Taohuayuan - Most Expensive House in China - Beautiful Traditional Chinese Style House

Price (2016)¥1 billion ($150 million)
Total Area6730 sq m (72441 sq ft)
LocationLake Dushu, Suzhou, China

Wealthy Chinese can afford to buy a house they like in any corner of the world, from Melbourne to Vancouver, but this time all eyes are on this magnificent example of low-rise architecture in traditional Chinese style on the lake Dushu in Suzhou in a hundred kilometers west of Shanghai. House with 32 bedrooms and 32 bathrooms, is announced as the most expensive house in China and offered for sale by Sotheby's for 1 billion yuan (about 150 million dollars).

House name is Taohuayuan and means "utopia" or "peaceful prosperous land" and looking at these photos it is easy to understand why. Magnificent foggy ponds, a huge swimming pool, a solid wine cellar and wonderful views of the picturesque lake, all this corresponds to a sense of quiet confidence, symbolically reflected in the name of this beautiful home.

The total area is ​​6730 square meters (72441 sq ft).

Beautiful Sculptures by Philip Jackson

Philip Jackson is a renowned sculptor with an outstanding international reputation.

His ability to convey the human condition through skilful use of body language is legendary, producing figures both imposing and operatic in their narrative and presence, which are recognizable worldwide. Powerful and beautifully sculpted, Jackson's meticulously precise posturing of each piece creates an overwhelming sense of drama. Whether with the prestigious, figuratively detailed public monuments and statues for which he is often commissioned, or his hauntingly elegant and theatrically enigmatic gallery sculptures, Philip Jackson's work is truly awe inspiring - it never fails to move people.

Born in Inverness, Jackson now lives and works in West Sussex. He was appointed Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) in the Queen's Birthday Honours list 2009.

My sculptures are essentially an impressionistic rendering of the figure. Where you see the figure seemingly grow out of the ground, the texture resembles tree bark, rock, or lava flow. As the eye moves up the sculpture, the finish becomes gentler & more delicately worked, culminating in the hands and the mask, both of which are precisely observed & modeled. - Philip Jackson

House Around a Tree by A.Masow Architects

About A.Masow Architects

ArchitectureA.Masow Architects
Project Tree in the house
Year 2013

Aibek Almassov from Kazakhstan, the founder of the design studio A.Masow Architects, has created this beautiful house around a tree design. The main highlight of this four-level house is a glass wall just around a fir-tree. This impressive twelve-meter transparent building project is created to bring together the elements of contemporary design and natural beauty, enabling people to take some time to have a rest from the tense bustle of the city life.

The project has been already set up but the house hasn’t been built because of the absence of investors. After a while, almost all mass media – from local magazines and newspapers to internet publications – became interested in this futuristic house design. Even well-known channels have found A.Masow Architects to learn more about this great project. Finally, designers have realized that this project should be built without any doubt. Aibek Almassov stated many times that this house was not so difficult to build; the most difficult was to find really interested investors. At this time, he has two interested men and one of them directs the manufacturing of glass panels. So, A.Masow Architects is going to cooperate with him as soon as possible.

The architect says that the main idea of the project is to build a house, where everyone feels oneself comfortable, being able to escape from the noisy city and stay alone with his thoughts, since the house combines strict style of the metropolis and all environmental delights – beautiful high trees, fresh smell of fir-trees and silence.

An internal spiral staircase of the four-storey cylindrical construction symbolizes the stages of spiritual purification which can accompany a person who is alone with nature and oneself.

The basis of this transparent house, where the tree grows, is a metal framework resting on three pillars. The trunk and branches are passed through circular apertures of different diameter in the ceiling between floors.

The largest cut-out is done at the level of the fourth floor, where the upper branches of tree is. Thanks to the transparent walls, a unique all-round view opens there and evokes sensation of immediate presence in the forest.

There is also a container for the rainwater. The water there is being constantly cleaned and can be used for various needs. Ventilation provides air-filling for all levels of the cylindrical home.

Particular attention was paid to the fact that the house is not harmful to the environment. Glasses of the last two floors are covered with a layer of semi-transparent solar panels that provide electricity to the house.

Aibek Almassov wants everyone to visit such a house around a tree to prove that thirty-five square meters are not destroyed by his group, because there begins a new life with quiet mornings, tranquility and health.

Casa Acantilado - Beautiful House on the Cliff, Granada, Spain

Floor plans
About GilBartolomé Architects

Architecture Pablo Gil and Jaime Bartolomé, GilBartolome Architects
Project Casa Acantilado (House on the Cliff)
Year 2014
Location Salobreña, Granada, Spain
Photography Jesus Granada

A brilliant house, that resembles in its appearance something that has come from old pages of a fairy tale, is designed by GilBartolome’ Architecture Bureau. This beautiful architecture merges organic forms with dynamic modernity. Overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, it is located in Granada, Spain. This extraordinary project has got the name Casa Acantilado or Cliff House.

As the construction of this house had been started in Spain during the 2014 financial crisis, the group decided to avoid an expensive factory production and costly machines and save money. It was decided push the matter through the long hours of labor work on the project.

According to architects, the design and construction of the house were a real challenge: areas with a slope of about 45 degrees were considered to be very complicated.

The mansion seems to be buried into the mountain and hidden under the smooth curves of reinforced concrete sheets and hundreds of streams made of zinc plates. The architects have chosen this solution not only because effective appearance (like a mansion that is turned into a sea castle), but also it is much more saving for this area. The building has all interior spaces arranged on two levels, so that the optimum temperature is maintained everywhere throughout the year. This gorgeous mansion was created especially for a young Spanish couple. While building a house, architects from GilBartolome’ tried to fit it right into the surrounding landscape as accurately as it was possible.

Taking into account the slope of area, the internal layout of this Beautiful House on the Cliff has got two levels and its location inside the rock allows using the underground heat more efficient.

The Casa Acantilado is dug into the hillside that allows maintaining in it a constant temperature of the earth (approximately 19.5 degrees). Living spaces are covered with double-curved roof, which lines interact with the geometry of the mountain’s surface. This shape has not only an aesthetic function, but also directs inside the building the air flows reaching from the Mediterranean Sea.

GilBartolome’ Bureau states that architecture of this Beautiful House on the Cliff shows the whole landscape geometry, creating an intentional ambiguity between the synthetic and the natural. In general, the house is very similar to the dragon’s face with eye-windows and a scaly head.

Of course, the main thing in this project is the figured wavy roof that shines in the sun during the whole day. Its "scales" are made of galvanized sheets on special technology. The roof is based on retaining walls, lagging apart on 14.5 meters without additional supports. Thanks to this constructive solution, the first floor that is divided into several thematic zones can be used also as a spacious room for major parties. The complex and dynamic form of the roof creates an unusual interior, which the authors describe as modern cave in the style of Gaudi.

There is a spacious living area in the Casa Acantilado, where more than sixty-five guests can be seated. Only 150 square meters takes the lower level. Moreover, forming a small terrace, the house is located in such a way that it seems to be a hillside. Thanks to this, it is created a unique feeling that there is a breathtaking theater on the picturesque horizon. Most of the space is located in the open air, and even the pool was equipped on one of the terraces.

Organic shapes of the Casa Acantilado are visually highlighted and quite impressive. It must be stated that even the furniture was designed specially by the architects request for this unique home. They state that all house furniture was manufactured using the preplanned machines. But, nevertheless, the workers were given the opportunity to make a contribution to the project. There is also handwork in furniture parts design. This allowed employees to consider their work to be special in the Beautiful House on the Cliff.

This gorgeous house shows that everything is possible in performing a house design and that the designer and the consumer both have an opportunity to get a high quality product at an affordable price.

Creative Ideas for Reading Nooks

A place for reading is an integral part of life, both for work and leisure. Here it is possible to relax, forget about vanity and disconnect yourself from external irritants. So, this means that it is necessary to choose a zone where it is most quiet and cozy.

Books create a special atmosphere in an interior. For this reason, there has to be an own quiet nook (even if it is very small) to relax in the house. Let's dream about the most convenient places for reading.

Window still

A good lighting in your place for reading, is an essential condition for spending a long time with your favorite book. It is better to give preference to an area near window. Although this place seems to be simple, it is especially popular today. The combination of natural light with the wonderful scenery behind window will perfectly remove stress and help to relax, giving positive emotions. Use decorative pillows for comfortable staying on a window sill.


Peace and quiet, convenient chairs with a soft back and armrests. It would be good enough to hang a picture with a beautiful landscape on a wall; it will only add the harmonious atmosphere. Add a fluffy carpet or a knitted rug and here you are on the way to the ideal reading nook.

The attic floor

It is also an excellent place for reading. Getting originality of an interior, there can be added a high floor lamp, a cache-pot, a little table or a shelf to store all books.

Sure enough, it is possible to read in a bed and on a sofa. But there is a set of the elements capable to bring any interior concept to perfection. Here you can escape the real world and calm yourself after a hard working day.

WaterNest 100 - Solar Powered Floating House Design

The "Floating Nest"

About Giancarlo Zema

Design: Giancarlo Zema
Area: 95 sqm
Year: 2015

If you prefer to contemplate with not only green lawns but also expanses of water from the windows of your house, you will surely enjoy WaterNest 100. It is a charming eco-friendly solar powered floating mini-home. Being designed by Giancarlo Zema, this eco-house is equipped with solar panels that offer you a good chance to live in harmony with nature.

Eco-friendly features

It is made of environmentally friendly materials. According to the architect, this construction is up to 98 percent recyclable. The house can be mounted in any large and quiet water pond.

Few numbers to surprise you

The  solar powered floating house, with an area of more than 95 square meters, has a cocoon shape. The height of the ceiling is up to four meters, and its diameter is twelve meters. The curved structure of the body is made of laminated veneer lumber and recycled aluminum materials. On the rounded wooden roof an array of photovoltaic panels is mounted. It has a total area of 60 square meters being capable to produce up to 4 kW of electricity per hour. Large windows and balconies around the house allow guests to enjoy freely the views of the water.

Consider the variants for house planning

The "Floating Nest" can be a good option for becoming a family one, because the designers have taken care to provide enough building microclimate supplies. Developers have created a complex system of internal air conditioning and micro-ventilation. This allows you to categorize this floating structure as an economical ecosystem with low impact and low power consumption.

WaterNest 100 also boasts of the flexible interior design that can be easily changed according to the needs of its residents. For example, if a floating house isn’t considered to be used as a dwelling, it can be also fit for an office, a home cabinet, a lounge bar, a restaurant, a store or even for the exhibition hall.

Compare all pros and cons

Thus, we see that there are advantages and disadvantages in the construction of the  solar powered house on the water. Pros: it is an environmentally friendly home, energy consumption goes through solar panels, the house has enough space for a four member family or you can use it for any commercial purposes. The only minus is that you should build it in a quiet place - a river with a low water flow, a lake, a bay. And also you need a warm climate.

Giancarlo Zema has tried to express his vision of environmentally friendly house where everyone could find his peace of mind, living there with his family or creating there a unique atmosphere of a cozy restaurant.

Description from architects.

The eco-friendly solar powered floating house WaterNest 100, designed by Giancarlo Zema for EcoFloLife is an enveloping of 100 m2 residential unit, 12 m in diameter and 4 m high, made entirely of recycled laminated timber and a recycled aluminium hull. Balconies are conveniently located on the sides and thanks to the large windows, permit enjoyment of fascinating views over the water. Bathroom and kitchen skylights are located on the wooden roof, as well as 60sqm of amorphous photovoltaic panels capable of generating 4 kWp which are used for the internal needs of the residential unit.

The interior of WaterNest 100 can include a living room, dining area, bedroom, kitchen and bathroom or have other configurations according to the different housing or working needs. It is perfect like an ecological house, office, lounge bar, restaurant, shop or exhibition floating space. The selected furnishings in the EcoFloLife catalogue are top design, eco-friendly and elegant, and thus meet the most demanding contemporary needs. WaterNest 100 can be positioned along river courses, lakes, bays, atolls and sea areas with calm waters. The use of materials and sustainable production systems make this floating house recyclable up to as much as 98%. In addition, thanks to a sophisticated system of internal natural micro-ventilation and air conditioning, it is classified as a low-consumption residential habitat.

WaterNest 100 is the ideal solution for those wishing to live independently, exclusively and in complete harmony with nature. WaterNest 100 has several possible configurations, depending on the different housing or working needs. Several habitats WaterNest can be installed with a radial or linear configuration on lakes, bays, atolls and sea areas with calm waters to create an eco-resort with floating villages. The WaterNest Village is the ideal solution for hotel groups and hospitality investors working in the field of eco-tourism who wish to make a truly innovative floating resort and environmentally friendly way to live in style independently, exclusively and in complete harmony with nature.

Beautiful Bathrooms and Showers Design Ideas

 Beautiful Bathrooms and Showers Design Ideas

City in the Sky - Future City Concept

About Hrama

The design group Hrama has proposed an exotic project which seems to be similar to shots from the movie about the far and fantastic future. Externally, the buildings look like giant blooming flowers soaring above the tall skyscrapers. Towering over such polluted huge cities as New York and London this oasis project lets people take a break from everyday stress, problems and concerns. The building will be higher than famous in the US One World Trade Center and the Empire State Building. A lotus flower has been taken as a form for this project. The image of the lotus is borrowed from the Buddhist mythology where this flower was a symbol of all pure, which was growing up untainted including the fact that it was born out of a swamp. Thus, the giant lotus-building, staying in a noisy metropolis, go far away in the sky.

The stems will be used as a support, the leaves that are placed horizontally will be the parks, where you can escape from the omnipresent hustle and bustle and finally relax. The whole year here will blossom cherry trees and lilies will float in the shimmering waters. Grids will be decorated with creeping ivy. The light inside the mirror lotus flowers will be reflected and form a rainbow. Gardens and people who rest there will be protected from wind and bad weather with glass walls.

 There is no word yet whether it will be possible to fish in those clean ponds, enjoying the quiet atmosphere. And it is not also known whether there will be famous condescending posters, reminding visitors about proper behavior. But be 100 percent sure that those fantastic landscapes will amaze you for a long time and will not leave indifferent. And what's more, the City in the Sky will inspire everyone on creative ideas.

Smart Home - Smart Devices Make your own House Become your Friend

Let us imagine the utopian world where most of our work is done by machines and people there even dress up, wash the dishes and move from one corner of the house to another with electronic assistants. To perform any operation you will need to press only one button on your cell phone and voila – all your work is done for you! Remember the Jetsons who have illustrated us the futuristic world of the year 2060 with humanoid robots, aliens and fancy technical devices. Like it or not, the show became some kind of prophecy because, nowadays, we have got smart phones and smart watches and a lot of smart machines that help us about the house every day. Perhaps, we will have even flying cars in the nearest future? Who knows! For today, the primary goal for most companies is the invention and distribution of smart devices for people’s dream houses.

Very soon we will all live in so-called "smart homes" where everything is done to improve living conditions. Hundreds of billions US dollars are expected to be earned by the year 2019, delivering about two billion house appliances all over the world. Because of widespread popularity of smart phones and easy availability of sensor chips it will soon become possible for many devices of the future to integrate with your houses. But some drawbacks of these devices are already visible today.

Namba Parks Landscape Gardens in Osaka, Japan

Location and Contact Info

Naniwa-ku, the administrative district of Osaka in Japan, is well known for its nine-storey commercial and office complex called Namba Parks. The architects have planned the building of Namba Parks the way that was considered to become a natural intervention into the tough environment of Osaka metropolis.

The architect John Jerde constructed a nine-story business center (well-known as Parks Tower) with 120 shopping malls and a park on the roof on the place of the former Osaka Stadium. Landscape gardens cross all nine floors, gradually rising up to the roof of the building. John Jerde’s project has become significant because the priority was given to the fact that there are only a few green areas in the huge metropolis of Osaka. Located in 30-storey building, this project combines a modern shopping mall with the landscape park on the roof. It is easy enough for visitors to get into Namba Parks and fully enjoy rocks, lawns, cliffs, streams, waterfalls, trees, ponds and open terraces and then to go down into the place of entertainment venues and restaurants.

Let us consider what is located on each floor. The ground floor of Namba Parks is represented as a mall, where both sides of the shopping street are covered with shops, restaurants, cafes, etc. The first and the fourth floors are created for successful shopping. Casual cuisine and relaxed atmosphere can be observed in the restaurants that occupy the fifth floor. The variety of fine Chinese, Japanese and Italian cuisines can be enjoyed on the sixth and seventh floors. Also, the building contains an amphitheater for live performances, small private areas for planting and mobile trade stalls. And the entire ninth floor (the last one of the building) is occupied by gardens.

Green walls by FlowerArt GmbH | styleGREEN

The flat and pole moss wall is based on a flat moss subsoil, which is accented with clumps of pole moss. The flat moss plants with uniformly distributed clumps of pole moss looks very tidy and is reminiscent of a Nordic forest floor north of the tree line.

Material Thickness: 12mm MDF, 1-3mm adhesive, 15mm+ of greenery
Weight: 15kg/m²
Installation Options: Private rooms: Living room, bedroom, dining areas
                               Public buildings: entrance halls
                               Office buildings: lobbies, conference rooms, work stations
Sound Insulation: average

Product details on the green wall: Set on a gentle flat moss subsoil, clumps of pole moss are spread across the wall, giving the panels a varied and at the same orderly design. The pole moss, which is actually not a moss but rather a lichen – i.e. a symbiosis of algae and fungus – forms lush, fresh pads that rise from the subsoil with their round form. The result is a form of vertical greenery that not only insulates sounds, but also requires no maintenance thanks to a special preservation process – so no additional costs and no watering. Individual dimensions and different shades guarantee a unique character for any moss wall.

 The flat moss wall is versatile, livens up bedrooms and dining areas and transforms dreary conference spaces.When this wall is around, it’s easy to forget that you’re not on a densely planted, lusciously soft clearing in the Nordic tundra.

Design: FlowerArt GmbH | styleGREEN

Eagle Tower - 102-story Residential Building, NYC (Steampunk Neo-Art-Deco Architecture)

Residential Building, NYC (Steampunk Neo-Art-Deco Architecture)

About Mark Foster Gage Architects

Project: Eagle Tower
Design: Mark Foster Gage Architects

A 102-story residential building with sweeping views of Central Park and the New York City skyline. Each unit has its own unique figurally carved façade and balconies that frame particular features of the surrounding urban and natural landscapes. The building is draped in a façade of limestone-tinted Taktl© concrete panels with hydroformed sheet-bronze details and brass-tinted alloy structural extrusion enclosures. The 64th floor features a sky-lobby with exclusive retail stores, a 2-story high ballroom for events, and a 4-star restaurant all of which have access to four massive cantilevered balconies that offer an awe-inspiring event and dining experience unique to the city of New York.