A World War I fighter plane sits on the roof of 77 Water Street, NYC. When the William Kaufman Organization built the 26-story office tower in 1970, the owner wanted to adorn its roof with something more interesting than air-conditioning machinery.
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The library collection is the oldest in Switzerland, and is one of earliest and most important monastic libraries in the world. It holds 2,100 manuscripts dating back to the 8th through the 15th centuries, 1,650 incunabula (printed before 1500), and old printed books. The library holds almost 160,000 volumes. The manuscript B of the Nibelungenlied is kept here.
Admont Abbey is a foundation of the Benedictines on the River Enns in the town of Admont in Austria and is the oldest remaining monastery in Styria. It contains the largest monastic library in the world and a long-established scientific collection, and is known for its Baroque architecture and collections of art and manuscripts.
Adziogol Lighthouse is a vertical lattice hyperboloid structure of steel bars, serving as an active lighthouse, about 30 kilometres from Kherson, Ukraine.
The Amber Room in the Catherine Palace of Tsarskoye Selo near Saint Petersburg is a complete chamber decoration of amber panels backed with gold leaf and mirrors.
Anchor Stone Blocks are stone building blocks made in Rudolstadt, Germany. They are so precisely cut and polished that they fit together perfectly. They are made in three colors in imitation of the red brick, tan limestone, and blue slate of European buildings.
Ani is a ruined and uninhabited medieval Armenian city-site situated in the Turkish province of Kars, beside the border with Armenia.
Luis Barragán is considered the most important Mexican architect of the 20th century. A unique feature, as can be seen in many of his residential interiors and fountain features, is the typical tall coloured walls, which he borrowed and modified from traditional Mexican buildings. He situated many of his designs amidst natural backdrops, such as lava rock outcrops and groves of trees.
Borgund Stave Church is a stave church located in Norway. It is classified as a triple nave stave church of the so-called Sogn-type. This is also the best preserved of Norway’s 28 extant stave churches.The churches dragon heads a lot like gargoyles that are found on cathedrals, are used as drainage systems for the church.
One of the most famous parquet floors is the one used by the Boston Celtics of the NBA. The original floor, which was installed at the Celtics’ original home of Boston Arena in 1946, was moved intact to Boston Garden in 1952 and used there until the team moved to what was then known as FleetCenter in 1995, now known as TD Garden. The floor remained intact and in use until it was cut up and sold as souvenirs in 1999, after the 1998 demolition of Boston Garden. The Celtics today play on a parquet floor inside TD Garden that combines old and new sections
In Renaissance Europe, long before the concept of organ donation could have been envisioned, cadavers were given a new life as architectural ornaments, and skeletons were put to use as building materials. The monk who started this fad must have been the Martha Stewart of his day. Why continue piling up bones in an ossuary when you could put them to practical use-or better yet, turn them into a thing of beauty? Thus began the oddest interior-decorating style in history: rooms made entirely of human bones.
Capuchins’ Catacombs located in Palermo, Italy, where there are thousands of corpses lined on the walls like paintings. The catacombs date back to the 1599 when the local priests mummified a holy monk for all to see. They wanted to pray to him after death.
Casa Malaparte is a house on Punta Massullo, on the eastern side of the Isle of Capri, Italy. The house was conceived around 1937 by Italian Rationalist architect Adalberto Libera for Curzio Malaparte. Malaparte actually rejected Libera’s design and built the home himself with the help of Adolfo Amitrano, a local stone mason.
Seeking spiritual fulfillment, in 1971 he turned his back on the business world to reinvent himself as Von Jour Caux, leader of a troupe of artists and craftsmen known as Art Complex. They took the nouveau riche country by storm, completing over ten major projects until society’s appetite for extravagance vanished with the mid-90′s housing bubble . Private residences, condominiums, nursing homes—while the decorations by gaudy, the structures themselves never be wasteful, with the Philosopher’s Stone being one of their most eye-catching offerings.
At the height of the Cold War in the late 1950s, the idea of a hardened command and control center was conceptualized as a defense against long-range Soviet bombers. The Army Corps of Engineers supervised the excavation of Cheyenne Mountain and the construction of an operational center within the granite mountain.
The Clark House is an International-Modernist Style residence designed by Austrian-American Modernist architect Richard Neutra, and built in 1957 in Pasadena, California, United States.
Clementinum is a great example of Baroque library for it hasn’t been changed since its foundation in 1722. It still shows the organization of the library in the times of the Jesuit college in Prague.
Dar Sebastian house in Hammamet, often considered the embodyment of the perfect Tunisian house.George Sebastian fell in love with the simple beauty of the quiet fishing port of Hammamet and was the first of the international set of the times to build his villa there. He started a trend that has never ceased. Frank Lloyd Wright is said to have claimed it to be ” the most beautiful house I have ever seen”, but as we see it today, it is elegant, but rather sad in its emptiness. One has to have a vivid imagination to recreate the era when Cocteau, Elsa Schiaparelli, Paul Klee, Andre Gide, the Sitwells, Cecil Beaton and others came to enjoy visiting, partying and undertaking what someone once described as indulging the opportunity to do “some rather elaborate sinning”. Perhaps the marble bathtubs for four are a clue. These are two and the other two face them. There is an emptiness of spirit that fills the house where such original individuals once partied, but the space is cool, elegant and reflective of the medina which was its inspiration. It was no wonder that Dar Sebastian was requisitioned by the “Desert Fox” the much decorated and (by both sides) highly respected German General, Field Marshal Erwin Rommel for his wartime Headquarters during the Tunisian campaign …
Derinkuyu Underground City is an ancient multi-level underground city in the Derinkuyu district in Nevşehir Province, Turkey. With its eleven floors extending to a depth of approximately 85 m, it was large enough to shelter tens of thousands of people together with their livestock and food stores. It is the largest excavated underground city in Turkey and is part of a network of several underground complexes found across Cappadocia.
Dry Bridge is a bridge in Zrenjanin, Serbia. It is a unique bridge which does not have any water surface under it.
The Eremitage Palace is located in Dyrehaven north of Copenhagen, Denmark. The palace was built by architect Lauritz de Thurah in Baroque style from 1734 to 1736 for Christian VI of Denmark in order to host royal banquets during royal hunts in Dyrehaven.
Muzil is a 180 hectares big location which still has the status of the military area closed to citizens. Army has left this base two years ago but it remained closed. Government and the municipality intend to privatize the area and official plans had been made for it to become an exclusive golf resort thus closing the territory for wider public.
Gellért Thermal Baths and Swimming Pool are a bath complex in Budapest, Hungary, built between 1912 and 1918 in the (Secession) Art Nouveau style. They were damaged during World War II, but then rebuilt. References to healing waters in this location are found from as early as the 13th century. A hospital was located on this site during the Middle Ages. During the reign of the Ottoman Empire, baths were also built on this particular site.
Globe of Peace is a very large globe located in Apecchio, Pesaro, Italy. It was built over a period of six years by Orfeo Bartolucci with the stated goal of diffusing a message of peace and liberty to all people. It can hold approximately 600 people and internally contains descriptive tables listing every country of the world and their flag. Bartolucci solicited information about the Babson globe, and found out that it had issues with weather resistance that had led to deterioration over time, and that the methods used for its construction would cost Bartolucci approximately 500 million lire. This information influenced his design decisions. For six years, Bartolucci worked from 5 A.M. until dusk, using his pension income and accumulated savings but not borrowing any funds.
In the lovely Polish town, Sopot. Piers and long beaches and a classic summer destination for people in the area.
The Great Mosque of Samarra is a 9th century mosque located in Samarra, Iraq.
Grmožur fortress in Lake Skadar, the beautiful lake on the border of Albania and Montenegro.
Hoover Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, on the border between the U.S. states of Arizona and Nevada.
Gerard Houckgeest was a Dutch Golden Age painter of architectural scenes and church interiors.
The Jantar Mantar is a collection of architectural astronomical instruments, built by Maharaja (Ruler) Jai Singh II at his then new capital of Jaipur between 1727 and 1734. It is modeled after the one that he had built for him at the then Mughal capital of Delhi.
The diaolou are fortified multi-storey towers, which were constructed in the Kaiping area from the early Qing Dynasty, reaching a peak in the 1920s and 1930s, when there were more than three thousand of these structures. Today, approximately 1,800 diaolou are still standing. The diaolou served two purposes: housing and protecting against forays by bandits.
Karosta was constructed in 1890-1906 as a naval base for the Russian Tsar Alexander III, and later served as a base for the Soviet Baltic Fleet. When the Russian army left Latvia in 1994 after Latvian independence, Karosta became largely uninhabited and most structures fell to ruin. In late 1990s, the area was troubled by high unemployment, street crime and drug problems. Some remaining residents are considered neither Latvian nor Russian and hold “alien passports”.
The history of La Mamounia is as fascinating as the hotel. Situated on the edge of the walls of the old city of Marrakech, La Mamounia is named for its 200-year-old gardens, which were given as an 18th century wedding gift to Prince Moulay Mamoun by his father. Winston Churchill called it, “the most lovely spot in the whole world.” It also has its own perfume, a delicate scent of cedar wood, a fragrance created exclusively for La Mamounia by the prestigious ‘nose’ Olivia Giacobetti.
During World War II the Army Corps of Engineers needed to hide the Lockheed Burbank Aircraft Plant to protect it from being a target for a Japanese air attack. They covered it with camouflage netting and to make it look like a rural housing subdivision from the air.
The Post Office Railway, also known as Mail Rail, was a narrow-gauge driverless private underground railway in London built by the Post Office with assistance from the Underground Electric Railways Company of London to move mail between sorting offices. Inspired by the Chicago Tunnel Company, it was in operation from 3 December 1927 until 31 May 2003.
The Maunsell Sea Forts were small fortified towers built in the Thames and Mersey estuaries during the Second World War to help defend the United Kingdom.
The Miller House was designed by Eero Saarinen in 1957 and is an important residential representation of the International Style, a subtype of the Modern Movement. Of equal significance, the landscape of the Miller House, designed by famed landscape architect Dan Kiley, was one of the first and most important Modern designs in residential landscape architecture.
Minar-e-Pakistan is a tall minaret in Iqbal Park Lahore, built in commemoration of the Pakistan Resolution. The minaret reflects a blend of Mughal and modern architecture, and is constructed on the site where on March 23, 1940, seven years before the formation of Pakistan, the Muslim League passed the Pakistan Resolution.
The 65-metre high minaret, surrounded by mountains that reach up to 2400m, was built in the 1190s, entirely of baked-bricks.
Nemo 33 is the deepest swimming pool in the world. Its maximum depth is 35 meters. It contains 2,500,000 liters of non-chlorinated, highly filtered spring water maintained at 30 °C (86 °F) and holds several simulated underwater caves at the 10 m depth level. There are numerous underwater windows that allow outside visitors to look into the pools at various depths. The complex was designed by Belgian diving expert John Beernaerts as a multi-purpose diving instruction, recreational, and film production facility, 2004.
The Palacio Barolo was designed in accordance with the cosmology of Dante’s Divine Comedy, motivated by the architect’s admiration forAlighieri. There are 22 floors, divided into three “sections”. The basement and ground floor represent hell, floors 1-14 are the purgatory, and 15-22 represent heaven. The building is 100 meters (328 feet) tall, one meter for each canto of the Divine Comedy. The lighthouse at the top of the building can be seen all the way in Montevideo, Uruguay. The owner planned to use only 3 floors, and to rent the rest.
Perspecta: The Yale Architectural Journal the oldest student-edited architectural journal in the United States, is internationally respected for its contributions to contemporary architectural discourse with original presentations of new projects as well as historical and theoretical essays.
Ponte City is a skyscraper in Johannesburg, South Africa. It was built in 1975 to a height of 173 m (567.6 ft), making it the tallest residential skyscraper in Africa.
Porer lighthouse was built in 1833 on the islet of the same name, southwest of Istria’s southernmost cape.
Pruitt–Igoe was a large urban housing project first occupied in 1954 in the U.S. city of St. Louis, Missouri. Living conditions in Pruitt–Igoe began to decline soon after its completion in 1956; by the late 1960s, the complex had become internationally infamous for its poverty, crime, and segregation. Its 33 buildings were torn down in the mid-1970s, and the project has become an icon of urban renewal and public-policy planning failure.
Without a doubt, the tale of the grand limestone chateau on Madison Avenue at 72nd Street is the one of the most bizarre in New York social history.
The lighthouse tower is 23 metres high, and, when the lighthouse was built, it was 200 metres inland; and there were no large dunes around it. With time the sea moved in closer, and, simultaneously, the wind blew large amounts of sand up from the cliff. The sand piled up in front of and around the lighthouse. It filled the well and ruined the kitchen gardens. To suppress the sand pine grates were set in and lyme grass and helmet was planted in the dune. The only result was that the dune just grew larger. The more that was planted, the more the dune grew. At last the sand was so high that at times it was impossible to see the light from the sea. On August 1. 1968 the struggle was given up and the lighthouse was lit for the last time.
Grasshopper chairs by Eero Saarinen.
Francisco Salamone was an Argentine architect of Italian descent who, between 1936 and 1940, during the Infamous Decade, built more than 60 municipal buildings with elements of Art Deco style in 25 rural communities on the Argentine Pampas within the Buenos Aires Province. These buildings were some of the first examples of modern architecture in rural Argentine.
San Juan Parangaricutiro was destroyed during the formation of the Parícutin volcano in 1943. Along with the village of Parícutin, San Juan Parangaricutiro was buried beneath ash and lava. The tops of cathedrals in old San Juan Parangaricutiro still protrude from the volcanic deposits.
The Sanzhi UFO houses were a set of abandoned pod-shaped buildings in Sanzhi, Taiwan.
Carlo Scarpa was an Italian architect, influenced by the materials, landscape, and the history of Venetian culture, and Japan
Södra Ängby is a residential area blending functionalism with garden city ideals, located in western Stockholm. Encompassing more than 500 buildings, it remains the largest coherent functionalistic villa area in Sweden and possibly the world, still well-preserved more than a half-century after its construction in 1933–40.
Super-Kamiokande, or Super-K for short, is a neutrino observatory in the city of Hida, Gifu Prefecture, Japan. The observatory was designed to search for proton decay, study solar and atmospheric neutrinos, and keep watch for supernovas in the Milky Way Galaxy.
Swallow’s Nest is a decorative castle near Yalta on the Crimean shore in southern Ukraine.
The Teatro all’antica is a theatre in Sabbioneta, northern Italy; it was the first free-standing, purpose-built theater in the modern world.
The theatre was the final design by the Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio, Renaissance, and was not completed until after his death. The trompe-l’œil onstage scenery, designed by Vincenzo Scamozzi, to give the appearance of long streets receding to a distant horizon, was installed in 1585 for the very first performance held in the theatre, and is the oldest surviving stage set still in existence.
The Abbey of Monte Oliveto Maggiore is a large Benedictine monastery in the Italian region of Tuscany.
The Garden of Cosmic Speculation is a private garden created by Charles Jencks. The garden is inspired by science and mathematics, with sculptures and landscaping on these themes, such as Black Holes and Fractals. The garden is not abundant with plants, but sets mathematical formulae and scientific phenomenae in a setting which elegantly combines natural features and artificial symmetry and curves.
Ugland House is a building located at South Church Street, George Town, the capital of the Cayman Islands. The building is the registered office address for 18,857 entities and has for years been linked by American politicians to tax evasion.
Villa Cimbrone is an historic building in Ravello, on the Amalfi coast of southern Italy, dating from at least the 11th century AD. In 1904, Ernest Beckett, 2nd Baron Grimthorpe transformed it into a fortified palace with towers, battlements and a mixture of Arabic, Venetian and Gothic details, and called it Villa Cimbrone. Between the house and the cliff edge he built a garden, high above the Gulf of Salerno. The garden is an eccentric mixture of formal, English rosebeds, Moorish tea houses, picturesque grottoes and classical temples.
Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild is a French seaside palazzo constructed between 1905 and 1912 at Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat on the French Riviera by Baroness Béatrice de Rothschild.
Villa Torlonia is a villa and surrounding gardens in Rome, Italy, formerly belonging to the Torlonia family. Disused for a time, Mussolini rented it from the Torlonia for one lira a year to use as his state residence from the 1920s onwards. It was abandoned after 1945, and allowed to decay in the following decades, but recent restoration work has allowed it to be opened to the public as a museum owned and operated by Rome’s municipality.
Built in 1913, Grand Central Terminal, in New York City, is the largest train station in the world, in terms of number of platforms. Therefore, it’s only natural that there be various hidden nooks, corners and spaces, such as the network of underground tracks, storage areas and tunnels. Weaved amidst them all is an unlisted train platform, known as Track 61, with a secret entrance and passageway leading to an elevator going straight up to the world-famous Waldorf-Astoria hotel.
Yakhchal is an ancient type of refrigerator. The word “yakh-chal” also means glacier in Persian.