Outdoor Rooms, Curated by Yellowtrace

 

In case you thought today’s post is about “styling” your Verandas and Backyard Pergolas with a bit of lattice action, I’m afraid you’re in for a huge dose of disappointment. Sorry / not sorry. If you’re, however, in the market for amazing architectural examples of outdoor rooms taken to extreme levels – then you’re in the right place. That’s right, today we are talking about spaces that take the idea of “bringing the outside in” to a whole new level (which happens to be my all time favourite Architecture Wank Phrase, just so you know.)

The idea of bringing you this post was inspired by our upcoming summer holidays and spending more time outdoors (sorry Northern Hemisphere folk). This idea lead to many beautiful examples in warm and tropical climates – think Brazil, Mexico, Australia, Asia etc. Pretty logical, no? However, as my research and thinking evolved, I began to realise that other unexpected places had a few real gems to bring into the mix – namely Japan, which for my money is one of the front runners in creating extraordinary spaces that harness the concept of “outdoor rooms” with gusto. I found this quite interesting, as one wouldn’t expect to find such radical solutions in a climate that doesn’t lend itself to year-round outdoor living. This being said, the examples in Japan speak of what must be a very strong craving for achieving more with less space, for extending the boundaries of small sites and creating the illusion of generously proportioned living areas, even if this meant sacrificing traditional rooms for spaces that may not be used all year round. Let’s dive in.

 

See More ‘Stories on Design’ Curated by Yellowtrace.

 

House N in Oita, Japan by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

House N in Oita, Japan by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Photography © Iwan Baan.

 

House N by Sou Fujimoto in Oita, Japan // This house consists of three shells of progressive sizes nested inside one another. The outermost shell covers the entire premises, creating a covered, semi-indoor garden. Second shell encloses a limited space inside the covered outdoor space. Third shell creates a smaller interior space. Openings in the outer wall and roof aren’t glazed, so the patio garden, bathroom and kitchen contained behind are open to the elements.


 

Optical Glass House by Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, Hiroshima, Japan | Yellowtrace

Optical Glass House by Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, Hiroshima, Japan | Yellowtrace

Optical Glass House by Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, Hiroshima, Japan | Yellowtrace

 

Optical Glass House by Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP, Hiroshima, Japan // Completed in 2012, The Optical Glass House is located on a busy residential street in downtown Hiroshima. The house features a glittering facade of suspended glass blocks that creates privacy and tranquility on the bustling urban street filled with cars and trams. The house presents itself to the street with a dynamic 8.6 x 8.6m facade consisting of 6,000 pure glass blocks that reveal and conceal in equal amounts. The facade is designed to provide soundproofing from the outside world, and at he same time allow abundance of natural light into the immediately adjacent interior garden, which acts as a transition between the exterior and interior.

See full feature post here.


 

Garden House Tokyo by Ryue Nishizawa SANAA / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Garden House Tokyo by Ryue Nishizawa SANAA / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Garden House Tokyo by Ryue Nishizawa SANAA / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Garden House Tokyo by Ryue Nishizawa SANAA / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Photography © Iwan Baan.

 

Garden House by Ryue Nishizawa from SANAA in Tokyo, Japan // Designed for a tiny urban lot, the narrow building by Nishizawa might easily be mistaken for a mysterious vertical garden. This five-storey house has a series of stacked concrete floor slabs bordered with transparent railings, curtains, and walls of household plants growing within pots. Located in a dense commercial district, the building provides a combined home and workplace for two writers. The site was just four metres wide, so Nishizawa designed a building that has only glass walls to avoid narrowing the interior spaces even further.


 

The Montblanc House by Studio Velocity | Yellowtrace

The Montblanc House by Studio Velocity | Yellowtrace

The Montblanc House by Studio Velocity | Yellowtrace

Photography by Kentaro Kurihara.

 

The Montblanc House by Studio Velocity in Okazaki, Japan // Okazaki-based practice Studio Velocity has completed ‘Montblanc House’, a three-storey dwelling with a small salon in a quiet residential area of Japan. The design seeks to generate pockets of open space that maintain it’s privacy and views toward the mountains, despite it’s tight site.


 

The Baleia Houses by Studio Arthur Casas | Yellowtrace

The Baleia Houses by Studio Arthur Casas | Yellowtrace

Photography © Iñigo Bujedo Aguirre.

 

The Baleia Houses by Studio Arthur Casas in São Paulo, Brazil // ‘The Baleia Houses’ are located in the northern coast of São Paulo between a large rainforest reserve and the beach of Baleia. The four dwellings contain the same narrow plan which are positioned diagonally on a small plot of land, mimicking the topography of the site. By using the wall of the neighbouring residence, intimate spaces are created for the adjacent structure, providing view of the encompassing landscape while maintaining levels of privacy for the inhabitants.


 

Loft 24-7 in São  Paulo, Brazil by Fernanda Marques Arquitetos Asociados | Yellowtrace

 

Loft 24-7 by Fernanda Marques Arquitetos Asociados in São Paulo, Brazil // Loft 24-7, a bungalow of about 250sqm, exists as much on the outside as on the inside, blurring the boundaries of the house with the use of ponds and trees placed in key locations.

Previous Post: Round-up of Smokin’ Hot Brazilian Architecture.


 

Lee House by Studio MK27 in Porto Feliz, Brazil | Yellowtrace

 

Lee House by Studio MK27 in Porto Feliz, Brazil // The Brazilian architecture studio, lead by Marcio Kogan, have completed a minimal single family house where a large rectangular volume develops over one single floor, with interweaving exterior and interior spaces.


 

Glass Loggia House by Allen Jack+Cottier Architects | Yellowtrace

Photography by Nic Bailey of Allen Jack+Cottier.

 

Glass Loggia House in Glebe, NSW, Australia by Allen Jack+Cottier Architects // In designing this grand residence, Allen Jack+Cottier worked with designer Belinda Koopman and landscape architect Vladimir Sitta. This collaboration saw dark living spaces and a neglected garden transformed into a union of clever design and visual artistry. Drawing inspiration from the house’s previous use as a private zoo, the architects have created a polished-concrete pool ‘fenced’ by a quirky fish skeleton vitrine and plant-filled moat.


 

The Nest by a21studio | Yellowtrace

Photo by Hiroyuki Oki.

 

The Nest by a21studio in Thuận An, Vietnam // Climbing plants and vines shoot up over a gridded facade of metal beams and panels at this house in Binh Duong Province by Vietnamese architects a21studĩo. Constructed on a limited budget, the house was designed to both “look green” and fit in with its neighbours. The architects at a21studio used steel beams to construct a basic framework, then clad the exterior with lightweight mesh and corrugated panels, and encouraged plants to grow up around it.


 

Napa Valley House by Steven Harris Architects | Yellowtrace

Napa Valley House by Steven Harris Architects | Yellowtrace

Photography by Scott Frances/OTTO.

 

Napa Valley House by Steven Harris Architects in California, USA // The Napa Valley House was designed by Eliot Lee for his parents, along with his wife, who is also an architect. The house is a compound of four buildings that sit in a row between two hills. One is a living/ dining space, one is a master bedroom and bath, one is a guest house, and one is a spa with a sauna.


 

Outside in by Takeshi Hosaka Architects | Yellowtrace

Photo © Koji Fujii / Nacasa & Partners inc.

 

Outside in by Takeshi Hosaka Architects in Yamanashi, Japan // A single-storey private dwelling for a couple and their three children in Yamanashi, Japan. Situated adjacent to a number of farming fields and a forrest plot to the south, the house seeks to create a subtle gradation from outdoors to indoors, integrating the presence of nature into the living space.


 

Peanuts by UID Architects | Yellowtrace

Photo by Hiroshi Ueda, Courtesy of Uid Architects.

 

Peanuts by UID Architects in Hiroshima, Japan // UID Architects have designed a nursery in Hiroshima, Japan. The semi-outdoor space have slants and extrusions that surround a baby room – a place of the exploration for children and “a gallery of the forest” where pregnant women and mothers can take a moment to relax.


 

House K in Hyogo by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

House K in Hyogo by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

House K in Hyogo by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Photography © Iwan Baan.

 

House K in Hyogo by Sou Fujimoto // House K house, for a couple with a child, is wedged into a long and narrow “flagpole” site in a typical residential district in Nishinmiya, a medium-sized city between Osaka and Kobe. Fujimoto’s response was to construct a bleached, abstracted “hillside” in concrete-clad steel, creating an artificial landscape that opens up to a copse of trees to the west and below, with living spaces gently cascade down across three levels.


 

House NA in Tokyo, Japan by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

House NA in Tokyo, Japan by Sou Fujimoto / Photo © Iwan Baan | Yellowtrace

Photography © Iwan Baan.

 

House NA by Sou Fujimoto in Tokyo, Japan // Designed for a young couple in a quiet Tokyo neighborhood, this 85 sqm transparent house has hardly any walls, appearing almost as scaffolding. Associated with the concept of living within a tree, the spacious interior is comprised of 21 individual floor plates, all situated at various heights, that satisfy the clients’ desire to live as nomads within their own home.


 

Minna no ie by Mamm Design | Yellowtrace

Photo © Daici Ano.

 

Minna no ie by Mamm Design in Tokyo, Japan // This two-and-a-half storey dwelling is situated on a 4.5m by 12m plot bound by neighbouring buildings. The design seeks to provide a space that seemingly expands beyond its borders by inserting a six meter-high garden room at its centre. An atelier hosted in the cantilevered volume looks out over the garden room while a small study space and bedroom are stacked on the opposite end of the layout. Conscious of preserving a feeling of openness, every area of the house has a direct connection to the multi-storey void, and are devoid of partitions or doors.

See more info and images in our Gallery Post.


 

31 Blair Road Residence by Ong & Ong | Yellowtrace

Photo by Tim Nolan.

 

31 Blair Road Residence by Ong & Ong Pte Ltd in Singapore // A traditional façade embraces a contemporary way of living, meticulously achieving a delicate balance between the old and the new, with exterior and modern approach to interiors designed in context with the surroundings.


 

Casa Cor, 2014 Villa Deca by Guilherme Torres | Yellowtrace

 

Villa Deca by Guilherme Torres for Casa Cor in São Paulo, Brazil // With minimal visual interference in the scenario, the Villa Deca abuses raw materials. The house has no windows or locks, and appears like a large balcony. A minimalist environment with monochromatic colours, ranging from grey and sand, designed to be completely open in almost it’s entire length.


 

Casa Panama by Studio MK27 | Yellowtrace

Photo by Fernando Guerra.

 

Casa Panama by Studio MK27/ Marcio Kogan in São Paulo, Brazil // This concrete house in São Paulo is depicted as a luxury home from the 1950s, taking full advantage of merging the courtyard space with living and dining areas.

Watch the video of Modern Living – Casa P by Studio MK27 here.


 

House in Moriyama by Suppose Design Office | Yellowtrace

House in Moriyama by Suppose Design Office | Yellowtrace

Images © Suppose Design Office.

 

House in Moriyama by Suppose Design Office in Nagoya, Japan // Japanese architects Suppose Design Office have completed a residence in Nagoya, Japan, featuring a room dedicated to plants. In this home the garden, is incorporated into the interior as landscaping to surround the living space. “It was our intention to treat rooms and gardens as equivalent, and make the relationship between inside and out closer, by creating a design featuring this garden-like room so that things normally decorating a room such as art, books, and furnishings would in a way almost be thrust into an exterior space.”


 

Wonderwall by SO Architecture | Yellowtrace

Wonderwall by SO Architecture | Yellowtrace

Photography © Piyawut Srisakul.

 

Wonderwall by SO Architecture in Chiang Mai, Thailand // Wanderwall features huge open-plan spaces and seamless transitions between indoor and outdoor, with the big wall cutting through the existing landform within the plot, creating areas for different spaces and functions.


 

Tepoztlan Lounge by Cadaval & Sola Morales | Yellowtrace

Tepoztlan Lounge by Cadaval & Sola Morales | Yellowtrace

Photography by Sandra Pereznieto.

 

Tepoztlan Lounge by Cadaval & Solà-Morales in Tepoztlan, Mexico // Located south of Mexico City is this the curvy, triangular-shaped guesthouse which will form part of a larger series of bungalows that can be rented for days, months or years. The concrete structure creates three separate spaces with an open central area for people to gather or relax in the hammocks.


 

Casa Maracana in Sao Paulo, Brazil by Terra e Tuma Arquitetos Associados | Yellowtrace

Photo by Pedro Kok.

 

Maracanã House by Terra e Tuma Arquitetos Associados in São Paulo, Brazil // Maracanã House is made of blocks of light concrete, hosting the family of Danilo Terra, one of the studio directors. The house can be accessed through the void. Surprisingly empty, a belvedere opens to the residence, and a guide for the functional areas; social and services downstairs, and more intimate, upstairs. The light passes through the massive glass openings that oppose the strength of the concrete materiality that builds the house, just as it invades the city streets, in all directions.

See more info and images in our Gallery Post.


 

Spa Querétaro by Ambrosi I Etchegaray in Querétaro, Mexic | Yellowtrace

Photo © Luis Gordoa.

 

Spa Querétaro by Ambrosi Etchegaray in Querétaro, Mexico // The project brief called for an Integral Yoga and Spa Centre in an area of 418 irregular square meters. The design premise was to create a centre in constant contact with nature, generating an inner patios with a garden.


 

ML House by Bernardes Jacobsen | Yellowtrace

Photo © Leonardo Finotti.

 

ML House by Jacobsen Arquitetura in São Paulo, Brasil // This weekend house in São Paulo was designed for a couple with young children. The house has two facades – one inner one outer, as well as two “circulation galleries”, allowing a seamless solution to indoor / outdoor permeability.


 

Mirindaba House by Marcio Kogan | Yellowtrace

Photo © Nelson Kon.

 

Mirindaba House by Marcio Kogan in São Paulo, Brasil // The building is an impressive example of Kogan’s trademark elegant and airy concrete box forms, lined with stone and Brazilian timber, while open spaces play with light, and blur the lines between inside and outdoors.


 

La Palma by Miguel Angel Aragones | Yellowtrace

Photo © Joe Fletcher.

 

La Palma by Miguel Angel Aragonés in Mexico City // Inspired by Luis Barragán’s work, known for his ability to handle the light, the architect for this house had an all consuming fascination with the sun. The key approach to the design was to capture the sun, manipulate it and finally “seducing” it.


 

Gap House by Pitman Tozer | Yellowtrace

Photo © Nick Kane.

 

Gap House by Pitman Tozer Architects in London, England // With a street frontage of only 2.3 m wide the house sits within a narrow slot, originally the side alley and rear garden of an adjoining property. The challenge was to create a Low Carbon Building and make a comfortable 4-bed family home, maximising light and space within the constraints of a tight and awkward site.


 

House Reduction by MAKE Architecture Studio in Victoria, Australia | Yellowtrace

Photo © Peter Bennetts.

 

House Reduction by MAKE Architecture Studio in Victoria, Australia // As an alternative to the large ‘box on back’ extension, this project looks at how smaller spaces and multifunctional rooms can provide a large family with the space they need. External screens are used to provide flexibility and to allow the living space to expand and contract. Built in daybeds and joinery maximise the efficiency of the house in summer.


 

Grecia House by Isay Weinfeld | Yellowtrace

Photo by Fernando Guerra.

 

Grecia House by Isay Weinfeld in São Paulo, Brasil // The four boxy shapes that make up the house are each finished in a different material. The house and patios are positioned to make the most of the natural light while keeping the temperature cool.


 

2 verandas  in Zurich, Switzerland by Gus Wüstemann | Yellowtrace

2 verandas  in Zurich, Switzerland by Gus Wüstemann | Yellowtrace

Photography by Bruno Helbling.

 

2verandas by Gus Wüstemann in Zürich, Switzerland // Swiss architect Gus Wüstemann used raw concrete, oak and travertine to create the smooth walls and floors of this home and poolhouse overlooking Lake Zurich. The two buildings are positioned at different levels of a sloping site – frameless walls of glass slide open across the facade of the house, connecting living rooms on the ground and first floors with a terrace and balcony.

See full feature post here.


 

A21 House in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by A21 Studio | Yellowtrace

Photography by Hiroyuki Oki.

 

A21 House by a21 studio in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam // Architects a21 studio set out to design a multilevel home with an office space to house their studio. I truly love this project and it’s lack of fussy details, reuse of existing structure and surfaces, abundance of natural light, open breezy spaces, integration with trees and plants, an overall relaxed style and effortless beauty in the simplicity.

See full feature post here.


 

4 Responses

Leave a Reply