New Forest House – Southern England by PAD Studio

The New Forest House is an eco-gem, a modern dream home nestled within preserved woodlands, heaths and open grassy spaces in southern England. Hampshire-based architects PAD Studio was assigned this project which maintains a restrained footprint on the vast, verdant landscape which embraces it.

At just under 1,300 square feet, this modern dwelling replaces a former cottage, and sits on 18.5 acres of the New Forest National Park. Three bedrooms, a living room, dining room and kitchen seem plentiful, especially with the uninterrupted views of the rolling land appreciated from every space. A basement with media room and utility storage, as well as separate guest quarters, are also incorporated into this humble floorplan.

A green roof, solar power, grey water system and recycled earth berm all contribute to the sustainability of this low-energy structure. Materials such as the Douglar Fir timber were locally-sourced, giving back to the forestal surroundings.

Perhaps most ingenious is the reflective swimming pond, a “natural pool” built by excavating the ground at the rear of the house, then adding rocky embankments and wooden docks around it. Such an innovative preservation of natural resources for recreational purpose!

Sliding glass doors open to the outside, while moveable wood screens help deflect direct sunlight as needed. Clerestory windows as well as a voluminous glass roof area allow natural light to fill the living areas more than adequately.

Interiors are bright and cheery, with a neutral color palette mirroring the beech tree woodlands including the indigenous, horizontal wood paneling throughout. A floating wood-burning fireplace bestows a modern vibe upon the living room, which is mixed with rustic woods, distressed leather and soft textiles. The shared space features a raised kitchen of white and pale wood, with a simple and smooth wooden picnic bench dining table. Bedrooms are relaxed and sparsely furnished, though manage to exude an elegance derived from the beautiful, raw woods and cascading natural light from various glazing.

Built with sustainability, durability and eco-energy in mind, The New Forest House is a modern “green” dream home melding seamlessly with its preserved natural environment.


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