15 Magnificent Picture Windows That Frame Enviable Views

15 Magnificent Picture Windows That Frame Enviable Views

These window setups create a stronger connection between the surrounding landscapes and the homes.

Adding windows to a home is a great way to bring the outdoors in—especially when you’re spending more time indoors than usual, as most of us have over the past year. Here are some outstanding window setups that showcase even more impressive views, from a rocky cliff near a lake in Idaho to the base of a volcano in Chile.

A Serene Vacation Rental on Scotland’s Isle of Skye

Scottish firm Dualchas Architects designed this four-bedroom vacation rental on the Isle of Skye with expansive windows that offer sweeping views of the dramatic landscape. "Where else can you whale watch from within a luxurious sitting room, with a woodstove crackling in the corner?" the Boutique Homes listing reads.

Architect Alfredo Vanotti called upon local craftspeople to help build this alpine home, dubbed Casa VI, for a mother and her young daughter in northern Italy. Views of the Orobie Alps can be seen from the north-facing windows, which feature larch frames.

The expansive Cliff House by McCall Design and Planning sits on a steep slope next to Payette Lake in southwestern Idaho. "This design was all about capturing the beauty of the rocky site and the experience of Payette Lake," explain the architects. A boulder integrated into the entrance foyer and large, triple-glazed windows immediately set the scene for indoor/outdoor living.

Designed by Shanghai-based Bengo Studio, the Qiyunshan Tree House is a small hotel in China’s Qiyun Mountain Scenic Area that includes seven stacked, cantilevered guest suites connected by a central spiral staircase. At the top of the structure, a minimalist reading room features a floor-to-ceiling window that frames the lush mountain view. 

Located on an island in the Noorderplassen nature area in the Dutch city of Almere, the House with 11 Views was designed as "an abstract white box," according to architect Marc Koehler. The architect used 17th-century Dutch landscape paintings as references for the  home’s windows, which frame different parts of the natural landscape.

The Lost Cottage vacation rental is nestled in the remote lakeside town of Treangarriv in County Kerry, Ireland. The principal bedroom features a massive picture window that looks out over Caragh Lake and the surrounding farmland. A glass roof was also installed above the sunken tub in the bathroom so that guests can gaze up at the stars in the International Dark Sky Reserve.

A young Vancouver family tasked Falken Reynolds Interiors with converting their vacation home on British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast into their primary residence. In addition to renovating the interiors, the architects also opened up the spaces to the outdoors by adding skylights and a picture window that offer panoramic views of the coastline.

Butler Armsden Architects and Leverone Design reimagined this family retreat in Sea Ranch, a 1960s planned community that stretches 10 miles along the Pacific coastline in Sonoma County, California. Clear, vertical grain fir wraps the interior, while ample windows offer stunning glimpses of the sea and surrounding meadows.

Santiago- and London-based practice Ampuero Yutronic conceived Casa Hualle as a two-level, sculptural volume with almost 2,475 square feet of living spaces. Located near the town of Pucón in Chile’s Lake District, the family home features strategically placed windows that capture dramatic views of the nearby volcano and lake. 

Vladimir Radutny Architects renovated this 2,250-square-foot loft in a century-old Chicago building that was initially built for automotive assembly and display. Now, "as one moves between levels, a variety of unexpected vantage points and views are revealed," the architects explain.

This 2,144-square-foot cabin dubbed Hyytinen sits on a wooded plot that slopes down toward Minnesota’s Lake Vermilion. Designed by local firm Salmela Architects, the dwelling comprises two volumes that were stacked to form an L-shaped floor plan. The east-end of the cabin is fully glazed to capture the scenic nature outdoors.

Homeowners Simon and Sarah Younger turned to architect Stuart Tanner to design this partially prefabricated beach house on a rugged Tasmanian peninsula. The semi-modular house is built from steel, Tasmanian oak timber, precast concrete, and glass. The Youngers wanted very little distinction between inside and out. "You’d be a fool to try to outdo the landscape, if you thought your building could sing a louder song than the natural world," Tanner declares.

Stafford Architecture designed this Sydney home to respect the natural features of the quarter-acre lot it sits on. "We wanted to celebrate the incredible rock that delineates the site, and float the house lightly over it, while also connecting with it at key moments internally," says architect Bronwyn Litera. On the lower level, a picture window provides a view of the sandstone ledge. 

Photographers Alex Strohl and Andrea Dabene built the Nooq Cabin in Whitefish, Montana, in 2019. The Scandinavian-style mountain retreat features three gabled sections with expansive windows that overlook the surrounding slopes.

Portland-based architecture firm Hacker remodeled this summer home in Oregon’s Black Butte Ranch community for owners Tim and Nive Bailey and their three children. While much of the existing layout was preserved, the interiors were streamlined to bring in natural light and showcase the surrounding views.


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