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Olson Kundig Berkshire Residence

This Christmas were fortunate enough to spend time with our friend Jacob in Dover, Tasmania, Australia. Originally we had met Jacob when we booked his Quarry Hill Lookout holiday home (featured on Total Design Reviews) around this time last year. He is a very amicable bloke so we stayed in touch and he kindly invited us to spend the festive season with him. He also wanted to show us how his cookery school was progressing. Certainly we were impressed with the overall result especially the industrial style kitchen with a bespoke cantilever bench. This was co designed with local craftsman Mark, who is also in the process of creating his own cantilever house.

Presently I have written three books with an architectural component (Modern Masters, Luxury Design for Living, Australian Architecture) all featuring cantilevered homes. To achieve this illusion is a great modern engineering feat that always provokes positive attention. A phenomenally great example is Olson Kundig’s extraordinary Berkshire Residence, which is located in Massachusetts, United States.

Originally I was going to write about Olson Kundig’s awe inspiring Cabin at Longbranch (after I saw a post on LinkedIn) but I changed my mind when I saw their Berkshire Residence. This wonderful property is set on an expansive 300-acre plot so principal designer Tom Kundig had to first establish the perfect site. The main level of of the house is elevated 10 feet above the ground and cantilevered in two directions. This maximises the tranquil forest views and also regulates the temperature (snow in winter, humidity for summer) all year round.

Internally the design theme is exceptionally tasteful and is typical example of the properties I feature on Total Design Reviews. Materials like glass, timber, concrete and steel have been used to the maximum effect. However, this home doesn’t appear sterile or too commercial because the owners have furnished with a range of signature vintage pieces from different eras. They also have some beautiful original artwork that provides the perfect finishing touch.

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