This fully sustainable prefab cottage by Broadhurst Architects comes in three sizes—the smallest has just 175 square feet of indoor space with an outdoor area that's almost as large. Our favorite part of the eco-friendly getaway? A retractable window wall that opens to let in a soothing lake breeze.
Adjacent to both a lake and a vineyard, this tiny boathouse really didn't need much more to recommend it, but its owners still chose to make it extra homey and equipped it with a fireplace and antique board floors—all in a 20'x20' space.
The MicroHouse's diminutive size—just 96 square feet—was determined by the maximum allowed for construction without a permit. To make the most of the living space, the designer and owner included a loft area for sleeping; a large connected deck extends the living area outdoors.
These glass structures by designer Linda Bergroth are as minimal as a lake house can be. A shed behind the head of the bed provides storage so you can stick to the basics inside. Here, the simplicity of the glass cabin is accentuated by its idyllic surroundings—we imagine it would be hard not to relax.
While many of the lake houses on our list favor extra comfort, this minimalist cabin by Andersson-Wise Architects is better suited to those who don’t mind roughing it just a little. Though equipped with a small kitchen, toilet, and electricity, the cabin lacks heating and air conditioning.
The Hen House
The simple wooden exterior of this lake house by Rural Design Architects allows it to blend in with its country surroundings. Looking for a rustic getaway? You’re in luck—the award-winning Hen House is available for vacation rentals.
In the Lake
Subject to strict regulations, this house was developed to occupy one of many tiny islands in a lake in the Netherlands. The exterior was kept as basic as possible to focus the spotlight on the picturesque surroundings. After seeing how well received the Island House was, 2by4-architects developed plans for a prefab version.
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