10 Whimsical Homes That Defy Categorization

Most homes fit into some category of architecture, whether they’re tiny or not. From modern styles to log cabins and everything in between, we try to capture a large range of styles, but sometimes we encounter a home that really doesn’t fit into any single definition. Below you’ll find ten examples of mostly tiny homes that we thought were most unusual in appearance. Some are dreamy, while others are just downright creepy. Would you be able to live in something this eccentric?

1. Mexico City Nautilus House

Javier Senosiain’s 2007 Nautilus is straight out of The Little Mermaid, complete with an “undersea” garden inside.

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2. Casa Caracol on Isla Mujeres

The Little Mermaid must be popular in Mexico; here’s a seashell house on the famed resort island of Isla Mujeres just off Cancún. Designed by Raquel and Eduardo Ocampo, the shell dwelling is available for rent on Airbnb.

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3. Moominhouse in Akebono Kodomo no Mori Park

This Japanese take on the residence of Finnish author Tove Jansson’s beloved fairytale charactes, the Moomins, makes a nice day trip from Tokyo.

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4. Teahouse Tetsu Floats in a Cloud of Cherry Blossoms

We’ve no idea what Terunobu Fujimori’s inspiration for this was, but it’s more than fantastical enough to earn a place on this list. You can see it on the grounds of the Kiyoharu Shirakaba Museum of Art in Yamanashi Prefecture.

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5. A Communist Fairytale: Vietnam’s Hằng Nga Guesthouse

Created by Đặng Việt Nga, who received an architecture degree in the USSR and is the daughter of Ho Chi Minh lieutenant and momentary president of Vietnam Trường Chinh, this structure in the city of Đà Lạt is more popularly known as the Crazy House.

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6. Mysterious Sorcerer’s Castle in France

We’ll have to let the photo do the talking – we don’t know where it is in France, how old it is, or who built it. Impressive, though, no?

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7. Hameau de la Reine at Versailles

Fairytales abound with wicked queens, and this better-known French installation was built for a real one: the infamous Marie Antoinette. The name translates as “The Queen’s Hamlet”, and there are actually eleven houses within the complex.

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8. Hugh Comstock’s Hansel & Gretel Cottages

Hugh Comstock built quite a few whimsical homes in the California village of Carmel-by-the-Sea during the 1920s; Hansel and Gretel were the first, and those most directly inspired by a fairytale.

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9. Spadena House in Beverly Hills

A slightly different house from what you might normally associate with the 90210 area code, this is another 1920s California creation, designed by designed by Harry Oliver, a well-known Hollywood art director of the period. It was renovated around the turn of the century and is now an unusual stop on homes-of-the-stars tours.

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10. Casa do Penedo in Portugal

Nobody actually believes that fairytales are real, right? Well, a lot of people doubted the existence of this stone sandwich when photos of it began going viral. In fact, it’s been there since the 1970s.

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