The blog post about my Hobbit House plan with second story open-air deck (scroll down to the fifth design) was very popular and so I decided to offer the same feature on my 33’ Roundhouses – both one and two bedroom versions. The concept is very simple – it’s easy to stay comfortable in hot climates if you’re in the shade with a breeze. It’s easier to catch breezes on a second story open-air patio than on the ground. Plus you’d have good views from the deck. This idea could prove so popular that soon you’re sleeping upstairs, and then you move your laptop, desk, mini-fridge, lounge chairs and other comforts of home. You might want to install a dumbwaiter to hoist food and other items more easily.
So how is the lower roof built? (I knew you were going to ask.) The best idea I’ve thought of so far is bend steel pipe to the appropriate angle and embed it in the suspended slab floor. 3” steel pipe should work fine if embedded about 2’ in the concrete. Galvanized pipe would last longer in tropical climates. Run bamboo, saplings, etc. perpendicular to the pipe to support the thatch. I highly recommend thatch panels to speed construction. (One day for installation versus weeks of work.) Note in the drawing how everything is sized so the thatch doesn’t block the view from windows. Also note, I went with a 9’ ceiling and screened transom vents above doors and windows to improve ventilation.