8 Modern Solariums and Sun-Drenched Spaces

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By Michele Koh Morollo
By definition, a solarium is a glass-enclosed space that's designed to let natural light stream in.

For some people's homes, this means a porch or sunroom that's solely dedicated to soaking up rays—but for others, it can mean a multifunctional space that takes advantage of the sun with floor-to-ceiling windows. Either way, a solarium can be both beautiful and therapeutic. Take a look at these examples that should give you some ideas on how you can introduce one into your own home.

Hammock Sunning in North Carolina

On this 40-acre farm in Columbus, North Carolina, residents can lounge in a hammock in a porch surrounded by floor-to-ceiling glass windows, while enjoying lovely views of the adjacent forest.

On this 40-acre farm in Columbus, North Carolina, residents can lounge in a hammock in a porch surrounded by floor-to-ceiling glass windows, while enjoying lovely views of the adjacent forest.

A porch extension of glass and Cor-Ten steel was added to this renovated Italian country house. From within, the views connect the porch to the outdoor, but from outside, the reflection of the glass volume reflects the natural landscape, taking on a "skin" of green.

A porch extension of glass and Cor-Ten steel was added to this renovated Italian country house. From within, the views connect the porch to the outdoor, but from outside, the reflection of the glass volume reflects the natural landscape, taking on a "skin" of green.

This waterfront home in Lopez Island offers stunning views of the San Juan Channel and Fisherman Bay, thanks to large wraparound decks and a sun-drenched atrium with a double-sided propane fireplace.

This waterfront home in Lopez Island offers stunning views of the San Juan Channel and Fisherman Bay, thanks to large wraparound decks and a sun-drenched atrium with a double-sided propane fireplace.

This wood-framed, glass-enclosed lakeside home in Gothenburg, Sweden, looks like a giant greenhouse from the outside, but is in fact a spacious three-bedroom home.

This wood-framed, glass-enclosed lakeside home in Gothenburg, Sweden, looks like a giant greenhouse from the outside, but is in fact a spacious three-bedroom home.

The home of Primo Orpilla and Verda Alexander in Orinda, in the hills east of Berkeley, California, has a corridor with full-glass walls and a flat, glass roof, as well as plenty of rooms that let sunlight in from multiple angles.

The home of Primo Orpilla and Verda Alexander in Orinda, in the hills east of Berkeley, California, has a corridor with full-glass walls and a flat, glass roof, as well as plenty of rooms that let sunlight in from multiple angles.

Glass, concrete, and stainless steel create a solarium-like effect in the living room of this lakeside weekend house in Mexico.

Glass, concrete, and stainless steel create a solarium-like effect in the living room of this lakeside weekend house in Mexico.

On the sixth floor of Airbnb’s Paris office is a bright, plant-filled solarium where staff can relax and socialize. Designed by Airbnb in collaboration with STUDIOS Architecture, the space has all the relaxed breeziness of a Parisian attic loft.

On the sixth floor of Airbnb’s Paris office is a bright, plant-filled solarium where staff can relax and socialize. Designed by Airbnb in collaboration with STUDIOS Architecture, the space has all the relaxed breeziness of a Parisian attic loft.

The late Italian designer-architect Gae Aulenti’s home in Milan has a catwalk that begins in the living room and leads up to a solarium sitting area.

The late Italian designer-architect Gae Aulenti’s home in Milan has a catwalk that begins in the living room and leads up to a solarium sitting area.