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Volumetric Alchemy in Kihei: Death to the Tiny House Movement?

Small is the New Tiny

I love tiny houses on so many levels. I think they are springboards for innovation and experimental canvases for understanding how to marry the needs of the average human with a structure governed by rigid constraints. But I love tiny houses from a safe distance, the way I might love watching an extreme surfing video or an air show. I’m not sure I’d actually want to live in a tiny house other than maybe as a weekend getaway.

What you see below, however, is a truly sustainable and stylish residence that sacrifices nothing in terms of space and/or livability, and it accomplishes all this with an interior area of 580 square feet.

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Niko Preovolos of Dwellingpoint Design has fired up his keen sense of style and immaculate attention to detail and brought these disciplines to the realization of this artful guest cottage in Kihei, Maui. There is nothing cramped, and nothing small about the space. The ceilings soar, and vertical space has been generously used to make up for a small footprint in a design move I’ve defined as “Volumetric Alchemy.”

What was originally going to be 1,000 square feet ended up having to be reduced to 580 square feet for a number of reasons relating to zoning and permitting. Often the best architectural ideas come out of frustrating governmental limitations and this project is no exception.

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The House Lives & Breathes with Light & Comfort

No complicated unfoldings of tables, countertops, or toilets are required in this small house. Even the beloved (or is it despised?) Murphy bed idea was tossed in favor of a permanent bed cozified with a beautifully finished pony wall. Niko reasoned that most Murphy beds never get put away during the day, so why not design the space the way humans work. And so we have a permanent bed cleverly and partially hidden from the main living space.

This property is not for sale, but Niko from Dwellingpoint can help you bring some of this fabulousness into form. For a full slideshow visit Modern On Maui’s Feature Article.

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Not Too Small For a Hallway

Hallways are a luxury from a bygone era. Some may say they are wasted space, but I love how a hallway grants separation and distance between two spaces. Even this very small house has a hallway flanked with a cheeky mandarin “locker room storage wall” that leads into the private bathroom with its vertically oriented elegance.

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Good Design Improves the Bottom Line…

I thought I had a great sense of style, but the minute I walked into this house I saw clearly my own limitations and realized that there’s really no substitute for true talent. Bravo Niko – you are a magician. I’ll stick to what I do best, which is represent buyers and sellers in the Maui Real Estate Market.  

Liam S. Ball, R(B)
808.280.7809
liamball@hawaiilife.com

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Tobi Fisher

October 9, 2015

Aloha Liam,

Loved your post about the great guest cottage. It is so stylish and functional, an incredible use of space. Our Maui real estate is so valuable that it makes sense to really think things through in order to make the most of your space and money. I would definitely recommend the architect and designer to clients.

Mahalo
Tobi Fisher

Tobi Fisher

October 9, 2015

Aloha Liam,

Loved your post about the great guest cottage. It is so stylish and functional, an incredible use of space. Our Maui real estate is so valuable that it makes sense to really think things through in order to make the most of your space and money. I would definitely recommend the architect and designer to clients.

Mahalo
Tobi Fisher

Liam

October 9, 2015

Thanks Tobi. Yes this house really gave me a lot to think about. Building smaller spaces makes for a much better quality of life – especially when the outdoors can be enjoyed so easily. Niko is a real talent!

Liam

October 9, 2015

Thanks Tobi. Yes this house really gave me a lot to think about. Building smaller spaces makes for a much better quality of life – especially when the outdoors can be enjoyed so easily. Niko is a real talent!

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