Friday, July 26, 2013

18th Century Church Transformed Into Private Residence

st nicholas church, kyloe northumberland england, church renovations, adaptive reuse, green renovation, green architecture, church houses, green homes, sustainable design
Adaptive reuse projects generally call to mind industrial warehouses and factories turned into trendy studios, or shabby-chic restaurants and bars, but the transformation of the St. Nicholas Church in Kyloe, Northumberland, England has taken this concept of renewal and grounded it much closer to home. The church was purchased not too long ago by Sally Onions and Ian Bottomley, who went the unconventional route when scouting for their newest digs. Far from a Norman Foster style box, or even a classic and quaint Victorian house, the duo instead opted to transform an 18th century basilica into the sanctuary they now call “home.”
st nicholas church, kyloe northumberland england, church renovations, adaptive reuse, green renovation, green architecture, church houses, green homes, sustainable design

The church was originally built in 1792, so the couple wanted to maintain as much of the building’s classic architecture as possible. Rather than undertaking a full-on renovation — which actually would have been cheaper — they opted to restore the key elements of the church, such as the vaulted ceilings and original stained glass windows.
While sofas and beds have replaced pews, the integrity of the architecture remains – you can even find the old cemetery within the churchyard. But don’t think the two are reading by candlelight once the sun sets — the former house of worship has evolved to accommodate contemporary living with modern appliances, fixtures, electricity, and other creature comforts.

Read more: Dilapidated 18th Century Church Transformed Into a Private Home | Inhabitat - Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

Friday, July 19, 2013

Cool Architectural Alternatives for Living Without Air Conditioning

Cool Architectural Alternatives For Living Without Air Conditioning

With the heatwave sweeping the country, an urban air conditioning addiction is also on the rise. For those of us lucky enough to have it at work or at home, the generated air is an easy (if pricey) comfort that often leaves us avoiding the foreign realm of the outdoors. However, air conditioning wasn’t always there for us to fall back on so easily. Believe it or not, architecture can help us alleviate some of the heat.

Cool Architectural Alternatives For Living Without Air Conditioning

Above: Thick Earthen Walls: Sagburg by contexture studio
Top image: Cave Dwellings: Chair House by Igor Sirotov Architect
The advent of the air conditioner not only meant less sweat; it also changed the very way that we live, and the buildings we live, work, and play in. Cool porches and deep eaves were unnecessary, walls could be thinner, high ceiling and attics were a waste of space, and development could generally spread into increasingly hot climates. Such temperature control also allowed for steel and glass towers of greenhouse-level-heat to become a practical notion.

Cool Architectural Alternatives For Living Without Air Conditioning

Cool Architectural Alternatives For Living Without Air Conditioning

Prior to this luxury though, if you weren’t submerged in water, buildings actually needed to pitch in with the job of cooling during the summer. Here is a collection of homes that show features that could help you to build your way out of heatstroke. Oh, and also: climate change.
There is a reason why people started by living in caves, as seen in the top image, the Chair House by Igor Sirotov Architect. The thermal mass of the huge volume of earth surrounding caves helps to stabilize temperature inside. Plus, it looks awesome.

Cool Architectural Alternatives For Living Without Air Conditioning

Same goes for buildings that are constructed underground. Not only is the sun stopped from entering the interior, but the earth that surrounding the building is slow to heat up and cool down, also making it warmer in the cold months.
Read on for more brilliant examples of living A/C-free!

Cool Architectural Alternatives For Living Without Air Conditioning

Friday, July 12, 2013

Contemporary Living

Enjoy the eye candy!
Would you want to live in any of these spaces?

Architectural Award-winning Beach House. This dramatic sculptural residence is situated in the very private and gated Sanderling Club on Siesta Key. The home turns abstract art into concrete reality. After a four year collaboration, the homeowners and their architect, Guy Peterson, agree that they achieved exactly the modern masterpiece they envisioned. Peterson organized living spaces in color coded "cubes". The cubes reflect a privacy gradient from public uses to shared spaces to family areas. The home is perfectly designed for its' beachfront setting with deep overhangs which shade the property from direct sunlight… but allow for maximum light and spectacular water views. The home functions like a private family resort with its wonderfully large pool designed to accommodate both water polo games and lap swimming. The pool features a slide purely for the fun of it and an oversized Jacuzzi for relaxing. A fire pit is ideal for evening gatherings and the volley ball court attracts players of all ages. The stunning 1.53 acre site features beautifully landscaped gardens on both the entry side of the residence and the beach side living and entertaining area.

Click here for more info: Sanderling-Rd-Sarasota-FL

A. Quincy Jones' 1962 Sherwood residence has been recently transformed into a most sought after, just north of Sunset, Beverly Hills private estate. Period modern details merge flawlessly with cutting edge contemporary systems. Glass walls give way to water features seamlessly blending the outside and in. Master suite is now 2 stories with a spa bath & screening room or gym. Private patios, decks and outdoor access from nearly every room. Truly once in a lifetime opportunity to live in one of the most notable architectural estates available in Beverly Hills. 


Amazing contemporary home in Tanglewood school district! Designed by architect, Ken Shaumberg, this spacious home brings together style amenities, beauty and functionality. Featuring a vaulted wine cellar, gorgeous design and a sparkling pool with water feature, fire pit and cabana with half bath and outdoor shower, this home is one of a kind!


A dramatic reinvention by NYC's Garrison Architects garnered international recognition for a modern home of wood, steel and vast stretches of glass. While a walking trail weaving through the 9+ acre wooded site invites direct interaction with nature, the peacefulness of the Princeton property is ever present within the 7,000 square foot interior. Each main level room opens to outdoor space, displaying the beauty of natural stone and finely grained wood. Tinted Venetian plaster and mosaic glass tile, used judiciously, energize spaces with color and texture, but perhaps the most striking feature is a set of translucent… inclined panels that wash the Great Room in diffused light from above. A bevy of intuitive technological amenities includes a screening room on the fully finished lower level and a newly updated integrated Apple audio system. Even blinds descend at the touch of a button in the gloriously bright and open master suite (two MBR suites) with one of 4 fireplaces and one of 4 uniquely luxurious full baths. Choose between office all 3 miles to town. 


(Shout out to Maricela! Thank you!)