Get Cozy in This Renovated A-Frame Cabin in the Woods

A pair of boutique hotel owners transforms an A-frame cabin in New Jersey into a Scandinavian-inspired retreat that starts at $150 a night.

When Chad and Courtney Ludeman, the husband-and-wife team behind Philadelphia's design-driven Lokal Hotel, started searching for a property in New Jersey, they were looking for something between Philly and the shore towns to the south. They wanted a property that would be convenient for a quick escape from the city—and close enough to the shore for day trips to the beach. When they came across a classic 1960s A-frame cabin on the Maurice River in Dorchester, they knew it was the one. 

"We’ve always had a soft spot for A-frames," says Chad, "and even though this one hadn’t been updated since it was built, the bones were great, and the property was just what we were looking for."

The material palette consists of concrete, bleached flooring, pine plywood, and lots of matte black and white. 

The midcentury modern furniture is from Article, who worked with the Lokal team to furnish the cabin. Shown here in the living room are Article's Nirvana Dakota Tan Corner Sectional, the Taza Rug, and the Forma Lounge Chair in gray. 

Working with a limited budget, the Ludemans designed the property themselves, and built much of it with their two boys and an in-house crew over the summer. While the location is rustic, the interiors are anything but. For the renovation, the Lokal team decided on a modern, Scandinavian aesthetic and collaborated with Article on the interior furnishings​. 

The first floor contains another bedroom and full bath in addition to the modern living room, kitchen, dining room, and bar. 

There is a queen bedroom and full bath on the upper loft level, which enjoys its own deck and overlooks the woods and river. 

The renovation team’s proudest accomplishment was all of the custom concrete work that they did themselves. The poured-in-place concrete work consisted of two bathroom vanities, one custom Jacuzzi bathtub top, two shower wall surrounds, one outdoor countertop, and the 44-foot-long countertop that stretches from the front door to the back. 

The open chef's kitchen has plenty of countertop space. 

The modernized cabin now contains three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and can sleep up to eight guests. It also features a chef's kitchen, a fire pit, a wood-fired hot tub, and a Big Green Egg grill. The bedding consists of high-quality linens and robes from Parachute Home.

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A stairway leads to the loft bedroom. 

A queen bedroom and full bath on the upper loft level opens to a private deck overlooking the woods.

The basement has been partially finished into a "bunk room" with four twin bed nooks built into the walls. The basement includes a small lounge area with its own TV. 

The Ludemans poured their own concrete for this custom Jacuzzi top during the renovation. 

They also poured the concrete for both bathroom vanities. 

As seasoned boutique hotel owners, the Ludemans have thought of everything you might need for a short stay. "We accumulated notes from what was lacking from every vacation home rental we’d been to in our lives. We didn’t want people worrying about what they needed to bring," says Courtney. 

Rates for the A-frame cabin start at $150 a night. Lokal accepts reservations via their website.


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