Sotheby’s is an iconic name in auctions, a decades-old seller of fine goods. Some of the world’s most expensive jewels and rarest works of art have been sold here. Now, Sotheby’s has put an entire island for sale. It’s carbon neutral and already has some incredible buildings standing on it.

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An aerial view of an island

This island is an incredible example of how nature can be harnessed but not destroyed. The buildings on the island are made with both natural and manmade materials. A combination of hempcrete, 3D-printed concrete and seaweed were used to create the buildings.

Related: A floating park above the piers of Manhattan, New York

The island is off the mainland of Nova Scotia, Canada, about 50 miles from Halifax. Buildings on the island include the Earth House, which is really nine interconnected buildings. The Wood House is also here, a garden suite near the eastern shore. Wind, geothermal energy and solar power are used to power the buildings on the island, which are carbon neutral.

A triangular shaped cabin

Every room in this little village is made out of a different material. Some rooms are made from locally-sourced stone, stacked seaweed, compacted earth, hemp and glass brick. The Earth House is made totally out of thatch. It’s full of communal spaces and gathering areas, including a viking fire pit. There’s a bathhouse inspired by Japanese architecture. The soaking tubs were cut from bedrock. The stargazing room and meditation space are additional reminders of how amazing nature can be.

A building covered in green on the roofs and walls

Additionally, the house was made entirely from wood that was already on the island. It has two bedrooms and plenty of comfortable living space. All the food for the island can be grown in the greenhouse, which is made of glass brick. The buildings also have green roofs to reduce stormwater runoff and provide a habitat for plants.

A cutout opening leading to a pool

Vollebak Island is the first of its kind, a large-scale project showing that humans can live in harmony with the natural world. All the buildings here were designed to blend into the natural world around them and to provide amazing views of that world from within.


Images via Vollebak