Greetings from New Zealand! 🙂

After reading about all these fabulous shipping container homes, surely you are ready to buy one right? Well if you want to start small and stay efficient, I found one you just might be into. The Port-A-Bach shipping container home (‘Bach’ is a New Zealand term for a small holiday shack) is perfect!







According to NetAtlas, “New Zealand is one of those countries where its near-to-no-one geographic location has created a hotbed of innovation through necessity and the Kiwi-produced Port-a-bach is particularly inventive because it is based around a remanufactured shipping container. As such, the NZD$100,000 (US$55,000) fold-out dwelling is not just rugged due to its natural steel exoskeleton, it’s as easy to transport internationally as it is to transport locally on a standard container truck. It has low environmental impact and can connect to local utilities or be entirely power, water and sewer independent. The designers, Cecille Bonifait and William Giesen of Atelier workshop in Wellington, opted for extra height of a 2.8 meter tall container instead of the standard 2.2 meter height.”



I found all the exact details of the shipping container home on the designer’s site! Atelier’s Workshop believe up-cycling containers can be an effective answer for large scale projects and if portability, site access, robustness, security are issues. The Port-a-Bach prototype was built in Hangzhou, China and shipped to New Zealand. It is now part of the permanent collection of Puke Ariki Museum, New Plymouth. The Port-a-Bach is said to not currently be in production but they do accept commissions to design customized container building solutions.

The Port-a-Bach home boasts that they are:

  • Portable
  • Secure
  • High-level finish
  • Designed to be environmentally clean
  • Comparatively inexpensive
  • Comfortably sleeps two adults and two children


Also that they allow for:

  • Transportation
  • Immediate, flexible and long-term solution that enables you to use your land without investing in a permanent property commitment
  • Future development, ideal for leased land situations
  • To be power, water and sewer independent, it is well suited to remote or non-service supplied land
  • Quick and easy transportation (via truck or helicopter) and installation to any orientation with minimal impact on site
  • Unfolding to create a living space and refolding to create a secure unit for storage or relocation


Their features include:

  • Fully enclosed exterior steel shell (when folded up)
  • Appointed with large internal storage cupboards and shelves / stainless steel kitchen and fittings / bathroom with open shower, sink, composting toilet
  • Interior fabric screen system gives the versatility of creating rooms within the large open living space : includes bunk beds, double bed room, dressing room, kitchen and bathroom
  • Exterior canvas screen system allows to shelter the deck area for comfortable indoor/outdoor flow and living
  • 6 concrete footings form a stable, non-invasive ‘foundation’, allowing you to situate the unit on a wide range of ground conditions






















What I really enjoyed about this house is it’s mobility and significant flexibility of use. They are perhaps the house’s biggest key selling points. As well as its durability, close it down and lock it up when not in use and it can withstand the elements, as cargo containers were made to do.

Photo Credits: LunchboxArchitect, DesignBoom, TreeHugger, Dornob, NewAtlas




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