Fale Marker


110 sqm

Great Barrier Island

Dune Dormer

In the tradition of a Pacific a fale or simple whare occupying a coastal site, this concept draws its form from a simple pitched roof sheltering an open living pavilion. However, from the water or the beach, its silhouette is evocative of a harbour marker, upright on the dune, guiding its seafaring client’s home.
It’s owners asked for this whare to be a modestly scaled holiday bach with 3 bedrooms and social family gatherings space. The waterfront site occupies the land by the side of the road where ocean views are obstructed by the foredune – a common constraint of Medland’s Beach.
Our solution was to connect living with the land and sleeping to the sky. Unlike a fale we have placed bedrooms in the ‘attic’, connecting each respective sleeping zone with either the ocean’s horizon or the bush. This released the entire ground floor for flexible, communal living. A boat is tucked below the floor boards as the descending topography allowed.
The whare’s public and immediate location to the road edge dictated screens at both levels to moderate privacy and sun. Lower-level screens slide away while upper screens pivot forward like wings of a bird or kites in the sky.


2022 NZIA Auckland Architecture Award