Pushing the boundaries of sophistication, and blurring the barrier between the natural and the artificial, the static and the dynamic, these elegant floating houses designed by architect Dymitr Malcew establish a new connection between homeowners and lakes, rivers and oceans. These homes aim for minimal intrusiveness and the highest level of luxury.
For his projects, Malcew invents spaces —artificial islands resting on water—inspired by the nature that surrounds them, with open corners to make the experience a delightful fantasy. “The main goal was to design a house that would cause minimal impact on the environment, but at the same time offer an innovative life experience,” explains Malcew. “All the rooms are designed for maximum visual connection to the surrounding landscape.”
Every one of his creations is unique. Malcew respects the climate and environmental conditions and takes special care to customize the materials and details to create a fitting setting for its residents. Additionally, thanks to the floating base of the structure, the houses can be easily moved from one place to another.
The allure of these houses is most evident in the Netherlands, where increasingly ambitious floating palaces are built in docks and harbors. Dams and piers frame one of the most sophisticated projects: the Steigereiland floating village in Ijburg, Amsterdam, designed and built by architect Marlies Rohmer. Just like pieces of a city that is only connected by water lines, the three floors of each house feature terraces and glass walls open to the water, and hide rooms under the waterline to escape the bright sunlight.
Berlin, Germany is also in love with the charm of Modern Houseboat, a floating residence located east of the city on Lake Rummelsburg. With expressive and exciting design, each room faces the lake and huge windows give the illusion of fusing the outdoors with the colorful furnishings. Although white interiors and wood beams create beautiful environments, the truly magical spot is the exterior platform that frames the front of the houseboat and seems to extend towards the lake waters.
Thanks to water mirrors that multiply the natural light, large terraces and exquisite design, these floating houses have somehow managed to create a new way of inhabiting the world. ■
MARLIES ROHMER: Marcel van der Burg / Luuk Kramer / Roos Aldershoff Fotografie