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People in glass houses...have really cool houses!

Built with reflective glass on their exteriors, these structures seem to play tricks on the eyes by appearing more like their surroundings than actual buildings.


Reflective buildings blend into their surroundings

Sometimes it's hard to tell whether there is an actual building in front of you or an optical illusion. One architectural trend is to use reflective glass that allows buildings to blend into their surroundings. Check out these five structures from around the world that do just that.

The Treehotel, tucked near the Lule River in Sweden, capitalizes on the surrounding forest with its reflective glass that shows off the great outdoors.

High in the treetops

The lightweight aluminum structure is mounted on the pines’ tree trunks and offers those inside a 360-degree view of the surroundings. Guests can get inside the cabin via a rope ladder or by crossing the attached rope bridge.

Home sweet home

This private home in the Netherlands has been appropriately named by its architect, Johan Selbing, the "Mirror House."

Jeroen Musch

Who’s that?

The exterior’s reflective glass not only makes for a stunning visual display, but it also provides some fun for the nearby livestock.

Jeroen Musch

Wide open spaces

The mirrored panels open up to the nearby forest.

Jeroen Musch

Privacy please

The mirrored exterior also prevents anyone outside from being able to look inside the home.

Jeroen Musch

Desert oasis

Artist Phillip K. Smith III transformed this 70-year-old homesteader shack in Joshua Tree, California into a home that, thanks to alternating mirrored panels, looks to visitors as if they can see right through it.

Steve King

Clear horizons

The project was only supposed to be on display for two days, but more than 400 people ended up journeying out to the structure over two weekends, according to a press release from Royale Projects.

It is no longer open to the public.

Steve King

Colored windows

The structure’s remodel included LED lighting that lit up the mirrored door and windows at night with vibrant colors.

Steve King

Modern treehouse

Called by its architects the "Lake Cottage," this structure was created as an interpretation of a treehouse.

Naho Kubota

Cool surroundings

UUfie, the architecture firm that created this home, described the design in a press release as an effort to “repeat the experience of living within the branches of a tree.”

Naho Kubota

Branches all around

The treehouse theme continues inside, where the dining room is surrounded by black wood formed in the shape of branches.

Naho Kubota

Funhouse frenzy

What was once a graffiti-covered playground structure in Copenhagen is now a reflective pavilion with amusing funhouse mirrors.

Laura Stamer

Mirrored ends

The mirrors are mounted on the gabled ends of the pavilion, as well as behind doors along the sides of the structure.

Laura Stamer

Radical reflections

Implementing funhouse mirrors “engages a play with perspective, reflection and transformation,” MLRP, the architecture firm behind the transformation, said in a press release.

Laura Stamer