Dream Weaver: A Spanish-style Casita in Darlinghurst by YSG Studio.

Perhaps it was the pandemic-induced isolation, or their newly minted status as empty nesters, but when one Sydney couple acquired a penthouse overlooking Rushcutters Bay, they were mainly enthusiastic about one thing—dialling up the pizzazz and making up for lost time. And dial it up they did, thanks to Yasmine Saleh Ghoniem of YSG Studio, whom they tapped to give the home a Spanish tapas bar-inspired spin. With larger-than-life landings, glass walls, deep pile bespoke rugs and hypnotic stone s

A Modish B&B in Red Hill by Tom Robertson Architects & Simone Haag.

The very mention of a bed-and-breakfast can conjure up visions of chintzy chairs and lace curtains and fluffy three-egg omelettes that taste like Sunday morning. Bassano is none of that—except for the omelettes, which they will happily indulge. With a charcoal aesthetic and a menagerie of vintage pieces, the Red Hill, Victoria bed-and-breakfast has a voguish-meets-vintage quality ideal for placid days and carefree stays. Once a pair of standalone cabins, the owners, Scotty and Eliza Bemelen, ro

La Hacienda Jardín in Tepoztlán, Mexico by Práctica Arquitectura.

There’s something thoroughly Willy Wonka-ish about the Mexican valley town of Tepoztlán. Known for its exotic ice cream flavours, great weather, and otherworldly flora and rock formations, it earned the title of Pueblo Mágico, or Magic Town, back in 2002. So naturally, it stands to reason that it’s a favourite among locals and tourists alike. “With a population of a little more than 35,000, it is a quiet weekend escape for city dwellers and the perfect retirement oasis,” says David Martínez Ramo

The Spa-like Hyundai Seoul Shopping Centre by Burdifilek.

When you step into The Hyundai Seoul, it’s not immediately obvious whether you’re in a spa or a shopping centre. With zen design elements, a waterfall garden, luxuriant greenery and sprawling spaces, the department store—South Korea‘s largest—puts a whole new spin on the term ‘retail therapy’. The multi-level scheme is courtesy of Toronto-based interior design firm, Burdifilek, who created the store as part of a larger complex featuring offices, shops and leisure spaces, just in case shoppers de

A Renovated Victorian Terrace House in East London by Daytrip Studio.

Clapton is one of those East London districts that often goes under the radar, with a spirit that straddles breezy and bold. With a glittering trail of restaurants and bars, an unmissable weekend market on Chatsworth Road, and a canal that sidles past it, its part-zen, part-zappy character was what caught the attention of one London family. Having set their hearts on an unassuming Victorian terraced property, they quickly realised that they’d need to enlist an architecture firm to give it a thor

Designer Maximilian Eicke’s Eccentric Home in Bali.

For most of us, quarantine was a time of baking extravaganzas, newfound hobbies and pyjama-clad Zoom calls. But in Maximilian Eicke‘s case, the isolation was a little more life-changing. The German-born designer, who shuttles between The Hamptons and Southeast Asia, used the time to build a house for his family in Bali. The catch? The site, originally a rice field, wasn’t the nicest of properties. The terrain was barren and life-starved. So what happened next was rather serendipitous. “A massi

A Modernist-Meets-Modern Home in Warsaw by Paradowski Studio

Enveloped between the Vistula River and its escarpment, is Powiśle, one of Warsaw‘s most happening neighbourhoods. It’s like a little funfair of Indie galleries and vintage stores and sunshine-y bistros. And then, in the summer, of colourful food trucks and bubbling-over bars that sparkle along the riverside promenade. With year-round promise, it’s no wonder that a young, creative couple chose to make it their home. “They settled on a modernist tenement,” say Zuza and Piotr Paradowski—co-founder

Mud Residence Guesthouse in Belgium by Andy Kerstens.

The most unexpected thing about classic, remodelled homes is the rich layers of personality it dons under its swish new additions. Like hidden badges of honour, or time-served souvenirs. Weathered, worn, but never weary. Such is the luxe, 1960s-revived guest house nestled just outside the forest of Heverlee, in Leuven, Belgium. Dubbed the Mud Residence, the 4-person guest house “is actually a nod to clay that you can shape however you like. The residence is a blank canvas that can be used as bot

Camouflaged Home in Morelia, Mexico by HW Studio.

Deep in the forests of Morelia, central Mexico, rests a home that seems like it could have been magicked to life by a hobbit. It has all the trappings of a hobbit house, camouflaging into the hillside, mirroring the knolls and dells. Unassuming. Barely there. Recognisable only to those who stop long enough to notice it. “This project generates a continuity in the beautiful living surface around the land, forming a new hill in a place already surrounded by many,” say Rogelio Vallejo Bores and Os

Le Moulin Holiday Home in France by Hauvette & Madani.

Le Moulin is a place where time stands still, almost as if someone bottled up its parts and preserved it for posterity. With two hectares of luxuriant downland, a burbling stream, a sheepfold, and orchards brimful of fruit, the charming French auberge sloughs off the stridency of nearby Paris. “For the last three hundred years, the property has been part of the historical fabric of the highly preserved region of Perche Sarthois. Here, the trees are centuries-old, nature reigns supreme, and luxur

Decorative Minimalism: CC Residence in Taipei by ECRU Studio.

In Taipei’s Daan District, where moonlit markets, bars and glittering boutiques dominate the townscape, tranquility secretly dwells in the residential interludes. It was this rare breathe-easy quality that inspired a Canada-returned family to find their moorings here. “Having spent close to a decade in Canada, the owner was in search of a natural environment for his wife and their two kids, and immediately fell in love with this place. It’s a very quiet residential area with many schools,” says