Weird houses have always attracted attention. By boasting some peculiar architecture, showcasing unique interior design or simply by having a strange location, unusual homes manage to impress one way or another, through their creativity and originality. Some also manage to lure in quite a few visitors and get to become local symbols in time.
Ever thought of living in a seashell castle or having your own remote dwelling on a small rock in the middle of a river? Well, there are people who have.
Check out the weird ideas of some homeowners around the world and feast your eyes on this selection of interesting houses that are now renowned for their strangeness:
1. Melnikov’s House in Russia
The Melnikov House belonged to master architect Konstantin Melnikov (Aug 3, 1890 – Nov 28, 1974) and was the only single-family property ever built for a private citizen during the Soviet regime. Highly experimental in nature, it is an icon of Russian Constructivist architecture, which was an innovative style at the time, leading to the country’s most significant modern buildings.
The unusual house has a weird shape and layout to it. It’s made up of two interlocking cylinders, with no load-bearing walls anywhere on the inside, and displays a vertical stained-glass plane in the front and multiple hexagonal windows in the back. Initially a family residence, this unique house now serves as a museum, showcasing preserved furniture and Melnikov’s archive of architectural drawings and paintings.
2. Drina River House in Serbia
The Drina River House is an isolated, cabin-like dwelling placed on a small rock in the middle of the Drina river in Serbia. Built back in 1968 by brothers Milija and Milan Mandić and their group of friends, the house was initially intended as a shelter for swimmers. However, because of its strange but also unique positioning, it grew so much in popularity that it soon became a cool gathering place for young people.
Over the years, this interesting house was destroyed and washed away seven times by the river’s waters only to be rebuilt again and again by the local youth.
The home rose to international fame starting with the first Drina Regatta festival in 1994, after which it became one of the most photographed objects in Serbia and was even chosen by National Geographic to appear in one of its “photos of the month” features, in August 2012.
3. Casa do Penedo in Portugal
Casa do Penedo, or the Stone House, is an unusual home located in northern Portugal, between towns Celorico de Basto and Fafe. The striking thing about this property is that it highly resembles a dwelling from the stone age, even though it was built only 50 years ago.
The construction began in 1972 and lasted for about two years. The owner, an engineer from Guimarães, initially intended to build a vacation home. But, as time passed, Casa do Penero lured in so many visitors due to its weird structure, that it soon became a well-known tourist attraction. It is now a small museum, showcasing photographs and relics from Penero’s history.
This funny house is made up of four gigantic boulders, blending seamlessly in the natural surroundings. It’s located near a wind electricity farm, but strangely enough, it doesn’t have any electricity.
4. Shell House in Mexico
Mexico’s Shell House is one of the world’s most famous vacation homes. Tourists from all around the globe come here to take advantage of the beautiful beaches and tropical surroundings, but also to stay in one of the most creative houses ever designed.
Architect Eduardo Ocampo started building this home back in 1994 for himself when he moved to Isla Mujeres. He also added a holiday unit for his brother, famous painter Octavio Ocampo, who would visit frequently. What was initially intended as a family abode (Eduardo later met his wife Raquel), soon became a stunning, famous construction, due to the brothers’ artistic talents and inspired by the seashells all around the area.
The unique home comes with its own private pool, a kitchenette and BBQ area and showcases two master bedrooms complete with all the necessary amenities. Larger groups can also be accommodated, as an extra smaller unit has been newly added to the two main shells.
5. Habitat 67 in Canada
Habitat 67 is an unusual housing community in Montreal, Canada. Designed by architect Moshe Safdie for his master’s thesis, the complex was later built to be featured in the famous World Fair Expo 67 (which took place between April and October 1967).
The purpose of this architectural masterpiece, as Safdie envisioned it, was to combine the benefits of the outdoorsy suburban living with the density of urban apartment buildings. The development is made up of 354 identical concrete structures, stacked in different combinations, forming 146 residential units of different sizes and layouts. Each flat has at least one large private terrace.
Due to its weird, but also exceptional form, Habitat 67 soon got worldwide recognition and became an architectural landmark in Montreal, and in Canada overall. The building complex was initially financed by the federal government but is now entirely owned by its tenants. Safdie himself owns a penthouse there, and both his penthouse and the entire structure can be toured.