This historic Italian town is selling homes for 1 Euro

January 30, 2018 by  
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If your idea of the good life is making your home in a stone-built cottage in a historic Italian town, stop dreaming. For just one Euro ($1.24), you can make it happen. That’s because the city of Ollolai in Sardinia is selling homes to buyers who are willing to invest a little blood, sweat and tears into restoring their aging stone homes. ? in love with #barbagia #autumn #autunnoinbarbagia #sardinia #ollolai #sardegna #photography #sardinialovers #explore #igers #igersardegna #supagufrittu A post shared by ?? Sardegna ?? (@antonellapala9) on Dec 1, 2017 at 9:05am PST The beautiful town of Ollolai rests in the mountains of Sardinia, an island off the coast of Italy in the Mediterranean. The city has over 200 stone dwellings that are falling into disrepair, and a population that is rapidly dwindling. To reverse the problem, the city is selling off homes for one Euro, provided that the buyer commits to restoring the home over three years. Related: Italy is giving away hundreds of historic castles and villas for free C'era una volta…………#cortesapertasollolai #pastafattaincasa #sardinia #sardegnaofficial #sapori #sosbattormorossardegna #lovesardegna #lanuovasardegna #focusardegna #bestsardegnapics #like4like #specialesardegna #instafamenow #illife_sardegna #thailand_allshots #wonderful #volgosardegna #borghipiubelliditalia #sardegna_reporter #hashtag #ollolai #autunnoinbarbagia2017 #illife_sardegna#autunnoinbarbagia #borghisardi #the_hub_sardegna#nikond3400 #nikonitalia #photography A post shared by Ely (@elysjourneys) on Nov 30, 2017 at 11:21pm PST “We boast prehistoric origins,” said Efisio Arbau, mayor of Ollolai. “My crusade is to rescue our unique traditions from falling into oblivion. Like many small towns, Ollolai has seen its younger population move to larger cities and a falling birth rate. Last year, the mayor asked former homeowners to donate their crumbling dwellings and put them on the market. So far, three have sold, with over 100 offers coming in from around the world. Sound like your cup of cappuccino? Head over to Ollolai comune to check out the available homes and start picturing yourself eating the local cheese under the Italian sun. Via CNN Images via Wikimedia and Ollolai comune

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This historic Italian town is selling homes for 1 Euro

Aging Portuguese granary transformed into a serene sanctuary in the trees

January 29, 2018 by  
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The Dovecote-Granary in Portugal is a temple in the trees where people can reconnect with nature and themselves. The simple structure stands on the granite foundation of what was once a 19th-century maize granary. Tiago do Vale Arquitectos took cues from traditional local architecture while reconstructing the rotting building as a place of serenity and contemplation. The structure combines three vernacular typologies: granary, dovecote, and drying shed. It is built out of oak wood in the same style as the granaries that stood there for centuries. Sadly, the wood of the granaries had rotted beyond salvage, so the architects documented the existing structure and re-constructed it out of fresh wood. By documenting the original building in its entirety, as well as the building techniques used in its construction, the architects managed to successfully re-create the building stronger than it was originally, while preserving its spirit and giving it new life. Related: Salima Naji’s Preservation of Sacred Moroccan Granary Sites Nominated for Aga Khan Award With farming disappearing from the area, the original function of the structure became obsolete. This prompted its current use as a kind of temple, a sanctuary among the tree canopies, and an iconic shape in the rural landscape of the Minho region. The architects reconstructed the two granaries on the original foundation to act as the walls of the new building and topped them with a dovecote, while the interior re-creates the traditional drying shed. + Tiago do Vale Arquitectos Via ArchDaily Photos by João Morgado

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Aging Portuguese granary transformed into a serene sanctuary in the trees

Tokyo capsule hotel gets a Finnish-inspired refresh and sauna

January 22, 2018 by  
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Capsule hotels are commonplace in Tokyo, but the recently renovated ºC (Do-C) Ebisu hopes to stand out from the pack with its contemporary Finnish-inspired refresh. Designed by Tokyo-based practice Schemata Architects , the renovated hotel is one of the newest offerings by capsule hotel chain 9h (nine hours). Though guests won’t have much room in their tiny capsule units, they do have access to a roomy Finnish-inspired sauna. 9h hotels typically redesign and build their capsule hotels from scratch, but decided to take the renovation route with ºC (Do-C) Ebisu. Schemata Architects was asked to preserve the existing capsule units but otherwise gut the interior and overhaul the exterior. The building was also retrofitted with new saunas . “In Japan, people often stereotypically associate capsule hotels with saunas due to the conventional style of capsule hotels in the past,” wrote the architects. “The existing building was actually not equipped with saunas, but we intentionally recreated the stereotypical image by adding saunas there, while eradicating the conventional impression, to establish a powerful combination of capsules and saunas representing the identity of ºC.” Related: Kyoto’s Futuristic Nine Hours Capsule Hotel Offers a First Class Sleeping Experience in Tiny Pods The eight-floor capsule hotel’s narrow building facade was repainted in a rusty red hue, matching the color of the anti-corrosive paint applied to the structural steel members. Natural timber is used throughout the interior, while clear fiber-reinforced plastic, chosen for waterproofing purposes, can be seen in the space connecting the shower room and sauna. The project was completed December 2017 and is located a one-minute walk away from Ebisu Station. You can make bookings online ; the capsule hotel is open to both men and women. Per the name, each stay at the minimalist hotel is only nine hours: one hour to get ready for bed, seven hours of sleep, and one hour before checkout. + Schemata Architects Images by Nacasa & Partners

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Tokyo capsule hotel gets a Finnish-inspired refresh and sauna

You’ve got to see this freestanding office stuffed inside the shell of a historic chapel

January 18, 2018 by  
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  In order to revamp this chapel without ruining its stunning historic shell, Belgian architecture studio Klaarchitectuur  tucked a modern, freestanding office space right inside. Now,   exposed brick , chipped plaster, faded frescoes and a domed ceiling create a spectacularly unusual work setting for the lucky people toiling away in the unique space. The design team, led by architect Gregory Nijs, left the building’s shell intact– in accordance with its status on the historical registry– and created a new freestanding structure in its interior. The central cavity was left open, with stacks of boxes placed against one wall. Related: 19th-century church converted into gorgeous modern lofts in Brooklyn These minimalist volumes house all the essential office functions such as workspaces, a conference room, storage space, and bathrooms. The surrounding area is used for a variety of public events, which will allow the chapel to once again serve the community.   Exposed brick, chipped plaster and faded frescoes were all left intact, creating a contrast with the contemporary finishes of the new structure,  with its black staircase , striated wood floors and white-painted walls. + Klaarchitectuur Via Dwell Lead photo via Klaarchitectuur

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A run-down property in Portugal gets a playful renovation using a blend of colors and patterns

January 17, 2018 by  
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The inventive  renovation of this house in Ovar, Portugal, balances the past and the present by connecting the main residence with a newer addition using playful patterns and colors. Architect Nelson Resende Arquitecto  turned the crumbling, traditional home into a modern multi-use space with plenty of charm by drawing in light, adding modern finishes and highlighting the original features of the home. The house is located in the city of Ovar in Portugal, on a lot bordering the access road, abutting against the adjacent buildings. The secondary structure and the main house itself are treated distinctly, with the main residence featuring larger rooms. The spaces in the secondary structure are more constrained. Related: Architects convert 150-year-old Lisbon building into an artisanal green studio The architect decided that the main building should house the living areas and common spaces, with the street-facing part of the secondary structure converted into a garage and the inward-facing section reserved for private use, service and storage spaces . The attic in the main building is a multipurpose space bathed in natural light . The architect used beautiful decorative tiles for the facades and wood in the interior, blending traditional design with modern functions. + Nelson Resende Arquitecto Photos by João Morgado

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A run-down property in Portugal gets a playful renovation using a blend of colors and patterns

The majority of the National Park Service board just resigned

January 17, 2018 by  
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The majority of the 12-person National Park System Advisory Board (NPSAB) resigned this week because President Donald Trump’s Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke was unwilling to meet with them, according to NPR . Democrat Tony Knowles, former governor of Alaska, said in a resignation letter “…from all of the events of this past year I have a profound concern that the mission of stewardship, protection, and advancement of our National Parks has been set aside.” The National Park Service (NPS) advisory board was first authorized in 1935, and today more than three-quarters of its members have left their seats. In the January 15 letter Knowles said that he will remain dedicated to the success of America’s national parks, but “For the last year we have stood by waiting for the chance to meet and continue the partnership between the NPSAB and the DOI [Department of the Interior] as prescribed by law. We understand the complexity of transition but our requests to engage have been ignored and the matters on which we wanted to brief the new Department team are clearly not part of its agenda.” Related: Ryan Zinke recommends shrinking two more national monuments Nine board members signed that letter, and all of their terms were set to expire in May. Today a tenth member – whose term doesn’t expire until 2021 – resigned as well. Project Concern International CEO Carolyn Hessler Radelet submitted a similar letter to Zinke. According to The Washington Post , this move means the federal government lacks a functioning body to “designate national historic or natural landmarks.” The publication said it also shows how federal advisory bodies have been marginalized in Trump’s administration . Zinke suspended outside committees back in May of last year for his staff to review their work. Interior spokesperson Heather Swift said boards restarted in an email to The Washington Post earlier this month, but didn’t provide other details. The two people remaining on the board at this time are University of Maryland professor Rita Colwell and Harvard University professor Linda Blimes, who told The Washington Post she didn’t resign as she’s currently conducting research funded by the National Park Foundation and wants to finish. Their terms are up in May. Via NPR and The Washington Post (1 , 2 , 3) Images by Casey Horner on Unsplash , Gage Skidmore on Flickr and NPS

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The majority of the National Park Service board just resigned

Melbourne architects turn an old terrace house into a gorgeous light-filled home

January 17, 2018 by  
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Melbourne-based Ben Callery Architects converted a compact terrace house with limited square footage into a contemporary, light-filled home by going upwards and outwards. The renovation introduced a large rooftop deck, and natural light floods the interior, providing a strong connection with the outdoors. The Beyond House also takes advantage of a number of sustainable features including passive heating and cooling, solar power , water harvesting, and repurposed materials. The old row home was previously cramped in between two walls with little light, but by bringing the home design upwards, the architects were able to outfit the top level with a gorgeous open-air deck that allows the homeowners to enjoy a private outdoor space. Although adding this indoor/outdoor connection to the home was imperative to the renovation, the owners were also focused on creating a strong sustainability portfolio for their new home. Related: Low-impact Abbotsford Eco House uses recycled materials wherever possible in Melbourne “The owners are serious about sustainability and wanted the new addition to be naturally comfortable, using the sun for heating, breezes for cooling, water harvesting, solar power, recycled materials (even re-using the old kitchen),” the architects said. “We looked beyond the site constraints and beyond the typical spatial boundaries within a terrace house’s rooms and levels.” The strong connection to the outdoors continues throughout the interior, which was outfitted with strategically placed windows to bring in as much natural light to the living space as possible. In fact, every room in the house has a floor-to-ceiling glass door that provides optimal light, further fusing the indoor with the outdoor. + Ben Callery Architects Via Freshome Photography by Peter Bennetts via Ben Callery Architects

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Huge factory turned into a cozy residence with plenty of room leftover for the residents’ hobbies

January 16, 2018 by  
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This former factory in Nobeoka, Japan, now functions as a modern home for a couple who wanted to preserve the industrial legacy of the building. Considering the fact that the building was large enough to house production and manufacturing facilities, Schemata Architects reorganized the layout to include several voids that will serve as areas where the owners can enjoy their future hobbies. The building occupies a corner lot in Nobeoka, Miyazaki Prefecture in Japan . It grew over time to reach its current total area of 4736 square feet (440 square meters) distributed across two floors. The project started as an initiative organized by a Japanese magazine BRUTUS, which invited readers who wanted to renovate their houses as well as several selected architects, and matched each reader to their favorite architect. Related: Tokyo factory is transformed into an industrial-chic Blue Bottle Coffee cafe Schemata Architects renovated the building working in close collaboration with the client and his wife, who wanted the project to preserve the history of the building. In discussing the design, the team reached the conclusion that the optimal size of the residential part would be as small as 1829 square feet (170 square meters). This meant that there was a large unused floor area that had to somehow be incorporated into the concept. They decided to keep these spaces as voids that will accommodate the clients’ future passions and hobbies. “Such voids, created somewhere between the interior and the building envelope , generate a dynamic space that raises expectations for something to happen,” said the architects. + Schemata Architects Photos by Takumi Ota

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Huge factory turned into a cozy residence with plenty of room leftover for the residents’ hobbies

Smart Home targets affordability and eco-friendly design in Australia

January 10, 2018 by  
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Green Sheep Collective aimed to create an affordable and highly energy efficient home with the design of Smart Home, a renovation and extension in Melbourne , Australia. Built for approximately $200 per square foot, the home is by no means a low-cost home but the price is impressive given the inclusion of high-level environmentally sustainable principles and components. In contrast to Melbourne’s many McMansions, the Smart Home is a site-specific compact home that boasts low to zero emissions, recycled materials, and connection to the outdoors. Smart Home is an expansion and renovation of a two-bedroom single-fronted Victorian cottage in inner Melbourne. Passive solar design principles guided the design and the home’s openings and room layout are optimized for natural light and ventilation. Recycled materials were used wherever possible as was ethically sourced materials like the radially sawn timbers and Flexo recycled rubber flooring. Water saving impacts were addressed with EcoVerta water saving units. Careful design and clever storage solutions with built-in furniture created 20% more usable indoor space within the 140-square-foot addition. Related: Beautiful Northcote Solar Home shows off modern energy-efficient family living “This project faced a number of critical challenges that had to be overcome in order to meet these sustainability and design targets,” wrote the architects. “The constraints included overshadowing, poor orientation, and a small 7.5 metre wide east-west block built close to the boundary. The existing home was dark and leaky with a lean-to at the rear.” The architects demolished the lean-to and added a mezzanine . “Our response creates interesting volumes for architectural beauty, and minimises idle space by ensuring the floor plan is utilised to its full capacity through clever storage solutions and split level living. The single storey addition includes open plan living, dining and kitchen opening via large openable glazed doors to an outdoor deck.” + Green Sheep Collective Images by Shae Parker McCashen

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Smart Home targets affordability and eco-friendly design in Australia

Architects squeeze an ethereal art gallery into a narrow Shanghai alleyway

January 3, 2018 by  
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Chinese studio Wutopia Lab converted a dim, dark alleyway between two buildings into a beautiful, light-filled gallery in Shanghai. Located in a terraced courtyard sheltered from the city’s chaotic streets, One Person’s Gallery is a compact space topped with a pitched roof and furnished with repurposed items found during the site cleanup. The original site of the gallery was an old storage area that had been filled with junk over the years. As the cleanup process began, YU Ting from Wutopia Lab was inspired by the raw quality of the space. He decided to use the existing arch as a motif for the gallery space, creating an open, almost chapel-like atmosphere . Related: Renzo Piano embeds modern art gallery with ‘winged’ roof into French vineyard As the space was being cleaned out, the architect was also inspired to put the “junk” to good use as well. The project turned into a kind of archaeological dig, with almost everything in decent condition put aside for use in the gallery. Old furniture that had been abandoned for years was given new life as furnishings or decorations in the library and courtyard. Some of the old doors were repurposed , while others were used in the ceiling. The finished gallery is a beautiful, open space that offers a retreat from the chaotic hustle and bustle of city life. According to the architect, the gallery will be open to artists who want to showcase any works focusing on urban design and architecture. + Wutopia Lab Images via Wutopia Lab

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