Timber and stone combine to create a dream home in the mountains
Rudi Oosthuyse used his passion for DIY and an innate sense of creativity to build an impressive eco home for his family.
Rudi and Karen Oosthuyse’s house is the first structure you see when you turn off the Van der Stel Pass onto a
winding track that leads to their fynbos farm just outside Bot River. Built with stone excavated on the farm as well as reclaimed blackwood, pine and blue gum – with huge windows affording a glorious view of the valley below – this home is entirely Rudi’s handiwork.
“Rudi is a dad, entrepreneur and creative thinker,” says Karen. “I, on the other hand, am an exercise fanatic and I can’t work with my hands at all. But I’m really good at buying things!”
Together the pair own and run a mountain lodge where they’re bringing up their two children as close to nature as possible. “Ruan is a real animal whisperer, while Karmi loves hugs and dancing,” says Karen.
The Oosthuyses’ dream home started to take shape in 2013. “We planted the trees in June that year and levelled out the ground; construction began in 2014. At the end of that year, we were able to move in.” >>
Trees such as bald cypress (Taxodium distichum), Chinese elm (Ulmus parvifolia), water oak (Quercus nigra), pin oak (Quercus palustris) and American sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) are planted around the house.