It’s often said that home is where the heart is, but I’m sure that most of us would easily fall in love with these fairytale cottages and leave our old homes behind in a heartbeat. What goes in to making a fairytale cottage? First of all, it’s clear that you need a rural setting, preferably a forest with witches and wolves or fairies and elves hiding behind every tree and rock.
Whether they remind you of Chicago speakeasies, medieval assassination plots or Cold-War precautions, secret rooms and passages have an undeniable mystique and appeal to them. Here are 20 secret rooms created with safety, work or play in mind. Secret rooms today can provide you and your family with a safe haven or store room in the case of an emergency. Or a fun and cozy hidden nook to hide away from the outside world. Whatever the case may be, it is their secrecy and mystique that makes them so appealing to us.
When someone brings up historical architecture, we picture beautiful arches, towering spires, sculptures and stone walls, but most of us probably don’t think of bright and vibrant colors. Nasir al-Mulk Mosque, as illustrated by these photographs, is a striking and strong exception to the idea that historical structures might have been somewhat lacking in colors. Not only are its stained-glass windows richly colored, but its walls feature a beautiful and vibrantly colorful array of painted geometric tiles.
Artist Alyson Shotz has created an interesting piece of installation artwork that also serves as a thought experience – a run-of-the-mill picket fence covered entirely by perfectly mirrored surfaces. The visual effect of having a mirrored fence is as weird as it is diverse – in some landscapes, the fence seems to be camouflaged, while in others, it serves as a strange and surreal extension or distortion of the environment around it.
While we did write recently about furniture and home design for pets, we never had any idea that anyone would take it this far: an unidentified homeowner in California has spent $35,000 turning his home into a feline paradise. It’s not clear who this home is better for, the owner or the 18 cats he lives with. Spiral ramps, walkways, scratching posts, miniature stairways, crawlspaces and other awesome details designed specifically with his 18 fluffy roommates in mind.
This aerodynamic tube office, designed by Spanish architects Jose Selgas and Lucia Cano, has been turning heads due to its unusual and sustainable design. Half of the office, which the two architects designed for their architecture firm Selgascano, is dug into the ground in a forest outside of Madrid. This ensures that the office stays cool even during the hot Spanish summers.
We know that a lot of you like to read our articles while you’re at work (naughty, naughty pandas), so we’ve created a virtual vacation trip with amazing hotels around the world that you’d rather be sitting in right now. These locations will take you from the icy forests of Finland to the jungles of Bali and from the streets of Paris to the turquoise Mediterranean waters of Greece. As diverse as they are, there’s one thing tying them together – each location is perfectly suited for you to take a breather and relax.
The vaulted hall of a cathedral is already a great place for spiritual introspection, but when it’s graced by a simple yet beautiful artwork like this one by artist Anne Patterson, the effect becomes so much more awe-inspiring and profound. In “Graced by Light,” Patterson hung 20 miles of multi-colored ribbons from the ceiling of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco and illuminated them, creating what seems a ray of multi-colored light from heaven itself.
Not all work spaces were created equal – some can reduce workers’ morale while others can keep them happy and inspire them to be more energetic and creative. For companies like Google, which require smart, creative and in-demand workers, such offices offer a competitive edge when trying to attract young and intelligent employees. Here’s a list of the coolest and most well-designed office spaces in the world.
You know what they say – if you’re afraid of heights, go to the highest mountain. For those having a chronic fear, here’s an extreme solution – a chance to walk on the glass box, set up 1,035 meters (3,396 ft) high on the Aiguille du Midi, mountain peak of the tallest mountain in Europe – Mont Blanc. The construction has taken three years to build, and now it is finally open to the public. The novelty is the highest attraction in Europe and is commonly referred to as Step Into The Void.
The Manta Resort’s new room on Pemba Island in Zanzibar is a tropical island hotel room like any other – except that it floats anchored above a shallow coastal coral reef. The bedroom, which was opened just this month, is located in a room below deck that has large viewing glasses offering guests a view of the colorful aquatic world outside. By day, tropical fish and other sea organisms float and swim by the window. At night, lights illuminate the water outside the windows, attracting squids and other otherwise shy sea creatures.
These copper pipes, gears and steel railings are not from the interior of an ironclad battleship or WWI factory – they‘re part of the brilliant interior steampunk design of Truth Coffee‘s cafe in Cape Town. The cafe features authentic elements and accents like old bookcases, candlestick telephones, vintage typewriters, gas-masks and other gizmos and gadgets.