This home stands at the edge of the Tongass Narrows in Ketchikan, Alaska. Two shed roofs angle slightly away from each other, directing views to the wilderness beyond.
This home stands at the edge of the Tongass Narrows in Ketchikan, Alaska. Two shed roofs angle slightly away from each other, directing views to the wilderness beyond.
teak and oak flooring, whitewashed walls, and soaring ceilings
teak and oak flooring, whitewashed walls, and soaring ceilings
The outdoor sunken kitchen is a surprise feature, sitting beneath the elevated home.
The outdoor sunken kitchen is a surprise feature, sitting beneath the elevated home.
In the living area, a cedar storage unit made by Grant features a five-by-five-foot sliding panel that conceals shelving and the television. “It’s a way to make it feel less like a TV room during the day,” Beer says. The sunken sofa—a throwback to the residents’ childhoods in the 1970s— is from the Houdini collection by King Living. The dining chairs were a secondhand purchase.
In the living area, a cedar storage unit made by Grant features a five-by-five-foot sliding panel that conceals shelving and the television. “It’s a way to make it feel less like a TV room during the day,” Beer says. The sunken sofa—a throwback to the residents’ childhoods in the 1970s— is from the Houdini collection by King Living. The dining chairs were a secondhand purchase.
The sunken living room is just one of many grade changes inside the structure. “We were adamant that we didn’t want something domestic,” says Andrew. “We wanted something surprising, that was hyper-animated, and that, when you moved through it, changed all the time.” The sofa, designed by the couple and Levenbetts, is upholstered in cotton velvet. The Habibi side tables are by Philipp Mainzer for e15, the fireplace tools by Fort Standard, and the doors by Fleetwood.
The sunken living room is just one of many grade changes inside the structure. “We were adamant that we didn’t want something domestic,” says Andrew. “We wanted something surprising, that was hyper-animated, and that, when you moved through it, changed all the time.” The sofa, designed by the couple and Levenbetts, is upholstered in cotton velvet. The Habibi side tables are by Philipp Mainzer for e15, the fireplace tools by Fort Standard, and the doors by Fleetwood.
The sunken living room features a multifunctional piece of built-in furniture that integrates a sofa, sound system, and television, and also contains a "secret door" that leads to a wine cellar. "[We incorporated this] as a clin d’oeil to the midcentury tradition of built-in work stations and bookshelves," says Morales.
The sunken living room features a multifunctional piece of built-in furniture that integrates a sofa, sound system, and television, and also contains a "secret door" that leads to a wine cellar. "[We incorporated this] as a clin d’oeil to the midcentury tradition of built-in work stations and bookshelves," says Morales.
A planter is integrated under the open staircase leading to the upper floor, and a skylight in the roof illuminates the stairwell.
A planter is integrated under the open staircase leading to the upper floor, and a skylight in the roof illuminates the stairwell.
Architect Nic Brunsdon renovated an original heritage cottage for a young family in the suburbs of Perth, Australia. The 3,229-square-foot home includes a sunken “garden room” with large sliding doors that connect the interior gathering space to a sunny green courtyard.
Architect Nic Brunsdon renovated an original heritage cottage for a young family in the suburbs of Perth, Australia. The 3,229-square-foot home includes a sunken “garden room” with large sliding doors that connect the interior gathering space to a sunny green courtyard.
Duchateau engineered hardwood oak complements the kitchen’s warm wood cabinetry. A broad sliding door connects the space to the outdoor deck, which spills down to the backyard.
Duchateau engineered hardwood oak complements the kitchen’s warm wood cabinetry. A broad sliding door connects the space to the outdoor deck, which spills down to the backyard.
A cantilevered peninsula offers a smart, space-saving solution for the 900-square-foot layout: It offers ample space for food preparation and also acts as a dining area.
A cantilevered peninsula offers a smart, space-saving solution for the 900-square-foot layout: It offers ample space for food preparation and also acts as a dining area.
Maintenance problems can be extremely expensive to repair.
Maintenance problems can be extremely expensive to repair.
To avoid the sight of dirty dishes, the sink is on the side rather than in the island, where instead an induction stove from Bora (with a cleverly designed down-draw exhaust system) makes the kitchen “really social,” says Kate. “One of us can be cooking while the other can sit and have a glass of wine.”
To avoid the sight of dirty dishes, the sink is on the side rather than in the island, where instead an induction stove from Bora (with a cleverly designed down-draw exhaust system) makes the kitchen “really social,” says Kate. “One of us can be cooking while the other can sit and have a glass of wine.”
A fire pit enclave on the lower-level courtyard is the perfect place for post-dinner conversation.
A fire pit enclave on the lower-level courtyard is the perfect place for post-dinner conversation.
Step out into the yard and enjoy a large fire pit surrounded with Adirondack chairs for your entire group to gather around.
Step out into the yard and enjoy a large fire pit surrounded with Adirondack chairs for your entire group to gather around.
Front of the house with Fire pit, and shaded, outdoor sitting area to enjoy the sunrise.
Front of the house with Fire pit, and shaded, outdoor sitting area to enjoy the sunrise.
nigh time view of fire pit and tv area
nigh time view of fire pit and tv area
A linear fire pit at the edge of the courtyard patio
A linear fire pit at the edge of the courtyard patio
Rooftop deck with fire pit with seating for outdoor entertaining.
Rooftop deck with fire pit with seating for outdoor entertaining.
Back yard with fire pit facing the lake
Back yard with fire pit facing the lake
Backyard Seating & Fire Pit at Night
Backyard Seating & Fire Pit at Night
Pool and Hot Tub/ Fire Pit
Pool and Hot Tub/ Fire Pit
Customized Concrete Fire Pit
Customized Concrete Fire Pit
Exterior of the cabin with fire pit.
Exterior of the cabin with fire pit.
The outdoor fire pit.
The outdoor fire pit.
Conversation pit at the Miller House in Columbis, Indiana, a national historic landmark. Interior architectural design and curation by Alexander Girard in collaboration with Eero Saarinen and Dan Kiley.
Conversation pit at the Miller House in Columbis, Indiana, a national historic landmark. Interior architectural design and curation by Alexander Girard in collaboration with Eero Saarinen and Dan Kiley.
A fire pit and garden complete the backyard as a place to relax when not making art.
A fire pit and garden complete the backyard as a place to relax when not making art.
Haugen/Zohar's salvaged-wood Fireplace for Children, in Trondheim, Norway, serves as a sheltered place for storytelling. Photo by Haugen/Zohar Arkitekter/TASCHEN.
Haugen/Zohar's salvaged-wood Fireplace for Children, in Trondheim, Norway, serves as a sheltered place for storytelling. Photo by Haugen/Zohar Arkitekter/TASCHEN.
Though the fire pit was “kind of an after-thought,” says Hannah, the family uses it year-round. “In the spring and fall, it warms you up on cool nights, and in the summer, it just adds ambience.”
Though the fire pit was “kind of an after-thought,” says Hannah, the family uses it year-round. “In the spring and fall, it warms you up on cool nights, and in the summer, it just adds ambience.”
Made of polished integral concrete with a Cor-Ten steel base, a fire pit “becomes very much a unique element that sets itself apart in form and color,” says landscape architect Stefan Thuilot, who designed it.
Made of polished integral concrete with a Cor-Ten steel base, a fire pit “becomes very much a unique element that sets itself apart in form and color,” says landscape architect Stefan Thuilot, who designed it.
Even the camp fire pit is lined with recycled fire bricks and gives a warm twist to cool Pacific Northwest nights
Even the camp fire pit is lined with recycled fire bricks and gives a warm twist to cool Pacific Northwest nights
After raising the rear patio to the level of the kitchen, the team reused the original redwood decking and supplemented it with recycled pieces from other projects. Recessed planters punctuate a garden wall. Scott and Regina warm themselves by a Solus fire pit on chilly evenings.
After raising the rear patio to the level of the kitchen, the team reused the original redwood decking and supplemented it with recycled pieces from other projects. Recessed planters punctuate a garden wall. Scott and Regina warm themselves by a Solus fire pit on chilly evenings.
“We didn’t want the pit to be an obtrusive contraption sitting in the center of a zen-like courtyard,” says architect Matthew Hufft. A low-profile fire pit is the perfect continuation of a mellow Missouri backyard. Photo by Mike Sinclair.
“We didn’t want the pit to be an obtrusive contraption sitting in the center of a zen-like courtyard,” says architect Matthew Hufft. A low-profile fire pit is the perfect continuation of a mellow Missouri backyard. Photo by Mike Sinclair.

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