By Michelle Yastremsky
In May of 1940, the entire city of Rotterdam was destroyed. Monumental buildings were bombed, leaving behind a shell of the former Dutch capital.
Rather than let the city wash away with defeat, what arose was opportunity: to make a Dutch city more architecturally unique and modern than any other.
One of the city’s most iconic commissions were that of the cube houses, designed by Piet Blom in the 1970s. A splash of yellow in an otherwise gray setting, these buildings were designed to resemble trees within a forest and create a sense of community for the residents.
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They are built above a pedestrian bridge – adding it to the list of epic bridges around the world.
Each house is tilted at 45 degrees. Certainly the sharpest homes in the city!
And yes, people live there! So try not to gawk into their windows too much on your exploration. There is, however, one way to get a peek of what happens beyond the closed doors...
You can tour the inside. While most of the cube houses belong to private residences, one crafty entrepreneur allows visitors to tour his building, for a fee.
The walls are diagonal, so no going to Ikea to pick up furniture. Houses like these require special attention, and most likely custom furniture.
Each home is three stories high. Residents have three full stories of space to transform into their perfect home. The entryway welcomes you to the ground floor, on the first floor you'll find the living room and kitchen, then at the top you'll find bedrooms and a bathroom.
Many of the houses have their own sunroofs, so you’ll have plenty of light no matter which angle you are facing.
You can play life-size chess in the courtyard
Can you get a check-mate when your friends and family are the pieces?
You'll find a not-so-secret viewpoint, located just outside the cube house complex’s courtyard. Be sure to make a stop at the barriers overlooking the colorful port and skyline; grab your phone and snap a photo before you go!
It's located across the street from one of Rotterdam's other archicecturally-innovative marvels: market hall. Stop by this futuristic food hall and unwind with a traditional dutch delicacy.
Rotterdam Cube Houses address:
Overblaak 70, Rotterdam, Netherlands