Fieldstone barn from the outside, inside a loft. High, bright rooms behind thick stone walls, modern steel stairs in front of clay-plastered walls and plank floors made of local pine next to bathrooms with a concrete look. Cosy farmhouse romance meets an urban attitude to life here. Two of the buildings on the three-sided farm, typical of the area, are rented out as holiday homes. The farmhouse offers 200 square metres of space for up to eight people. Cooking is on the ground floor, living is in the attic with a cosy fireplace. Opposite, in the former stable building, only the historic capped ceilings and exposed steel beams remind of the original use. A professional kitchen is waiting for cooking enthusiasts on the ground floor and the 100-square-metre, 5-metre-high room in the attic can be used as a meeting room, yoga studio or simply as a very spacious living room.
Both houses have a private patio area. The spacious outdoor areas are for all guests and it is only a short walk to the historic farmers’ garden, the meadow orchards or the chicken and duck runs. Fresh eggs, home-grown fruit and vegetables, herbs from the garden make the farm feeling perfect and guests become self-sufficient. The garden sauna with a view of the endless expanse makes the feel-good programme complete.
With the Birkenhof, architect Stefan Zielonkowski has created his own dream of living in the countryside. When renovating the buildings, he followed the principle of “adding the new without covering the old”. Superfluous extensions were demolished and old structures exposed. Large windows provide beautiful views of nature, and wall heating as well as clay plastered walls ensure a good indoor climate – in summer and winter. At the same time, the Birkenhof is self-sufficient in energy. It is heated with wood from its own forest and the solar cells on the roof combined with a battery storage system provide so much electricity that guests can charge their e-cars for free during the day. And if you don’t want to bring your car, you can walk five minutes to the nearest train station and be in Berlin in 1.5 hours.
What to do
Enjoying the sauna, hiking, cycling, swimming in lakes, picking mushrooms, excursions to Szczecin, the ruins of the Chorin Monastery, the Schorfheide Biosphere Reserve, the Oder River and the Szczecin Lagoon;
Why we like this house
A masterful transformation of an old farmhouse into a modern, sustainable holiday dwelling.
This house is great for
Families, friends, small groups
Arrival without car: train station within five minutes walking distance, charging possibility for e-cars at the house, energy self-sufficiency with solar power;
From bar entrepreneur in Berlin's trendy Friedrichhain district to farm owner in the Uckermark region. Architect Stefan Zielonkowski is living a childhood dream. He was looking for a farm, accessible without a car, with woods, meadows and lakes in the vicinity and, as a minimum structural requirement, "not in danger of collapsing". When a stork crossed his path on his first exit at the station in Petershagen, he immediately started his Uckermark adventure and fortunately shares it with his guests.
|Region/Town||DE – Germany, Brandenburg, Uckermark, Petershagen|
|Scenery||In small village, surrounded by meadows, a fruit and vegetable garden and a small birch grove.|
|Number of guests||Max. 14: 8 guests in the farmhouse, 6 guests in the former stable|
|Completed||Built in 1880 - renovation 2020|
|Design||Stefan Zielonkowski (architect), Berlin|
|Architecture||Old & new|
|Criteria||1-2 (house/apartment), 1-4 (house/apartment), 1-6 (house/apartment), 1-8 (house/apartment), 8+ (house/apartment), Apartments combinable, Family, Garden, Hiking, Lake/river, Pet-friendly, Sauna, Workation, EV-charging station, No car needed|
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