Talk about being one with nature.
Picture building your dream beach house on an empty plot of oceanfront land, and chances are you won’t envision a subterranean escape.
Allow us to introduce you to the home that just might change your mind. (This video really shows off the amazing abode and its relation to the beach!)
Nestled on the shore of Atlantic Beach, Florida—a stone’s throw from Jacksonville—this unique duplex was built in the ‘70s by famed Florida architect William Morgan after a strong hurricane left a massive sand dune on the property.
Not one to think inside the box, Morgan, who lived next door at the time, decided to snatch up the land and build an architectural experiment—literally inside the dune.
The result is a work of modern art, attracting the attention of photographers, architecture buffs, and beach vacationers since it was completed in 1975.
From the outside, the dwelling (divided into two 750-square-foot apartments) looks like something you might see in a fairytale: a simple grassy knoll interrupted with curvy white concrete-lined openings.
Inside, a curved staircase in each apartment hugs the shape of the dune and leads down to a loft-like living space with a seating area and kitchen. Taking cues from the natural shape of the dune, every surface in the home—from the rooflines to the kitchen peninsula—is curved.
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Despite being underground, views are enjoyed from the beachfront abode through two horseshoe-shaped openings in the dune (which, seen from the beach, might be mistaken for a bug-eyed sand creature). Two decks perched atop the dune are also perfect spots for taking in the views and beach breezes.
In addition to the quirky appeal of the Dune House, it also boasts environmental benefits. Because of the grass-covered roof (which, yes, has to be mowed) the internal temperature is kept stabilized at a cool 70 degrees.
Ready to pack up and move underground yet? We sure are.