Tofino Beach House by Olson Kundig

Tofino beach house is a 2,500-square-foot home located in Tofino, Canada, designed in 2016 by Olson Kundig.

A modern, open-concept living room with expansive windows overlooking a forested lake.
Spacious glass-walled room with wooden beamed ceiling, comfortable seating, and panoramic forest view.
Spacious modern kitchen with timber ceiling, large windows, and integrated appliances.
Expansive glass windows frame a nature-inspired interior with a colorful abstract artwork.
A cozy dining area surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows offering stunning forest and ocean views.
Expansive wood-panelled interior with panoramic forest views, integrated furnishings.
A cozy forest cabin with large windows offering scenic views and modern furnishings.
A modern architectural walkway with wood paneled walls and a view of the forest beyond.
Minimalist glass-walled house nestled in lush forest, with large windows offering scenic views.
Cozy modern cabin nestled in lush forest, with sleek wooden exterior and illuminated interior.


Nestled in a weather-beaten forest, this 2,500-square-foot beach house creates a connection between the drama of the nearby ocean and the sense of sanctuary provided by the trees. Composed primarily of one large room, the house is light-filled on the south side facing the ocean, and insular and protected on the other side.

Glass walls open the living area to panoramic views of forest and ocean, while two fireplaces on either end anchor the space and provide a feeling of refuge. Cantilevering the house from its base provides space for ferns and beach salal to grow underneath the glass flooring that runs the perimeter of the main room, giving the sense of floating above the forest floor.

The warm, natural tones of the interior take inspiration from Tofino’s coastal forest, and are punctuated by pieces from the owner’s contemporary art collection. Artworks were incorporated into the design of the home, with the fireplace walls specially designed to fit paintings by Sam Francis and Diego Singh. A collection of furniture pieces designed by Jim Olson specifically for the house, including a walnut sofa built into the hearth of one fireplace, complete the interior environment.

“This beach house is essentially one single room, with the emphasis on feeling connected to the ocean and the surrounding woods.” –Jim Olson, FAIA, Design Principal.

Photography by Nic Lehoux

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- by Matt Watts