A bit boring on the outside and characteristically minimalist inside, this stunning home in Japan nonetheless gets huge brownie points for having no fewer than 29 skylights! Since the double storey building's solid metal cladding blocks out any possibility of light penetrating the family's interior living space, the designers looked to the sky to provide natural light instead. Takeshi Hosaka created a system of acrylic panels that appear to sag just below the roof; these not only hold and distribute natural light, but also control the home's microclimate.
Sunken below street level, the house is like many homes in Yokohama: crammed in between a variety of other forgettable structures and poorly lit. A total of 29 skylights fixes that by absolutely inundating the acrylic panels with light that is then dispersed throughout the home (see our coverage of the Sun Tracker that pumps daylight indoors).
The space between the roof and panels also creates a vacuum for hot air. During the summer, this keeps the lower level cool, while in winter, it keeps the home warm! For another example of Japanese minimalism, check out this salon that looks like a slice of vanilla bean pie. Bedrooms are tucked away behind folding doors, fixtures are completely utilitarian, and limited foliage has been added to choice, dramatic centers.
images © koji fujii / nacasa&partners inc.