By: Joe McGauley
There are really good reasons to move underground that aren't escaping nuclear annihilation or keeping a small cult of mole women from making a run for it. Here are five sprawling modern homes that have been so expertly hidden into hillsides that you may seriously consider a subterranean move. Don't believe us? Check these out.
Credit: ASK Arkitektar
This lair-like compound is cleverly camouflaged beneath the lush green surroundings (much like these 5 other hidden homes), but its views of the unbelievably picturesque valley below are hardly compromised thanks to the floor-to-ceiling windows that wrap around the entire exposed facade. Björk, is that you?
Credit: Peter Stutchbury
New South Wales, Australia
The aptly named Invisible House outside Sydney was expertly engineered to lay flush against the sloping mountain in such a way that you wouldn't recognize it as more than a slab of flat concrete until you were close enough to step inside. Interestingly, the unique aesthetic is as much a design choice as it is a necessity for habitation: any structure in this location that isn't protected from the elements in such a way would be subjected to furious winds from all angles and constant sunlight "like a furnace." It could also be totally at home on this list of the coolest isolated homes on the planet.
This alpine holiday retreat was carefully cut--bunker style--into the rural hillside of a small village known for its luxurious thermal spas. The bulk of the concrete-encased living area is unseen from the outside, though the modest, visible facade takes full advantage of the outdoors, with a spread of windows that looks out onto a cozy patio (with a flame-heated hot tub, of course) and killer views of the mountains. And if you require a more clandestine exit, there's a tunnel that connects the house to a nearby barn.
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