Buying a house is a pretty big deal. For most people, buying a house is a pretty huge investment. It’s not like buying a suit or a pair of shoes, you can't just throw it away; it’s a commitment. For this reason, many people spend a lot of time and money finding the perfect house for their needs.
However, as we all know, everyone has different needs and desires, and what exactly they are vary so completely from person to person that sometimes finding the perfect house requires one to step outside the box. Some people buy houses just to tear them down and start again, others lean towards a particular design whether it’s contemporary or traditional, and then there are the few others that lean towards the simply bizarre.
Houses are a representation of your personality, so it comes to no surprise that some people (with personalities a little too big for the plain ole’ house to contain) take their houses to the next level of uniqueness. In today’s world, if you can dream it, you can build it. So let’s take a look at some of the most bizarre houses from around the world.
10 Space Ship House, Chattanooga, Tennessee: $119,000
This house is practically famous, having been featured in several newspapers, magazines and televisions shows, including HGTV. The house is suspended on six cement pillars, between which you can park your car (or hovercraft?) The front steps resemble a staircase that has been lowered from the ship and there are plenty small, square windows encircling the house that give it even more of a spacey feel. The house has 2,000 square feet of living space, three bedrooms and two full baths. It’s also located in a very scenic spot, right beside the Tennessee river; the perfect scene for any sci-fi enthusiast!
9 The Shoe House: $127,000
There was an old lady, that lived in a shoe… and well, you know how the story goes. However, in reality, there is a shoe house. The real-life shoe house, that was built in 1948 by extravagant millionaire Colonel Mahlon M. Haines, was originally a giant structural advertisement for Haines’ business. The generous Colonel Mahlon C. Haines, who was known as the “Shoe Wizard of York”, used to invite the elderly to stay in the house and live like “kings and queens” at his expense.
The house is 45 feet in length, 17 feet wide and 25 feet high, with two bathrooms, three bedrooms, a living room and a kitchen, located on five various levels. It has been renovated recently and now operates as a museum in memory of the extravagant Colonel Mahlon M. Haines.
8 The Nautilus House, Mexico City: $218,000
This shell-inspired house located near Mexico City was designed by Mexican architect Javier Senosiain of Arquitectura Organica. Senosiain, who is inspired by the work of Lloyd Wright and Gaudí, built this building as part of a concept that he calls “Bio-Architecture”. This is the idea that architecture based around organic, natural forms bring us back to our local history, tradition and cultural roots as we work to live in harmony with nature, rather than against it. The house was built for a young family with two children who were tired of living in a conventional home. The imaginative house features a striking entry-way cut into a wall of colourful stained glass. All its features flow seamlessly together to reflect the natural contours of a shell.
7 The Mushroom House, Cincinnati, Ohio: $349,000
The Mushroom House, also known as the Tree House, is located in the Hyde Park section of Cincinnati, OH. It was designed by architect Terry Brown, a professor of Architecture and Interior Design at the University of Cincinnati.
The house was created in collaboration with the assistance of university students, and is an ornately fanciful home built between 1992 and 2006 and it served as the architect’s secondary residence. In 2006, it was announced that the house was for sale, and unfortunately in 2008, the architect Terry Brown passed away. For this project the architect started using a variety of materials; wood, colored glass, shell, ceramics, and various metals, crafting them into some amazing irregular shapes reminiscent of those in nature.
The structure of this unusual house provides a variety of unusual, sensuous experiences in colors, shapes, sounds, volume, enclosures, and textures. Terry Brown made it seem simple to embody the movement of music and nature within a built environment, and as a sign of appreciation, his work was exhibited at the National Building Museum, Contemporary Arts Center. It also was featured in books and periodicals worldwide, including REWARD.
6 Dog Bark Inn, Cottonwood, Idaho: $1 Million
Like dogs? Well why not live in one! Or not. Maybe you could just visit the Dog Bark Inn and stay a night or two, for the fun of it! The Dog Bark Inn is a Beagle shaped house that was created by chainsaw artists, Dennis Sullivan and Frances Conklin, in 2003. The couple who made a living from carving folk-style dogs from wood and selling them, invested their hard-earned money in this property where anyone can book a room in the two-bedroom suite.
5 The Toilet-shaped House: $1.1 Million
I don't know why you would ever want to live in the toilet, but Sim Jae-Duck apparently thought it was a good idea. The late mayor of Suwon, South Korea, Sim, who was apparently born in a restroom, built this toilet-shaped two-story home to celebrate the 2007 inaugural meeting of the World Toilet Association. The association works to help provide clean, efficient and working sanitation system for more than 2 billion living without toilets. The house is 4,520 sq ft, with a large roof-top balcony that is accessible from a staircase that arises from the “toilet-drain” and has a glass-walled bathroom where the windows can be turned opaque for the occupants’ privacy.
4 VW Beetle House: $1.4 Million
The Beetle House is located in Gigi near Salzburg, Austria. The house was designed by Master Builder Markus Voglreiter, and if you haven't gathered already, it’s inspired by the Volkswagen Beetle car. The owners bought a conventional 70’s style home and completely renovated it. The house was completed in 2003 and is an eco-friendly and energy efficient house. Voglreiter later built a similar style building as a restaurant and bar nearby, called “The Car. Das Auto”.
3 The Fallingwater, Pennsylvania: $155,000 (1935) - $2,695,716 (2014)
The beautiful Fallingwater, in Pennsylvania, U.S.A. is built over a waterfall. The house was designed in 1935 for by Frank Lloyd Wright for the Kauffman family. The Kaufmann family, who owned the very popular (at the time) Kaufmann Department store, used to vacation beside the Bear stream in a small cabin. They then decided that they wanted to modernise and hired Wright, an American architect and lover of nature to design this beautiful building. Ironically, they're so close to the waterfall, that it’s hard to even see it!
2 The Steel House, Ransom Canyon,Texas: $3 Million
The Steel House, in Ransom Canyon, Texas was designed by architect and sculptor Robert Bruno. The unusual looking house, that vaguely resembles some type of pig-like creature, took Bruno 23 years to build and is made out of 110 tons of steel. Shortly before Bruno’s death, the Steel House was featured in an episode of Texas Country Reporter with Bob Phillips. In 2013, the Steel House made another debut in Vogue. It’s considered to be a piece of art by many, with Bruno often referring to himself as an “architectural sculptor artist”.
1 Palace of Bubbles: $9 Million
The Palace of Bubbles is situated on the southwest coast of France. This house was designed by Antti Lovag, who is known for his rebellion against traditional architectural structures. Lovag rethinks architecture by dismissing the need for angles and straight lines, and instead favouring curves and contours in order to bring about a unified atmosphere between the home and its natural environment, an environment full of rock croppings that rarely sees angles and straight lines.
The building has 12,916 sq ft of living space and has 28 rooms, all of which are round with round beds. Many of the rooms have floor to ceiling carpeting, and lighting that changes with the time of day. The building is often used for festival parties and other grand events. The unique building has already been deemed a historical monument by France’s Ministry of Culture, even though it’s not yet even 50 years old.
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