The tiny house movement is growing rapidly. Something of an antidote to modern malaise, the adorable, minimalist lodgings, usually set against a lush forest backdrop, reject excess consumption and digital dependence in favour of sustainable living. Ironically, they’re big on Instagram.
If you’re not quite ready to ditch contemporary comforts for good, Adelaide company CABN has set up an off-the-grid accommodation experience in the Hills.
The two-and-a-half by six-metre eco hideaway sits in a secret location – just a 30-minute drive from the city – overlooking 180 acres of natural scrubland. The Scandinavian-style, self-contained timber box comes with heating and cooling, two-burner kitchen stove, mini fridge-freezer, king and king single bed, shower and an environmentally friendly composting toilet system. There are also kitchen utensils, bath and bedding linen, and biodegradable shower products. But there’s no wi-fi – and that’s the point.
“CABN is a significant opportunity for guests to recharge, recalibrate and experience a real disconnect from technology and the crazy we bring into our lives,” says owner Michael Lamprell.
“We plan to help people start this journey by designing and handcrafting beautiful tiny houses. By placing them in secluded areas of natural beauty, no further than an hour from Adelaide, we're enabling a brief respite.
“You can come and experience the minimalist lifestyle without breaking the bank or jumping on a long-haul flight. It's an escape from the hectic day-to-day schedule or a weekend break for the terminally busy."
CABN was born during a trip to Boston in 2016. Lamprell was reading Minimalism: Living a Meaningful Life by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus (their doco Minimalism is on Netflix) and met the team behind tiny cabin accommodation Getaway.
“I was instantly drawn to their concept and motivation behind it,” he says. “The idea of living a more simplified, authentic and genuine lifestyle appealed to me so much that I want to be able to bring to Australia and New Zealand what the guys in Boston have created. But tailored to our communities and way of life.”
A night in the eco hut (named Jude, after Lamprell’s mum) starts at $190. Lamprell is partnering with private landowners and national parks for other locations. The moveable, custom-designed houses will be built to blend in with the landscape.
This article was updated on December 10, 2018.