This high-tech house is brought to you by the architects at ZeroEnergy Design, a Boston-based architecture practice that designs new constructions as well as major renovations for building modern green homes. The home you see in this tour is designed with energy performance in mind, using a combination of insulation, strategically placed windows, solar panels, and a design that encourages interior air circulation in order to make the home's use of energy as efficient as possible.
The importance of nature is often a critical component in energy efficient and eco-friendly designs – in this example, the importance of nature is emphasized by the lush natural surroundings of the property and the neutral, earthy colour scheme that characterizes the exterior shell of the building. Clearly, this home is designed for living in harmony with nature, as the reflective windows allow this building to attain a sense of camouflage by casting a reflection of leaves, branches, and sky across the front of the building. This street-facing side is set back from the sidewalk, with a beautifully landscaped front yard that opts for a sense of wilderness rather than a tame, trimmed aesthetic. Tall grasses and small shrubs sprout up around the base of the home, providing a grounding and sheltering effect that makes the structure appear established even though it's a brand new addition to the site.
The design of this sheltered entry way provides a comfortable place to wait outside before entering the home, with a transparent acrylic awning that covers the top and close walls on either side. This recessed entrance is both intimate and friendly, balancing an eclipsed space with a visually open feel created by the clear front door and window.
The stairwell has been given plenty of breathing room in this design, with a large shaft that allows the stairs to adopt a gentle, flowing twist on their way through the levels of the home. Translucent steps with a transparent railing create a light feeling that lets light pass through the home, and the cut-out design is also highly conducive to effective air flow. To the left, a small office enjoys a quiet window-side location behind frosted glass – once again, a feature that opens up the space to plenty of healthy, natural light.
This living room is a classy mixture of traditional and modern elements – an antique floor rug and grand piano add a stately, historic feel, while sleek white furniture brings a sense of modern minimalism to the scene. A space for relaxation and leisure, this room offers a wealth of different places to sit depending on the mood or occasion, all within friendly conversational distance of one another.
Like the rest of the home, the kitchen takes on a light, fresh feel. This floating design gives an additional sense of lift as cabinets levitate several inches off the ground. The decor in this room has been kept simple, with a small nod to artisan traditions in the rocking chair and woven rugs – but other than that, this kitchen allows the lively views of nature to shine in the spotlight, through crisp windows that are unburdened by frills and folds of a heavy curtain.
For more energy-efficient and eco-friendly living ideas, take a tour of this tiny forest home!