The contemporary Residence in Kifisia has been designed for a family of four by N. Koukourakis & Associates in the suburb of Kifisia, in Athens, Greece. The home is comprised of 3,767 square feet (350 square meters) of living space, constructed on a small, almost level square plot. The concept of the designed was focused on establishing additional open air spaces to create a pleasant habitat on the small plot. The small stone mass in the entryway separates the public spaces from the private spaces to ensure privacy.
The open ground floor plan encompasses the foyer, sitting room, rest room, dining room and kitchen, which through large interior and exterior openings utilize all natural light to the largest extent, while at the same time they appear to complement the outdoor / open spaces since they are directly connected. The double height opening in the living room visually connects the ‘public’ and ‘private’ spaces of the residence. On the first floor, the living room, office and children’s bedrooms all have balconies without railings and transparent glass for maximization of the view. On the second floor the master bedroom has infinite views and a vast veranda. The basement comprises of additional secondary ‘functional rooms’ as well as the guest room.
The materials used for the exterior facade constitute the components used in the internal spaces. Coffee-grey coating and wood in a monochromatic dialogue define the overall structure of this building. The use of wood in the external spaces, the ground floor and the balconies doubles and visually connects the spaces of the residence.
The furniture follows the simple and minimal theme of the building’s spaces, enhancing the clean design lines and light colors of the structure as well as the primary function of light and the comfort of the spaces.
The shell of the house is constructed using a facade insulation system; the aluminum casings have thermal-break system and high spec double energy glass panels. Heating is provided through the floor while there is also a central air conditioning system. It is constructed in accordance with the specifications of a smart home where all operations including lighting, the movement of shutters, the alarm system, video surveillance cameras, multi-room sound system and air conditioning are all controlled by a centralized system.
This contemporary single family residence was designed by the duo team of architect Dalius Regelskis and decorator Greta Motiejuniene of the firm Dalius & Greta Design in Trakai, Lithuania. The home features a soothing neutral color palette in the main living spaces, the master bedroom showcases a bold royal blue with a Moroccan feel and the playroom has a fun and playful color palette with bright and colorful hues. There are elements in the home that gives off a nature theme with leaves, branches and wood. High ceilings and plenty of natural light leave this cozy and comfortable home feeling light and airy.
Photos: Darius Gumbrevicius
Toronto Residence was designed by Belzberg Architects on a large double lot in a premier neighborhood in north Toronto, Ontario, Canada, completed in 2012. The project’s ambition is split between providing a space that can take advantage of the site’s abundant natural features and also serve as a hub for a growing international family. Large portions of glazing along with clean lines and simple volumetric proportions underscore the client’s interest in creating a space with an effortless flow between interior and exterior; in a climate that is not always conducive to this type of habitation.
The interior layout of the 10,000 square foot house has been carefully crafted to provide an informal and inviting space with an understated sophistication. The architecture and landscape design at the front of the building have been choreographed to allow for an abundance of natural light and a feeling of airiness without sacrificing privacy. A simple, yet enduring material palette blends plaster and zinc cladding with various natural woods and stones. This striking modern property has received an Honoree Best of the Year Award in 2012 from Interior Design Magazine.
Photos: Courtesy of Belzberg Architects
This stunning contemporary single family home has been designed by residential building company, Capital Building in South Coogee, a coastal suburb in south-eastern Sydney, Australia. With top quality workmanship, the light and airy residential property has undergone a renovation and extension with an earthy feel throughout, using a neutral color palette, recycled materials and plenty of layering and textures. The open plan living/dining and kitchen area features a folding glass door and a large window to blur the lines between the indoors and out and bring in plenty of natural daylight. The large patio boasts plenty of space for entertaining and a large swimming pool.
This living space creates its own cozy area yet filters out to the kitchen. The use of similar tones and textures connects the 2 areas.
The living space combines various textures all within the neutral palette.
The staircase is in the center of the house so it needed to have its own presence yet still feel part of the decor. The recycled timber stairs connected to the joinery in the rest of the open plan room.
The recycled timber stairs take advantage of the space by keeping the space open, framing a display area and making it a feature of its own.
This staircase was designed and hand made to achieve a wharf style feel. It has a stunning design element which keeps the spaces open and the light filtering through.
This industrial inspired kitchen combines a timber island with recycled timber benchtop frame which has been set against a white sleek background. The island is in the middle of an open plan room yet it becomes part of the furniture with the use of timber.
The work side of the kitchen allows you to see the recycled timber bench top which is laid higher than the dark stone bench top. It maintains the industrial feel combined with the look of the rest of the house.
This dining space was a meeting of slick white, recycled timber and fabric that was kept in the same neutral textured palette.
This guest bathroom has been kept as simple as possible to feel like part of the furniture. The timber floors work with the recycled timber vanity and the decor has used earthy colors and textures to soften the feel.
This recycled timber staircase frames 2 levels of this house. It separates the spaces yet keeps them open to ensure the light and airy feel is maintained.
This kids bedroom uses recycled timber- look flooring on the walls with a fun plasterboard tree on top to give the room that tree-house feel.
This master bedroom uses a blade wall to conceal a small hall that opens on to a walk in robe and en-suite making this master bedroom feel like it is an apartment all of its own. The recycled timber-look flooring was used on the walls to create that earthy feel. The concrete heavy lights hang from the ceiling as bedside lights and the pale grey accessories give the room a dreamy feel.
This room plays off a white backdrop against textures, recycled timbers and soft grey accessories. Add the faux fireplace and the room is made for sweet dreams!
This bathroom combines a neutral palette with earthy textures. A recycled timber vanity and timber look tiles feels like you have brought the mountains to the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney.
Photos: Sue Murray
This stunning attic apartment, spotted on Alvhem Makleri is located in a beautiful stone building from the 1920s on a street in the popular Vasastan, Sweden. The charming 452 square foot home features exposed beams and a sloped ceiling creating a snug and homey environment. With unobstructed, beautiful views from the fourth floor, there is plenty of natural light with an abundance of windows and two skylights. The apartment has a fantastic floor plan with a spacious living/dining space, a bedroom with plenty of storage as well as space for a desk and a cozy kitchen with a built-in banquette. There is plenty of room for both cooking and social interaction at the “bar,” which separates the kitchen from the living room.
The appeal of a home is determined by a number of different factors. Homeowners carefully choose the type of furniture, the wall color, the flooring material and various other decor options to help a home feel inviting and livable. However, some neglect to appreciate the importance of lighting. In airy and well-ventilated homes, there is a belief that lighting is not as much as a concern as it would be in a more constrained atmosphere. However, the correct lighting can add a sense of uniqueness and help to break up what may appear to be a rather open and even cold environment while at the same time offering environmentally-friendly options with low consumption fixtures.
The “Warmth” Factor
Well-ventilated spaces are ideal for stifling summer days, but in the evenings should rooms be sparsely lit, they can appear altogether harsh and drab. This is especially the case should the walls be painted a darker hue. Some of the best lighting techniques can add a sense of warmth and comfort to these spaces. “Airy” should never be confused with “cold”. Ceiling-mounted “High Hat” fixtures are an excellent way to bathe a room in warm light and help to accentuate the spaciousness while not leaving the occupants feeling overwhelmed.
Formal Dining Areas
As the dining room represents one of the areas of a home that is used most often, chandeliers can go a long way in adding a wonderful visual centerpiece that can help highlight an open environment. It is important to choose one that matches the decor around the room, otherwise the chandelier may appear “dated” and out-of-context.
Large Areas Such as Living Rooms and Other Formal Spaces
Wall sconces are a visually stunning way to accentuate the grandeur of a larger living space while simultaneously providing an elegant backdrop to any surrounding decor or furniture. There are often times when large, open areas can have a bit of an “institutional” feel about them, and these sconces can break up this space while providing an inviting ambiance during the evening hours.
The Environmental Advantage
In the past, properly lighting an airy or well-ventilated home was a concern due to the amount of energy consumption. Thankfully, we live in an era that offers many environmentally-friendly options when choosing a lighting fixture. For instance, energy efficient table lamps are very popular and are an effective way to break up the space of a large room while providing warm accents to the tables and furniture that may be nearby. These and other cost-effective fixtures make lighting a larger home easier and cheaper than ever before.
Finally, it must be remembered that proper lighting does not only provide a sense of warmth and comfort, but it also serves to accent and showcase any other interior decor.
This stunning project consists of a complete rehabilitation and interior design of a single family house and its outdoor spaces in the residential area of Bellaterra, on the outskirts of Barcelona. Designed by YLAB Architects, the proposal includes full internal redistribution of the interior spaces, the recomposition of the existing facades and exterior design of the terraces, pool and garden. The owners, a family passionate about light and spacious interiors, bought the property because of its fantastic views, but knew from the beginning, they needed a radical rehabilitation that would transform the house and its outdoors.
The goal was to convert this 5,382 square foot house of classical forms and narrow interior layout into a spacious modern house with continuity, allowing fantastic views from all levels. A new layout was made for this house, a facade matching its geometry, expanding the volume of the house was improved, and new walls and windows were created in solid wood carpentry, allowing abundant connections between the outdoors and the interior of the house. In the interior, the flooring is covered with natural Sahel polished limestone, which reflects the light increasing its intensity; the walls are painted in ivory white color; and the built-in furniture are finished in ivory white satin lacquer or natural tropical Etimoe wood, showing an elegant orange grain that bring a look of natural warmth in contrast with the white and glossy surfaces.
A staircase of access and planters recovered crosspieces-delimited was proposed in the front garden. In the rear, a large terrace in chipped stone, in prolongation of the interior space, descends towards the garden forming an infinity pool, an area of sunlight and a series of garden terraces.
Photos: Courtesy of YLAB Architects
This stunning home on Red Mountain is nestled into the mountainside and opens to views in all directions in Aspen, Colorado. A project in the making, 20 years prior to construction, this home is owned and designed by Charles Cunniffe of Charles Cunniffe Architects. The architect had applied lessons he had learned from previous commissions to his own house, incorporating his own wishes and influences. The 10,000 square foot home applies warm yet contemporary materials to create a nurturing family home for Charles, his wife Angela (owner of a model and talent agency) and their two kids.
Carefully placed windows allow for ample natural light, while the open layout with doors opening completely to the outdoor waterfall and decks, and provide spacious entertaining spaces. Most of the spaces are housed on two floors, living areas and master suite on the first floor, with children’s rooms, a family room and services downstairs, while the aforementioned guest suite is on the second floor, and an office is perched in the third-floor tower. The plan of the linear house is like a dumbell — the center is an open living area, and smaller spaces are on the ends; this applies to both the first and lower level.
The master suite bathroom is split into his-and-her sides, his-and-her toilets, his-and-her vanities, with a glass-enclosed shower sitting in between. A tub sits at the exterior wall, soaking in the stunning mountain views.
Photos: Courtesy of Charles Cunniffe Architects
This stunning residence in Millbrae, California has had a complete modern overhaul to the kitchen and both the living room and dining room have been remodeled into a beautiful open plan interior by Burton Architecture. The home features clean lines, oak cabinetry, custom wood work, open spaces, plenty of natural light and wood ceiling, walls and interiors. Lawrence Construction brought this incredible transformation into fruition, creating a warm and cozy family home that has a welcoming ambiance that is perfect for entertaining friends and family.
Photos: Cesar Rubio Photography
H Residence was designed for a young family of five and their dog, Coco in Alabang, Philippines. The home was designed by Utwentysix Design Studio whose goal was to create a home that would allow for increased interaction between family members, create a lot of open areas for the family members to congregate and to ensure spaces were multifunctional to serve the varied, growing and changing interests of the family members. The solution was a well-designed plan for the house by creating an open plan to allow for better flow between spaces and increased interaction between family members.
No single room or space is isolated from the rest of the house. Enclosed hallways were eliminated, opened up pockets of communal spaces where it seemed other areas were becoming isolated and interior partitions were minimized where it made sense. The result is an open plan house where every room flows easily into a larger one blurring the lines between spaces. The materials used were dark, warm woods with light natural stones to give an earth, airy and warm feel to the house, as well as creating a neutral palette to layer on the family’s colorful belongings and memories that are sure to be accumulated through the years. Lots of natural daylight spills into every space through abundant windows and a Big Ass Fan creates constant air circulation minimizing the need for air conditioners.