This one-of-a-kind residence in Miyamoto, Japan, is a puzzle of sorts. Designed by Yo Shimada and his Kobe-based practice Tato Architects for a family that privileged openness and seamless connection, the two-story steel-framed house is essentially one big space divided into various living areas by way of a series of platforms arranged like a spiraling staircase on two sides.
Placed 70 centimeters, or a little over two feet, above the level below it, each of the 13 triangular platforms is formed by steel beams and corrugated metal panels with exposed undersides (or ceilings), furthering the minimalist and industrial feel of the house. This arrangement also allows for each platform to be used as a shelf or table from the floor below it.
The clients also had no use for enclosed bedrooms, as they felt that withdrawing into private rooms was lonely. They also didn’t require storage, either, as they wished to keep their belongings out instead of concealing them. This philosophy allows the house to be a large display of togetherness.
Still, certain functions get their own terraces. A dining and kitchen area is located on a lower terrace, while a central living space finds the platforms converging before splitting off again and reaching upward to two glazed outdoor decks. A “master suite” is located “upstairs,” while a closed bathroom extends over two levels. As for traveling between platforms, short wood steps framed in black metal provide connections. Have a look. Could you imagine living here?