Situated amidst the steep forested hillsides of Hardangerfjord above Odda, lies two towering structures by the Stavanger, Norway-based Helen & Hard architectural firm. Dubbed the Woodnest treehouses, the construction of these residencies exist in a direct response to the topography and conditions of the site itself.
With a goal of facilitating a unique spatial experience through connecting the “ordinary and extraordinary sensations of climbing and exploring trees”, the Helen & Hard Woodnest treehouses successfully embody the necessary requirements of a nature-focused dwelling.
Inextricably crafted from nature, each treehouse is suspended 5-6m above the forest floor and fastened with a steel collar to the individual trunk of a living pine tree. Accessible via a small timber bridge, which leads off the ground, into the structure and up in to the tree, each Woodnest apartment measures an estimated 15m2 and is fully equipped with four dedicated sleeping spaces, a bathroom, a kitchen area and a communal lounge area.
Boasting breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding lush forests and mountainous landscape, the Woodnest treehouses were inspired by the Norwegian cultural traditions of vernacular timber architecture, which is a practice which dates as far back as to the time of Vikings. Through combining an old material with new techniques, Norwegian vernacular timber architecture is not only highly sustainable and aesthetically pleasing, but also encourages architects to experiment and maximize the potential of their materials.
Structurally supported by the tree trunk itself, and formed from a series of radial glu-laminated timber ribs, the untreated natural timber shingles encase the volume to create a protective skin around the building, which will weather over time to merge and blend with the natural patina of the surrounding forest.
Currently available for booking, the Woodnest treehouses are an accommodation that has been open throughout the Covid 19 crisis, thanks to its optimal privacy and socially distanced apartments. Charging anywhere between 2800NOK – 7600NOK, and above for additional guests, every Woodnest treehouse promises convenient travel to-and-fro its neighboring town of Odda, alongside a multitude of adventures and sights along Norway’s second longest fjord.