The Clay Retreat

The client’s Japanese heritage and our love of Japanese architecture and tradition have heavily influenced our design work. Modulation of light and shadow creates a series of spaces filled with serenity, in tune with the natural world, restorative to the senses and emotional wellbeing.

Project & Environmental Data

Project Info

  • Location: New Forest, Hampshire
  • Designation: National Park, Conservation Area
  • Collaborators: Belmore Building, Enhabit

Environmental Data

  • Energy Efficiency
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7
  • Insulation
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7
  • Thermal Mass
  • Airtightness
    1 2 3 4 5 6
  • Solar PV
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7
  • Embodied Carbon
    1 2 3
  • Heating/Hot Water
    Electric Gas Ground Source Air Source
  • Solar Thermal
    Yes No
  • Rain Water Harvest
    Yes No
  • Ventilation
    MVHR Natural
  • Energy Storage
    Yes No

"The project was our first time working with architects and the whole family enjoyed the experience, even the dog! Wendy, Ricky and the team are very enthusiastic, knowledgeable and full of inspiring and unusual ideas. Their thoughtfulness and calmness got us through the challenging time in 2020 and we now have a restful and fun family home in the forest that we love."

. . . Private Client . . .

Clay plaster used throughout, creates a tactile surface and a softness to the interior that makes you want to reach out and touch the walls. An added bonus, the clay absorbs toxins and pollen from the air, offering a naturally low carbon alternative to gypsum plaster. The walls contrast with the crisp polished concrete floor and concrete hearth which reflect light and absorb the sun’s energy during the day, releasing warmth at night when needed, helping to create a comfortable internal temperature.

This is a deliberately modest and sensitively crafted home that embraces its setting, remaining harmonious with the wider landscape.

We love what we do, and we work hard to make sure that you enjoy the journey with us too. We have a great team at PAD studio and have built up a network of like-minded collaborators. We don’t make false promises to you – we are realists, but we also work with you to ensure that you get the best possible value.

At every turn, the eye catches a detail that has been thoughtfully considered, discussed with our clients and their children and has been painstakingly executed by our team of wonderfully talented builders. Everyone who has worked on this home has enjoyed the process and for us, this joy is encapsulated in the spirit of this place. It is a place of happy repose that cheers and nurtures all who enter.