LOOKING for somewhere special to escape to for a romantic holiday or a family getaway? Then look no further than the west coast of the Isle of Skye and the delightfully named - and designed - Hen House.
Nestled into the hillside overlooking Loch Bracadale on the west coast of the Isle of Skye, sits a wonderfully eye-catching architectural curiosity.
Lovingly dubbed the Hen House by locals, the simple timber construction was the brain child of Rural Design Architects (who also designed and built Fiskavaig Studio) and was created to not only serve as a holiday home but also complement the local croft house and farm buiilidng vernacular and the rugged nature of the surrounding coastal landscape.
Ideal for honeymooners or a small family getaway, the holiday house, which is just 72 m2 (775 ft2), was constructed using locally sourced Scottish larch boards and timber and maintains a rustic feel akin to the small farms and barns usually located on the island. Its design deliberately narrows to the north, reducing its surface area, and leans into the weather, reducing its exposure to the high winds that drive in off the sea.
Described as “A perfect holiday rental for couples, small families or close friends”, the Hen House comfortably sleeps up to four people and has ample space.
The small building is kept warm and cosy by its Morso wood burning stove, thick walls and excellent insulation, no matter the weather outside. The interior is spacious and consists of a large living area complete with a soaring ceiling; separate toilet and bathing areas; two large double bedrooms (one on the first floor and the second on a mezzanine), a small kitchen and a small reading room while internet, wifi and a TV come included.
The modern facilities such as the state of the art Swedish waterless toilet are designed to make minimum impact on the surrounding country side, employing efficient use of water and energy resources to offer maximum comfort while reducing wastage.
Perhaps the most striking feature and one of its biggest draws, was the smart decision by the designers to maximise the location by using wide windows to not only let more of the light in but also to connect with the stunning views that surround the house. Indeed the entire north facing wall gives way to a storey and a half tall window that provides a panoramic view of Loch Bracadale.
The house has appeared on several television programmes including Grand Designs and BBC2 programme ‘The House that 100k built’ and is set to be used by Volvo a location for its marketing this year, it has also received special recognition for its unique design in 2010 becoming the first recipient of the Saltire award.
Things to do
Not only can you walk directly down to the sea and cliffs from the front door of the house, but the Holiday Home is also located close to the village of Carbost and the Cuillin mountains. Walkers and climbers will be delighted with the challenges and breathtaking views offered by the Cuillins, whilst those seeking a more leisurely stroll can head to the local beach.
Eagles are frequently seen in this area, as well as hares and roe deer, while otters and seals can often be spotted frolicking in the bay.
Visit the world famous Talisker Distillery for a dram (or two), before heading further afield to search for the mysterious fairy pools at Glen Brittle.
Isle of Skye
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