50 Jaw-Dropping Glass Houses That Shatter Expectations
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50 Jaw-Dropping Glass Houses That Shatter Expectations

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By Duncan Nielsen
It’s clear: glass homes equal unparalleled views.

When glass dominates a home, the result is a borderless residence that syncs with its environs, creating a stunning, new visual and psychological sense of space. See how the glass homes below use the versatile material to create ambiance and connect with the outdoors.  

1. Villa Mosca Bianca

Villa Mosca Bianca by Design Haus Liberty unfolds in layers, its outdoor terraces cascading down to the waters of Lake Maggiore. Frameless sliding glass doors and curving panels of glass connect the interior to outdoor terraces, their shapes echoing the forms of the house and stepping down to the water’s edge. Curving glass walls blur the boundary between inside and out, with the meditative views of the lake prioritized. A light palette of natural stone finishes is calming, textural, and leads attention outward.

Villa Mosca Bianca by Design Haus Liberty unfolds in layers, its outdoor terraces cascading down to the waters of Lake Maggiore. Frameless sliding glass doors and curving panels of glass connect the interior to outdoor terraces, their shapes echoing the forms of the house and stepping down to the water’s edge. Curving glass walls blur the boundary between inside and out, with the meditative views of the lake prioritized. A light palette of natural stone finishes is calming, textural, and leads attention outward.

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Designed by Peter Bohlin of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, the 3,000-square-foot house "incorporates the natural world by allowing one to experience the temperature, sights, and smells of the island as you travel through the house," Kasper says. He calls it "the house that Nirvana built," from his time as a producer for the world-famous band, along with their Seattle grunge brethren Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Mudhoney, and the Foo Fighters.

Designed by Peter Bohlin of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, the 3,000-square-foot house "incorporates the natural world by allowing one to experience the temperature, sights, and smells of the island as you travel through the house," Kasper says. He calls it "the house that Nirvana built," from his time as a producer for the world-famous band, along with their Seattle grunge brethren Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Mudhoney, and the Foo Fighters.

For Bruce Shafer and Carol Horst's vacation home in the Tehachapi Mountains, architect Tom Kundig of Olson Kundig chose materials suited to the harsh climate. "The area is super cold in winter and super hot in summer," says Kundig, who designed a deep overhang to shade the core of the house from solar gain. "In the high desert, it's not just about being in the sun, it's about getting out of the sun."

For Bruce Shafer and Carol Horst's vacation home in the Tehachapi Mountains, architect Tom Kundig of Olson Kundig chose materials suited to the harsh climate. "The area is super cold in winter and super hot in summer," says Kundig, who designed a deep overhang to shade the core of the house from solar gain. "In the high desert, it's not just about being in the sun, it's about getting out of the sun."

In a naturally fragmented and disconnected context, the Gafarim House offers monolithic, opaque volumes to the street, citing the compact, parallelepipedic masses of northern Portuguese popular architecture and adjusting its scale to the surroundings.

In a naturally fragmented and disconnected context, the Gafarim House offers monolithic, opaque volumes to the street, citing the compact, parallelepipedic masses of northern Portuguese popular architecture and adjusting its scale to the surroundings.

Fully renovated, Capilano House is a west coast modern home overlooking Capilano River in North Vancouver by Miza Architects. 

Fully renovated, Capilano House is a west coast modern home overlooking Capilano River in North Vancouver by Miza Architects. 

Located in the south end of Halifax, Nova Scotia, Syncline was designed by Omar Gandhi Architect. The quiet, masculine modern form sits adjacent to Point Pleasant Park and overlooks the North-West Arm. 

Located in the south end of Halifax, Nova Scotia, Syncline was designed by Omar Gandhi Architect. The quiet, masculine modern form sits adjacent to Point Pleasant Park and overlooks the North-West Arm. 

Inspired by midcentury modern design, this museum-like home was designed by Japanese architect and Harvard professor Toshiko Mori, who founded New York-based Toshiko Mori Architect. The home’s current owner wanted a property that deeply connected with the natural beauty that surrounds it. 

Inspired by midcentury modern design, this museum-like home was designed by Japanese architect and Harvard professor Toshiko Mori, who founded New York-based Toshiko Mori Architect. The home’s current owner wanted a property that deeply connected with the natural beauty that surrounds it. 

Located on the top of a sand dune, the Vlieland house is dominated by a high roof that was inspired by the De Waard Albatross tent, a popular pyramidal camping tent designed by Dutch tent makers De Waard in 1961. The ground floor—where the communal areas like the living lounge, kitchen, and covered terrace are located—are fitted on all sides with glass to maximize views.

Located on the top of a sand dune, the Vlieland house is dominated by a high roof that was inspired by the De Waard Albatross tent, a popular pyramidal camping tent designed by Dutch tent makers De Waard in 1961. The ground floor—where the communal areas like the living lounge, kitchen, and covered terrace are located—are fitted on all sides with glass to maximize views.

Built in 1954, the Donald and Helen Olsen House was designed by Berkeley architect Donald Olsen and is a well-preserved example of International Style. A modern masterpiece in Northern California's Berkeley Hills, the architecturally significant dwelling was landmarked by the city in 2009 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2010. 

Built in 1954, the Donald and Helen Olsen House was designed by Berkeley architect Donald Olsen and is a well-preserved example of International Style. A modern masterpiece in Northern California's Berkeley Hills, the architecturally significant dwelling was landmarked by the city in 2009 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2010. 

Atop a ridge in the Santa Lucia Preserve, Halls Ridge Knoll guest house takes advantage of passive design opportunities in its temperate climate. Expansive windows provide natural lighting throughout, while a broad overhang shades interiors from the summer sun. Sliding doors and operable windows use the prevailing winds for natural ventilation, and provide expansive views of the surrounding mountain range. 

Atop a ridge in the Santa Lucia Preserve, Halls Ridge Knoll guest house takes advantage of passive design opportunities in its temperate climate. Expansive windows provide natural lighting throughout, while a broad overhang shades interiors from the summer sun. Sliding doors and operable windows use the prevailing winds for natural ventilation, and provide expansive views of the surrounding mountain range. 

Flip House's open plan allows striking views outward to the city, bay, and garden. The back of the house was recast as the primary facade with a new glass wall, allowing natural light to fill the home throughout the day. 

Flip House's open plan allows striking views outward to the city, bay, and garden. The back of the house was recast as the primary facade with a new glass wall, allowing natural light to fill the home throughout the day. 

Designed by award-winning Auckland architect Andrew Patterson, this remote one-bedroom house, which rests on a rocky escarpment in a sheltered cove, is constructed as an angular, modern, stone-and-glass enclosure that looks out to breathtaking views of Pigeon Bay—a deserted, rocky bay where seals and dolphins often show up.

Designed by award-winning Auckland architect Andrew Patterson, this remote one-bedroom house, which rests on a rocky escarpment in a sheltered cove, is constructed as an angular, modern, stone-and-glass enclosure that looks out to breathtaking views of Pigeon Bay—a deserted, rocky bay where seals and dolphins often show up.

Designed by architect Francis E. Leighton, the 604-square-foot space known as the Hi House is encompassed with glass and surrounded by thick bishop pines. Surrounded by the Point Reyes National Seashore and Tomales Bay State Park, the five-acre estate is a secluded, tranquil sanctuary. The property is located just minutes away from the Pacific Ocean, and it's close to tons of hiking trails.

Designed by architect Francis E. Leighton, the 604-square-foot space known as the Hi House is encompassed with glass and surrounded by thick bishop pines. Surrounded by the Point Reyes National Seashore and Tomales Bay State Park, the five-acre estate is a secluded, tranquil sanctuary. The property is located just minutes away from the Pacific Ocean, and it's close to tons of hiking trails.

Located in Chileno Valley, just three miles west of downtown Petaluma, the barn is complimented by its setting and the coastal range beyond. Its entry frames a view through the house and out to the meadow. The light-filled living area opens up to the long view south and gathers the bedrooms and kitchen to either side. 

Located in Chileno Valley, just three miles west of downtown Petaluma, the barn is complimented by its setting and the coastal range beyond. Its entry frames a view through the house and out to the meadow. The light-filled living area opens up to the long view south and gathers the bedrooms and kitchen to either side. 

The thousand-foot cliffs and precipitous mountains of Big Sur, California, have a long history of attracting contrarian thinkers. Taking cues from the flora, fauna, and rocky cliffs of the region, California, Mickey Muennig's brand of organic architecture doesn't stop with the terrain.

The thousand-foot cliffs and precipitous mountains of Big Sur, California, have a long history of attracting contrarian thinkers. Taking cues from the flora, fauna, and rocky cliffs of the region, California, Mickey Muennig's brand of organic architecture doesn't stop with the terrain.

As a thought-provoking exploration of environment and design, this minimalist ring-shaped holiday home in Aragon, Spain, abandons boundaries and opens itself up to nature. Designed with a distinct shape and circular symmetry, the indoor and outdoor spaces of Solo Circle are visually and physically linked to the house’s hilltop wilderness setting, as well as a sun-soaked interior courtyard with a pool.

As a thought-provoking exploration of environment and design, this minimalist ring-shaped holiday home in Aragon, Spain, abandons boundaries and opens itself up to nature. Designed with a distinct shape and circular symmetry, the indoor and outdoor spaces of Solo Circle are visually and physically linked to the house’s hilltop wilderness setting, as well as a sun-soaked interior courtyard with a pool.

In addition to providing natural lighting, the reflective windows have other benefits. Deer walk right by the cabin, unaware that they’re providing a free wildlife show for the Molenaars and their Jack Russell terrier, Nigel. After the sun sets, and the interior can be seen from outside, the owners light candles which make the cottage glow like a huge lantern.

In addition to providing natural lighting, the reflective windows have other benefits. Deer walk right by the cabin, unaware that they’re providing a free wildlife show for the Molenaars and their Jack Russell terrier, Nigel. After the sun sets, and the interior can be seen from outside, the owners light candles which make the cottage glow like a huge lantern.

A gabled roof home in Werkhoven, a Dutch village in the province of Utrecht, takes the form of a modern barn with a twist—split down the middle from the peak, half of the exterior is floor-to-ceiling glass to take advantage of the views. "The transition from inside to outside, and vice versa, is always important in our designs," says architect Ruud Visser.

A gabled roof home in Werkhoven, a Dutch village in the province of Utrecht, takes the form of a modern barn with a twist—split down the middle from the peak, half of the exterior is floor-to-ceiling glass to take advantage of the views. "The transition from inside to outside, and vice versa, is always important in our designs," says architect Ruud Visser.

Tom Givone's current weekend abode, nicknamed the Floating Farmhouse, is—so far—his capstone project, a synthesis of personal taste, material experimentation, and historically sensitive restoration: a living laboratory for how to bring the vernacular past into the present.

Tom Givone's current weekend abode, nicknamed the Floating Farmhouse, is—so far—his capstone project, a synthesis of personal taste, material experimentation, and historically sensitive restoration: a living laboratory for how to bring the vernacular past into the present.

Two trunk-like columns support an aluminum-and-zinc-clad home in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains designed by architect Craig Steely. With an intention to disrupt  as few oak trees on the dense site as possible, Steely built the glass-walled house to  nestle against the steep hillside. Visitors access the entrance from above, descending to the living spaces via a native grass-covered roof.

Two trunk-like columns support an aluminum-and-zinc-clad home in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains designed by architect Craig Steely. With an intention to disrupt as few oak trees on the dense site as possible, Steely built the glass-walled house to nestle against the steep hillside. Visitors access the entrance from above, descending to the living spaces via a native grass-covered roof.

Covered in mirrored glass that’s transparent when viewed from within, the façade of this Mexican forest retreat reflects the color, light, and movements of its natural surroundings.

Covered in mirrored glass that’s transparent when viewed from within, the façade of this Mexican forest retreat reflects the color, light, and movements of its natural surroundings.

Located in Aarhus, Denmark, Villa R is a minimalist, serene structure clad in zinc panels. "The objective was to create a house that brings the forest inside through large glass panels—and create an ever-changing seasonal backdrop for the interior living spaces," stated the architecture firm, C.F. Møller, of the 3,200-square-foot abode.

Located in Aarhus, Denmark, Villa R is a minimalist, serene structure clad in zinc panels. "The objective was to create a house that brings the forest inside through large glass panels—and create an ever-changing seasonal backdrop for the interior living spaces," stated the architecture firm, C.F. Møller, of the 3,200-square-foot abode.

Floor-to-ceiling glass windows with sliding glass doors allow access to the decked outdoor space. Because the area is covered by the roof's overhang, the family can enjoy the new bright and airy environment, no matter the weather. 

Floor-to-ceiling glass windows with sliding glass doors allow access to the decked outdoor space. Because the area is covered by the roof's overhang, the family can enjoy the new bright and airy environment, no matter the weather. 

Architect Kengo Kuma designed a floating, transparent structure supported by very thin steel columns. Transparency was a common design goal for the entire project. 

Architect Kengo Kuma designed a floating, transparent structure supported by very thin steel columns. Transparency was a common design goal for the entire project. 

In the ’60s, using only materials found on their 400-acre plot of forest in Mendocino County, Charles Bello and his wife built a sustainable ranch—including an undulating glass house. The concept of the Parabolic Glass House was straightforward, and only took about 20 seconds to crystalize: the openings of the house begin where a nearby line of trees hit the sky, and then arch up in a parabolic shape to frame the view in front of them. The shape of the home arose from the site itself.

In the ’60s, using only materials found on their 400-acre plot of forest in Mendocino County, Charles Bello and his wife built a sustainable ranch—including an undulating glass house. The concept of the Parabolic Glass House was straightforward, and only took about 20 seconds to crystalize: the openings of the house begin where a nearby line of trees hit the sky, and then arch up in a parabolic shape to frame the view in front of them. The shape of the home arose from the site itself.

Designed by José Guedes Cruz, César Marques, and Marco Marinho of the Portugal-based firm Guedes Cruz Architects, The Wall House is laid out in an open-box plan, and is fitted with plenty of glass windows to enhance the synergy between its interior and exterior spaces.

Designed by José Guedes Cruz, César Marques, and Marco Marinho of the Portugal-based firm Guedes Cruz Architects, The Wall House is laid out in an open-box plan, and is fitted with plenty of glass windows to enhance the synergy between its interior and exterior spaces.

Originally designed in 1957 by SOM partner Roy O. Allen, this four-bedroom, three-bathroom house in Briarcliff Manor has been meticulously restored, while many of its original midcentury design details have been preserved and even emphasized. In fact, much of the design is reminiscent of the work of midcentury luminaries like Ludwig Mies van Der Rohe and Philip Johnson. 

Originally designed in 1957 by SOM partner Roy O. Allen, this four-bedroom, three-bathroom house in Briarcliff Manor has been meticulously restored, while many of its original midcentury design details have been preserved and even emphasized. In fact, much of the design is reminiscent of the work of midcentury luminaries like Ludwig Mies van Der Rohe and Philip Johnson. 

The Glass House Dream & Charme combines innovative technology with modern design and Italian architecture. Located in the heart of Monferrato, this stunning villa boasts floor to ceiling windows with 360-degree views of the surrounding hills.

The Glass House Dream & Charme combines innovative technology with modern design and Italian architecture. Located in the heart of Monferrato, this stunning villa boasts floor to ceiling windows with 360-degree views of the surrounding hills.

Located in Queensland, Australia, the residence was created by Sarah Waller Design, an architectural studio that’s based in the Queensland suburb of Doonan. The glass pavilion–style home was designed for Sarah Waller and her family and sits on top of a polished concrete slab. Inspired by the midcentury era, it looks out to the Noosa Valley golf course.  

Located in Queensland, Australia, the residence was created by Sarah Waller Design, an architectural studio that’s based in the Queensland suburb of Doonan. The glass pavilion–style home was designed for Sarah Waller and her family and sits on top of a polished concrete slab. Inspired by the midcentury era, it looks out to the Noosa Valley golf course.  

Set at the edge of Stoney Lake in Ontario, Canada, is a photographer's home, studio, and boat house designed by Toronto-based studio GH3. The glass box unites landscape and architecture while providing ideal spaces for photography, programmatic functions for living, and boat storage.

Set at the edge of Stoney Lake in Ontario, Canada, is a photographer's home, studio, and boat house designed by Toronto-based studio GH3. The glass box unites landscape and architecture while providing ideal spaces for photography, programmatic functions for living, and boat storage.

C-Glass House by Deegan Day Design engages not only Philip Johnson’s Glass House and the Farnsworth House by Mies van der Rohe, but also the California legacies of Elwood, Koenig and others. Though its architectural lineage is self-evident, this glass house is as indebted to artists’ explorations of glazed enclosures as it is to the precedents of Johnson and Mies.

C-Glass House by Deegan Day Design engages not only Philip Johnson’s Glass House and the Farnsworth House by Mies van der Rohe, but also the California legacies of Elwood, Koenig and others. Though its architectural lineage is self-evident, this glass house is as indebted to artists’ explorations of glazed enclosures as it is to the precedents of Johnson and Mies.

Built in 1953, the Wiley House is made up of a single glass-and-wood rectangular pavilion that’s perched on top of a rectangular box made of stone and concrete. Johnson chose the six-acre plot of land himself and was particularly fond of the natural slopes of the site, which is surrounded by hickory trees.

Built in 1953, the Wiley House is made up of a single glass-and-wood rectangular pavilion that’s perched on top of a rectangular box made of stone and concrete. Johnson chose the six-acre plot of land himself and was particularly fond of the natural slopes of the site, which is surrounded by hickory trees.

Architect Tom Kundig’s assignment was simple enough: Build a tiny, Thoreau-like getaway for an Atlanta-based writer who owned ten acres on San Juan Island in Puget Sound. "The idea was not to clutter anybody’s thinking, especially a writer’s," he said.  So he designed a 500-square-foot retreat that’s both womblike and open to its surroundings.

Architect Tom Kundig’s assignment was simple enough: Build a tiny, Thoreau-like getaway for an Atlanta-based writer who owned ten acres on San Juan Island in Puget Sound. "The idea was not to clutter anybody’s thinking, especially a writer’s," he said. So he designed a 500-square-foot retreat that’s both womblike and open to its surroundings.

Inspired by the surrounding landscape of chestnut trees, rocky hillside, and bubbling stream, Portuguese architecture firm 3r Ernesto Pereira chose to blend into, and take advantage of, the local geography rather than fight against it at this sleek, modern home near the coastal city of Porto. At a cost of €100,000 (approximately $125,000) and measuring about 140 square meters, this stunning, wood-and-glass retreat took about four months to construct. 

Inspired by the surrounding landscape of chestnut trees, rocky hillside, and bubbling stream, Portuguese architecture firm 3r Ernesto Pereira chose to blend into, and take advantage of, the local geography rather than fight against it at this sleek, modern home near the coastal city of Porto. At a cost of €100,000 (approximately $125,000) and measuring about 140 square meters, this stunning, wood-and-glass retreat took about four months to construct. 

The motto for the Panorama Glass Lodge states "Where the sky is," which works as a fitting descriptor for the design of this cozy 248-square-foot vacation cabin. Thanks to the glass panels that wrap around a strategically placed bed, the bright dancing lights of the aurora can be viewed from the most comfortable spot.

The motto for the Panorama Glass Lodge states "Where the sky is," which works as a fitting descriptor for the design of this cozy 248-square-foot vacation cabin. Thanks to the glass panels that wrap around a strategically placed bed, the bright dancing lights of the aurora can be viewed from the most comfortable spot.

Nestled at the end of a private cul-de-sac on nearly an acre of pristine waterfront property in Sagaponack, New York, this distinctive, contemporary retreat from the renowned architectural firm Bates Masi + Architects makes a dramatic modern statement. Juxtaposing elegant, Alaskan cedar siding with broad expanses of glass, the home exudes an effortless and seamless flow between its indoor and outdoor spaces.

Nestled at the end of a private cul-de-sac on nearly an acre of pristine waterfront property in Sagaponack, New York, this distinctive, contemporary retreat from the renowned architectural firm Bates Masi + Architects makes a dramatic modern statement. Juxtaposing elegant, Alaskan cedar siding with broad expanses of glass, the home exudes an effortless and seamless flow between its indoor and outdoor spaces.

Designed by Arthur Witthoefft of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in 1961, this five-bedroom, five-bathroom midcentury house is set in the woods of Armonk, New York. The 5,000-square-foot home features full-height walls of glass, a wraparound floating terrace, and a quiet deck that overlooks the site's sylvan surroundings.

Designed by Arthur Witthoefft of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in 1961, this five-bedroom, five-bathroom midcentury house is set in the woods of Armonk, New York. The 5,000-square-foot home features full-height walls of glass, a wraparound floating terrace, and a quiet deck that overlooks the site's sylvan surroundings.

38. Isla Lebe

The fully glazed upper floors of the two cabins are designed to take in views of the archipelago, which was inhabited by nomadic tribes before Spanish explorers arrived in the 16th century. Guillermo first visited the area in the mid-1970s. "It was very isolated then," he says. "The Pan-American Highway reached only to the city of Valdivia. From there, a narrow dirt road covered the remaining 400 kilometers to the Chacao Channel, which separates Chiloé Island from the mainland."

The fully glazed upper floors of the two cabins are designed to take in views of the archipelago, which was inhabited by nomadic tribes before Spanish explorers arrived in the 16th century. Guillermo first visited the area in the mid-1970s. "It was very isolated then," he says. "The Pan-American Highway reached only to the city of Valdivia. From there, a narrow dirt road covered the remaining 400 kilometers to the Chacao Channel, which separates Chiloé Island from the mainland."

Minneapolis–based firm ALTUS Architecture + Design have designed a unique 2,850-square-foot residence in Woodland, Minnesota, by marrying glass-house architecture with a reflective "shiny" shed. The single-story property is primed for tranquility, as it sits on a peaceful woodland plateau and overlooks a lush wetland, as well as a calming lake in the distance.

Minneapolis–based firm ALTUS Architecture + Design have designed a unique 2,850-square-foot residence in Woodland, Minnesota, by marrying glass-house architecture with a reflective "shiny" shed. The single-story property is primed for tranquility, as it sits on a peaceful woodland plateau and overlooks a lush wetland, as well as a calming lake in the distance.

Set among fields along the south facing coast of Long Island and within a short walk to the ocean, this Hamptons residence is a quiet refuge for a growing family and offers extraordinary views of the surrounding landscape. The volume of the house is a two-story wood, steel, and glass structure; transparent walls provide delicacy to the house. Louvered screens and deep overhangs shield the interior spaces from summer sun and allow warm winter light to dip below the roofline.

Set among fields along the south facing coast of Long Island and within a short walk to the ocean, this Hamptons residence is a quiet refuge for a growing family and offers extraordinary views of the surrounding landscape. The volume of the house is a two-story wood, steel, and glass structure; transparent walls provide delicacy to the house. Louvered screens and deep overhangs shield the interior spaces from summer sun and allow warm winter light to dip below the roofline.

Argentinian architect Luciano Kruk has designed Casa Golf, a striking 2,949-square-foot dwelling that's comprised of three stacked concrete and glass volumes. Soaring high on a 10,764-square-foot plot of land, the contemporary residence is surrounded by breathtaking views and an unparalleled natural environment.

Argentinian architect Luciano Kruk has designed Casa Golf, a striking 2,949-square-foot dwelling that's comprised of three stacked concrete and glass volumes. Soaring high on a 10,764-square-foot plot of land, the contemporary residence is surrounded by breathtaking views and an unparalleled natural environment.

Dunbar and Astrakhan's low-cost, high-impact tour de force is a storefront facade constructed from salvaged double-insulated window glass panels arranged in a shingle pattern.

Dunbar and Astrakhan's low-cost, high-impact tour de force is a storefront facade constructed from salvaged double-insulated window glass panels arranged in a shingle pattern.

Architect Reinhold Andris has lived in this house in southwestern Germany since 1998. Fifteen years on, the structure remains emblematic of his modernist perspective. "It’s a very open architecture," he says, noting the near-invisible steel frame and pervasive use of glass.  

Architect Reinhold Andris has lived in this house in southwestern Germany since 1998. Fifteen years on, the structure remains emblematic of his modernist perspective. "It’s a very open architecture," he says, noting the near-invisible steel frame and pervasive use of glass.  

Boora Architects designed a house for Ryan and Mary Finley near Cannon Beach, Oregon, that resembles a glass prism and rises above a shallow cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The 3,330-square-foot structure is topped with a green roof.

Boora Architects designed a house for Ryan and Mary Finley near Cannon Beach, Oregon, that resembles a glass prism and rises above a shallow cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The 3,330-square-foot structure is topped with a green roof.

The iT House is an exploration of the couple's architectural ideas, built with the help of friends over many weekends away from Los Angeles. It brings the precise and the cool together with the wild and untamed.

The iT House is an exploration of the couple's architectural ideas, built with the help of friends over many weekends away from Los Angeles. It brings the precise and the cool together with the wild and untamed.

The house that started it all: Philip Johnson's Glass House in New Canaan. He and David Whitney used to invite great minds from the architecture, design, and art worlds to the house for evenings of discussion and debate. When the Glass House opened to the public in 2007, its programmers continued the invitation-only tradition.

The house that started it all: Philip Johnson's Glass House in New Canaan. He and David Whitney used to invite great minds from the architecture, design, and art worlds to the house for evenings of discussion and debate. When the Glass House opened to the public in 2007, its programmers continued the invitation-only tradition.

Surrounded by wheat fields on a high-altitude plateau stands a small glass house and a solid, traditional barn. The owners, inspired by Philip Johnson’s Glass House, wanted a refuge that opens up to the prairie and mountains.

Surrounded by wheat fields on a high-altitude plateau stands a small glass house and a solid, traditional barn. The owners, inspired by Philip Johnson’s Glass House, wanted a refuge that opens up to the prairie and mountains.

Van Beek’s extra space is home to her office. She works on a Tense table by Piergiorgio and Michele Cazzaniga and Flow chairs by Jean Marie Massaud, both for MDF Italia.

Van Beek’s extra space is home to her office. She works on a Tense table by Piergiorgio and Michele Cazzaniga and Flow chairs by Jean Marie Massaud, both for MDF Italia.

Edgeland House, built on a cliff-top lot in Austin by architect Thomas Bercy for lawyer and writer Chris Brown, is topped by a living roof that helps it blend into the landscape. The concrete, steel, and glass house is divided into two distinct public and private halves.

Edgeland House, built on a cliff-top lot in Austin by architect Thomas Bercy for lawyer and writer Chris Brown, is topped by a living roof that helps it blend into the landscape. The concrete, steel, and glass house is divided into two distinct public and private halves.

For a San Francisco couple living on a hill overlooking the Mission District in San Francisco, glass walls were a must. Indoor louvers allow the residents to frame their view of the city, much like the aperture on a camera.

For a San Francisco couple living on a hill overlooking the Mission District in San Francisco, glass walls were a must. Indoor louvers allow the residents to frame their view of the city, much like the aperture on a camera.