Design Dilemma: Indoor/Outdoor Living to the Max | Home Design Find
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Design Dilemma: Indoor/Outdoor Living to the Max

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It’s during the summer months that we really crave spaces that take advantage of the great outdoors. Indoor/outdoor living is where it’s at!

Here’s a house (above and below) in Nicaragua that is the closest one can come to living with nature while not living in a tent. Take a look:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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Now obviously, such a home wouldn’t work in many climates, but in warm ones that are not rife with mosquitoes, this kind of home offers the absolute maximum in indoor/outdoor living. The owners, painter Peta Kaplan and sculptor Ben Sandzer-Bell have settled in Granada, Nicaragua. Their two-bedroom, two-bathroom home, only 1295 square feet, feels much, much bigger, thanks to its open floor plan in which rooms open onto a central courtyard featuring a small swimming pool. Here’s a better view of the pool:

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The homes uses lots of natural, local materials and curvilinear shapes to continue the organic, outdoor theme. Most doors, for example are curved:

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We can’t imagine anything better for those who crave proximity to nature. (On the other hand, those who don’t like insects and small critters in the home may be less enamored.)

So what’s the take away for most of us who may not live in such a mild climate, but who yearn to have more of an indoor/outdoor house?

  • Install lots of big windows with direct access to the outdoors. If you can’t do that, at least bring in lots and lots of natural light whenever possible.
  • If you’re building a new home, consider an interior courtyard onto which all rooms can open. Be sure to fill the courtyard with lots and lots of plants. If that’s not doable, invest in large, lush houseplants¬† or install window boxes filled with flowers. In colder or rainier climates, perhaps a centralized solarium might be an answer.
  • Open up the roof somewhere in your home. Install a skylight that allow you to glimpse the big blue sky. If you can’t do that, consider a solar tube that will at least allow you to bring more light into dark spaces.
  • Fill your home with natural materials.¬†Bamboo, wood, stone and terra cotta have a way of bringing a little bit of nature indoors, even in the big city.

 

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