A Small Energy Efficient Guest House

This writers studio could make an awesome tiny house with some minor modifications. Designed by SMNG-A Architects, this 448-square-foot studio is an addition to an existing 1,100-square-foot house. It doubles both as a creative get-away for the owner and as a private space for any guests.


The form of the guest house/studio was inspired by Anselm Kiefer painting. It contains a chalk outline of a cube with the diagonally opposite corners chamfered. This concept has been applied to the retreat with one of the chamfered corners acting as the entry, and the other as a window.



The ground floor contains a two-story entry space with a sleeping nook, laundry, toilet and shower. A staircase to the upper level takes you to a sleeping loft. The studio has also been rotated 90-degrees around its foundation, cantilevering the corners just above ground level. 

It’s also quite an energy efficient structure; it contains high value insulation with a minimal thermal bridging, high performance windows and doors, a thermal mass lower level stone floor with radiant floor heating, and a rain screen skin on the exterior.

Via ArchDaily

Niall Burke

Structural engineer by day, tiny house designer by night. Niall has a keen interest in small spaces, green design, and sustainability. He started developing Humble Homes while studying for his masters degree in engineering. He is the founder and managing editor of Humble Homes.

1 Comment
  1. I am an artist-designer that has become fascinated with “living small”. But as I age, I am much more aware of the limited mobility that comes with age and therefore design has to take on a different dimension. As the population of the USA grows older, this most certainly will be an area of need for the future. I would like to collaborate with someone to design small houses for the older generation.