Maricel Blum was at the checkout of a Denver grocery store when she spotted a modernist hut by architect Renée del Gaudio on the cover of a local magazine 5280. “She called immediately and insisted on coming,” reports del Gaudio, who works in his family’s glass and steel alpine house in Boulder. “Seeing my place, Maricel said,” You are designing a house for me. “”
Blum, a Colombian artist with bases in Bogotá and Key Biscayne, Florida, has made winter pilgrimages to Colorado since her college days in Boston. Over the years, she and her two children have tried all the ski resorts and loved Breckenridge so much that they have decided to build their own place at a startling distance. That’s how she arrived on her cliffside property, 45 minutes south (and less than two hours from Denver), in Fairplay’s almost windswept, almost undeveloped old mining town, at an altitude of 10,000 feet.
“I thought about building my own log house like everyone else here,” says Blum. “But when I saw this point of view, I said no, no, no, it must be completely open and all that.” Del Gaudio, who operates a woman’s own office, specializes, she says, in “an in-depth analysis of the region’s climate, landscape and history to create contemporary architecture that belongs here”. In other words, she was ready. To start the design process, she and her husband and their children set up a tent directly on the rocks on the one hectare site of Blum and spent the weekend getting to know the place. Join us for an overview of the striking, but also low-impact, energy-efficient results.
Photograph of David Lauer, courtesy of Renée del Gaudio Architecture.
“The gable roofs of the cabins and the rustic materials are reminiscent of the first shelters in the region,” explains del Gaudio. Note that the two structures are raised on steel pillars to minimize excavation and preserve the natural topography of the site.
The standing seam roof is made of galvanized steel in a matte finish: “It is a material called Bonderized which is made to take paint. I installed it raw and I left it as is because I liked that it was not shiny, ”says del Gaudio. “It was an experience here, but it’s now my favorite.”
The decking has been carefully constructed around a pine cone with ripe hairs that rises next to the house. Del Gaudio notes that the material is also non-slip and says that it has only one drawback: “it’s horrible barefoot”.
Cabins have closed and open cell foam insulation, and in summer, cross breezes and ceiling fans keep things cool (no air conditioning). Del Gaudio has also pre-wired the structures with photovoltaic panels, so that 100% of the electricity can be supplied by solar energy – Blum says that at the moment the house is not used enough to justify the installation complete system.
The sinks and twin faucets come from Ikea and the bathtub is the Eaton model from Signature Hardware: “It’s acrylic, which makes it more affordable, but unlike ceramic, it doesn’t retain heat . ” The tub filler is Lethe from Signature Hardware. The toilets are tucked away in their own compartment across the hall.
Here are three more of our favorite modern cabins: