The Pohutukawa House designed by Matthew Gribben Architecture is located in Piha, New Zealand, stands at the coastal foreshore of a wild beach on a site almost overgrown with mature Pohutukawa trees. The positions of the existing trees and their twisted limbs have been closely mapped and the house has been designed to occupy the residual space that the trees have left (beside and under the trees).
The interior volumes of the house take maximum advantage of the geometry to provide an intense relationship with the landscape, while framing projected views of the beach and the looming presence of Lion Rock. The capacity to project views throughout the ground floor living areas allows privacy for the inhabitants, without restriction on access to sun and or shelter from the trees, according to the season. The material palette reinforces the reading of the house as a monolith directly shaped by the presence of the trees.