On New Zealand’s Great Barrier Island, two architects designed a petite holiday home that takes care of its own water, electricity, and sewage needs. The outdoor room is backed by a gabion wall made of stone. Rainwater runs off the roofs into a channel before being funneled through pipes concealed within it to an underground concrete tank.
In this Upper West side co-op, architect Brad Zizmor saw potential in the apartment nobody could love. A re-imagined interior and gracious new outdoor space transformed this architectural blunder to boon. The outdoor dining area is screened for privacy.
The Zizmors didn't want to use curtains to screen their wide-open home from noisy neighbors. Instead, Kari Elwell Katzander of Mingo Design, an urban landscaper, created a living wall of wooden planters and English ivy that provides privacy without blocking light. They also installed a 16-foot-wide deck for playing and grilling, and lined it with hostas, Hollywood juniper, and bamboo.
Comprised of four modules arranged around a central courtyard, this Mexican home is a fresh take on the casa de fin de semana. An expansive wood roof shades the outdoor dining area and a nearby water feature helps cool the air.
Architectural harmony defines this family’s home near Lake Tahoe. A picnic table from Janus et Cie sits off the kitchen; the landscape architecture is by Richard D. Wood. In addition to passive solar, says architect Jack Hawkins, “there is the added benefit of a thick concrete slab as a thermal mass that absorbs and stores the heat from the sun.”
Cerebral architect Matali Crasset turned this stone farmhouse into a flexible, open environment for a Parisian jewelry designer and her many houseguests. Jewler Michèle Monory’s friends, the Leclercs, join her for an alfresco meal on the patio. They’re seated at a custom-made table on Fermob’s Luxembourg chairs.
A Boston family chose a double dose of prefab for an addition to their home in the Massachusetts countryside. The family scored the Saarinen-style table at Brimfield Antique Show for only $200. A Java ceiling fan by Minka-Aire helps circulate the breeze on the pool patio. The decking is made of six-inch-wide Garapa with hidden fastening clips. The dining chairs are from Ikea.
For design mavericks Jonathan Adler and Simon Doonan, a challenging site that slopes toward the sea yielded a unique opportunity to create an intimate and relaxing hideaway on New York's Shelter Island. In the gravel-lined entry court shaded by a Japanese maple tree, furniture from Beall and Bell—an antique shop in Greenport, New York—mixes with Pendant Globes by Primelite Manufacturing. Bobo pillows by Adler outfit the banquette, and cedar clads the interior of the seating area.