A well-designed home elevates quality of life, be it through gathering friends and family in thoughtfully scaled spaces, helping you stay connected to the rhythms of nature, or allowing you to work and play under the same roof. The houses that most captivated our readers this year respond poetically to the environment and individual needs, and are finely tuned without seeming overwrought. From Karuizawa, Japan, to the Southern Alps of New Zealand, the heavyweight homes of the year span the globe.
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