by Kristie Garrell | Interior Design
It's the start of spring—and time to start thinking about spending time outdoors! That's why we've gathered 15 spaces that are perfect for celebrating sunny days.
At night, the penthouse of Squire's office in London is Upstairs, a members-only bar and restaurant. By day, it’s the staff canteen, the myriad glass doors opening to a landscaped terrace—outfitted with a very modern-day ping-pong table.
2. Rosewood Luang Prabang by Bensley
This glamping hotspot in Laos is the place to unwind while on vacation. Bill Bensley looked to the area’s famed French-Lao architecture for this paradise on a UNESCO World Heritage Site, featuring six hilltop tents with private dining areas and vast balconies within the rainforest.
The architect’s most significant move was building 14 poured-in-place board-formed concrete walls, their color meshing pleasingly with the surrounding terrain. Both the courtyard and living area survey the Topanga Canyon and the Pacific Ocean.
Inspired in part by Chicago’s motto, Urbs en Horto, meaning city in a garden, Heiser and Gannon left space for an intimate courtyard between the street-front sections of the two buildings. Inviting people to gather, a massive copper outdoor fireplace is already starting to patina. When the weather allows, Tied House’s sliding glass doors stack away, opening the bar area completely to the courtyard.
5. Mar Adentro Hotel and Residences by Taller Aragonés
At this cutting-edge hotel in San Jose del Cabo, Mexico, water encircles and unifies contrasting elements: minimal buildings, custom-furnished by Poliform, and a nestlike restaurant pavilion woven from tree branches.
6. Lotus Square Art Center by Shenzhen Dae Interior Design Co., Ltd
Just as this Zhuahi, China building’s environmental impact is minimal, so, too, is its visual impact on the landscape. From afar, supported by treelike columns, it appears to be a natural elevation of the terrain.
A creek was dammed to form a reservoir of drinkable spring water, but that’s not the only water feature on this property in Pueblo Eden, Uruguay. Arriving visitors traverse a stream by trundling across a bridge newly built of heavy timber. Locally quarried marble blocks became the base of a picnic table.
Animating the stone-paved main courtyard of this Paris building are benches custom-designed by a landscaping consultant. Their organic shapes, swelling to incorporate round planters, are made of locally sourced sustainable acacia wood. One bench sits adjacent to an island of greenery, a grassy oasis sprouting trees, shrubs, and LEDs that glow like fireflies.
The main courtyard of this College Station, Texas hotel offers a swimming pool along with cabanas and a café pavilion. Their angular forms in waterproof canvas, stretched over tubular steel, derive from bivouac shelters.
A ground-up 9,000-square-foot building in Pella, Italy by Lissoni adjoins one from the early 19th century, originally a local pensione. Lissoni’s three-level component houses nine guest rooms; two more suites occupy its smaller counterpart. Stacked local stone borders the hotel’s new 40-foot lap pool.
Even though Manhattan's skyscrapers dominate, the overall feel of this rooftop bar is intimate and relaxed. Ivy covers a wall in the outdoor area while mirrored arches reflect the city.
The vibe at Olea in Zakynthos, Greece is sybaritic yet organic—and entirely modernist. Terrace lounges shaded by carob and olive trees appear to float on water. Knobbly bamboo partitions and rustic thatched ceilings of woven palm leaves abound. Furniture is largely oak or rattan, and walls are hand-troweled plaster.
The residence’s second-floor deck literally hung right over a cove in the Chesapeake Bay. Masi’s solution yielded a new, flat-roofed house, raised three feet higher than its predecessor—and LEED-certified to boot. The second floor’s outdoor living area can become indoor space when glass panels are pulled out of wall pockets.
14. Ozadi Tavira Hotel by Campos Costa Architects
This indoor-outdoor retreat in Portugal is easy-breezy. Capping a rehabbed 1973 hotel, suffused in the era’s earthy neutrals, a slanted roof in laminated pine also shades a deck for drinking.
15. Chileno Bay Resort & Residence by Gulla Jónsdóttir Architecture + Design
From hotels to jewelry, Gulla Jónsdóttir crosses all boundaries. The marble fire pit at the beach bar at Chileno Bay in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico blends natural elements with the outdoor furnishings.