Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo

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By Jennifer Baum Lagdameo / Published by Dwell
A cosmopolitan design mecca with a distinctive urban vibe—Tokyo is one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world and home to upwards of 37.8 million people.

Balancing traditional and modern aesthetics, space is always at a premium and although many Tokyoites live and commute from the stereotypical "rabbit hutch" apartments found throughout the metropolis, a lucky few live in oasis-like modern abodes discreetly tucked away in residential Tokyo neighborhoods. The Japanese are adept at finding beauty in subtle, unobtrusive spaces—leading innovative architects to design some of the most stunning and covetable modern homes. 

Open-Plan Concrete Home in Japan

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 1 of 10 - After purchasing a thin, L-shaped lot in Tokyo, Tamotsu Nakada asked architect and friend Koji Tsutsui to create an open-plan concrete home to fit the site.

After purchasing a thin, L-shaped lot in Tokyo, Tamotsu Nakada asked architect and friend Koji Tsutsui to create an open-plan concrete home to fit the site.

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 2 of 10 - The House in Higashiazabu is a minimal dwelling in Tokyo, Japan, designed by PANDA. <br>The home, which is located on a commercial street with mixed-use housing and traditional-styled residences, was designed with windows on the third level to create a sense of privacy for the inhabitants from the facing street.&nbsp;

The House in Higashiazabu is a minimal dwelling in Tokyo, Japan, designed by PANDA.
The home, which is located on a commercial street with mixed-use housing and traditional-styled residences, was designed with windows on the third level to create a sense of privacy for the inhabitants from the facing street. 

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 3 of 10 - This minimal residence in Tokyo, Japan, was designed by Kazuya Saito Architects—sandwiched between two busy roads and the railroad tracks. The architects faced the challenge of trying to limit the line of sight, noise, and wind. A high-ceilinged interior, which opened up the space while maintaining natural light, served as the perfect solution.

This minimal residence in Tokyo, Japan, was designed by Kazuya Saito Architects—sandwiched between two busy roads and the railroad tracks. The architects faced the challenge of trying to limit the line of sight, noise, and wind. A high-ceilinged interior, which opened up the space while maintaining natural light, served as the perfect solution.

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 4 of 10 - The Shift House is a minimal residence located in Tokyo, Japan, designed by Kino Architects. The mostly black exterior has  segregated angular roofs creating a striking overall appearance from the street, which is starkly contrasted by its bright and airy interior.&nbsp;

The Shift House is a minimal residence located in Tokyo, Japan, designed by Kino Architects. The mostly black exterior has segregated angular roofs creating a striking overall appearance from the street, which is starkly contrasted by its bright and airy interior. 

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 5 of 10 - The Oyamadai House a minimal residence in Tokyo, Japan, which was designed by FrontOfficeTokyo. Going against what might be a natural instinct to retreat behind walls in search of privacy, the family and the architects saw this challenge as a chance to connect with the city—extending the concrete to form a landscape that blurs the boundaries between the city and the home.

The Oyamadai House a minimal residence in Tokyo, Japan, which was designed by FrontOfficeTokyo. Going against what might be a natural instinct to retreat behind walls in search of privacy, the family and the architects saw this challenge as a chance to connect with the city—extending the concrete to form a landscape that blurs the boundaries between the city and the home.

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 6 of 10 - The black facade of the Yatabes’ house may turn a darkly futuristic face to its suburban block, but behind it the house is full of light. In Saitama, a tightly packed neighborhood near Tokyo, the black metal screen affords the family privacy without sacrificing outdoor space.

The black facade of the Yatabes’ house may turn a darkly futuristic face to its suburban block, but behind it the house is full of light. In Saitama, a tightly packed neighborhood near Tokyo, the black metal screen affords the family privacy without sacrificing outdoor space.

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 7 of 10 - House in Tokyo is a minimal residence located in Tokyo, Japan, designed by Ako Nagao + miCo. Located between reinforced concrete mid-to-high-rise apartments and an old wooden housing area—a common scene in this crowded metropolis—the custom-built dwelling also houses a music studio.&nbsp;

House in Tokyo is a minimal residence located in Tokyo, Japan, designed by Ako Nagao + miCo. Located between reinforced concrete mid-to-high-rise apartments and an old wooden housing area—a common scene in this crowded metropolis—the custom-built dwelling also houses a music studio. 

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 8 of 10 - House with 30,000 Books designed by Takuro Yamamoto Architects is a minimalist home located in Tokyo, Japan. The residence features a double-height ceiling space, with large windows on both floors illuminating a bespoke floor-to-ceiling bookshelf with natural light. The exterior is composed mainly of galvanized metal panels which contrast against the mostly wood interior. &nbsp;

House with 30,000 Books designed by Takuro Yamamoto Architects is a minimalist home located in Tokyo, Japan. The residence features a double-height ceiling space, with large windows on both floors illuminating a bespoke floor-to-ceiling bookshelf with natural light. The exterior is composed mainly of galvanized metal panels which contrast against the mostly wood interior.  

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 9 of 10 - House NA from 2011 has glass walls and a steel structural frame containing a matrix of tiny rectangular rooms and outdoor terraces, each on a separate floor level linked by stairs, ladders, or movable steps. Hemmed in by neighboring homes on three sides and a narrow street in front, the house belongs to a couple clearly at ease with Tokyo’s urban condition.

House NA from 2011 has glass walls and a steel structural frame containing a matrix of tiny rectangular rooms and outdoor terraces, each on a separate floor level linked by stairs, ladders, or movable steps. Hemmed in by neighboring homes on three sides and a narrow street in front, the house belongs to a couple clearly at ease with Tokyo’s urban condition.

Follow Us to 10 Modern Homes in Tokyo - Photo 10 of 10 - Large clerestory windows face the street at the Higashibatas’ house in Tokyo, optimizing both privacy and natural light within.

Large clerestory windows face the street at the Higashibatas’ house in Tokyo, optimizing both privacy and natural light within.