IDr. Karmel Contreras' Courage to Pursue 'The Dacha'

IDr. Karmel Contreras' Courage to Pursue 'The Dacha'




When I saw a picture of the interior of this house, I knew it was how I wanted my dream home to be.


“The Dacha”, Russian meaning for “a home away from home” is a luxury vacation home located in Wanaka, a resort town in the Otago region of the South Island of New Zealand. It was designed by Eliska Lewis Architects, an award-winning boutique architectural firm based in Wanaka.


The first thing I noticed when I saw a photo of the interiors is the breathtaking view outside, seen through the sliding glass doors. Surprisingly, after some research, I found out that the design was made out of the simple repeated brief of the owner, “It’s all about the view”. And Eliska Lewis Architects did exactly that.

The house interior is a combination of wood, stone, and large windows - creating warmth, bringing nature in and best of all, giving the residents or guests a view of Lake Wanaka and its surrounding mountains, 24 hours a day. The rooms were even laid out in a way that each can provide both privacy and a view. The high ceiling of the common area also adds to the grandness of the house. I love the warmth that timber-finished ceilings create. Automated clerestory windows were also used for cross ventilation and for more natural light to come in. Beauty and Functionality definitely go together. This how I want my home to be someday.


There’s a saying that goes “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them”. This is a dream worth pursuing. My dream home would most probably be smaller in scale. And being an Interior Designer myself, I know that beauty is just one of the several things to be considered- climate conditions, sustainability of materials, etc. all have to be considered. But these will not change the fact that The Dacha is definitely an inspiration I cannot ignore.


Follow IDr. Karmel T. Contreras on Instagram and check out her designs.

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