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Tour the Concrete Home of Reclusive Architect Peter Zumthor

There are so many options when it comes to remote dwellings for the modern-day Thoreau, that the type of hut a stylish hermit prefers—woodland fairytale studios? oxidized steel droplets in the desert? rugged cabanas?—says a lot about a person. When that person is a famous architect like Peter Zumthor, that preference says a lot about, well, the entirety of his oeuvre.

The Swiss architect is known to be without flash or frill, building meticulous homes out of high-quality concrete. His personality, as was profiled in 2011 by The New York Times, is as austere as his buildings, so when it comes to his studio in Haldenstein, "just a speck on the Swiss map," as the Times writes, it makes sense that he holes away in "a quasi-monastic glass-and-concrete retreat." One the Times described as "an anomaly among the quaintly gabled houses with children's plastic slides and bird feeders cluttering the backyards."

Architizer recently included old photos of Zumthor's studio in its roundup of hidey-holes for the design-minded recluse, offering a peek into the beautifully and idiosyncratically austere surroundings that make up this particular architectural genius's comfort zone. It's essentially chunks of concrete and glass pulled together to in a way that, by magic, seems lofty and spacious—and the Swiss vistas and thriving greenery just outside the studio make it far from prison-like. Have a look:

· 8 Hermit Homes for the Design-Minded Recluse [Architizer]