It’s difficult to define the things that make a house feel like a home or the characteristics that a dream home should have to actually be everything that its owners wished for. Obviously, no two dream houses are alike and it’s this uniqueness that actually makes them perfect for those using them. How do you imagine your dream home would be like? Where would it be located and what style would you choose for it? Would it be big or small, would it have a pool and what would you like to see when you look out the window? These are not simple questions so perhaps you should let yourself be inspired by the choices others made.
Two pools that mirror each other, one below and one above you
The Wall House doesn’t just have two swimming pools, although we could see how such a detail would be a good feature for a dream home. What makes this house really stand out is the fact that while one of the pools is on the patio, the other one is suspended above it. There’s water beneath and above you and it’s like entering a whole new world. The experience is unique and extraordinary.
This wonderful dream house was designed by Guedes Cruz Architectos. They completed the project in 2013. Concrete, glass and wood are the main materials used throughout. The house is located in Cascais, Portugal and its large windows open it to the gold and the sea, bringing the outdoors in and allowing the fresh breeze and the serene views to become a part of the interior decor.
Hidden in the rainforest, with views over the tree canopies
We can’t decide what’s more dreamy, to live in the middle of the rainforest with nothing but lush greenery and beautiful trees around you or to have an infinity pool on the rooftop and to admire the distance views over the canopies while enjoy the peaceful atmosphere. The owners of this dream house in Sao Paulo don’t have to choose because they have it all.
The house was designed by Studio MK27 and it sits in a clearing on the coastline. It was named The Jungle House because of the dense vegetation that surrounds it. The architects took maximum advantage of the location and the views by placing all the main living areas on the upper floor, alongside the pool.
Of course, the architects were also careful to show respect for the land and to minimize the building’s impact on the surroundings. Their goal was to create a strong connection between the indoor and outdoor areas and to establish a natural interaction between the building’s architectural elements and the land that surrounds it.
Shaped by nature, built out of pure materials
This cottage may not look like much and it’s true that it doesn’t have any impressive architectural features but it gets to stand out in a different way. You can find this retreat on the Seascape Banks Peninsula, in New Zealand. It’s meant to be a remote destination and it’s set into an exposed rocky escarpment, on the Northern side of a volcano formation.
This is a beautiful retreat for honeymoons or romantic getaways. It sits close to the water and it offers serene and relaxing views in the distance but at the same time it captures the ruggedness of the rocky surroundings.The cottage was designed and built by the Pattersons office. They completed the project in 2013. The interior is organized into a lobby, a living room that can also be used as the sleeping area and a bathroom. They total 110 square meters.
A modern-day fort overlooking the sea
These days you don’t see many castles or fortifications. The architecture has evolved to be more focused on comfort and aesthetics than on the defensive elements. That’s why it’s unusual to see a house that revisits some of these concepts. This is a property situated in Muriwai, New Zealand. It occupies 470 square meters of space and it was a project by Petterson Associates.
The refreshing thing about the house is the way in which it responds to its surroundings. The building is designed to withstand the weather conditions on the site and to be defensive and imposing at the same time. It offers its owners lots of privacy but it also allows them to be close to nature and to enjoy the outstanding views.
The house features a courtyard that offers protection against the wind and the sea spray coming from the ocean side. The harsh coastal environment is tamed in a beautiful and very practical manner. The architects also used a number of other design strategies to ensure the comfort and happiness of their clients. For instance, they have the house large overhangs and a strategically-organized floor plan that responds to their needs.
Family home expansion embraces the slope
A person’s needs and preferences change over time so what at one point used to be the perfect home can start to look a bit too small as the family grows. It’s what happened in Ballarat, Australia on a site that used to be occupied by a small house with only two bedrooms. The owners reached a point when they needed more space so they asked Moloney Architects to help them with this.
The architects designed the Invermay House, a family home better suited for their clients’ needs. Their requirements were simple. They just wanted to expand their original home and to have more space which they could enjoy together with their four children. The clients wanted to have as many rooms as possible oriented towards North in order to have more sunlight during the day. They also wanted the living spaces to be placed on the ground floor to that they could easily go outside and that’s exactly what the architects gave them, making their dream home become reality.
A nature-loving home with a suspended pool
The site on which this house was built is a wooded area populated with lots of trees. It overlooks the Potomac River, the house being located in Glen, Echo, Maryland, in Washington DC. It’s not the first house to be built here. It was actually built on the footprint of a pre-existing house and this was done in order to minimize the impact on the site and to preserve the surroundings as best as possible.
There are a few major differences between the old house and the new one that took its place. This one, for instance, is more modern and has floor-to-ceiling windows on both floors that let the surroundings become a part of the interior decor, welcoming the outdoors in. Another new element is the new swimming pool which is suspended 20 feet above the ground. Once again, this unusual design strategy was chosen in an effort to minimize the impact on the land. This was a project by Robert Gurney.
A strong focus on sustainability
Some appreciate comfort, some put the looks over everything else and some have a big desire to be eco-friendly and to close with nature. Villa K is a house designed by Paul de Ruiter Architects. It’s actually the first project that they developed in Germany. The clients wanted their new dream home to be sustainable and discreet in order to integrate well into its surroundings with a minimal impact on the land.
To respect these wishes, the architects chose to design the villa using only glass, steel and concrete. The result was a house oriented towards the South with a glass facade that offers unobstructed views of the surrounding landscape and mainly the valley. To ensure a seamless transition between the indoor and outdoor areas, the architects created a U-shaped terrace around the living spaces.
The terrace is crossed at the center by a patio which is partly indoor and partly outdoor, strengthening this connection. There’s also a swimming pool that cantilevers over the slope. A platform was designed across the pool and it can be pulled up whenever desired. The terrace is surrounded by a garden where vegetables and fruit trees grow.
The perfect retirement home
Where would you like to live when you retire? This may not be something to think about right now but there will be a time when you’ll start thinking about these things. Some time ago, Ström Architects were approached for such a project. Their clients wanted a new home where they could live comfortable after their retirement. The house had to suit their specific needs but the clients didn’t want it to look like a typical retirement home. Instead, they wanted it to be contemporary and to have a fresh and cheerful vibe.
The architects designed a single-level structure with an open plan living, dining and kitchen area, large windows that bring in lots of natural light, a guest suite and a master bedroom that cantilevers over an existing wall. The house sits on a sloping site and the cantilevering section forms a protected parking area.
The challenge to do the site justice
When the views and the surroundings are as amazing as they are here,nothing is more important than doing the site justice. This was in fact the main goal that the architects of Original Vision has to attain. They designed this extraordinary dream house somewhere on Kamala Beach, in Phuket, Thailand. They completed the project in 2008.
The house sits in a ravine that overlooks the Andaman Sea. The rocky landscape and the views were the two elements that the architects focused on when they designed this unique house. They’re referenced in the design on every occasion. Overall, the house has a solid and imposing structure but at the same time it’s very open and airy in order to establish a connection with the surroundings and to capture the most wonderful views.
Sculptural beauty attained through geometric forms
Inspired by the sculptural impact of geometric forms in architecture, ARRCC created the City Villa, an amazing dream home located in South Africa. This modern family home plays with light and shadow and uses simple lines and forms to sculpt the land. The building is made up of rectangular elements stacked one on top of the other. They form cantilevering sections and they give the house a striking, dramatic but also natural look.
The kitchen and the dining area are placed on the ground floor. Full-height glass windows surround these spaces, opening them to the surroundings and bringing the light and the views in. The bedrooms are situated upstairs and they get to offer the most extraordinary views. Large windows and glass doors connect them to a large outdoor terrace.
The outdoor area is designed to look very relaxing and tranquil. There’s a large pool and a Jacuzzi tub that are surrounded by lush greenery with a zen look and feel. Next to the pool there’s a sunken seating area with comfortable furniture and a fire pit at the center. The coolest thing, however, would have to be the large overhang and the round skylight.
Verticality saves the land
Any of these houses could be someone’s dream home. They’re all really charming and in sync with their surroundings. We’re talking about four houses designed by Alejandro Sanchez Garcia Arquitectos in 2009. They’re all located in Valle de Bravo, in Mexico, covering a total area of 720 square meters.
All four of these dream homes sit in a private garden. In order to preserve the site as best as possible and to salvage as much vegetation as possible, the architects designed the houses with small footprints. They’re organized vertically and they resemble small towers, each structured on three floors and each with a roof garden. Two sides of their facades have floor-to-ceiling windows while the other two are covered with wood lattices.
This is a house located in Toronto, Canada, in a large ravine system with pretty amazing views. The conditions on the site were perfect for creating a close relationship between the house and its immediate surroundings and that’s exactly what Hariri Pontarini Architects did back in 2006 when this dream home was built. To emphasize this connection even more, the architects chose to use a series of natural materials for the facade.
The house has a slightly curved front facade that faces the street and and maintains the privacy of the inhabitants by being almost entirely solid and closed off. The design, however, open towards the back. Large windows and glass doors invite nature in and allow the views and the surroundings to become a part of the inhabitants’ everyday life.
Playing with gravity
This is the S House, a contemporary residence located in Herzliya, Israel. It’s just been completed by Pitsou Kedem Architects in 2016 and, from a certain angle, it looks like it’s just a large concrete block that hovers and defies gravity. At a closer look, you can spot the volume that sustains it and connects it to the ground, like an anchor.
The design of the house is defined by simple and clean lines which give it a sculptural allure. At the same time, the boundaries between the interior spaces and the garden and poolside area are blurred. The transition is smooth and seamless. There are no floor height differences between these zones and the sliding glass walls can be opened completely. The decorative pool is a really cool feature and we also really like the wooden walls that wrap around it.
Relaxing on the beach and enjoying the breeze
Sitting on the porch or relaxing on the living room sofa and listening to the waves break on the beach shore…now that’s dreamy. It’s also the main reason we really like the W House. It’s a beautiful family home that sits on a rocky site in Huentelauquen, Chile. The proximity to the sea is a great advantage, meaning that the house offers panoramic views and also takes advantage of the lovely breeze.
In total, the house has three bedrooms and two bathrooms. The living room is large, open and bright, welcoming the views in. The two major challenges that the architects of 01Arq had to face with this project were related to the budget and the weather conditions on the site. The architects had to find a way of protecting the living spaces from the wind without blocking the views. They also had to limit themselves at $500 per square meter.
The result was a big success, a 130 square meter house completed in 2007, one that makes the most of its location and that offers the inhabitants the opportunity to feel like they’re on vacation every day. The full-height windows and glass doors let the light and the views in and the interior design and decor are kept simple in order to put on focus on the surroundings and the landscape rather than on the artificial ornaments.
The house with an underwater room
The Spa House is a contemporary home located in Hout Bay, on the coast of Cape Town, in South Africa. It was completed in 2011 y Metropolis Design and it has a wonderful orientation which allows it to take views of the bay and the harbour. The site is pretty imposing and interesting on its own and the architects faced the challenge of integrating the building in this context without making it seem out of place.
Naturally, the architects were inspired by the surroundings, the views and the conditions on the site. The coolest thing about the overall design is the strong connection that it has with water. A large pool is seamlessly connected to the wooden deck and the lounge areas and one of the rooms is placed below them. This room has windows that offer views inside the pool. The experience is unique and amazing and the ambiance in here is very serene, relaxing and stunning on all levels. After all, not many people can say that they have an underwater room in their house.
Building a house on a steep slope, on the edge of a cliff or anywhere on the coastline is definitely not a walk in the park. The process is complicated and has to be carefully thought out but it’s all worth the effort in the end when you get to call that house your home and to wake up every morning with a gorgeous view unveiled in front of your eyes. The St Leon house is one of those homes.
The house was built in Bantry Bay, Cape Town. It was a collaborative project between SAOTA and Antoni Associates. The views from up here are amazing and the interior design and decor are lovely and enjoyable as well. The design strategy in this case was to make the interior of the house feel really comfortable and inviting and to let the views complement the cozy ambiance rather than become the main focal point. A diverse mixture of textures and patterns ensures a perfect balance.
Cantilevered above the sea
Imagine being suspended over a cliff, with the sea beneath you and feeling completely safe and comfortable. It’s an amazing sensation and one that can be enjoyed by anyone who visits this lovely resort on Manshausen Island, in the Steigen Archipelago in Northern Norway. The feature that impressed us the most is portion that’s cantilevered above the sea. It has glass on all three sides so the views are extraordinary and unobstructed.
This spectacular resort was a project by Stinessen Arkitektur. The team was careful to take into consideration the site’s unique topography as well as the two existing structures, one of which was an old farmhouse. This is actually the structure that has been restored and opened towards the views with the partially cantilevered design. The other cabins that were added are oriented towards the most beautiful views. After you stay here for a few days, you’ll never want to leave.
Inspired by famous movies
If you’ve seen Ex Machina you probably remember where all the action took place. Ever wondered if it’s a real building? It is and what’s interesting in this case is that the architecture of the house has a deep impact on the movie which is defined by a continuous duplicity, a contrast between what’s human, natural and what’s not.
The residence where the movie was filmed is located on top of a cliff and was designed by Jensen & Skodvin Architects. Another location was the Juvet Landscape Hotel in Norway by the same architects. The underground rooms with concrete walls were constructed at Pinewood Studios in England. Together, these three locations helped create the right ambiance which emersed the viewers deep in the story. The minimalistic retro furnishings and the exposed concrete surfaces played an important role in the story, creating a low-tech vibe that contrasted with the main character.
Shaped by the views
Like a lot of other houses and villas, the Plane House has a design highly influences by its location. Situated on Skaithos Island, in Greece, the house was designed by K Studio. Their main objective was to establish a seamless connection between the internal and external spaces and to maximize the impact of the landscape and the views of the overall decor. A 270 degree view of the coastline defines the major interior spaces, the house being carefully oriented towards it.
In addition to being oriented towards the gorgeous view, the spaces are also organized in a practical and comfortable manner. For instance, the swimming pool gets to make the most of the view and at the same time it provides a cooling breeze over the terrace. Moreover, the house has a strategic design which allows it to be open to the surroundings in some parts and intimate and private in others. A nice balance is created this way.
Floating in the air to capture the views
The search for the perfect site for building one’s dream house can sometimes be very long. It can be years until you finally find the ideal location that has everything you’re looking for. However, it’s worth the wait, especially when you know that soon you’ll be able to enjoy all that beauty from the comfort of your own home. The owner of this house spent years searching for this site that would later hold his dream home. In 2012 it wall finally complete. The house was built in Nagano, Japan by Kidosaki Architects Studio.
It’s not a very extravagant house, although it does stand out in a rather dramatic way. It sits on a sloping mountain ridge and its design was entirely shaped by the land. Naturally, the client wanted the house to capture the amazing views that he spend all those years looking for. That’s why the architects came up with a design that allows the house to extend into the air.
The dramatic cantilever is supported by two diagonal bracing steel cylinders and it pretty much floats in the middle of these gorgeous surroundings. But the connection to the landscape isn’t only reflected in the architecture of the building. The interior spaces are kept simple and furnished and decorated using pure materials.
An exposed skeleton wrapped around the cliff
Situated in El Arco, Chile, in an area where houses never existed, the Till House can be accessed via small and difficult paths, with no rods to make things easier. But this didn’t discourage the owners. In fact, they embraced this extreme seclusion and were glad such a remote site. But that’s not the only reason they chose it.
The house is a weekend retreat built by WMR Arquitectos in 2014. It sits on a cliff with panoramic views on three sides. The architects designed the house with an exposed skeleton that embraces the cliff. Only local resources and labor were used in the process. The skeleton of the house has a black finish and the walls were clad in dark brown. They contrast with the interior which has white walls and ceilings.
The social areas such as the living room, the dining space and the kitchen share an open floor plan with the two bedrooms. The layout is simple and flexible and large sliding doors offer the option to separate the bedrooms from the rest of the spaces at night for more privacy. Large terraces were designed to the west, north and south and the entire roof is a terrace as well.
Minimalism at its best
One of the advantages of living in a house that sits on a remote site is the fact that privacy is not an issue. In other words, you can have full-height windows in the bedrooms with no need for long curtains and you can make the views a major part of the interior design of every room. Architect John Robert Nilsson took advantage of this detail when designing this summer getaway that overlooks the Baltic Sea, on Varmdo Island.
The house is minimalist in every way. Its design is defined by clean and simple forms, fluid lines and a chromatic palette based on white and light wood accents. A lot of glass was used in the project. It was necessary in order to connect the spaces to their surroundings and to allow the landscape and the views to become a part of the interior. The barriers between spaces are almost inexistent. Outside, a cozy sunken lounge area with a fire pit at the center makes the whole package complete.
Mobile home floating on water
Not being physically linked to any single particular location is definitely a great advantage for some people who move around a lot and prefer flexibility. But such houses are rare. One of them was designed by Dymitr Malcew. It’s a floating house that sits on a flat, transportable base. This means it can be easily moved to a different location whenever desired. Just take it to the new location and dock it. You have full control over the views and the orientation.
The main idea around which the project was designed was to create a house that would have a minimal impact on its surroundings, whatever these may be. At the same time, the house had to offer an unusual experience and its mobility helps achieve that. In addition, all the interior spaces have access to an outdoor terrace which goes around the house. This ensures a strong and direct connection to the landscape.
Sculptural simplicity and clarity
Sometimes it’s refreshing to take a step back from all the things we take for granted and all the ideas that have become streamline and to consider alternatives or to come up with personalized options. For instance, when planning the design of a new house, don’t go straight for the usual monolithic structure. Take your time and explore other design options as well. This house in Mexico City can be your source of inspiration.
The house has a modern design that’s very open and very nicely connected to its surroundings. The overall structure is slim, sleek and sculptural, the house featuring a cascading design that embraces the views and the surroundings. The connection with the surroundings and the land is also emphasized through the selection of materials, finishes and colors. The house features a bunch of details that allow it to look more beautiful as it weathers.
Smaller is cozier
Having a really big house may seem like a dream come true for some while others would rather have something small and cozy. 134 square meters is more than enough and that’s how much Casa Chontay measures. It’s a private home in the Antioquia District in Peru. It was designed by Marina Vella Arquitectos in 2014 and it doesn’t have a huge infinity pool, expansive views over the ocean or other such features. It’s quite modest in fact and that’s what makes it special.
The particularities of the site include a beautiful mixture of wood, stone, clay and local vegetation. The site itself has an irregular form, sitting higher than the surroundings and overlooking the surroundings. The house was built using sustainable materials and this allows it to naturally blend in and to become a part of the landscape.
The interior spaces are cozy and inviting, distributed in a practical manner, with the living room, dining area and kitchen in one place and the bedrooms separately in a different part of the house. The outdoor areas are also really welcoming, featuring hammocks, a gazebo, a pool, a playground a fire pit and even an orchard. Large stones found on site create a beautiful composition.