windows/ to see this -nice landscape.

  • andie

    the interior color scheme could be simplier, other than that, i am ok with the overall design

  • R

    The house has the exterior of a construction shed and it looks it has been temporarily ‘dumped’ there. The interior looks like a cafetaria: very cold imo.

  • llll

    A solid-curtained wall treatment as referring to Mies’ Farnsworth House. Both aimed at addressing inside-out/ouside-in experience, but this one is LESS poetic from outside as a result of the over-evenly-distributed curtain windows.

    A lots of nice interior details, as the unexpected skylights above shower and table, the synchronization between bedroom+corridor concealment, the small niche-opening between sofa-room and kitchenette…slim window framing an elegant view directly facing/terminating a passageway is highly-appreciated. shame on the labour-intensive closuring/opening of window-blinds activity.

    A economic house, but not classic somehow…

  • ck

    its interesting…..i don’t really like the idea of staying in it, but as a project, yeah its interesting.

  • MMM

    Nice and elegant, unfortunately not suitable for a residental building, even just for a holiday house. It looks like the architect was driven too much by formal approach and designed the shell and than the rest… So nice surroundings and you cannot to ejoy it, just becouse somebody deigned you such stupid vertical windows from floor to ceiling.

  • justin

    where is the cast of A Clockwork Orange when you need them?

  • ryan

    nice for a getaway with a fun bunch / merry go rounding while inebrated / finding friends in nooks and cranies / peeping in or out through slats / would hate to use the toilet after somebody had showered : muddy tracks

  • erik

    Ideal house for Big Brother TV…
    A bathroom without a bath isn’t a bathroom!

  • haohao

    skylight is very interesting!

  • Nelle en Namreh

    Het is een droomhuis. Wij zijn fotografe en architect. Ongelooflijk wat een ruimte beleving. De totale omkering van binnen en buiten . Na het Schroderhuis van Rietveld het mooiste huis van West Europa. Ieder architect zou hier minimaal 72 uur geslapen ,gewoond en geleefd moeten hebben. Wij zijn er 72 uur geweest.