Dune House takes measured approach to energy-efficiency


September 2, 2013

Dune House is located on the crest of a sand dune in North Holland (Photo: Erik Boschman)

Dune House is located on the crest of a sand dune in North Holland (Photo: Erik Boschman)

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Owners of Dutch architecture firm Min2, Jetty and Maarten Min, decided to build themselves a new combined house and studio. Since architecture is the pair's trade, you'd expect the resulting property to impress, and this indeed transpired: Dune House combines an attractive blend of traditional and modern Dutch styling with a measured approach to energy-efficiency, which includes a smart ventilation system, and energy usage monitor.

Dune House is located in North Holland, on the crest of a sand dune overlooking the coast, with the sea just 300 m (985 ft) away. The property measures a total of 350 sq m (3,767 sq ft), spread over three floors. During construction, Jetty and Maarten were keen to choose building and finishing materials which would visually complement the local surroundings, and so British clay tiles, bark-covered Douglas fir trunks, and exposed timber lend an unfinished rural charm.

Inside, the ground floor of Dune House features storage areas, a bathroom, library, office, and a conference room. The entire space is designed for flexible use, and the inner walls are made of light materials such as MDF, so as to allow adjustments if necessary. The upper two floors contain the actual living quarters for the couple, and afford the best views of the coast.

Dune House also sports a energy-efficient technology in the form of well-insulated windows, and an on-demand smart ventilation system which offers fresh air when required. There's also an air source heat pump that powers the underfloor heating and hot water.

Dune House is still a work-in-progress, and rather than come to a final decision on what energy-reducing tech should be employed, the architects installed an energy-monitoring system to keep track of all energy usage. From here, the pair will eventually decide which types of technology to implement (solar power or wind turbines, for example), in order to minimize the home's energy footprint.

Source: Min2 via Inhabitat

About the Author
Adam Williams Adam scours the globe from his home in North Wales in order to bring the best of innovative architecture and sustainable design to the pages of Gizmag. Most of his spare time is spent dabbling in music, tinkering with old Macintosh computers and trying to keep his even older VW bus on the road. All articles by Adam Williams

The pictures (esp. #1 & #2) show a large upper story window ensconced into the extended roof. There does not appear to be any gutter or diverter over that roof, so when it rains, the window will be flooded. This is good design?


piperTom, by eliminating guttering you are reducing maintenance and avoiding a potential for decay, also the sills appear to be angled to avoid pooling. This is better than good design. It's brilliant.


Great house, typical of the innovation and sheer quality of the new housing in North Holland. We could do with some more of this sort of thing in Wales instead of all those horrid inefficient bungalows, but I think that UK planning practices and building regulations hold us back. Regulation enacted to drive standards up eventually restricts improvements in quality and innovation unless it evolves with new materials, techniques and economic & environmental changes.

Doug MacLeod
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