‘thomson house’ by atelierworkshop, new plymouth, new zealandimage © russell kleynall images courtesy of bonnifait + giesen




working within the typology of an existing railway cottage, wellington-based bonnifait + giesen renovated and designed an addition to a centrally planned new plymouth, new zealand property. while the bedrooms and living rooms traditionally flank the main corridor, the brief called for more space and interior light. the west end of the cottage was pushed out by four meters in an effort to extend the existing ridge line and create a large double height area. the new office mezzanine and lengthened facade are clad in slatted redwood to allow for direct sunlight and privacy, while still referencing the house’s original form. in keeping with the designers’ efforts to honor the cottage’s vernacular qualities and environmental cleanliness, the redwood was harvested from the client’s own plantation.

atelierworkshop: thomson house, new zealanddecks and bands of glazing extend the linear space and afford glimpses of the nearby seaimage © russell kleyn

atelierworkshop: thomson house, new zealandimage © russell kleyn


atelierworkshop: thomson house, new zealand

atelierworkshop: thomson house, new zealandaxonometric


atelierworkshop: thomson house, new zealandfloor plan / level 0 : addition + mezzanine

1. entrance/sunroom

2. existing sitting room

3. kitchen

4. dining room

5. living room

6. bedroom

7. WC

8. guest bathroom

9. laundry

10. ensuite

11. wardrobe

12. main bedroom

13. garage

14. office

15. deck

16. dining terrace

17. neighboring house, part of complex


atelierworkshop: thomson house, new zealandfloor plan / level 0 : existingrailway cottages are organized linearly, with the kitchen and laundry at the back of the house.



project info:



project name: thomson house

main purpose: housing

design: bonnifait + giesen, atelierworkshop

location: new plymouth, nz