FLOAT studio completes 'outside house': two pavilions integrated in the maui landscape

FLOAT studio completes 'outside house': two pavilions integrated in the maui landscape

FLOAT studio, an architectural research and design practice, has completed the ‘outside house’, a pair of pavilions that straddle a three-hundred year old lava flow in maui, hawaii. the two small dwellings — one enclosed and the other outdoor — are intended to shape a close relationship with the landscape and natural setting.

all images by oliver koning



inspired by FLOAT’s watershed studio (built in 2009), the client (a land conservationist) requested a project that would reinforce her connection with the sub-tropical landscape of upcountry maui. FLOAT designed two facing pavilions which provide distinct conditions from which to inhabit the land. the enclosed pavilion, called the ‘mauka’, is a tiny detached bedroom that faces up towards the lava flow and sunrise. the sheltered dwelling provides privacy as well as shade for daytime reading and napping.

the client requested a project that would reinforce her connection with the land



with its light wood-frame construction, the ‘mauka’ pavilion rests above the ground on four concrete piers. the structure is clad in reflective film on the north and south sides, and western red cedar on the east and west. screened vents along the base of the north and south walls allow a comfortable amount of air movement and indirect light in the single room, while polycarbonate sheathing protects the roof and vents from the regular island rains.

the outdoor pavilion, named ‘makai’, is a pre-fabricated, roofed platform



the outdoor pavilion, named ‘makai’, is a pre-fabricated, roofed platform that shelters a deck, outdoor kitchen, and hidden outdoor shower. ‘makai’ provides open views of the pacific and the island of kahoolawe. the galvanized steel structure was hand-carried, assembled by hand, and anchored to the ground with four threaded rods. the decking and cladding are milled from juniper, a tree that is harvested to protect ground water and habitat in the pacific northwest.

a deck, outdoor kitchen, and hidden outdoor shower are included within the outdoor pavilion



‘the outside house is intended to demonstrate the client’s eco-centric worldview’, explains principal of FLOAT studio, erin moore. ‘a perspective that is rooted the hawaiian concept of aloha aina, or love of the land’. erin moore is also an associate professor in the architecture department and in the environmental studies program at the university of oregon. moore collaborated with structural designer, mark donofrio, an assistant professor at the university of oregon to achieve the project.

a hidden shower is one of the amenities included within the space

the enclosed pavilion provides a more intimate space for reading and napping

the structure was designed to be easily dismounted



project info: 



products: snow peak take chairs, curious maui chair, western red cedar and juniper cladding and decking, kohler sink, feeney cable rail. makai and mauka tables by float.
fabricators: jas steel, woodinville, wa; valmont coatings, tualatin, or; asf ironworks, eugene, or.
contractor: dave sharp
photo credit: olivier koning
designer: erin moore
structural designer: mark donofrio

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