Norwegian Retreat Designed for Extreme Weather

Completed in 2014, and called The Rabot Tourist Cabin, this retreat is one of many offered by the Norwegian Trekking Association. The cabin has been designed by JVA, and it’s set not far from the Okstindan glacier in Northern Norway, on a site that’s 1,200 meters (3,937 feet) above sea level.


Rabot Tourist Cabin - JVA - Norway - Retreat - Exterior - Humble Homes

The building itself measure just 70 square meters in size (753 square feet) and, given the local weather conditions, it has been designed for strong winds and heavy storms. However, if you can put up with (or avoid) the weather, the tourist cabin features amazing views of the surrounding mountains and glaciers.


Rabot Tourist Cabin - JVA - Norway - Retreat - Living Area - Humble Homes

Robot Tourist Cabin is accessible only by foot, or skis – there are no roads that lead up to it. In case of emergency i.e. the destruction of the main cabin, there is a secondary rescue hut found 50 meters (164 feet) from the main building. According to the architect, the cabin has been built utilising local craftsmen and materials.


Rabot Tourist Cabin - JVA - Norway - Retreat - Kitchen & Dining Area - Humble Homes

The exterior of the building is designed to be distinctive, but also in harmony with its surroundings. The sharp edges and form are meant to mimic the jagged edges of the mountain tops in the background. Due to the behaviour of wind and snow, there are no protruding elements. The bulky-looking chimneys were inspired by the topography, and allowed them to avoid using steel cables for support.

Rabot Tourist Cabin - JVA - Norway - Retreat - Exterior Winter - Humble Homes

Despite its rather small floor plan, the cabin is able to accommodate up to 30 people. The dining room and living room at set on opposite ends of the building, separated by a kitchen and storage rooms. Both the dining room and the living room feature amazing panoramic views of the landscape. To keep warm, there are no less than two wood-burning stoves.

Rabot Tourist Cabin - JVA - Norway - Retreat - Floor Plan - Humble Homes

There are no cable lines running electricity to the cabin. Instead it’s generated onsite through a photovoltaic array. Smartly, the cabin the two main areas of the cabin can be sectioned off from one another to improve heat efficiency. The cabin has been named after Charles Rabot, a French glaciologist and geographer who is known to have explored the mountain of Nordland.

For more cabins and retreats check out this amazing flat-pack structure from Germany by Allergutendinge. Or this Finnish family’s small cabin getaway. See all retreats.

Via ArchDaily
Photos: Svein Arne Brygfjeld

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. I note that there are 2 wood-burning stoves in the building, but no trees on the landscape. ???? Were to get the wood?