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Architect couple inspired by nature to build their home in Catskill Mountains — and it has remarkable sustainability features

The cottage gives the perfect escape from their life in Manhattan.

The cottage gives the perfect escape from their life in Manhattan.

Photo Credit: iStock

A home is not just where the heart is but where we can also find peace of mind. For some, this can mean taking matters into your own hands and crafting the home of your dreams. 

An article from Design Milk detailed how a New York City architect couple, Maria Ibañez de Sendadiano and Todd Rouhe, crafted their dream home after a decade of hiking among the Catskill Mountains.   

Located a few hours away from NYC, the couple designed and crafted an ultra-efficient, air-tight home named the Catskills Cottage. With the fast-paced, daily operations of running their own firm in the City, IdS/R Architecture, the Cottage gives the perfect escape from their life in Manhattan. 

As both partners are outdoors enthusiasts, the design was developed with nature in mind. The 1991-square-foot cottage uses solar panels to generate most of the energy to be used throughout the year. 

According to a study by data analytics and brand consulting company Kantar, nearly 50% of the 10,000 respondents surveyed revealed that a home with minimal impact on the environment is important for personal wellness. 

Sustainable homes are becoming increasingly popular as people look to live more eco-friendly lives while also saving money. As global temperatures rise, building practices have been developed with consideration of the planet. This includes reducing reliance on cement and steel, significantly cutting down on pollution during construction. Additional methods include thermal control bubble sheets for insulation and energy-efficient windows that reduce the need for artificial lighting.

The concept of energy-efficient housing, as explored in the Catskills Cottage, is gathering interest. For example, Hiatus Homes, which has developed housing that is 40% more energy efficient than traditional properties, is gaining increased attention. 

As the average American household burns 11,000 kilowatt-hours a year, according to the Energy Information Administration, building homes sustainably is not just good for our air but more affordable as well. 

"Even without solar, the homes are much more efficient and will be popular with anyone trying to reduce their carbon footprint or reduce their utility bills," co-founder of Hiatus Homes Jesse Russell told The Cool Down.  

To that end, the Catskills Cottage uses its unique design to align with the natural setting while lowering energy costs

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