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Equinox Passive House in Bulgaria Perfectly Aligns With the Sun

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This beautiful 5,543-square-foot home on the coast of Kavarna, Bulgaria has been designed to perfectly match the angle of the summer equinox sun.

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Created by Ignatov Architects, the compact, energy-efficient design makes the home 90% more energy efficient than a similar home without upgrades, which also gives it Passive House status.

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The home is built right into the hillside, allowing it to work with its natural surroundings. A green roof provides natural insulation and frees up lawn space, minimizing energy loss and maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature.

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The wall of glass on the front wall of the home is inverted, keeping sun from entering the home in the middle of summer. In the winter, the low angle of the sun hits the patio swimming pool and reflects into the house to provide natural lighting. A roof oculus allows a single ray of light to shine into the home, acting as an annual calendar as it shines in different spots according to the season.

The home also has a wastewater treatment unit, natural ventilation and recovery system, and rooftop solar panels. Additional heat is provided from an underground heat pump or solar hot water panels installed for the pool.

Malta Home Maximizes a Small Lot With Cantilevered Design

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Located on the tiny island of Malta, this sustainable home by Chris Briffa Architects was designed on a lot only 250 square meters in size. The green-roofed, energy-efficient Hanging Home has turned into a significant design challenge, incorporating the small space with eco-friendly features into this modern yet traditional home.

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Rieteiland House Offers Energy Efficiency and Beautiful Panoramic Sunset Views

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The Rieteiland House in Amsterdam, The Netherlands is a breathtaking piece of architecture created by Hans van Heeswijk Architects.

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Gulf Islands Cabin by Olson Kundig Provides a Single-Room Retreat in British Columbia

This gorgeous Gulf Islands Cabin by Olson Kundig Architects is the perfect spot for nature lovers to escape for a cozy weekend retreat. Located in British Columbia, the minimalist space consists of one wood-paneled room, with a secure exterior made of corten steel that ensures safety from storms and fires. Read more »

Japanese Home Offers a Minimalist Design With Natural, Earthen Floors

 

Takaya by Makoto Tanijiri

Located in Hiroshima, Japan, this house has quite the minimalist and modern exterior, but head inside and the you’ll discover a traditional tamped earth floor. Japanese architect Makoto Tanijiri of Suppose Office created it with natural local materials for a rustic, earthy effect.

 

The home is filled with sliding walls and windows and traditional, simple materials, allowing residents to easily fill the space with their own furniture and belongings without worrying about the current style. He used white surfaces, wood, and multiple levels to create a flexible, comfortable atmosphere.

Takaya by Makoto Tanijiri Interior Exterior

 

The traditional floor is affordable, made of local materials, and keeps the space warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It is virtually effortless to install, and yet another example of how we can use our natural outdoor materials to create a cozy, minimalist living space that is still close to nature.

Takaya by Makoto Tanijiri Exterior

Takaya by Makoto Tanijiri Interior

Roundhouse Garden Buildings Inspired by Yurts

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Rotunda Living, a small home builder based in the United Kingdom, has designed some small, contemporary round houses inspired by nature’s shapes and elements. They look like the perfect backyard getaway to use as a studio, guest bedroom, pool house, or meditative escape space.

The design is similar to a yurt, but with solid walls. The plan is to use locally-sourced materials and a local supply chain to create quality, sustainable materials that will not sacrifice aesthetics. Each design uses natural, breathable, and efficient materials for insulation and construction, providing a healthy environment that inspires creativity in an atmosphere inspired by nature. Read more »

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