written by:
December 12, 2013
Though open-plan spaces are the new norm, some—like the following 10 we hand-picked from our pages—clearly stand out from the rest.
white couch white loft dark wood floors

A 200-year-old factory in Umbria is transformed into an inviting home by designer Paola Navone. In the seating area, a trolley found at a flea market functions as the coffee table alongside an expansive Navone-designed sofa for Linteloo. Custom pendants by photographer Mark Eden Schooley hang above the dining table. Photo by Wichmann + Bendtsen.

Photo by 
Originally appeared in A Converted Factory Building in Italy
1 / 10
Australian living room

In the Sydney, Australia, neighborhood of Rozelle, architect Christopher Polly renovated a house with green design in mind. The open-plan, double-height kitchen/living/dining area makes the most of the house's 1,700 square feet. Photo by Brett Boardman. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in An Airy Renovation in Sydney
2 / 10
The rear facade reveals a glimpse of the living room.

Architect Piers Taylor's renovation of an old gameskeeper's cottage, complete with a castellated roof and sweeping meadow below, is an exercise in dramatic modernization. From the outside, the open living area appears to be a continuation of its natural surroundings. Photo by Ben Anders. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Taylor Made
3 / 10
Miller House living room with Eames Compact couch

Eero Saarinen’s legendary Miller House in Columbus, Indiana, was built for open-plan living. Photo by Leslie Williamson. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Miller House in Columbus, Indiana by Eero Saarinen
4 / 10
tokyo, house, Takaharu and Yui Tezuka

When a Japanese couple asked architects Takaharu and Yui Tezuka to design a small home that would evoke the Italian love of food, informal gatherings, and natural settings, the result was la dolce vita in Tokyo. The entire interior wall opens, extending the house visually and socially into the small garden that lies between the multigenerational family’s two homes. The boys’ favorite feature is the soccer goalpost (which doubles as clothesline). Photo by Adam Friedberg. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Family Style
5 / 10
The pitched-roof main living area, with generous banquette seating continuing around the perimeter. “My 23-year-old daughter has taken groups of university friends up for relaxing weekends,” says O’Sullivan. “And during school holidays I took my son Henry

Shane Blue of Bourne + Blue Architecture in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, created a beachside family compound in Diamond Beach for James and Sue O’Sullivan. With five children visitng at any given time, an open-plan living area was a must. “My 23-year-old daughter has taken groups of university friends up for relaxing weekends,” says O’Sullivan. “And during school holidays I took my son Henry and five of his 16-year-old friends for a week of surfing, fishing, card games and mischief.” Photo by Simon Whitbread. 

Photo by 
Courtesy of 
Copyright Simon Whitbread
Originally appeared in Adventures in Oz
6 / 10
The Walnut Residence is equipped to handle Monti’s tight-knit extended family. His parents—who often come to town every month or so—their grandchildren and Monti and his wife. When everyone gets together, it becomes a madhouse, but the home is built to ha

In this multigenerational Venice, California, home built by Modal Design principal Daniel Monti, the open-plan setup most definitely encourages running in the house. “The house plays two sides,” says Monti, “It becomes very formal, clean and cocktail party-ish, but at the same time when the grandchildren and my parents are in town, it’s toys everywhere and kids having fun, yelling at the top of their lungs.” Photo by Benny Chan. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in The Giving Tree
7 / 10
Metropolitan chairs by Jeffrey Bernett for B&B Italia

At the House of Earth + Light in Phoenix, one main space holds the living room, dining room, and office. In the office are Metropolitan chairs by Jeffrey Bernett for B&B Italia. Most artwork hung throughout the house comes from the resident’s art gallery. Photo by Daniel Hennessy. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Love's Labors Found
8 / 10
Casa Fluida featured an open layout of functionally flexible space inspired by the fluid city.

Massimo Iosa Ghini's Casa Fluida features an open layout of fluid space inspired by the "fluid city" of Memphis. Ghini, said to be the founder of Bolidism, traces an insightful line from the speed-obsessed movement's influence on Memphis design philosophy to the current culture. 

Courtesy of 
Justin Reid
Originally appeared in Massimo Iosa Ghini: The Speed of Design
9 / 10
Beanbag pouffes by Slacker Sack, Chair-One dining chairs by Konstantin Grcic for Magis.

On a Maui mountaintop home by Dekleva Gregorič Arhitekti, a few steps allow the large living-dining area to have discrete areas for lounging and entertaining while keeping an open flow. Photo by Cristóbal Palma. 

Photo by 
Originally appeared in Clifftop House with Angled Roof in Maui
10 / 10
white couch white loft dark wood floors

A 200-year-old factory in Umbria is transformed into an inviting home by designer Paola Navone. In the seating area, a trolley found at a flea market functions as the coffee table alongside an expansive Navone-designed sofa for Linteloo. Custom pendants by photographer Mark Eden Schooley hang above the dining table. Photo by Wichmann + Bendtsen.

Photo by Wichmann + Bendtsen.

Join the Discussion

Loading comments...

Latest Articles

45 dva 2270 persp1 cmyk 0
The prospect of retirement doesn’t just signal the end of a career; it offers the chance to recalibrate and re-prioritize in life.
July 25, 2016
18
You don’t have to choose between sustainable energy and curb appeal.
July 19, 2016
jakemagnus queensland 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
July 06, 2016
content delzresidence 013 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 29, 2016
abc malacari marwick stair 01 0
A simple set of stairs is a remodel’s backbone.
June 28, 2016
Design Award of Excellence winner Mellon Square.
Docomomo US announces the winners of this year's Modernism in America Awards. Each project showcases exemplary modern restoration techniques, practices, and ideas.
June 27, 2016
monogram dwell sf 039 1
After last year’s collaboration, we were excited to team up with Monogram again for the 2016 Monogram Modern Home Tour.
June 27, 2016
switch over chicago smart renovation penthouse deck smar green ball lamps quinze milan lounge furniture garapa hardwood
A strategic rewire enhances a spec house’s gut renovation.
June 26, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent coralie gourguechon treviso italy cphotos by coralie gourguechon co produced by isdat planche anatomique de haut parleur1
Coralie Gourguechon's paper objects will make you see technology in a whole new way.
June 26, 2016
green machine smart home aspen colorado facade yard bocci deck patio savant
Smart technology helps a house in Aspen, Colorado, stay on its sustainable course.
June 25, 2016
Compact Aglol 11 television plastic brionvega.
The aesthetic appeal of personal electronics has long fueled consumer interest. A new industrial design book celebrates devices that broke the mold.
June 25, 2016
modern backyard deck ipe wood
An angled deck transforms a backyard in Menlo Park, California, into a welcoming gathering spot.
June 24, 2016
dscf5485 1
Today, we kicked off this year’s annual Dwell on Design at the LA Convention Center, which will continue through Sunday, June 26th. Though we’ve been hosting this extensive event for years, this time around is particularly special.
June 24, 2016
under the radar renovation napa
Two designers restore a low-slung midcentury gem in Napa, California, by an unsung Bay Area modernist.
June 24, 2016
Exterior of Huneeus/Sugar Bowl Home.
San Francisco–based designer Maca Huneeus created her family’s weekend retreat near Lake Tahoe with a relaxed, sophisticated sensibility.
June 24, 2016
light and shadow bathroom walnut storage units corian counter vola faucet
A Toronto couple remodel their home with a special emphasis on a spacious kitchen and a material-rich bathroom.
June 24, 2016
Affordable home in Kansas City living room
In Kansas City, an architecture studio designs an adaptable house for a musician on a budget.
June 23, 2016
modern lycabettus penthouse apartment oak vertical slats office
By straightening angles, installing windows, and adding vertical accents, architect Aaron Ritenour brought light and order to an irregularly shaped apartment in the heart of Athens, Greece.
June 23, 2016
kitchen confidential tiles custom cabinetry oak veneer timber house
A modest kitchen addition to a couple’s cottage outside of Brisbane proves that one 376-square-foot room can revive an entire home.
June 23, 2016
feldman architecture 0
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 22, 2016
Blackened timber Dutch home
A modern dwelling replaces a fallen farmhouse.
June 22, 2016
hillcrest house interior kitchen 3
Seeking an escape from bustling city life, a Manhattan couple embarks on a renovation in the verdant Hudson Valley.
June 22, 2016
angular
Atelier Moderno renovated an old industrial building to create a luminous, modern home.
June 21, 2016
San Francisco floating home exterior
Anchored in a small San Francisco canal, this floating home takes its cues from a classic city habitat.
June 21, 2016
modern renovation addition solar powered scotland facade steel balcony
From the bones of a neglected farmstead in rural Scotland emerges a low-impact, solar-powered home that’s all about working with what was already there.
June 21, 2016
up in the air small space new zealand facade corrugated metal cladding
An architect with a taste for unconventional living spaces creates a small house at lofty heights with a starring view.
June 21, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent marjan van aubel london cwai ming ng current window
Marjan Van Aubel makes technology a little more natural.
June 21, 2016
urban pastoral brooklyn family home facade steel cypress double
Building on the site of a former one-car garage, an architect creates his family’s home in an evolving neighborhood of Brooklyn.
June 20, 2016
Modern Brooklyn backyard studio with plexiglass skylight, green roof, and cedar cladding facade
In a Brooklyn backyard, an off-duty architect builds a structure that tests his attention to the little things.
June 20, 2016
the outer limits paris prefab home living area vertigo lamp constance guisset gijs bakker strip tablemetal panels
In the suburbs of Paris, an architect with an eco-friendly practice doesn’t let tradition stand in the way of innovation.
June 20, 2016