Mercedes-Benz Star Lodge


  • The Laneway Group
  • Big Red Structures
  • Custom Cargo


Brief to create a weather proof temporary structure on the top of Mt Buller to provide warmth and shelter to mountain dwellers. Required to withstand arctic conditions and be visually appealing.

Entire job from initial concept to delivered structure including all design, engineering, fabrication, fitting, styling, etc. completed within 5 weeks.

Our design involved using 3 x 40′ shipping containers. Time restraints meant we were unable to source traditional roof trussing, therefore we designed, engineered and fabricated the roof truss all in house in 2 days.

Key Features


Functional appeal is our ability to provide warmth through in-built handwarmers recessed into the perimeter, shelter from the weather, showcasing the spectacular view, custom floor designed to manage with wet snow boots, custom made furniture (made by us) to suit the aesthetic.

Roof structure was designed to withstand 120m3 of snow, 266km/h wind speeds and visually align with the geometric nature of the containers.


Hospitable space in an inhospitable climate. The impact on the environment was minimal during the build with works completed very quickly. The impact on the visual landscape at the top of the Mountain is an inviting safe haven from the elements.

Footings needed to have minimal impact on the ground and native grasses around the site. Footing design allows for the site to be re-instated at the end of the tenure.

Entire structure modelled in 3D CAD to predict all fits, tolerances and finishes. This 3D model also facilitated pre-production of all elements of the roof structure in the workshop, prior to shipping to site – thus minimising site work in arduous working conditions.


With in-house design & engineering we now have the ability to accommodate both form and function. All our staff (creative, engineering, draftsmen, carpentry, metal fabrication) work seamlessly together on projects to ensure projects like the Star Lodge are designed and built to adhere to all practical requirements and be visually appealing / on brand.

Advanced 3D modelling is incorporated into all projects requiring bespoke structures. This facilitates structural analysis, procurement, fabrication and construction.


Highlighting the key features of the clients’ product (state-of-the-art air vents) were integrated into the heating of the space within custom-built wall panels. New benchmarks were set with the whole build completed within 8 build days (4days x 2 runs)… the ability to build the “lodge” quickly was a key part of the design integrity.

Utilising re-purposed shipping containers and recycled tyres for the flooring material, has kept our environmental impact low.


Designed to overcome location challenges, with footprint, orientation, roof pitch and shielding all taken into account right from the initial design stage.

Designed to be “knock-down” so that the structure can be disassembled and stored within the shipping containers. All sections are within the 10m internal length of the containers.

Bolted and screwed assembly results in minimal scrap when the structure is disassembled, as all parts are able to be removed and stored for re-use on subsequent activations.

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