Chinese Company Showcases Fully 3D-Printed Villa and Apartment Building

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Only a few years ago, if someone had told you that it was possible to build a home without the noisy, dusty eyesore that is the construction site, you’d probably have thought they were crazy. Yet, Chinese company WinSun Decoration Design Engineering Co has made this possible – they’re actually printing homes now, using one of those revolutionary 3D printers.

WinSun made headlines in March last year, when the printed 10 different one-story, 200 square-meter houses, using nothing but industrial construction waste and a 3D printer. Each building cost $4,800 to make. Now, they’re in the news again with two new additions – a five-story apartment building and a 1,100 square meter villa.

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Warsaw’s Keret House – World’s Narrowest Home Is Just 1.2 Meters Wide

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Wedged into the narrow space between two buildings in Warsaw, Poland, the Keret House is considered the narrowest home in the world. At just 36 inches across at its narrowest point and 48 inches at its widest, the house is barely large enough for one person to move around.

The unique living space is the brainchild of Israeli writer and film maker Etgar Keret. The gap between the two buildings was discovered almost six years ago, by Polish architect Jakub Szczęsny. He realized that it was just enough room to fit a house, so he decided to go ahead and build one. Coming up with a design for the tiny available space was tough, but the real challenges were ownership issues, building regulations and financing. Luckily, he managed to raise 70,000 euros (over $80,000) for the project and began the construction in collaboration with the Polish Art Foundation.

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Iranian Designers Create Salt Restaurant That Filters Polluted Urban Air

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The aptly named Salt Restaurant in Shiraz, southern Iran, is completely made of salt. The walls, bar, tables and chairs are entirely made of the white mineral; even the stairs have a smooth, salty coating.

The unique restaurant is the brainchild of Iranian firm Emtiaz Designing Group, who used salt as the main construction material in order to promote the concept of green construction. They created the building using environmentally sustainable, locally sourced, affordable salt, powder and rock. “In this particular case, the walls, structural sculptures and ceilings are made from salt sourced from the nearby salt mines and salt lake of Shiraz which was mixed with natural gum to harden it,” said a spokesperson of the firm.

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This Boulder Is Actually a Cozy Cabin in the Swiss Alps

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It’s hard to believe that this rock sitting so casually on a boulder-strewn slope in the Swiss Alps is actually fake. In reality, it houses a cozy wooden cabin for one, complete with a bed, fold-out table, stool, fireplace, and a window!

The only feature giving the boulder’s secret away is the odd square window that sticks out like a sore thumb on one side. But if you were hiking past the large rock, you’re more likely to miss out on that feature and assume that it’s all a part of the landscape. Nothing else about the rock betrays the fact that it conceals a perfectly-detailed wooden cabin beneath its rough exterior.

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Dutch Architect Turns Fictional Bridges on Euro Bills into a Reality

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When Austrian designer Robert Kalina came up with the design for Euro banknotes in 2002, he deliberately created fictional bridges that represent European architecture in general. The bridges can be recognised as having originated in various periods of European history, such as the Roman period, the Gothic period, the Renaissance, and contemporary 20th century architecture. This was supposed to be a good way to keep things generic and not favor any particular member country in the EU.

But with his latest stunt, Dutch architect Robin Stam has turned the idea on its head. “The European Bank didn’t want to use real bridges so I thought it would be funny to claim the bridges and make them real,” he explained. So he went and built all the bridges exactly as seen on the paper money, according to color and scale

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Luxury Singapore Skyscraper Allows Residents to Park their Cars in the Balcony

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Hamilton Scotts, a high-class apartment condominium in Singapore, is offering its residents the ultimate luxury in terms of parking – an individual two-car garage located inside each apartment! A glass wall separates the garage from the living room, offering a lovely view of their expensive cars from the couch.

The system is quite simple – when residents enter the building, they need to park their cars inside a glass elevator shaft. The elevator then raises the vehicle up to the corresponding condo and parks it within a glass enclosure that is visible from the living room.

Although the Hamilton Scotts condo numbers 30 floors and tens of thousands of square meters of living space, there just wasn’t enough to build a multi-level parking for the residents. Faced with this challenge, the team of architects and engineers in charge of development came up with something so much better.

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Newly-Opened Chinese School of Arts Is a Real-Life Hogwarts

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Young Potterheads in China are in for a real treat – they have the chance to study at their very own Hogwarts! Well, it isn’t really a school of magic – the building is a part of the Hebei Academy of Fine Arts and will house the school’s animation students. But who cares as long as you get to spend hours inside a magnificent castle that strongly resembles Harry Potter’s famous school, right?

Images of the impressive school went viral as more and more netizens began to notice that its various turrets and towers are a lot like Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. But the designers of the structure insist that they weren’t inspired by J. K. Rowling’s magical world; they simply modelled the castle after European architecture in general. They actually prefer to call it ‘Cinderella Castle’, since it features a gigantic clock tower.

Sadly, there won’t be any shifting staircases or talking portraits inside the castle. But it still is a pretty awesome place for a college. “We want our students to be inspired and this impressive fairytale architecture is exactly what they need for working in a creative environment,” a spokesperson for Hebei Academy said. “It’s important for the students and for the staff that they feel part of something special, and that is enough magic to ensure what we have created is a fine institution for furthering interest in the study of arts.”

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Macabre Restaurant in Mexico Is Decorated with 10,000 Animal Bones

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A new Mexican restaurant in Guadalajara is making waves for its highly unusual interior. The concept restaurant is named ‘Hueso’ (Spanish for ‘bone’), and true to its name, it uses animal bones as the mainstay of its decor.

Mexican architect Ignacio Cadena is the brains behind the beautiful yet haunting design that plays with the sculptural elements of deconstructed skeletons. The exterior or ‘skin’ of the renovated 1940s building is made up of handmade ceramic tiles with zigzag patterns that resemble stitches and sewing patterns.

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Lack of Building Space Inspires Chinese School to Build Running Track on Its Roof

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An elementary school in Tiantai, in China’s Zhejiang Province, has a 200-meter running track built on its roof. It’s a strange place to have children running, but the school’s authorities didn’t have much of a choice. There wasn’t any construction land available on the campus grounds, so they figured a track on the roof is better than no track at all.

“Under the circumstances that limited land cannot provide enough space for students to exercise in, we chose to challenge the concept that playgrounds and tracks have to be on the ground,” said chief architect Ruan Hao. The unique design has received worldwide recognition – it represented China at the 14th Venice Architecture Exhibition this year.

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Luxury Bunker Condominium Helps the Rich Survive the Apocalypse in Style

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The ‘Survival Condo Project’ is a luxury bunker complex located in a missile silo 15 storeys below ground level in Kansas. It is designed to help the rich survive any disaster – including health pandemics, weather calamities, or nuclear terror attacks – without having to relinquish opulence and style.

The missile silo was originally built in the 1960s by the US Army Corps of Engineers for the Atlas F missile. Its 9-foot thick walls, built out of epoxy-hardened concrete, are capable of withstanding a direct nuclear attack. The dome structure that covers the silo can also tolerate winds of over 500 mph.

Recently, the silo was purchased by real estate developer Larry Hall, who has been in the business of building advanced survival condos since 2008. He claims that the dwellings his company builds can make it possible to lead an uninterrupted life of luxury underground.

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English Company Sells Zombie-Proof Log Cabins

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If you believe a zombie apocalypse is imminent, then you probably should be doing everything you can to protect yourself. Luckily, a British firm called Tiger Log Cabins has just the product for you. They’ve created the world’s first zombie-proof log cabin, designed to withstand the worst zombie attacks imaginable.

The cabin is called ZFC-1 (ZFC stands for Zombie Fortification Cabin), and it is guaranteed to protect you from the walking dead for at least 10 years. It is surrounded by barbed wire and is equipped with an escape hatch, a storage unit for weaponry, and an upper deck with a 360-degree vantage point to keep an eye out for approaching zombies.

The ZFC-1 consists of three sections, all of which are independent from each other with two lockable doors securing each area. So if a zombie were to breach the main large section, it would have to get through three very securely locked doors. The material used to build the cabin are supposed to be of the highest quality, with glazing that is factory siliconed and internally beaded to all doors and windows. Zombies wouldn’t even be able to climb on to the roof, thanks to the square cut logs at the edges of the cabin.

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Man Spends Two Years Covering Every Inch of His House with Seashells

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Xiao Yongsheng is the owner of a small beach and a traditional Chinese house on Lingshan Island, off the coast of Qingdao city in eastern China’s Shandong province. When he decided to renovate his large home, he wondered if it was worth spending money on expensive designers and architects. Ultimately, he decided to save up and do it for free – he spent two whole years covering every inch of his 1,500-square meter house with seashells that he collected from his own beach.

“I’d always liked shells but it never struck me to use them until I was walking on a beach one morning and came across a very unusually colored clam shell and then it hit me,” said the 58-year-old. “I realised I was sitting next to a huge, free supply of beautiful building material – so why not use it?” So he began collecting every kind of shell he could find – right from tiny 3-millimeter ones to giant conches that weighed over four kilograms.

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Impressive-Looking Gothic Castle in Connecticut Can Be Yours for $45 Million

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Gothic castles aren’t commonplace in America, so this impressive real-life Hogwarts in Woodstock, Connecticut, definitely stands out. ‘Chrismark Castle’ is only a decade old but with its moat and turrets, it has all the markings of a genuine medieval castle.

Chrismark Castle presents itself as a perfectly preserved medieval structure on the outside, with all sorts of modern amenities and technology concealed on the inside. It stands on a 354-acre property, encompassing 22,000 square ft. and consists of a massive lower-level garage, eight bedrooms, ten bathrooms, 12 fireplaces, a maid’s room, a library, a pool, and several massage rooms.

The star of the castle’s opulent interiors is perhaps the 1,200 square ft. circular kitchen – it has windows all around the walls, offering a 180-degree view of Lake Porter. The dining room spells grandeur as well – it has a unique ceiling design and can accommodate a huge dinner party. The master bedroom also offers gorgeous views of the grounds, and the granite-fitted master bathroom has its own whirlpool. All the doors in the castle are custom-fit and handmade, as are the hardwood floors.

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Texas Man Spends $2.2 Million Turning His Backyard into Four-Pool Waterpark

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Summer in Texas may be merciless, but Hal Jones from Austin has found a great way to stay cool at all times. He spent a whopping $2.2 million to have four enormous pools built into his backyard. He wanted to create a pool experience that’s ‘second-to-none’, so he chose a property located on the shores of Lake Travis – where his guests could arrive by boat.

Once he identified the property, Jones hired designer Evan Mills to come up with a plan for the water-park and create four pools, each with its own unique design. “We have the hot tub, the kiddie pool, Lazy River and Negative Edge pool,” said Jones.

The lazy river pool, which includes a swim-up bar, is where he entertains his friends. “I traveled throughout Texas and saw how people loved the lazy river pools,” he said. “You don’t need to get out of the pool to enjoy a drink!”

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Chinese Entrepreneur Turns Industrial Concrete Tube into Popular Low-Cost Hotel

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While some people enjoy luxurious travel, others are more than happy to make do with the bare minimum. A clever Chinese hotelier has used this fact to his advantage – he constructed a highly unusual, low cost hotel by reusing industrial grade concrete tubing.

The ingenious young man, from Henan Province, managed to acquire several meters of recycled concrete tubing and sliced it into 15 separate mini structures. Each sturdy structure, designed to accommodate two people, is equipped with a double bed, a restroom, and a few ‘extra touches’ like air conditioning and sound proofing. The exteriors of the circular dwellings have even been decorated with some street art to make them look more appealing.

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