Known as a land of endless forests and one of just three Baltic states, Lithuania has gone relatively unnoticed in design circles. While it is a small nation with only about three million inhabitants, the country has one of the fastest growing economies in the European Union and boasts significant works of contemporary architecture. Famous for its landscapes, from lakes and wetlands to the Curonian sand peninsula, Lithuanian designs embrace their surroundings. This is especially true within the country’s residential projects. Sensitively positioned to capture views or maintain privacy, these houses draw inspiration from their idyllic contexts. Crafted with meticulous detailing and modern formal approaches, these designs respect building traditions while reinterpreting them.
Drawing together rural Lithuanian retreats from across the Architizer database, the following collection takes a look at designs that are secluded or remote in nature. Whether they are designed as discrete, quiet retreats or bold, dramatic statements, these residences capitalize on picturesque settings and expansive open spaces. Though a majority of Lithuania’s architecture was historically built with wood, the following projects explore a diverse variety of materials and assemblies. Together, they begin to embody the unique design culture of Lithuania.
Created as a family house in a seaside resort town, this project is located on a narrow site only half a mile from the sea. Surrounded by forest atop a small hill, the house’s living spaces are lifted above street level, while utilitarian functions are placed beneath. The project was divided into three separate volumes with distinct functional zones.
Embracing the Lithuanian notion of a country house, this carefully detailed residence takes a fresh look at the traditional archetype. A modest, gabled volume was created with large, translucent sliding panels to help connect to the outdoors.
Designed for a couple that loves to listen to the blues, this black volume in the forest is built around a central living space. Conceptualized as the house of blues, the project allows music to reach every room of the house through interstitial space. The home incorporates a glass façade for the summer months and a wooden deck to enjoy the surrounding forest.
Designed as a linear farmstead in Pociunai, this family house overlooks the nearby waterfront and open landscape. Organized as a single bar that reaches across the property lines, the residence was oriented to views and clad with a minimal material palette.
Completed a few years ago near Vilnius, this rural residence includes a multi-story living space and a detached garage. Oriented to embrace light within its main living quarters, the project explores the archetypical house profile and uses careful craft and detailing.
Sited atop a slope in a historic Vilnius suburb, this house was made to contrast with its surroundings. The wooden, rectilinear design is smaller in scale than the typical 20th-century Lithuanian house, while the cube-like structure is integrated into its idyllic landscape.
Created for a client in the agricultural production business, this rural house features a large, dramatic cantilever. Built on a slope in the Minija valley, the project was conceived as a kind of Noah’s ship that moved the family, their belongs, and pets from the city.
This residence was carefully sited along a river shore in Kaunas. Made with vertical rusted steel planes and glass, the project’s envelope was designed to recall the region’s growing pine trees.