Wait… This Is a Boathouse?! It's More Livable than My NY Apartment!

Here’s a sweet little tiny house swoon for all of you tiny home addicts who can’t get enough of the tiny home craze. This is Lakeside Pavilion, an absolutely adorable converted boathouse in Orono Minnesota. When, oh when, can we move in?! Well, actually, we probably can’t due to zoning laws, but looking at the pictures is pretty amazing, too. The Lakeside Pavilion was actually inspired by zoning laws, if you can believe it. It started out as a mere storage shed, and when the property owners sought to expand or possibly even move it, they met with a whole pile of zoning law red tape.So, in the face of all the zoning restricions, Christine Albertsson and Todd Hanson of Albertsson Hansen Architecture took matters into their own capable hands and turned the wee building into a recreation pavilion. They re-roofed it using proper wood shingles and added a few new windows and doors. With a little bit of whimsy, they made the tiny house look like a cute little English Cottage. They also hired some very capable landscapers from Close Landscape Architecture to turn the surrounding grounds into an English-style garden, decorated with boating paraphernalia. It’s grand!

While the main house sits up above in the beautiful bluffs, the wee one sits down here by the water and a lovely wooden stairway is the bridge that connects them. Imagine walking down from the big house, gazing at the lake and the gardens below. Imagine going for a swim and then warming up in the pavilion afterwards by the wood-burning fireplace, eating a delicious meal made in the cozy open-concept kitchen. Or perhaps you come down here in the morning and pick up a snack for your day out of time on a boat on the beautiful water. This lovely little micro house is a treasure to be sure. But yes, it’s a boathouse not a sleep house and you won’t see any bedrooms here, either, although it would be a sweet and cozy place to stay overnight! The lovely warm wood you see everywhere is glorious Douglas Fir. Hanging storage cabinets once offer storage space for boating necessities like life jackets, rain boots, and even fishing gear, and the indoor counters are totally aligned with the outdoor ones, allowing for “through service” to customers who line up out on the deck.

Christine and Todd from Albertsson Hansen Architecture have a can-do, positive attitude, and they love to brighten up the world, one architectural piece at a time. They put so much thought, effort, and care into their designs, as you can see from this one simple – yet elegant – example. Whether it’s remodeling that you need, or add-ons, renovations, or even brand new houses built from scratch, they can help get you started. Chris and Todd can do anything they set their minds to, that’s for sure, but they particularly specialize in retreat houses – again, as you can see from the Lakeside Pavilion! The tiny house craze is on the rise, with beautiful little micro homes like this one popping up all over the place. We can’t get enough of these gorgeous little houses, made with so much creativity, efficiency, and space-saving possibilities in mind. In this day and age, tiny houses just make sense! Whether it’s a converted shed, boathouse, or a tiny house built from scratch – it just doesn’t matter. What matters is that people are becoming more and more concerned with the environment, the economy, and are wanting to make better choices about their lives. Living tiny means living responsibly, and that’s good enough for us.


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