top of page





Project Type

Zen training allowed the Japanese Samurai to have a mental edge over their enemy through the strength of a calm mind and by being fully present in the moment. The cultural heritage of Japan’s Samurai warriors still exist today and it is seen in the respect and discipline that prevails through Japan. Poor mental health and depression are affecting the Japanese public, partly due to technology and the increased use of digital devices. The Warrior Refuge aims to serve as a calm getaway for people to reconnect with themselves in the busy environment of urban Tokyo. The concept of the Samurai is brought forwards in our proposal through the use of overlapping protective aluminum scales, shielding the occupant from the outside world. Traditional Japanese materials have been chosen; timber, cork and bamboo. The key structural elements are the timber ribs, they are fixed in place by the top ring beam and the wood floor slab. Both elements have slots to help with positioning the ribs in place. The ribs are shaped with recesses to facilitate the installation of the aluminum scales that slide in and are bolted to the wooden profile. Each rib has 8 slots to accommodate 8 scales. The top scale is a photovoltaic panel to power the cabin lights. The rounded glass dome seals off the pod from the weather and the pod is raised on timber legs to protect it from damp ground. The bamboo light funnel holds the lights for the scheme and fills the refuge with dramatic shadows. At 6m2, the cabin can be replicated and placed around various locations in Tokyo. The cabins have been designed as a refined kit of parts that can be dissembled and reassembled at speed. Understanding Japan’s fast-paced nature, visitors to the cabin have the option of remaining standing in the cabin and circulating around the central light funnel or sitting on the dynamic cork seat which surrounds the cabin with an organic form. The entrance to the cabin is a subtle sliding door. As someone enters, the lights in the funnel are illuminated which allows others to know that the cabin is occupied. 



Recreational | Temporary Refuge

NK3 Design Team:

Natasha Kearney, Ana Consciência, William Odour, Reuben Choi, Valerie Or, Silas Olusanya  

6 sqm

20221212 Tokyo Presentation-1.jpg

Want to know more about this project?

We welcome you to email us to for more information.

bottom of page