Gallery: The Nautilus – Giant Snail-Shaped Home Fit for a Family


The Nautilus, designer Javier Senosiain’s bizarre, snail-shaped dwelling, is a mind-bending union of artistic experimentation and simplified living. Inspired by the work of Gaudí and Frank Lloyd Wright, Senosiain has brought to Mexico City another sparkling example of what he calls “Bio-Architecture” — the idea that buildings based on the natural principles of organic forms bring us back to local history, tradition and cultural roots, in turn creating harmony with nature.

Perched above the smoggy city, this giant mollusk is home to Magali and Fernando Mayorga and their two sons Allan and Josh. Upon entering the Mayorga’s home, one must first pass through the main entrance – a door set inside a large stain glass wall – into the living room where the plant-covered floor is separated by long narrow pathways that run along side an artificial stream. The hole punched doors located in the rear of the main space lead to two small cavernous rooms for the boys, while the master bedroom sweeps across the back of the structure.

The glittering shell-like paint frames the tongue shaped furniture protrusions that grow from the surrounding walls. Each element has been carefully chosen to coincide with the organic theme of the building, and as Senosiain describes, “This home’s social life flows inside The Nautilus without any division, a harmonic area in three dimensions where you can notice the continuous dynamic of the fourth dimension when moving in spiral over the stairs with a feeling of floating over the vegetation.”

A notable eco-factor of this unconventional home is that it’s constructed of a sprayable ceramic called Grancrete. This material is stronger than concrete, fire resistant and provides good insulation in both hot and cold climates. The spiral shaped design, material and construction methods used to build The Nautilus make it earthquake-friendly and easy to maintain.

This Bio-Architecture reminds us that we too are organic beings, and maybe what we all need is to get a little more down to earth.

+ Habitat Organico



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  1. Chrissy April 22, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    I’d so want to move in there with all my teletubby children

  2. Awesome Hidden Lair Tuc... August 6, 2010 at 9:36 am

    […] using conventional methods, the entire ground floor was constructed using the typical earth home sprayed concrete technique. The house also makes use of recycled glass and is topped with a protective green roof […]

  3. Karuna July 27, 2010 at 7:42 am

    Awesome!…amazing creation!..A perfect fusion of science and nature.

  4. jpr September 28, 2009 at 5:42 pm

    You can set fire to a Michael Reynolds home and it will burn toxic gases, since he uses old tires wood studs all adds to the fuel of the fire. His homes are not very efficient, especilally in hot areas, if you like to fry in the summer. Tires are not green nor is a lot of what he uses. This home mentioned above will withstand about 2700 degees it won’t burn the major part of the material is green

  5. gnobot July 1, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    Proper credits should go out to Roger Dean who has been building these type of habitats since the 70s. Check out his architecture at:

  6. fire1985 June 24, 2009 at 4:50 pm

    GORGEOUS! How much is it?

  7. bearsong June 22, 2009 at 7:34 am

    Undoubtedly, a beautiful design. The feel of the interior spaces is magnificent. I am hesitant about his adoption of term bio-architecture, however. I am contrasting Javier Senosiain against Michael Reynolds, perhaps the true biotect. I do not know how deep ecological design runs in Senosiain’s design, whereas Reynold’s earthships are true living buildings that utilize various green technologies, not only to super insulate and maximize passive solar gain, but also intelligently use water systems to minimize water consumption and maximize utility, such as in the use of indoor vegetable gardens. Reynolds’ use of “recycled” materials such as discarded bottles to achieve the same effect accomplished in the above entrance way may also give Reynold’s an edge in creative thinking. It’s one thing to build a dream house like the above snail using materials that are convenient to you, its another to create dream houses out of “garbage.” I again do not know enough about the above home to say definitively that Reynolds’ buildings are superior, but I do know that it is not buildings that look like natural objects, but rather ones that work as natural systems that are what we need for a sustainable future.

  8. august sygavast June 21, 2009 at 4:01 am

    Fabulous and very harmonic design. Things like that colors up our world.

  9. mskogly June 19, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    I absolutely love it! Imagine living in such a house…

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