About the Architect:

Klein Dytham architecture (KDa) is a multi-disciplinary design practice known for architecture, interiors, public spaces, and installations.

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet1
PokoPoko Club House_ ©http://www.klein-dytham.com/pokopoko/tmj7xl5cro50zobcpbgl8g4fm4kvhf
  1. Design

PokoPoko is a 300sqm clubhouse in Tochigi, Japan

Tochigi Prefecture is a centre of historic buildings, shrines, temples, and the surrounding nature. It is an important area where the temples and shrines make up a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The prefecture is surrounded by mountains on three sides and has volcanic clusters with great hot spring resorts. 

The clubhouse is within a forest clearing between the hotel’s two existing accommodation blocks. You can reach it through a footbridge in the forest connecting the original resort to the new clubhouse.

Since it has built near Mount Nasu volcanoes, you can see it as an eruptive volcano from the design volumetry. 

It pops out, which is also explained by the Japanese name” Poko-Poko”, which is onomatopoeic and means the sound of popping up – rather like a bamboo shoot popping up from amongst the trees,” explained Dytham.

The design idea is how to bring nature within.

In the same way, a volcano breathes from its top, the skydome of the PokoPoko is breathing light and brings natural elements to create a fairy tale: wood for warmth, green for forests illusion, and fire as it represents the energetic, forceful, moving things in the world.

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet2
Adult Area_ ©http://www.klein-dytham.com/pokopoko/tmj7xl5cro50zobcpbgl8g4fm4kvhf

The colour green has a resting effect. It makes it feel calmer and more secure, making it an ideal colour for interior design. Emotions associated with the colour Green are Nature, Harmony, Growth, and Fertility. Also, it is considered a lucky colour in Japan. 

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet3
Eating Area_ ©http://www.klein-dytham.com/pokopoko/tmj7xl5cro50zobcpbgl8g4fm4kvhf

“Part of the Risonare Nasu Hotel complex, PokoPoko reminds us of a cosy spot in a fairy tale. Surrounded by abundant nature, three roof cones playfully poke out from the woods in different directions to form a kind of clubhouse for families. Here they can have fun making pizzas in the pizza oven with fresh vegetables they picked from the nearby field; the kids can tire themselves out climbing up and down the net, and parents, in the meantime, can relax around the fireplace with a drink and a book while enjoying the view of the surrounding nature.”-KDa-

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet4
PokoPoko section_ ©https://architizer.com/blog/projects/pokopoko-clubhouse/#media-13

The family-oriented clubhouse comprises three joined cones, each offering a different function yet sharing the aesthetics.

The middle space, which serves as a cooking activity area with natural products, also links the two opposite sides; one is an indoor play house for the children where they are put in the centre of attention, a climbing net in the middle: a tall white structure from floor to top encouraging the kids to reach the sky. 

The other cone is for adults to enjoy peace. A flexible modular green setting, designed by Klein Dytham architecture as part of the “Dora Dora” furniture collection, is around the fireplace and books all around like a retreat area.   

The divisions are highlighted using mid-level bookshelves, allowing for a visual connection between the playground and the fireplace.

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet5
Ground floor Plan _ ©https://architizer.com/blog/projects/pokopoko-clubhouse/#media-11

As if it is a link between past and future through daily “present” activities. Each enjoys its world with a 360° view of the forest, guaranteed by the transparency of ergonomic glass. That is the fairy tale. Without forgetting the tops of the roofs that are chamfered at different angles creating the oculus.

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet6
Kids Area_ ©http://www.klein-dytham.com/pokopoko/tmj7xl5cro50zobcpbgl8g4fm4kvhf

The outdoor space is as magical as the interior. The scenery around the clubhouse maintains a combination of soft and hard landscaping. Green is everywhere: from the view to the furniture. As if the whole place is a forest sanctuary. 

As the studio emphasized, “PokoPoko can be both a lively and a peaceful place, seamlessly connecting to the forest outside, making one feel like having spent a day in nature even on a rainy day.”

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet7
outdoor space_ ©https://archello.com/pt/story/93440/attachments/photos-videos/8
  1. Materials/construction

Since old times, wood has been treasured in Japan. Even after being cut, it has been seen as a living being. The trees were viewed as sacré and divine, as if they were the gods descended to earth. The roof, which is the main element of the clubhouse, is distorted and asymmetrical.

Local Pine was used for its construction: Pine is considered a softwood, making it easier to work with, but It is also durable in time and strong enough for home construction. 

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet8
the full structure_ ©https://architizer.com/blog/projects/pokopoko-clubhouse/#media-9

Two slender timber members with spaced off-cuts type beams, which rise from a decreased metal ring beam to a smaller ring which is part of the roof gentle. The beams are skinned with plywood sheets to type tensioned pores and skin. 

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet9
the structure beams_ ©https://architizer.com/blog/projects/pokopoko-clubhouse/#media-8

A layer of rigid insulation is held in place by a grid of timber battens, forming a ventilated cavity, which will get skinned by one other layer of plywood, which, together with a breather paper layer, kinds the bottom for the shingle roof.

PokoPoko Club House by Klein Dytham architecture - Sheet10
The oculus ring structure_ ©https://architizer.com/blog/projects/pokopoko-clubhouse/#media-10
  1. Sustainability  

Using Pine as a construction material is sustainable enough since it is eco-friendly. It grows fast and is always available without harming the ecosystem. 

The interior by night_ ©http://www.klein-dytham.com/pokopoko/tmj7xl5cro50zobcpbgl8g4fm4kvhf


Klein Dytham architecture. (n.d.). PokoPoko. [online] Available at: http://www.klein-dytham.com/pokopoko/ey42ooqgq9goidf0wws3v79iegjd5s

 [Accessed 19 Nov. 2022].

Your Own Architect. (2020). Is Pine a Good Building Material? [online] Available at: https://www.yourownarchitect.com/is-pine-a-good-building-material/.

Journal. (2021). PokoPoko Clubhouse // Klein Dytham architecture. [online] Available at: https://architizer.com/blog/projects/pokopoko-clubhouse/.

World Architecture Community. (n.d.). This club house by Klein Dytham Architecture offers serene atmosphere within lush forest in Japan. [online] Available at: world, S. (n.d.). The magical and intriguing PokoPoko Clubhouse in the forests of Japan. [online] www.stirworld.com. Available at: https://www.stirworld.com/see-features-the-magical-and-intriguing-pokopoko-clubhouse-in-the-forests-of-japan.

Pires, S. (2021). Charming Hotel Clubhouse Is a ‘Fairytale Building’ Nestled in a Japanese Forest. [online] My Modern Met. Available at: https://mymodernmet.com/pokopoko-clubhouse-japan/

 [Accessed 19 Nov. 2022].

World Architecture Community. (n.d.). This club house by Klein Dytham Architecture offers serene atmosphere within lush forest in Japan. [online] Available at: https://worldarchitecture.org/article-links/egnnc/this-club-house-by-klein-dytham-architecture-offers-serene-atmosphere-within-lush-forest-in-japan.html.