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Glass Cabin by Mjölk architekti


The cabin has stood here, in a meadow in the Jizera Mountains, for over a hundred years. The world around it has changed since it was built from the timber and granite of the surrounding forests. Two world wars had swept through Europe, the Czech Republic through the dark period of communism and the frenzied post-revolution years. The world has become faster and more connected, but some things remain the same.


We refurbished the house with the future in mind, but at the same time, we didn’t feel like letting go of all the wonderful, wild and unwieldy aspects of its past. It was essential that we didn’t strip the cabin of its intangible soul, the fragrance of the timber, and the stark chill of the granite blocks. We kept what we could. What remained, we’ve complemented with a new quality that doesn’t seek to compete with the past.


The oven and the stove in the sitting room became the heart of the cabin’s layout. Walking around the chimney is like spinning a time machine back and forth between the past and the future. It takes a second to go through a century. I zip through the old sitting room, slide past the staircase to the first floor, slam the door, and I’m in the living space that was built in place of the original shed. It’s a spectacle.


A lightweight transparent structure filled with glass panes defines a slightly sunken spacious living room that combines a modern kitchen and plenty of free space. The rather unusual layout captivates a multitude of vibes and atmospheres. The glossy brass-clad ceiling reflects each shift in the outdoor ambiance. From the kitchen, I climb a few more steps and back into that familiar Jizera cabin.


The downstairs area has been fitted out with the essentials that are part of any cabin. The stone bathroom built between the original walls is a cleansing machine. The water from the showers hits the concrete islets and vanishes below the perforated floor grating. White steam is condensation on the stones, over which the spring waters of the nearby Jizera River may once have flowed.


From the entrance corridor, we climb to the first floor on subtle steel stairs past a round skylight that illuminates the entire space. The old beams smell of history and above is the original thatched roof, which we managed to preserve. It offers a glimpse of what the house looked like before we took over. Where the planks of the original floor could not be salvaged, there is now a glass floor. The glazed elements replacing the decayed wood link the interior space into a surprising ensemble and provide unexpected views throughout the house.


The upper floor is dedicated to slumber. Four bedrooms offer the snoozers a wide range of experiences. The glass-walled master bedroom is a charmer. At night, in the hours when the house falls silent and you’re drifting into a dream, it becomes the captain’s bridge. The round skylight shines like the moon over the sea, and the sailors in bed have the whole ocean of the interior at their fingertips.


The large children’s bedroom is also a playroom, where all the children’s activities can be moved, should the weather outside turn rough. If there’s any place for mischief, it’s here. For the other two bedrooms, the classic rooms of the mountain cabin have been reimagined. They’re the places where the sun tickles you in the morning and you say: “God, it’s so good to sleep here!”



We furnished the interior in a subtle way. It concludes the overall philosophy of our approach to refurbishment. We didn’t want to forcefully place pieces of global design into the house. Most of the new equipment consists of original furniture and accessories that we designed ourselves. They reflect the quality of the handmade work of the craftsmen from the Jizera Mountains who still live and work here. The new pieces are complemented by old furniture lovingly selected by the clients themselves.


Architects: Mjölk architekti; Area : 239 m²; Year : 2020; Photographs :BoysPlayNice;