Forest House

Being close to trees has the power to slow your heart rate and lift your mood – but have you ever considered living in a forest house?

Forest living has several great benefits. You get access to the freshest air possible, for starters. Plus, you’re surrounded by natural beauty and get to escape the hustle and bustle of city and suburban living.


But living in the forest doesn’t mean you’re constrained to a rickety old cabin either!

Here are 15 beautiful examples of modern houses that feel right at home in the forest to prove our point.

(1) A contemporary home nestled among the trees

This home was designed by San Fransisco-based architect sagemodern and sits tucked between the trees alongside a golf course in Truckee, California. The property combines wood and black elements to create a dramatic colour palette.

Forest House
Photo: sagemodern

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(2) A cantilevered home nestled among the trees

Mike Rantilla from Freelon Group designed this award-winning home in Raleigh, North Carolina. It springs upward from the pristine wooded site and squeezes vertically into a three-storey scheme.

The home received the 2009 AIA Triangle Honour Award.

Photo: Mclane & Company, Mark Herboth and Frame Magazine.

(3) City views overlooking Santiago

The hillside forest might surround this family house, designed by Nicolas Loi + Arquitectos Asociados, but it also has beautiful views of the city below.

The home sits in the hills near Santiago, Chile.

Nicolas Loi + Arquitectos Asociados designed this modern home overlooking Santiago. Photography by Marcos Mendizabal.
Photos: Marcos Mendizabal.

(4) A cabin in a Wisconsin forest with blackened pine

Milwaukee-based Johnsen Schmaling Architects completed this family retreat in rural Wisconsin.

The home features blackened pine cladding, concrete floors and wide-span glass doors and sits atop a steep, forested bluff overlooking a lake.

Johnsen Schmaling Architects designed this home in a forest in Wisconsin.
Photos: Johnsen Schmaling Architects

(5) This wood-clad house is at home in the trees

Thellend Fortin Architects designed this home, surrounded by the Laurentian forest near Montreal, Canada.

The design for this property was driven by a desire to bring it in harmony with its environs. The dwelling sits on a plateau in the forest’s heart and benefits from natural light, despite its north-facing aspect and inverse orientation to the lake.

Photos: Olivier Samson Arcand

(6) A concrete house in Mar Azul forest

BAK Architects are behind this concrete house in the forest of Mar Azul, Argentina. The owners chose a field in the woods away from the sea to construct a cottage without losing the presence of the landscape.

BAK Architects designed this concrete house. Photography by Gustavo Sosa Pinilla and Daniela Mac Adden.
Photos by Gustavo Sosa Pinilla and Daniela Mac Adden

(7) This cedar-shingled house is at home surrounded by forest

Wood shingles and wood panelling help this house fit in with the forest surrounding it, while large windows provide views of the ever-changing landscape.

Bourgeois / Lechasseur Architects designed the LK House in North Hatley, a small village in Quebec, Canada.

When the architects visited the site, they said they were charmed by the dense, leafy forest and deer nearby. A stream borders the property.

Photos by Adrien Williams

(8) A contemporary cabin surrounded by a Hemlock forest

This black cabin is a summer home surrounded by a Hemlock forest in Quebec, Canada. Designed by architect Jean Verville, the cabin is tucked away into a slightly sloped lot and was built for young professionals and their two children.

The parents’ bedroom and bathroom have large windows that let in natural light and frame the surrounding forest.

Photo by Maxime Brouille

(9) This house was designed to enjoy views of the forest and river

This home in Cap-à-l’Aigle, Quebec, designed by Bourgeois / Lechasseur architects, is named the ‘Altaïr House ‘.

Altaïr means ‘the flying eagle,’ which makes sense given the house is designed in the shape of a ‘V,’ and has long facades suspended over the surrounding nature.

Photos by Adrien Williams

(10) This wood and stone home was designed to enjoy the tranquillity of the surrounding forest

This home in Valle de Bravo, Mexico, was designed to allow the homeowners to enjoy the tranquillity of the surrounding ancient pine forest.

Designed by Weber Arquitectos, this home is part of a small development of five houses, built to have little impact on the surrounding trees to respect the environment.

The design and layout create a real sense of privacy, while the adult trees provide shade for the swimming pool and covered patio.

Photos by Rafael Gamo

(11) A forest home with abundant natural light

Hammer Architects are behind the North Pamet Ridge House, surrounded by woodland in Truro, Massachusetts.

This two-storey home sits along a high ridge, surrounded by dense woodland. Hammer Architects built the house to function as a weekend retreat, accommodate single floor living and provide abundant natural light.

The home’s extensive use of glass opens it up to the outdoors, offering long vistas and cooling breezes.

Photos by Hammer Architects

(12) A stunning forest home in West Virginia

Travis Price Architects designed the Hayes Residence, a home in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia.

Rather than cut down the trees to make room for the house, the trees in this forest became part of the house design.

Photos by Ken Wyner

(13) A private residence in Virginia

This secluded house in Virginia Beach, Virginia, makes the most of the surrounding forest and captures the views of the nearby bay.

GRADE is the architect behind Studio House, built as a private residence for a mosaic artist.

In designing the home, GRADE said they responded to the two disparate conditions of the site: the expansive views of the Chesapeake Bay and the mystic wooded area it stands on.

Design by GRADE

(14) A holiday home hanging off the edge of a cliff

The forest trees around this house help filter the natural light that streams into the home.

Christopher Simmonds Architects designed this cottage surrounded by woodlands in Val-des-Monts, Quebec, Canada.

The home shifts its way over the edge of a cliff to command views of the adjacent lake. The lower level recreation room allows the family accessible admittance into nature. Natural cooling is provided by cool air rising off the lake and out through the windows on the forest elevation.

Photos by Doublespace Photography

(15) This dark brick home has made a life for itself in the forest

Finally, Setless Architecture designed this home surrounded by nature in Dundas, Ontario, Canada. The house sits above the Bruce Trail on the edge of the Niagara Escarpment, a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve.

The outdoor patio can be seen from indoors through the large black-framed windows. Touches of wood soften the dark brick exterior, like the chairs, stairs and doors.

Photos by Sandy Rush Photography