5 Treehouses We Want to Cuddle Up In (and the Books We’d Read In Them)

in Potpourri by

Treehouses are perhaps the coolest places to live on the face of the planet. They’re equal parts whimsical and engineering, and we happen to think they are some of the most exciting places to live (and read), as long as you don’t mind tight spaces and you aren’t afraid of heights (those are two major drawbacks for some). If treehouses are something you only thought children played in while outside in the yard after school, you’d be mistaken. After some research and coming across Pete Nelson’s Be in a Treehouse: Design / Construction / Inspiration (Abrams, 2014), we soon realized living in trees is no longer only for Tarzan!

Check out five of our favorite treehouses from all over the world, paired with the books we think would be the perfect read while relaxing hundreds of feet above the ground!


HemLoft Treehouse

The HemLoft Treehouse, built by former software developer Joel Allen, was originally a secret treehouse. Allen built it on public land in Canada, but after years of keeping it a secret, he turned it over to Canadian Wilderness Adventures founder and owner, Allan Crawford. It’s now housed on the tour company’s land in Callaghan Valley, Canada.

Image Credit: Exterior shot via Geoff Stevenson, flickr; interior shot via Joel Allen/The HemLoft, flickr

What we’d read there:

the-unpeopled-season-riceThe UnPeopled Season: Journal from a North Country Wilderness, Daniel J. Rice (Riverfeet Press, 2014)

In Spring 2011, author Daniel J. Rice left his career as a geologist and moved into a tent in the middle of the forests of Minnesota. This peaceful, contemplative journal traces his experiences over four months of isolation in the wilderness. Rice discusses his difficulties in the wild with heartfelt humor, and ultimately produces an eye-opening story of our connection with the natural world.



The Mirrorcube

This mind-bending treehouse, couched in the forests of Harads, Sweden, is completely covered in mirrors. It’s confoundingly beautiful, and the perfect place for some relaxing reflection. Plus, it’s part of the famous Treehotel, a collection of treehouses you can actually stay in. Other treehouses include the Bird’s Nest, the UFO, and the Blue Cone.

Image credit: All images from Treehotel

What we’d read there:

house-of-leaves-danielewskiHouse of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski (Pantheon, 2000)

This modern classic, widely regarded as the ultimate contemporary braintwist novel, is the perfect spooky read for the spacey setting of The Mirrorcube. This intricately paced and complexly told horror-thriller follows a young family that moves into a house where the laws of physics seem not to exist.



Free Spirit Spheres

These suspended spheres near Vancouver, Canada look like they grew there on their own. Undeniably organic yet strikingly modern, these funky spheres look as cool as they are cozy. There are three of them that you can book relatively cheaply, and we suspect it would be worth every penny.

Image credit: All images of the “Eve” sphere, from Free Spirit Spheres

What we’d read there:

joni-mitchell-maromJoni Mitchell: In Her Own Words, Malka Marom (ECW Press, 2014)

It seems fitting to read about a true free spirit in a Free Spirit Sphere. This eclectic exploration of folk singer Joni Mitchell’s life and art is told through interviews, narrative stories, lyrics, paintings and photos. Not your average celebrity biography, this read feels more like a conversation between two creative friends than anything else.


Ethan Schlussler’s Bicycle Tree House

Made famous in a viral YouTube video in 2013, this bicycle-elevator treehouse, built by Ethan Schlussler in Idaho, stands 30 feet above the ground. As beautiful as it is innovative, this treehouse is the epitome of cool, and not just because it was featured on Treehouse Masters. We recommend reading the feature about Schlussler and his treehouse in Slate for more on this really special treehouse.

Image credit: All images via Slate, from the book Cabin Porn by Zach Klein and Steven Leckart (Little, Brown and Company, 2015); Photos by Noah Kalina

What we’d read there:

high-rise-ballardHigh Rise: A Novel, J.G. Ballard (Liveright, 2012)

This sweeping novel, recently made into a stylish movie, is a pretty stressful read. To sum up: people live in a high-rise building, and the people at the top have way better living conditions than those at the bottom. Class warfare erupts, violence ensues, and society gets a bit rougher around the edges (to put it lightly). However, if you’re going to read about people getting all freaked out high up in the air, it’s probably best to do it somewhere super high up, that also happens to be super relaxing.


Beach Rock Treehouse

This funky treehouse, in Beach Rock Village in Okinawa, Japan, has multiple domed tiers made out of Plexiglas, giving visitors a birds-eye view of the surrounding trees. Designed by Takashi Kobayashi for communication with outer space, this cool setting is the perfect place for some communication with either aliens or your own subconscious.

Image Credit: Photos via TreehouseMap and the LA Times

What we’d read there:

contact-saganContact, Carl Sagan (Pocket Books, 1997)

In the spirit of the design of the Beach Rock Treehouse, we think the perfect book to read is one about alien communication. This novel, written by awesome astrophysicist and all around groovy dude Carl Sagan, tells the story of humanity’s interaction between advanced extraterrestrial life. Written with a realistic point of view on our ability to react to aliens, this novel also features some relatable characters and a great story. Plus, it was made into a movie in the 90s.

Katie Hires is a book lover, pop culture nerd, and graphic designer. When she's not researching Game of Thrones fan theories, she's either reading or at home making pasta.

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