We build tree houses as high as we safely can so that your room directly overlooks the forest canopy. Different designs are conceivable; we have worked on three types of tree houses :
- Tree houses suspended on rope wires
- Tree houses set on wooden consoles
- Geodesic polyhedron laid in the fork
The type of construction will depend on the tree structure, shape and localization. Each construction is a new challenge because tree are as different from one another as people can be.
Suspended treehouse (lateral view)
Suspended tree houses are typically composed of several platforms suspended at different heights on strong boughs growing quite flat outward. In case your host is a giant strangler ficus, you may end up with surprisingly large surfaces.
A suspended treehouse is very exciting to build and it is a good idea to combine pre-constraining cables to guide the weights of the various platforms in such a way that forces are exerted over the branches coaxialy and inward. Well composed forces ideally result in solely linear compression efforts through the branches, towards the trunk and down to the ground.
Suspended structure detail : rosewood beams and steel rope wires
Tree house set on wooden consoles (lateral view)
This type of construction usually circles around the tree, following an octogonal shape, with a combination of several floors. Here's an example of an efficient room distribution: entrance and exit cables join where the landing platform stands. At this level, a circular corridor surrounds the trunk, allowing passage in and out of the tree house and providing access to the bathroom and the stairway that leads to to the main platform.
The latter consists of a kitchen area and a living room that turns into a series of semi-private rooms for the night. A railing runs all around the main platform for safety and to optimize the view. Another stairway leads to the more private canopy room.
Tree house with a duralumin geodesic polyhedron core (Ikos)
The icosahedron was pre-engineered by our friend Gilles Ebersolt. A regular polyhedron composed of 20 equilateral triangles, it is quick to assemble. We enlarged it with several suspended platforms, including a bathroom. The difficulty lays in finding the tree with a crown open enough to receive the structure.