As of now, the (for some) fear-inducing residence known as the “Cliff House” only exists as an idea. Architects who designed the glass house at Australian firm Modscape were inspired by the way barnacles cling to a ship’s hull. The home is made of five stacked modules connected to the side of the cliff by a lift and secured with the help of engineered steel pins.
Through the looking glass
The 5-story modular home features three bedrooms (two doubles and an en-suite), a chic living space, a carport, a separate bathroom and an open-air spa and barbecue area on the lowest floor. Modscape’s vision is to have the home be a “natural extension of the cliff face rather than an addition to the landscape, creating an absolute connection with the ocean.” On the firm’s website, they say that “internally, the living spaces feature minimalistic furnishings to ensure that the transcendent views of the ocean and the unique spatial experience of the location remain the integral focal point of the design.”
Not everyone can live in a home like this! So, if you’re afraid of heights, this might be the last place you ever want to set foot in. On the other hand, if you’re a thrill seeker and heights don’t faze you, this extreme home is for you!
The design is a result of clients who have approached Modscape to explore design options for extreme parcels of coastal land in Australia, according to the firm’s website.
It might look precarious – and a hostage to coastal erosion – but there’s no reason why the design shouldn’t be structurally sound, Maxwell Hutchinson, a former president of the Royal Institute of British Architects told the BBC. Cantilever beams drilled into the rock could support the building just as crampons support a climber.
While people assume homes must be built upwards from foundations in the ground, it’s equally possible in theory for them to be suspended or hung. There’s a tradition of unconventional properties around the world including floating homes, underwater homes and even ice hotels, he said.
But, he warns, “all of these things are expensive because the construction industry hates anything unusual”. Thus, a buyer of this house would have to have a huge chunk of change.
And that wouldn’t be the only thing required of them, Hutchinson told BBC, “It would have to be someone with a very, very strong stomach.”