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Travel

Small comfort: Tiny houses for an Auckland mini-break

NZ Herald
By: Petrina Darrah
Not for sale

Whether you want to try out the tiny house lifestyle or just book a uniquely different Airbnb, spending a few nights in a tiny house is an escape from the everyday.

Embracing simpler, minimalistic living that is close to nature, a tiny house holiday is a chance to get away from it all. These homes highlight simple pleasures, such as enjoying a view, watching a crescendo sunset, sipping a glass of wine by a roaring fire, or opening bedroom doors to the sight of native bush.

Simple doesn't always mean basic, though; between features such as fireplaces, hot tubs and open-air bathtubs, tiny houses don't stint on luxury. They make the most of small spaces with meticulously thought out interiors and cleverly maximised outdoor areas.

If you're curious enough to try a tiny house for the weekend, why not test the waters with one of these Airbnb properties in the Auckland region; all of them can be found within an hour's drive of the central city.

The Snug, Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
The Snug, Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

The Snug, Piha

You'll find The Snug close to Piha, surrounded by subtropical Waitakere forest. Cosy wooden interiors immediately invite you to settle in and discover small surprises such as a collection of books and a stash of organic tea and fruit. With a book and cup of tea in hand, the deck is the perfect place to relax. In the afternoon, the hammock is the ideal location for soaking up the sunshine.

This tiny house has been designed with a slow pace in mind. There's no phone reception, so you can switch off from the busy pace of life and simply relax.

The Snug is also eco-friendly and features a composting toilet and all-natural cleaning products.

The Tiny, Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
The Tiny, Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

The Tiny, Piha

A tiny home hideaway set in native bush near Piha, this house is light and airy inside, with minimalist decor that helps create a sense of peace and calm. With wooden interiors and a north-facing location, you'll enjoy sunshine during the day and warmth in the evening. To add to the tranquillity, a selection of pure essential oils and a diffuser are provided.

The outdoor space is as enticing as the inside, with a bathtub built into the deck, a Weber barbecue and an outdoor lounge suite.

This tiny house sleeps four, and with separate sleeping lofts, it can accommodate a small family.

Pierre of Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
Pierre of Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

Pierre of Piha

Fondly nicknamed "Doris Jean", this tiny house is located in a prime spot above Piha Beach. From almost anywhere within this perfectly formed home, you'll have expansive views of the Tasman Sea.

A small bastion of comfort in the rugged environs of the wild West Coast, this tiny house is the perfect winter retreat. On cool evenings, cosy up next to the wood burner and watch sunsets or storms captivate the coast. In the mornings you'll be serenaded by boisterous tūī, while at night you can gaze at the stars at night from the skylight above the bed in the loft bedroom. Its eco-friendly credentials include a composting toilet.

As it is split over two levels, the living area in the Doris Jean is surprisingly large and the sleeping spaces private.

As well as the king-sized bed, there is a small single bedroom inside and an extra cabin right next to the tiny house that sleeps an additional three people, so you can fit in up to six guests in total.

Clevedon Tiny House. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
Clevedon Tiny House. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

Clevedon Tiny House

The Clevedon tiny house is an example of how small, utilitarian spaces can be transformed into stylish living areas. Starting life as an implement shed, this tiny house has been renovated to create a retreat from the pace of the city.

Clevedon is only around 40 minutes from central Auckland but has a delightfully rural feel to it. This tiny house blends into the landscape and makes the most of the surrounding views. You'll have the best vantage point from the hot tub; settle in to watch sunsets cast a glow over the countryside.

In the house itself there are plenty of modern quirks. The bathroom has been customised with overhead speakers so you can soundtrack your shower, and a drop-down projector means you can enjoy movies from the comfort of the king bed.

As an added bonus, the Clevedon tiny house is dog friendly.

La Casita del Mar, Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
La Casita del Mar, Piha. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

La Casita del Mar, Piha

La Casita del Mar, which translates as the little house by the sea, is located between bush and beach at Piha. This tiny house has big views and the balcony gives you a front-row sunset seat.

The Casita is elegantly furnished and comfortable. Packing a lot into a compact space, it is equipped with all the modern amenities, including a bathroom with underfloor heating and a kitchen with an oven and a full-size fridge.

Matakana Fantail Retreat. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
Matakana Fantail Retreat. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

Matakana Fantail Retreat

Found only 10 minutes from Matakana village, the Fantail Retreat is a modern tiny house in a rural setting.

Although it looks truly tiny from the outside, there is a sense of spaciousness as soon as you step inside. The sleek interior of this tiny house has been carefully planned out to include everything from a queen bed, to a sofa and a breakfast bench and stools. Upstairs is a cosy reading nook.

Netflix, a dual gas hob and a coffee machine mean you can enjoy all of your creature comforts in one economically-sized space.

Outside, the sunny deck has expansive views of the Matakana hills.

Eco-friendly tiny house, Point Chev. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb
Eco-friendly tiny house, Point Chev. Photo / Supplied, Airbnb

A tiny house in the central city

Try out tiny house living without even leaving the city. For a unique staycation experience, check into an architecturally designed tiny house right next to Point Chevalier beach. Secreted away down a no exit street, this tiny home is only a stone's throw from the CBD but still manages to be private and peaceful.

The kitchen and living areas flow seamlessly into the deck through double glazed cedar French doors. Outside, you can relax in dappled sunlight on the outdoor sofa, while inside you can snuggle up in the loft bedroom.

For more New Zealand travel ideas and inspiration, go to newfinder.co.nz and newzealand.com