A Tiny House Shaped Like a Shell in Japan Blends Into its Forest Surroundings

Ah, to be nestled in a tranquil forest in Japan in a small sustainable home shaped like a shell. Tono Mirai Architects designed just that in the Nagano Prefecture located in the Chūbu region of Japan: a small villa made of local wood and clay, shaped in a unique shell-like design. Called the Shell House, the villa was constructed at the request of a client who wanted a piece of architecture that is “unusual, beautiful, and does not make you feel old in time,” per the home’s press release. The result is a house with a curved roof with dark brown wood shingles and large transparent doors that lead into a two-story space. 

Inside, natural light brown wood accents the walls. The interior is one giant loft-like space, complete with a kitchen and an oval island, a living space with a fireplace, a bathroom, a raised dining space, and stairs that lead to an open upstairs bedroom loft. The interiors are all made with local earth and wood, complimenting and blending into the surrounding forest outside. The transparent sliding doors that lead outside also double as large windows, allowing natural sunlight to enter the space. Outside, there’s a spacious wooden deck for occupants to really take in the natural surroundings.

What’s more, it isn’t just the exterior that has a curved appearance. Inside, much of the walls curve to make a wave-like shape throughout the space. Even the stairs that lead up to the second floor make a curve. With the surrounding lush greenery and seemingly not another single soul in sight, the Shell House looks like the ideal place to be quarantined and ride out the rest of the coronavirus pandemic. Ah, to be quarantined in a shell-shaped home in the middle of a Japanese forest.

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