Does anybody remember an era—five years ago, maybe?—when conspicuous consumption was limited to handbags, Ghost Chairs, and absurdly opulent mansions? Well, it seems nowadays one isn't truly wealthy without the in-house nightclub, private island, or posh pet real estate to prove it. Yes, in many ways, 2012 was the year of high-design and ludicrously extravagant animal homes, with some of the world's most influential designers and architects whipping up plans for the cats, dogs, and chickens of the megarich and/or design-obsessed. Even The New York Times had much—309,483 words, to be exact—to say about the influx of luxe (and oft unlived-in) dog houses: "The average price of their doghouses is about $5,000 or $6,000 [...] though it's not unheard of for people to spend north of $25,000 ... But the sole resident is a stuffed squirrel."
Is it indulgent? Absolutely. But, hey, if you're going to spend lots of time or cash on something frivolous, pampering a favorite animal friend is not the worst way to go about it, right? Above: 11 fancy-pants pet abodes that made news this year, from wooden igloos by Japan's Kengo Kuma to midcentury modern dog homes designed by none other than Frank Lloyd Wright.
· All Year in Curbed 2012 posts [Curbed National]