The latest addition to Islayâ€™s increasingly rich array of self-catering accommodation is a first for the island: a beachfront house clad entirely in larch. The one-bedroom property, designed by Skye-based architects Dualchas and constructed by local builder Colin Logan, is an annex to Beach Cottage at Kilnaughton Bay, on the Oa by Port Ellen.
Like the whitewashed existing house, which was completed in 2007 and has become one of the most popular holiday homes on the island, the new building is a 1.5-storey structure that features floor-to-ceiling glass walls. Inside and out however it is quite different with the larch exterior complemented by Douglas Fir panels on the interior walls. Grey stone floor tiles heated by an air source heat pump, a poured concrete chimneybreast and external decking add to the modern, Scandinavian feel. Continue reading.....
The inspiration for the project however was decidedly traditional with architect Laura McInnes taking her cue from the common Islay combination of white-painted farmhouse and wooden outbuildings surrounded by stone walls. â€œWe were aiming for a design that was distinctive but responsive to its coastal setting,â€ she explained. â€œWe looked to reinterpret local building traditions while providing high-end living accommodation for visitors. The materials reflect those used in a traditional rural steading. The larch will fade to silver grey and dissolve into the landscape, helped by the buildingâ€™s sunken position behind stone-faced retaining walls and turf â€“ reflecting the Scottish countryside but with a modern and distinctive twist.â€
Owner Angus MacKinnon added: â€œI wanted to do something different and Iâ€™m really happy with the way itâ€™s worked out. Laura and Colin Logan and his team have done a great job. The feel of the house is very modern but it is also very cosy. I think wooden buildings look great in a Scottish, seaside setting and itâ€™s been great that we have been able to use local stone quarried on site to finish everything off with lovely dry stone walls.â€ For more information take a look at www.islay-beach-cottage.co.uk