On the shore of Japan’s Lake Nojiri, interrelated levels are cleverly used to create a multi-story home.

The kitchen is layered with the living room—the counter space becomes the flooring in the living area, and steps are used as additional seating.

Designed by Tokyo–based SUGAWARA DAISUKE Architects, the lakeside cottage known as Nojiri-ko Nature Platform reexamines the spatial relationships between nature, building, objects, and humans. 

Yet, that’s not all. The home goes one step further, giving its occupants not only multiple perspectives on the use of space, but also providing various views of the breathtaking surrounding scenery.

Rather than create a typical two-story home, the architects have designed a multi-layered space with a series of platforms.

Rather than create a typical two-story home, the architects have designed a multi-layered space with a series of platforms. 

Jérémie Souteyrat

A contemporary take on the traditional Japanese concept of fluid multi-purpose spaces, the interrelated platforms that compose this multi-layered home perform different functions. 



For instance, steps become additional seating. Floorspace doubles as kitchen countertops and tables. These nifty, multi-purpose levels cleverly overturn a common layout. Scroll through for a closer look inside. 

The first-floor cantilevers out and is perched like a platform, serving as a great viewpoint for observing the surrounding forest scenery.

The first-floor cantilevers out and is perched like a platform, serving as a great viewpoint for observing the surrounding forest scenery. 

Jérémie Souteyrat

Partially enclosed, the exterior platform features an outdoor swing that is suspended from the timber-framed porch.

Partially enclosed, the exterior platform features an outdoor swing that is suspended from the timber-framed porch.

Jérémie Souteyrat

See the full story on Dwell.com: Playful Platforms Revamp This Japanese Lake House Into a Fun, Five-Story Retreat

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