Attema Sate, a national heritage site from 1770

The farmhouse

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs.

Ask yourself what makes you come alive

and then go do that. Because what the world needs

is people who have come alive.”

(Howard Thurman)

What should a new live and work environment – a place where you can be yourself – look like? We thought about this question in 2015 and we discovered beautiful Gaastmeer, a small village in South-West Friesland in the northern part of the Netherlands. This is where the historic farm Attema-Sate lies at the waterfront and where the road turns into a bike path. The farm is a true sanctuary where you can unwind and charge your battery.

Our anchors space – respect – relationship were the starting points for a thorough renovation of the farm that was carried out in 2017. The landscape garden, building and the interior have all been transformed into a place where everyone can enjoy this unique location.

The design and supervision of the project were done by J.O.N.G. architects. Christien Starkenburg of Studio Slow is responsible for the interior design. She used various concepts for the rooms and the character of the building:

·      Barn/entrance: welcome, hospitable, surprise, collection, old&new

·      Barn/apartments: honest, experience, warm, story, simplicity, obvious

·      Modern/kitchen: centre, cockpit, polished, functional, professional

·      Monumental: tradition, colour, comfortable, family, layered

The farm has been there since 1770. The construction of the barn consists of sturdy beams and rafters. The rooms that were built in the barn do not touch the beams anywhere. The old and the new have been kept separated.

Where once the cows used to be, homely apartments for our guests have been created. The atmosphere has remained robust and pure. You will sleep like the farm hand used to, in a small room made of wooden planks above the cowshed.

Through an ingenious reconstruction of part of the rooftop in the barn, a sea of light was created as well as a wonderful panorama room overlooking the Frysian lakes. The room at the top can be reached with an elevator but if you take the winding stairs you will have a perfect 360° view of the entire barn.

The premises entirely run on green energy.


Attema-Sate is named after one family of which several generations lived and worked on the farm. A Sate is a piece of land with all the buildings that belong to a farm, including the family house.

Several different activities have taken place at the Sate since the 18th century, especially agricultural activities. Since 2000, the farm has been used as a Bed & Breakfast.


Margriet & Gerard Burgers


Images website: Sytske Hoogterp, Anna de Leeuw, Peter de Jong, Thijs Wolzak

© 2019 Attema Sate, ontwerp & code door BW H ontwerpers