The most beautiful homes in the world: Chair House, Ukraine, by Igor Sirotov

There is something eerily beautiful about the brutalist sensibility that Ukranian architect Igor Sirotov used to design his ‘Chair House’ in its physical context. Purposefully conceived as an isolated object against the harsh rocky setting that surrounds it by layers of concrete, metal and glass, this is a house that forces its inhabitants to alternate between looking inwards in monastic-like contemplation and embracing a feeling of communion with the landscape.

An exterior staircase provides access to the lower-level living room in a descending physical movement that reinforces the sense of rejecting the enveloping environment when entering the private domestic space. Inside, natural light is allowed to filter in only through small skylights and a sombre colour palette present in the exposed concrete, dark stone panels, and natural wood floors and furniture creates a relaxing atmosphere. In contrast, the bedroom was designed to feel almost exposed to the elements by being positioned on a higher level and by featuring full-length windows that allow residents to admire the vistas.