The Hood Canal Boat House is located along the Hood Canal, a scenic waterway in northern Washington that connects to the Puget Sound. The structure sits on a forested site owned by a couple with two children and a large extended family.
Seattle-based firm Hoedemaker Pfeiffer was charged with renovating an existing boathouse that "had no windows, one door and no charm". The architects set out to create a structure that engaged the landscape and provided a cosy atmosphere indoors.
"It is conceived as a building that can turn itself inside out, offering a protective layer of concrete and steel to the outside with the warmth of marine plywood on the inside," the team said.
The exterior walls are made of cedar and concrete masonry blocks. Two sides feature large barn-style doors clad in steel roofing, which slide open and closed via tracks that extend beyond the exterior walls.
"The oversized sliding doors extend well beyond the building to create sheltered spaces facing both sunrise and sunset," the studio said.
Inside, the ground level features a wooden storage unit, concrete flooring and plywood panelling. Nautical lighting fixtures are suspended from the ceiling and affixed to the walls.
A sleeping loft is accessed via a drop-down ladder controlled by a hand-operated pulley system.
"The retractable ladder allows the building to be used as winter boat storage and summer loft sleeping," said the studio.
The loft is lined by a protective railing made of wood and cables. A horizontal band of windows brings ample natural light into the space and offers elevated views of the scenic landscape.
Other boathouses include a blackened-timber structure by Weiss Architecture situated along a rocky coastline in Ontario and an Austin boathouse by Andersson-Wise that is made of new and salvaged materials.
Photography is by Alex Hayden.
Architecture: Hoedemaker Pfeiffer
Interior design: Garrett Cord Werner
Contractor: Fairbank Construction
Landscape: Leuner Landscape Designs