Tree Hotel / Tham & Videgård Arkitekter

© Åke E:son Lindman

Architects: Tham & Videgård Arkitekter
Location: Harads,
Chief Architects: Martin Videgård and Bolle Tham
Collaborators: Andreas Helgesson, Julia Gudiel Urbano, Mia Nygren
Client: Tree Hotel / Brittas Pensionat, Britta Lindvall and Kent Lindvall
Project Year: 2008-2010
Photographs: Åke E:son Lindman

floor plan
section render

A tree hotel in the far north of Sweden, near the small village of Harads, close to the polar circle.

© Åke E:son Lindman

A shelter up in the trees; a lightweight aluminium structure hung around a tree trunk, a 4x4x4 meters box clad in mirrored . The exterior reflects the surroundings and the sky, creating a camouflaged refuge. The interior is all made of plywood and the windows give a 360 degree view of the surroundings.

The construction also alludes to how man relates to nature, how we use high tech materials and products when exploring remote places in harsh climates (Gore-tex, Kevlar, composite materials, light weight tents etc).

© Åke E:son Lindman
exploded axon

The functions included provides for a living for two people; a double bed, a small bath room, a living room and a roof terrace. Access to the cabin is by a rope bridge connected to the next tree.

To prevent birds colliding with the reflective glass, a transparent ultraviolet colour is laminated into the glass panes which are visible for birds only.

Cite: "Tree Hotel / Tham & Videgård Arkitekter" 30 Jun 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 26 Nov 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=103393>
  • BK

    Awesome architecture! Really well thought out, almost flawless. I only wonder how practical it will be to keep the exterior surface clean. Even still, it’s worth a try given the result — the structure melts into the forest.

  • Jakov

    amazing. but it seems very annoying not to be able to open the window in such surroundings

    • Martin Hedin

      You do not want the mosquitos in, trust me

  • cl

    kind of trippy! do the anchors/brackets/clamps allow the tree to grow? I’m curious about the detriments to the tree with these types of projects.

  • jino

    Ask the tree

  • drewskiey

    Their approach is very compelling, attempting to dissolve the ‘figure’ into the ‘ground’. Though it’s a clever way to respond to its context, the sharp, glazed, metallic box still begs to be of its context: the forest. I think Tham & Videgård’s effort is commendable, but this project seems more successful at creating a big effect than a small affect. Just look at the movie Predator, Schwarzenegger blended in with the ground by covering himself in mud, whereas The Predator used his high-tech mirroring capabilities, and we all know how the movie ends.

    • Tom

      Are you seriously critiquing architecture by comparing it to Predator? Wow…

  • bkmy

    save the birds!

    • http://www.studiovert.net studiovert

      Yes, my first thoughts exactly…very symbolic in it’s beautiful cruelty.

      • Sean

        Due diligence…please fact check before speaking.
        “To prevent birds colliding with the reflective glass, a transparent ultraviolet colour is laminated into the glass panes which are visible for birds only.”

    • Mac

      You would still have squirrels crash into your shelter :)

      • Audric

        I’m thinking that people have fewer kind feelings towards squirrels than they do to birds. It may in fact enhance their appreciation for this project if it helps take out a squirrel or too.