Siberian larch siding, exposed steel framework, and expansive river views — this sounds like the makeup of an extraordinary waterfront retreat. Unfortunately for those with a pulse, the only thing staying inside this house is a 14-foot speedboat. The maritime shed sits on the banks of England’s River Yealm in the company of the 1880 Baring Boathouse. Its exterior complements the historic setting with a weathered timber finish and a reclaimed Cornish granite slip. Rather than taking up the majority of the ground level, the main occupant is stored in the eaves above. The boat is launched into the water by a custom-made mechanical hoist leaving room for other small crafts.
Burrowed into a coastal hillside is the Ktima House. Although the exterior is more sleek and modern than the traditional architecture, its white stucco facade is at home on the Cydadelic island of Antiparos. Its walls hug the topography of the land and when paired with its green roof, creates the illusion of a continuous, jagged line from above. However, its seaside elevation looks like an ancient fortress. The interior is equally minimalist filled with clean lines and a sterile white palette. Due to the staggered layout, a series of outdoor terraces extend from the living spaces, including an expansive poolside patio overlooking the Aegean Sea.
Propped above the landscape on a limestone cliff edge, the Clear Rock Ranch boasts some of the best views in West Texas. Its compact size is ideal for a weekend retreat or studio while its location provides vantage points across the 1,000-acre property giving the structure the ability to function as a hunting blind or observation deck. Raw and weathered, the steel facade is at home among the rugged scenery and offers a subtle nod to the owner’s welding past. Whether you’re outside on one of the multiple terraces or inside behind the floor-to-ceiling windows, the vast wilderness is always in full sight.
With a shallow gabled roof and simple form, Haus P starts with a traditional Allgäu home. It takes a contemporary turn by slicing a section out of the middle. This modification transforms the classic silhouette into two abstract volumes with one functioning as a shed and the other as a residence. Both exteriors are clad in charred timber, a complement to the southern Germany landscape. Internally, pale wood planks line every wall, ceiling, and floor creating a warm minimalist shell. The only exceptions are the concrete fireplace and the floor-to-ceiling windows that allow in the views of the surrounding verdant mountainsides.
Built off-site using only sustainable materials, the 3Box92 House is a vertical extension of a 19th-century building. The home sits on a street in the Boulogne Billancourt district of Paris. Its black limewash facade and modern cubic form is a stark contrast to the existing architecture. Inside, the geometric theme continues where stacked boxes form the internal layout. The staggered pattern creates a series of terraces and cantilevers on the rear elevation. This south end consists of a garden and pool backed by an opposing white limewash. Utilizing prefabricated systems, the entire project was constructed with only natural, recyclable items, and responsibly harvested wood.
Dark, brooding, and tough as nails, the Treow Brycg House embodies the spirit of a great seaside fortress. The residence is located on the coast of Nova Scotia. Its slanted form is modeled after the gambrel-roofed barns native to the region. Paired with its extra-dark bronze aluminum shield, the home can stand up to the harsh coastal climate. The oceanfront facade consists of concrete and blackened timber. Glazed panels running the length of the north elevation offer extensive views of Kingsburg beach to the two-story interior. In contrast to its somber exterior, the inside is full of warm details produced by walnut finishes and brass fixtures. A cantilevered deck extends toward the water, acting as an outpost to keep a watchful eye on the shore below.
Straddling the terrain on a bluff in Washington, the Rimrock House respects its cliffside property. The structure bridges over a natural wash, maintaining the site’s existing animal path while also elevating the glazed facade above the winter snow. The remainder of the exterior is clad in weathered steel, a material that can handle the harsh climate and also meshes with the rugged scenery. The opaque regions of the home are reserved for the private rooms. Slim windows offer glimpses of the landscape without sacrificing privacy. On the lower level, the main living area is wrapped in glass. This transparent boundary provides the kitchen, dining, and sitting room with panoramic views over Riverside State Park and the north end of Spokane.
Using traditional Japanese framework, the House Between Pillars turns a vacant Tokyo home into a modular masterpiece. The interior is fitted with wooden pillars, spaced equal distance apart. Between each column, tracks were placed and fitted with interchangeable partitions. This allows potential owners to divide and create rooms to fit their lifestyle. Along with the adjustable walls, moveable furniture adds to the home’s adaptability while the mix of plywood and timber provides a minimalist palette that can accommodate any style.
House MK reimagines a traditional Austrian farmhouse by giving it a contemporary new extension. The original structure is a prime example of the region’s vernacular architecture with white granite block walls and a clipped gable roof. While these historic characteristics were preserved for the existing residence, the addition takes on a more modern form. The buildings rough-sawn spruce cladding and an asymmetrical gabled roof are reminiscent of a barn, a current complement to the former farmhouse. Inside, the rustic touches continue with timber beams and knotted wood flooring. Sleek white walls and minimalist cabinetry create an updated atmosphere while openings in the ceiling flood the interior with natural light.
English country meets modern Scandinavia at Zealand Villa. The structure that previously occupied the site was destroyed by a fire and although the new construction isn’t an exact remake of the original, it does replicate some of the former home’s traditional features. It’s divided into three symmetrical volumes. Clad in white brick, their metal roofs and oak accents give off a barn-like appearance. The kitchen resides in one wing and the master suite in the other. At the center is the main living space. Celestial windows wash the Nordic-styled interior with natural light while glazed doors open out to the Denmark countryside.