10 Most Unique Buildings Of The World

The human mind never fails to astonish us with its creativity. Architecture is one such discipline where its creative faculties are best employed. Here we present to you a list of 10 unique architectural marvels which have caught the eye of one and all due to their alluring designs. Some of these buildings are quite strange and bizarre while some have really great architecture. You might be even shocked to know that some of these exist, really.

1. THE CROOKED HOUSE

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The Crooked House is located in Rezydent Shopping Centre, Sopot, Poland. It might be a little difficult to believe, but it is actually designed ‘crooked’. The house was built in 2003 and was designed by the architect Szotynscy Zaleski and whoever sees the house cannot help but wonder how he must have thought of such a strange design. It is spread over an area of 4000 square meters. Though it is crooked, the house is still symmetrical and so it just looks weird and not ugly to look at.

2. THE FOREST SPIRAL, GERMANY

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The Forest Spiral is located in Darmstadt, Germany. It is a residential building complex shaped in the form of a spiral. The designer of the building is Friedensreich Hundertwasser, an artist, and the architect is Heinz Springmann. It is also called the Hundertwasser building. The building is beautifully designed with the right use of colours giving it a dazzling appearance. It has a green roof, 12 floors, 105 apartments, an artificial lake, a playground and a courtyard too. It appears as though the windows are out of order.

3. THE BASKET BUILDING, UNITED STATES

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The Basket Building is located in Newark, Ohio, United States. It is shaped like a huge picnic basket and it actually is the world’s largest basket. It is actually Longaberger’s home office. It is a 7-story building and spreads over a vast area. It has recently been announced that the building is for sale.

4. HABITAT 67, MONTREAL, CANADA

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The Habitat 67 housing complex is located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. This building was built as a part of the Expo-67. It looks like cubes arranged over each other. Each of the houses in the complex has its own garden. Though the building looks unstable due to its design, but it is quite comfortable to live in. The architect of the building is Moshe Safdie. The project under which the building was constructed was actually intended to create affordable houses for people, which are closely spaced, but also private at the same time.

5. THE DANCING BUILDING, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC

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The Nationale-Nederlanden building in Prague, Czech Republic is also known as the ‘Fred and Ginger’ building and more popularly as the dancing building. Well, these names are due to the fluid design of the building. The building was completed in 1996 and was designed by the architect Vlado Milunic in cooperation with a Canadian architect Frank Gehry. This building was constructed on an empty riverfront plot. It has a unique design with the towers of the building spiralling around each other. It is made of glass and has ancient architecture. The Celeste Restaurant is located on the top floor. You can view the Prague Castle from the restaurant while relishing your favourite dish here.

6. THE CUBIC HOUSES, NETHERLANDS

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The Cubic Houses in Rotterdam, Netherlands have been built by the architect Piet Blom. The building has been built over a pedestrian bridge. It has 38 cubes attached to each other at different angles, resembling the branches of a tree and together forming a forest like structure of cubes. Each of these cubes has three levelled living areas. Together, it appears to be a beautiful piece of architecture.

7. NATIONAL CENTRE FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS, CHINA

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Abbreviated as NCPA, the National Centre for the Performing Arts is located in the sprawling city of Beijing, China. It is an opera house shaped like an ellipsoid dome due to which it looks like a huge egg and is also called The Giant Egg. It is made of glass and titanium and looks stunning. The construction of this building took 6 years, from December 2001 to December 2007. It has three halls which can seat 5,452 people and is surrounded by an artificial lake. The building covers an area of 12,000 metre square. It was a designed by a French architect Paul Andreu.

8. PIANO AND VIOLIN BUILDING, CHINA

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And we have another one on our list from China. This bizarre, but elegant building shaped like a giant piano and a violin, is located in Huainan, China. It was built in 2007 and is a showroom for city planners. It was designed by the designers from Huainan Fangkai Decoration Project Company and the architecture students from the Hefey University of Technology.

9. THE NAUTILUS HOUSE, MEXICO

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This beautiful shell-shaped house was built in 2006 by Javier Senosiain, a Mexican artist of Arquitectura Organica. It is located near Mexico City and has been designed as per the concept of bio-architecture. The idea of bio-architecture promotes the use of the natural forms of life in architecture, which in this case is the aquatic life. The complete design of the house is quite innovative, unique and a complete blend of the modern and contemporary styles of architecture. The house has a dominant organic theme and will make you feel close to nature. The whole idea about the house aims to create and maintain a harmony with nature. The house also has an indoor garden.

10. BMW WELT, GERMANY

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The BMW Welt in Munich, Germany is one of a kind as far as its architecture is concerned. It was constructed during 2003-2007 by Wolf Prix from the architectural firm Coop Himmelblau. Its design is one of the best among the car delivery centres in Germany. Adding to all this, the luxury showroom is also solar powered. It has high grade solar panels on the roof to capture the solar energy which is then distributed to the whole building. It also has thermally efficient surfaces within, to maintain constant temperature as well as natural ventilation systems. The building has a public gallery, a children’s centre and a conference suite.

Looking for a home in Playa del Carmen? Overlook these 7 flaws

Individual tastes and preferences will always defer no matter what. Everybody loves personalisation as it gives a sense of ownership. There is scope for personalisation in every aspect even while buying a home in Playa del Carmen.

In fact a house gives utmost freedom to decorate it as the owners want. Therefore this should fact should be kept in mind while finalizing a house as sometimes buyers tend to put off a deal just because they are not satisfied with minor features such as paint or wallpapers.

Since buying a house in Playa del Carmen is in itself a huge investment that people don’t want to spend on other repairs. However real estate experts that home owners should deter from minor repairs or expenses. While deciding on the budget is advisable to keep spare money to cover some minor repairs which are as follows:

  • Wallpaper: This is a minute aspect one would want to lose a perfect deal over. The taste of buyer and seller will definitely defer hence be reflected in the choice of wallpapers. This doesn’t mean it is some irreversible damage. Very often one indulges in home improvement after couple of years residing in it. But there is no harm in doing it before one formally starts residing in a new house.
  • Kitchen cabinets: Style is ever changing and appliances of utility need constant renewal. This applies to kitchen cabinets as cabinet re-facing is an inexpensive task. With few extra bucks one can make the old cabinets and drawers look new.
  • Unnecessary wall adornments: Mirrors are common in this category which was a rage sometime back. With the changing trend one would like to put some wall hanging or painting. If none suits then one can simply paint it for the fresh look.
  • Window decor: One of the most noticeable features of a house is the windows. If they are done in a tasteless manner then it might put off the buyer. But one should remember that it gives an opportunity to the perspective buyer to incorporate in their rich style.
  • Broken heating or cooling system: Both are quintessential for modern day living. If the damage isn’t too huge and under control then the house should be given a thumbs up. Decisions shouldn’t be hasty as it might lead to over-estimation of costs.
  • Closet doors: Closets are essentials and it is important that they remain in perfect condition as valuables are stored in them. However a few missing doors isn’t some damage that cannot be repaired.
  • Bathroom grout: A discolored one is a signal for danger as majority of buyers understand it as a sign of a moldy house. They shouldn’t base their judgment on just what they see. A home inspector should be contacted to find out the real damage and whether it can be fixed with a little scrubbing.

At the end of the day it is definitely the buyers call but they need to be guided properly. Some issues which seem huge at the surface might be a superficial one. Hence a good buyer should go to the depth of the problem to figure out its impact and not stick to ‘seeing is believing’ phrase.

This is a post by our author of the week, Marco. He is a real estate expert and blogger. He frequently writes on real estate, travel and good.

10 Most Beautiful Churches Of The World

Here, we present to you a list of the 10 most beautiful churches of the world. These churches are some of the best examples of architectural excellence and despite your religious beliefs, you will definitely appreciate these beautiful masterpieces of art. Some of these churches are centuries old and have ancient architecture, while some are embellished with modern art.

The traditional churches are usually in the shape of a cross with a dome, while the structure of the modern ones varies over a wide range of architectural designs.

However, whether traditional or modern, all the churches on this list are definitely worth visiting. So, read on to get a glimpse of these sacred marvels.

1. THE SAGRADA FAMILIA, BARCELONA, SPAIN

sagrada_familia

The Sagrada Familia is a Roman Catholic Church located in Barcelona, Spain. It is a large church and was designed by a Catalan architect named Antoni Gaudi. This church is one of the most beautiful churches that you will see in your lifetime. The construction of the church began in 1882 and it is still incomplete. However, the church is still a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The architecture of the church is a combination of Gothic and curvilinear styles. It has a number of structural columns and arches. In November 2010, Pope Benedict XVI proclaimed it as a minor basilica. The spires of the church are yet to be completed, after which, Sagrada Familia will become the tallest church in the world as well as the church with the tallest spires.

2. ST. BASIL’S CATHEDRAL, MOSCOW, RUSSIA

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The St. Basil’s Cathedral is the popular name for the ‘Cathedral of the Protection of Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat’. This one is a Russian orthodox church located at the Red Square in Moscow, Russia. The church was constructed during the period 1555-1591 under Ivan, the Terrible as a symbol of his capture of Kazan and Astrakhan and is the geometric centre of Moscow.  This church has also been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990. The design of the church is what makes it so unique. It is shaped like flames of bonfire rising into the sky and this particular design has no analogues in Russian architecture. It is often referred to as Kremlin due to its being located in the Red Square, which is quite close to Kremlin.

3. NOTRE DAM DE PARIS, PARIS, FRANCE

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This beautiful Gothic, Roman Catholic Cathedral is located in Paris, France. It is considered to be one of the most outstanding examples of French Gothic architecture. The cathedral is also particularly important as it holds the official chair of the Archbishop of Paris. What adds to its grandeur, are the beautiful sculptures and stained glass which are in contrast with the earlier Romanesque architecture. This cathedral is among the first few to have employed the arched exterior supports (flying buttress). The cathedral has enticing spire and towers as well and it was completed by 1345.

4. ST. PETER’S BASILICA

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The Papal Basilica of St. Peter, popularly known as St. Peter’s Basilica is located in the beautiful vicinity of the Vatican City, Italy. The church was built during the late Renaissance. It is considered to be one of the most sacred places of Christian pilgrimage and has a very special place in the Roman Catholic tradition. Another distinguishing feature about the church is that it has the largest interior among all Christian churches of the world. The basilica is the burial site of Saint Peter, one among the 12 apostles of Christ and also the first Bishop of Rome. It was constructed during the period 1506-1615. Michelangelo designed the dome of the church, and it is the tallest dome in the world.

5. HAGIA SOPHIA, ISTANBUL, TURKEY

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Hagia Sophia is located in Istanbul, Turkey. Initially, Hagia Sophia was a Greek Orthodox patriarchal church, then it was converted into an imperial mosque, and now it is a museum. It is an awe-striking example of Byzantine architecture. It has a massive dome and was the largest cathedral in the world for almost 1000 years, until the completion of Seville Cathedral. It has a beautiful interior and the central dome is supported by 40 arched windows.

6. HALLGRIMSKIRKJA

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The Hallgrimskirkja is located in Reykjavik, Iceland. It is a Lutheran parish church. It is the largest church in Iceland and not just that, it is also the sixth tallest architectural structure in the country. The church has been named after Hallgrimur Petursson, an Icelandic poet and clergyman and the author of the Passion Hymns. The church was constructed during the period 1945-1986. The church is centrally located in the city and a very famous landmark. It houses a large organ pipe and is also used as an observation tower.

7. CATHEDRAL OF FLORENCE, ITALY

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The Santa Maria del Fiore, popularly known as the Cathedral of Florence, is located in Florence, Italy. The basilica has a wide central nave with 4 square bays and an aisle on either side of it. The whole plan forms the shape of a Latin cross. The church also has Gothic arches and a very beautiful interior.

8. CHARTRES CATHEDRAL, CHARTRES, FRANCE

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Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Chartres, commonly known as Chartres Cathedral, is located in Chartres, France. The most striking fact about this church is that it has retained a lot of its original structures, especially the original stained glass windows. On the exterior, there are heavy flying buttresses and the west consists of two contrasting spires. It is one of the most outstanding examples of French High Gothic style.

9. WINCHESTER CATHEDRAL

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The Winchester Cathedral is located at Winchester, Hampshire, England. The cathedral is known for having the longest nave among all Gothic cathedrals of Europe. Another fact about this cathedral is that the famous author, Jane Austen, was buried in the North aisle of the nave. The cathedral has a spectacular interior design.

10. ST. MARK’S BASILICA, VENICE, ITALY

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Saint Mark’s Basilica is located in Venice, Italy. It is one of the most beautiful churches of Venice. It was constructed in 1650 and has since then been one of the most famous pilgrimage destinations. It is an enticing example of Byzantine architecture.