Designing New Life Peñol

February 2022

Dear subscriber/ reader



In this blog, we want to share our ideas for the design of our guest accommodations at our retreat New Life PEÑOL in El Peñol, Antioquia, Colombia.


First some news about our blogs in general: Podcasts


We added a podcast/narration to our latest Blog for our subscribers who prefer listening instead of reading. When you listen, please do not forget to scroll through the page to see photos or videos.


Back to the initial topic: the design of our guest accommodations


We have a busy life and when we want to go into relax mode abroad for more than one week, we usually look for a cabin or tiny house. Preferably with a fully equipped kitchenette and a balcony. Why? Because:

  • We are very picky about what we eat
  • We usually bring some of our own food from home
  • We like to hit the supermarket to get water, fruits, milk, cheese, bread, and eggs as soon as we arrive
  • We prefer a light breakfast. (especially in El Peñol, breakfast tends to be heavy with carbs and beans, because of the farmer’s tradition)
  • We like to sit outside on a balcony and enjoy the fresh air with a cup of coffee or tea in the morning
  • We want to have something to eat at any time during the day and enjoy that in a nice sitting area
  • Sometimes we prefer to order take out or delivery, and quietly eat in our own space instead of going to a restaurant full of people
  • We like to be comfortable: warm when the weather is cold, cool when the weather is hot, and dry when the weather is wet

When we researched guest housing options for our Finca, we focused mainly on the above basic points, and on designs that would blend in with the natural surroundings of our Finca.


Wooden Cabins


The first thing that came to mind when we thought about hills and the lake was wooden cabins. Wooden cabins are our first choice. They fit in the natural surroundings and are relatively affordable and easy to build on any type of terrain. A good choice for the slopes at our Finca because we can construct them on poles, which means, no need to level the terrain and alter the existing vegetation, etc. 

When we bought the Finca, we contacted one of the firms in El Peñol, which specialized in wooden cabins called Maderas Inmunicol. They treat their wood themselves and give a warranty of twenty years on their projects. Wooden cabins in a humid place like the hills of El Peñol may not be the easiest to maintain in the long run though. Let us know what you think of this choice of our guest houses in the comments at the end of the blog.


wooden cabins peñol


Glamping Domes


Currently, glamping dome tents are very popular around the world. In Colombia, they are also popping up like mushrooms everywhere. Despite the popularity, we were not attracted to use this type of accommodation at New Life Peñol. Glamping domes do look interesting (see picture), and some are even fully equipped. We think they look a bit too futuristic for our general theme of wellness, mindfulness, and meditation. In addition, they might be less durable than wooden cabins, and may also be too fragile for the various weather conditions in the hills of El Peñol.

To be honest, we were never attracted to stay at a glamping dome site; it looks to us like they are a bit unpractical, not that comfortable, and will not provide enough privacy for our taste. But that opinion is only based on our feeling. Have you ever stayed in a glamping dome? Please feel free to share your experience in the comments below this blog.

glamping domes accomodation

A-frame Tiny Houses?


This is the latest model that we have been researching. We like A-frames very much, especially the ones made of steel, glass, and wood. They provide a good blend of earthy materials, which looks good in any environment. The sturdy steel construction, long life span, easy cooling and heating capabilities, flexible interior spacing capabilities, and low maintenance do appeal to us a lot. A-frames are also relatively easy to build on poles. See pictures below.

We found reference material from a manufacturer in Estonia who ships A-frame house pre-fab packets around the world. This is a very interesting option since the building can be finished in less than three months. We need to consider the import duties and transportation costs from the Port of Barranquilla to Peñol though, and we heard horror stories about the cost and time it takes to import containers of goods into Colombia.

Our plan is now to build locally. We engaged an independent architect in Medellin, DOT Arquitectura a couple of months back. They were very professional in their service up to now. While we are waiting for some administrative challenges to get resolved (maybe a topic for our next blog), we are researching contractors with experience in building cabins and A-frame houses in Medellin and its surroundings. Let us know what you think of the A-frames in the comments below. And if you can recommend good, trustworthy contractors with an eye for detail in Medellin and surroundings, please let us know!

a-frame house peñol


Tell us what you think…


As mentioned in each section of this blog, we would like to hear what you think of each option. Our retreat will be focused on couples or groups of people in their 35/40+, no kids (below18), interested in mindfulness retreats, yoga, meditation, and relaxation.
We will not have an activity program. We will provide fishing trips on the lake as a relaxing activity though. We will not have a central pool area and NO loud music. Instead, we will place a private jacuzzi on the deck of each cabin/ house! We can arrange excursions through third parties. We can arrange a rental car. We will provide breakfast, fresh fruits, and drinks all day but no lunch or dinner. Ok, we will have a BBQ when you catch some fish 😉


With this in mind would you choose a wooden cabin, glamping dome, or an A-Frame tiny house?


Let us know what your thoughts are in the comments or send us an Email.
We would love to hear your opinion!

In our next blog, we will let you know the outcome and our final decision.


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Take care friends, see you next time.

theo meijer yut-mie peñol


  • Jhuri says:

    Wooden cabin or A-frame are my favorites for a retreat.
    I’m loving this idea and can’t wait to visit in the future.

  • Irene Baeta says:

    I would love to stay in the A-frame house 😍 Cant wait 😍

  • Caroline Castendijk says:

    The wooden cabin, though environmentally friendly, looks a bit outdated (oubollig) to me. I do not like the glamping dome.
    My preference would be the A-frame tiny home. They look gorgeous and I think are roomy, because it is possible to have the bedroom on a half loft (vide) and place the kitchen underneath at the backside of the house. Thus you’d have a spacious living, even more when opening the terrace doors and a wide view over the valley from both the bedroom and the living room.

  • Gietje says:

    I prefer the A frame tiny homes.

  • Yvonne says:

    De eerste vind ik meer voor op een camping. De tweede past in een film in 2090.
    Voor mij echt de laatste. Modern, comfortabel en passend bij jullie doel.

  • Ventura, Gloria says:

    Love them all

  • Charmie says:

    Definitely the A-frame Tiny House! The combination of steel, glass and wood is absolutely the bomb 🙂 Escaping the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it would be nice to experience the beauty of the nature in combination with the convenience of such a Tiny House. The wooden cabins are too classic …have no extra appeal and the gambling domes are just not my favorites. They remind me too much of comping which I don’t like.

  • Danielle says:

    Ik ga voor de A-frame Tiny houses, die vind ik het mooiste. De glamping domes vind ik echt niet mooi en niet passen bij de prachtige omgeving van Colombia.

  • Josette says:

    Hi, my preference goes out to the A-frame tiny house.
    Hope to be able to go in the future🙂

  • haroen says:

    A frame vind ik heel leuk,niet echt practisch met de schuine wanden,maar 100 keer mooier dan een glamping..leuke blog weer..mooi hoe jullie alles onderbouwen

  • Albert says:

    Goedemorgen, weer een mooie update en fijn dat jullie de lezers er bij betrekken. De houten Cabin is net als een schuurtje in de tuin, leuk om erbij te hebben. De Clamping lijkt op een nieuwe futuristische stad op Mars, dus blijft het A-frame als favoriet over. Wij hebben in een soortgelijke accommodatie op Bali gelogeerd. Steen, hout en bamboe. Veel ruimte door boven te slapen, en de badkamer overdekt aangebouwd “buiten, half open” zodat je toch een beetje het gevoel hebt onder de sterrenhemel te douchen. Succes met jullie keuze.

  • […] you read our previous BLOGS you may remember that in Blog 4, we asked you to help us decide on a model for the cabins for New Life Peñol Wellness Retreat. At […]

  • […] lees nuestros BLOGS anteriores recordarás que en el Blog 4, te pedimos que nos ayudaras a decidir un modelo para las cabañas para New Life Peñol Wellness […]

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