Two Pinecone-Shaped Tree Houses Hidden In The Italian Alps

An amazing mountain retreat from Malborghetto Valbruna, in Italy, just got two new additions. They’re nothing like the usual house extension and they don’t look like cabins at all. They’re something completely different and unique: two tree houses that look like giant pine cones. The project is called Pigna and was completed by Architetto Beltrame Claudio in 2017.

The Pigna tree houses are only two in number and that only helps to make them even more special and amazingView in gallery
The Pigna tree houses are only two in number and that only helps to make them even more special and amazing
The tree houses are designed to resemble oversized pinecones, a look that helps them fit naturally into the forestView in gallery
The tree houses are designed to resemble oversized pinecones, a look that helps them fit naturally into the forest

The concept phase for these unusual retreats was developed in 2014 for an architectural competition but it was only two years after that it all started to take shape. The project is now complete and the two tree houses can be rented by the retreat’s guests in search for a unique experience. You can find them in the Italian Alps, in the country’s oldest forest, hidden among spruce trees.

You can find these amazing retreats in the Italian Alps, near the border with Austria and SloveniaView in gallery
You can find these amazing retreats in the Italian Alps, near the border with Austria and Slovenia
These large pinecone-like nooks are hidden in Italy's oldest forest, among spruce treesView in gallery
These large pinecone-like nooks are hidden in Italy’s oldest forest, among spruce trees

They may look small and compact from a distance but each tree houses offers a total of 70 square meters of living space. They’re organized on three levels, each with its own distinct function. The ground floor is actually four meters above ground and functions as a covered terrace. The middle floor is the social area and includes a lounge space, the kitchen and a terrace. A staircase offers access to the top floor where the bedroom is situated.

These tree houses are actually an addition to a mountain retreat but function as individual structuresView in gallery
These tree houses are actually an addition to a mountain retreat but function as individual structures
The "cones" are strategically positioned among trees, in areas from where they can capture the beauty of the panoramaView in gallery
The “cones” are strategically positioned among trees, in areas from where they can capture the beauty of the panorama

The tree houses are designed to look like giant pinecones and this helps them blend into their surroundings and look like a natural part of the landscape. They’re constructed entirely out of wood, being covered with shingles and featuring large windows and sliding doors as well as an amazing skylight at the very top.

Although they look small, these structures actually measure 70 square meters and are organized on three levelsView in gallery
Although they look small, these structures actually measure 70 square meters and are organized on three levels
Inside each cone there's a cozy living and lounge area with a terrace and a kitchen and a bedroom upstairsView in gallery
Inside each cone there’s a cozy living and lounge area with a terrace and a kitchen and a bedroom upstairs

The interior is very cozy and welcoming, featuring wood on the walls, ceilings and floors, wooden stairs, animal skin rugs and custom furniture designed to seamlessly blend rustic and modern. The ambiance is very warm and casual but also refined and sophisticated in a simplistic way. The decor is full of texture and earthy, natural colors and finishes and complement each other harmoniously. The most amazing space of all would have to be the bedroom which has a dome-like ceiling and a round skylight above its bed.

A set of stairs connects the living area to the bedroom, carefully wrapping around the wallsView in gallery
A set of stairs connects the living area to the bedroom, carefully wrapping around the walls
the bedroom has a round skylight at the center and a ceiling that envelops it like a domeView in gallery
the bedroom has a round skylight at the center and a ceiling that envelops it like a dome