Building a sunken seating area or fire pit is a neat trick that architects sometimes use when they want to create an unobstructed view of the garden or backyard or when they want to offer intimacy and privacy to those using the area. We find the concept of a sunken garden to be very inspiring so we looked around and we found some awesome examples to share with you.

This is the backyard of a home in Malibu designed by Burdge & Associates Architects. The yard is large and beautiful and it would have been a real shame not to take advantage of that. The architect in charge decided that a sunken fire pit was the best option, allowing his clients to entertain guests outdoors without obstructing the overall view.

In the case of this contemporary home in Venice, California, it wasn’t really about the view but rather about incorporating a variety of functions and spaces in the same zone without making it seem too crowded or tiny. The house was designed by Electric Bowery and, a the rear, it has a swimming pool, an al fresco dining area and also a sunken lounge space organized around a firepit.

Surrounded by trees and vegetation, the residence designed by Wernerfield in Texas makes the most of the views and the peaceful and serene ambiance. The property includes a main residence, a guest pavilion and a storage barn and the challenge for the architects was to make the whole ensemble low-maintenance and able to blend in with the surroundings. One of the concepts that the architects used to achieve this was that of a sunken backyard.

When a house sits on a sloping site, a sunken garden or backyard doesn’t really seem out of place. For example, have a look at the Friday Residence by Splyce Design. It’s located in Vancouver, Canada and it has a really cozy outdoor area at the rear which is placed in the continuation of the indoor living space, with the lawn wrapped around it at a higher level.

The backyard of the Tusculum Residence by Smart Design Studio is small and narrow and it has a tiered structure towards the rear. What’s lovely here is the transition from the indoor living space on the ground floor and the sunken dining area placed next to it in the yard. It’s small and cozy and it transitions nicely into the tiered design.

When they designed the Wave House, A-cero Architects wanted to make the most of the location and the view towards the ocean. That’s why they left the backyard open and free of any visual impediments. The outdoor lounge area is actually a sunken space, partially covered by a cantilever and seamlessly connected to the interior spaces.

BCHO Architects designed a really interesting residence in South Korea. The house features these lovely sunken spaces but not out in the garden or in the backyard but on the roof. They offer the most amazing views in the distance from up here and they also feel safe and cozy, being sunken and all.

The Curved House is located in Springfield, Missouri. It was designed by Hufft Projects and it has a U-shaped floor plan which forms a cozy and intimate courtyard. The architects wanted to emphasize this aspect so they also built a sunken lounge space out here. Even though it’s still out in the open, it feels less exposed and that makes it extra comfortable and enjoyable.

In a lot of cases, the houses that have sunken gardens or lounge spaces in their backyards feature designs meant to make the height difference less noticeable and to seamlessly connect the spaces. In contrast to those designs, this home in Miramar puts an emphasis on its sunken seating area. The outdoor area was renovated and a custom wood pergola was added.{found on luxapatio}.

Since sunken lounge areas are usually very cozy and comfortable, they sometimes feature a fire pit at the center. It’s sort of like having everyone sit around a fire but in a very comfortable way. Check out this great coastal home and its spacious outdoor area.

You can also design a sunken area on a more casual and simplistic way. For instance, you can create something like this out in the garden. Put a fire pit at the center, some comfy chairs or benches around it and decorate the surroundings with fresh plants or small trees.

The opposite is also valid. You can make a sunken lounge area look imposing even though its height suggests the opposite. It’s a matter of style and it has to do with the proportions, the materials used and the placement.

Sunken lounge spaces are by definition intimate and cozy but if you want to increase the privacy you can surround the area with a fence or with hedging. Take this design for example. The stone wall offer privacy and, at the same time, integrates a fireplace that makes the whole area feel even cozier.

Situated in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine, this modern retreat is like a fresh oasis in an urban jungle. One of the most beautiful things about it is the outdoor lounge area which combined a wooden floor, a sunken seating area with comfortable sectionals, an outdoor fireplace and brick walls complemented by green plants. This is a design by Svoya Studio.

With elegant and glamorous interior spaces and extraordinary outdoor areas, the house designed by Marcelo Montoro is the perfect blend of luxury and charm. The large pol, the lush garden and the covered deck lounge spaces interact seamlessly with the interior spaces while a circular sunken fire pit offers a special kind of comfort, featuring a more secluded character.

House 14 is a modern residence designed by Dane Richardson in Eagle Bay, Australia. It has a built-in fire pit on its north-facing terrace. This feature is the focal point of the outdoor spaces, being the perfect spot from which to admire the views and to look at the sky at night.

The design concept proposed by this home in San Francisco is pretty interesting and practical. The house has a small backyard and to make the most of it the owners chose to create separate areas on different levels. This organization of the areas is practical, allowing each space to be defined and to have its own character.

MIA Design Studio placed the outdoor entertainment spaces on the roof of this beachfront house in Vietnam.Up here there’s a comfortable and sunken seating area surrounded by a green area. By elevating this area up on the roof, the architects managed to make the most of the gorgeous views.

Some retreats and hotels adopted the idea of sunken lounges as well. One is this retreat and spa on Veques Island in the Caribbean. It offers its guests panoramic views unobstructed by the outdoor lounge spaces which are very welcoming, warm and comfortable. The interiors were designed by Patricia Urquiola.

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