When Box™ started out many years ago, we were young and innovative and our idea was to introduce a number of standard plans.
We could then tweak and personalise these plans – basically, use them over and over again to make people’s design-and-build dreams a reality.
Box™ has now designed over 250 architectural houses and you would have thought that we could start repeating ourselves. Not so. Sometimes the best-laid plans go slightly awry and we’re always amazed at how rarely we look at a site and can say, “Hey, design number 147 would fit perfectly here”. The thing is that every site and project has so many unique variables: access, gradient, orientation, planning controls, budget, brief, outlook, neighbours, and site stability to name a few. It is seldom possible to take an existing design and plonk it on a different site so that it works perfectly for that particular owner.
Nevertheless when clients look through our portfolio of design-and-build projects, there are definitely a few favourites that keep popping up, house plans that form the basis of the footprint, of which we’ve designed some variants.
The one thing they have in common is that they are petite and tightly planned with no wasted inches. We also know from the clients who live in them say that they ‘work’ with a capital W.
Here are a selection of plans that clients often refer to.
This house was originally designed as a bach on a hill with a stupendous view out towards the ‘Hen & Chicks’. It’s a really simple getaway that works just as well for a couple’s retreat as it does for a family. The bedroom block is separated from the living zone but connected by a large covered, sheltered deck, perfect for spilling out onto in the heat of summer.
The other nice touch is ply linings right up to the ceiling, which lends an informal ‘holiday’ feel. We’ve often thought of this design as a modern version of the archetypal Kiwi bach.
Box™ has designed and built a couple of these now, including a couple of variants’ because it’s a plan that proves popular for urban infill projects.
What amazes us is the number of different configurations you can have. One house has the main living area on the top floor to capture sea views, another has a less open-plan layout with the living zone on the bottom floor. You can even squeeze in up to four good-sized bedrooms, or have three bedrooms and a ‘flexi’ room.
This is one of our original ‘standard plans’ and it still attracts a lot of interest, particularly as a bach. Given its layout or ‘mass’, it can get a bit tricky if trying to make it work on a slope, so is best suited to flatter sites.
The big attraction with this house design is the large, covered deck adjacent to the living area, which effectively doubles the living space in summer. We’ve had a lot of fun with variants of this one too. Definitely a Box™ team fave.
This house design won us a NZ Institute of Architects award for Small Homes, and was one of our very first builds. It can work on both a flat and sloping site and is extremely space-efficient with a large garage and storage area.
It also gives a number of options from three bedroom to two bed plus ‘flexi’. We also have a fourth bedroom ‘master suite’ add-on that forms part of the package.