The 600-Square Foot Japanese House 'That Feels Like A Mansion'

September 6, 2016

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This is the Horinouchi House in Tokyo, Japan. The house was designed by Mizuishi Architect Atelier to make the most of a very modest plot of land. I think they succeeded too, because I live in a 600-square foot apartment and it doesn't feel like anything but a dungeon. Or maybe like, the area below a dungeon. I don't have any windows.

Slightly reminiscent of a submarine's periscope, the Horinouchi House's triangular-shaped exterior allows it to fit snugly into its modest plot of land. Inside, the home is spacious and incredibly well lit, succeeding in making it feel much larger than it actually is. Its lower level houses a master bedroom and bathroom, along with a kitchen and dining room, while the upstairs quarters are primarily reserved for communal activities -- think a den or living room.

Pretty impressive. And if you need anybody to live there with the windows wide open all the time as some sort of performance art piece, I'm your man. You think I can't pee with people watching? I've been to jail before. Now I win distance peeing competitions.

Keep going for a bunch more shots and see if you can spot the kitty.

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Thanks to Dave L, who actually lives in a shoebox and may or may not be a green army man.

  • Steven Collatos

    didnt you post this last year?

  • Jenness

    The moment Hillary Clinton, Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio and everyone like them who bitch about the environment trade in their multiple 10k sq ft mega-mansions to live in one of these shoe boxes then maybe I will reconsider my hatred of tiny homes - wait - no I won't.

    At no time in human history as squeezing your ass into a tiny hovel been considered prosperous and it's never been something I've thought was motivating. We have an entire eternity to live in a tiny box in the dirt - I have no need to rush or experience that 1 nanosecond sooner than I am forced to by death.

    p.s. I'm totally with Anthony's comment - greeting visitors while sitting on the toilet because it's RIGHT there and the only seating option is not my idea of 'fine' living. It's crappy - literally.

  • DFCtomm

    I don't mind the stationary tiny homes. They serve a purpose. but what I can't understand is the tiny-home-on-a-trailer thing. They are basically just campers. It's like reinventing the wheel, if that reinvented wheel were uglier, less aerodynamic and cost 5 times more.

  • Jenness

    I still don't get them if only for the price. I was watching the show about Tiny Homes - and one was an RV. It was $19k and they spent $2500 recovering it and fixing a broken cabinet door. Their budget was $30k and for that budget they were looking at smaller homes with less features stuck on unattractive lots. Might as well roll with the wind RV style and just install a slab and anchors to tie it down.

  • David Gabel

    Damn. That is actually pretty darn good for the size. I can see why it might feel "like a mansion".

  • Wiley

    It's amazing what the right lens can do for a tiny room.

  • Sebastiann ElegantΓ© Neely

    This is nicer than my house, and at half the size.

  • tyr2180

    As a place where designers can take pictures, it looks great. As a place where humans might live, it's a dump. the most private/embarrassing parts of the house are visible from the front door, the place where your kids hang out is the most dangerous, and the place where you carry heavy groceries to is as far from the front door as possible. Great use of space, team! (all the designers high-five).

  • Amber Ridgdill

    What's embarrassing about a bathroom?
    Not really dangerous.
    Oh no, exercise!

  • DFCtomm

    yeah, nothing potentially embarrassing ever happens in there.

  • Amber Ridgdill

    ... anything that eats, shits. Sort of a fact of life.

  • DFCtomm

    Fine then. take a shit in front of a room of 5 year old kids. It's just a fact of life.

  • Amber Ridgdill

    Firstly, I have pooped, and bathed in front of my niece and nephew when they were 5 (and younger). There's nothing embarrassing about that. Secondly... you do realize there's a door separating the bathroom/front door area from the rest of the house, yes? No, you must not because if you had, then your comment wouldn't make any sense.

  • DFCtomm

    and there you go

  • bakuryu

    Also:maybe the roof is not a problem for your kids,but when you have to catch them (or just interact) you have to crawl.And just after you've climbed that ladder.
    You have also to almost climb to get out of the balcony.
    And little stairs at the front door seem very unconfortable,almost impossible to walk with,let's say, a grocery bag in each hand.
    But I like that you can welcome a friend from sitting on the toilet: "Get in and make confortable, pretty much done,here".

  • Billy Rocka

    I had a house where at one point the garage was made into an extra apartment. Pretty large, actually.

    Anyway, the bathroom was awesome! I could πŸ’©, 🚿 and shave all at the same time (and I often did) all while not getting my clothes or toilet paper wet!

    Was the best getting back from the beach...

  • Haiku

    Context is the key (5)
    Japan is not like U.S. (7)
    Stop being pompous (5)

  • I didn't think about any of this. You smart.

  • lerequena

    Same Architect as the TARDIS

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