Photos by Kate Becker
On Cosby, Minnesota’s quaint and peaceful Adney Lake stands the Atlas A-Frame. The 1983 cedar structure was purchased by friends Tony and Kate Becker and Jamey and Taylor Hammond in September 2019 and made anew over the winter months. Starting this April, the home was ready and started hosting guests via Airbnb.
Nicknamed “Atlas,” the A-Frame was designed to be a space to unwind and explore. The charming cabin has four beds and can sleep up to six people. Features include lofty ceilings, a wood-burning stove, stunning views, 150 feet of lakeshore and a private dock.
Enlivened by the idea of just picking a spot on the map and embarking on an adventure, the home’s namesake reflects this ideal. “When you hear ‘atlas’ you think of adventure. You think of a globe and a map and the opportunities that go along with them,” said Kate. The result of a winter’s worth of renovations and design is this Scandinavian-inspired, simplistic space. Ideal for centering the soul and focusing on what matters in life, Airbnb guests have resonated with this mission, resulting in the cabin being booked out well into September.
Meet The Owners
Atlas A-Frame is co-owned by two married couples, the Beckers and the Hammonds. Tony and Kate Becker are entrepreneurs and the idea of a stylish and hip business was not foreign to them. In addition to Atlas, they also own Pinewood, an upscale wedding and events center in Cambridge, Minn. and Northerly, a rental photo booth camper business. The other half of the team are the Hammonds. Taylor and Jamey Hammond live together in the Twin Cities where Jamey is a pastor.
In making Atlas come to life, Tony and Jamey took on the construction and building parts of the renovation, while Kate and Taylor were the visionaries behind the design and aesthetic. “Taylor and I have very similar styles and like a lot of the same things, so it was easy for us to put our heads together and make it unique,” said Kate.
Finding the Home
The dream of renovating and renting out a lakeside A-frame had been brewing in the minds of the Beckers for a while. With experience building their woodsy event center, Pinewood, creating a lakeside escape next was an attainable goal. They had saved a Zillow search for A-frames in northern Minnesota, specifically the North Shore and Crosby Lake areas, and were keeping their eyes open for opportunities.
Such an opportunity came when the two couples were spending a lake weekend together at Jamey’s parents’ cabin. While sitting on the porch enjoying the scenery, they got curious and decided to look up nearby A-frames for sale. “We found Atlas’s [listing] and we decided to go look at it together,” said Kate. On a spur of the moment trip to check it out, the two couples fell in love with the 80s structure and knew they could turn it into something really special together. While Tony and Kate sparked the idea of renovating such a place themselves, they knew it would be more fun to embark on with good friends by their side. And thus, the adventure began.
What drew the owners to this particular A-frame was how it was different than standard A-frames they’d come across. Rather than being one A-shaped structure, this build consisted of two A-shapes, converging into an “L” formation. This unique layout caught their eyes, and the picturesque views, floor-to-ceiling windows and the extra basement space really sealed the deal.
“We just fell in love with the property,” said Kate.
Bringing Atlas A-Frame To Life
While the layout of the cabin was what they wanted, they knew the interior needed some modernization. Luckily, much of the renovation was cosmetic, with reframing around doors and replacing some windows being the only major construction alterations.
Kate noted that a lot of the remodel included the “fun stuff,” like painting, furnishings and cabinetry and kitchen design. With experienced eyes for design, Kate and Taylor enjoyed brainstorming ideas and enlisting the husbands to help execute them. The result? Serene earth-tones reign, and additions of fresh white and natural wood tie it all together.
“We wanted it to be minimal and simple, and for everything to be functional as well. We wanted the whole space to be light and bright and inviting and cozy,” said Kate. They all agreed that they wanted to go the opposite direction of the region’s typical knotty pine and wood cabin look. The cabin is now a modern and contemporary space that stands out as unique, but without betraying its lakeside roots.
A crisp, Scandinavian aesthetic was accomplished by following the design movement’s pillars of clean, simple lines and minimalism. A lack of clutter achieves functionality, but without sacrificing style. This isn’t to say that the space has no decor, just that accessories are not superfluous and existing in excess. Aside from the visual aesthetic, this minimalism is great for rental properties, as you never know what decor might get lost between guest visits.
One of the owners’ favorite details is the cabin’s loft. Up in the loft, guests can experience picturesque views of Adney Lake from two rocking chairs. Here, guests can watch the sunset or the sunrise and breathe in the peacefulness of the environment. In the summer, it makes for a perfect place to unwind after an adventurous day, and in the winter, the panoramic views allow you to soak up the scenery without fighting the cold.
While the space is beautiful, the owners faced some challenges too. Up in the loft, there was a built-in nook that jutted out from the rest of the space. At first, they didn’t know what to do with the space, as it was too small for a table or chairs, but too apparent to just leave empty. A solution for the spot came with the vision for a cozy reading nook. Outfitted with a small daybed and some pillows, the spot found new life. “It’s always our favorite part,” said Kate. “In the mornings when we are all there together, we always fight over that spot. It’s just the perfect little reading nook for your morning coffee.” With some creativity, what could have been an awkward structural feature turned into a desirable haven.
Helping Make Memories
While they easily could have renovated the home for just their own uses, the intention throughout the whole process was to create something they could share. The owners are firm believers in the importance of escaping from day-to-day life and hope that this rental can inspire that action in its guests. “It’s the perfect opportunity for people to get away from their busy lives and really take a weekend to focus on what’s important and just to connect with the people around them,” said Kate.
Displayed in the kitchen is a sign reading, “No WiFi here, pretend it’s the 90s and talk to each other.” With no WiFi on the property, the owners encourage guests to unplug and enjoy timeless activities like playing cards, sitting by the fire or swimming in the lake.
While they’ve only been renting out the cabin since April, they’ve already been enjoying the positive feedback from guests.”It’s just been so rewarding to have people enjoy it. Everyone is always happy at the cabin, so it’s been really fun to be able to share our creation with other people and see how they use the space,” said Kate. The goal from the onset was to love and serve people, and they can feel confident knowing that their little cabin in the woods is doing just that.
To make your own memories at the northern Minnesota lake A-frame, search “Atlas A-frame // An A-frame on Lake Adney!” on Airbnb and book your stay. To admire from afar, be sure to follow the home on Instagram at @atlas.aframe