Dezeen Magazine

10 of the best private homes to explore in London during Open House

Open House London takes place this weekend, giving members of the public access to 750 buildings. Dezeen editor Anna Winston picks 10 of the best houses and apartments that will open their doors to nosy visitors and architecture enthusiasts.

The Tree House

Tree House by 6a Architects

6a Architects is one of London's names to watch, with recent clients including photographer Jurgen Teller, fashion designer Paul Smith and the South London Gallery in Peckham.

The Tree House is their extension to the home of the Observer newspaper's architecture critic Rowan Moore, with a timber structure that curves around an existing tree and simple, white interiors. The architects will be on site to answer questions about the project.

200 Jubilee Street, E1 3BP. Pre-booked Saturday tours only.

Find out more about the Tree House »

4 Bayer House


Chamberlin, Powell & Bon's 1957 Golden Lane Estate – just around the corner from the Barbican – is a perennial favourite with architects and fans of mid-century design.

This maisonette within the estate still has many of its original detailing and finishes and offers a rare glimpse into what many consider the golden era of social housing.

Golden Lane Estate, EC1Y ORN. Pre-booked Sunday tours only.

House for a Painter

Dingle Price Architects creates house for a painter in London

New warehouse conversions are booming an increasingly rare find in London as proper prices escalate, but this house and studio for a painter and his family in South London is one of the best recent examples.

The Victorian building was converted by London studio Pricegore (formerly Dingle Price Architects), which divided the space in half to create a double-height studio on one side and two-level living quarters on the other.

7 The Old Laundry, Haydon Way, SW11 1YF. Saturday 10am - 5pm.

Find out more about House for a Painter »

The Yard House


Designed by Jonathan Tuckey, who has become known for his minimal but comfortable aesthetic, The Yard House is likely to inspire envy in any creative that visits thanks to its generous spaces and built-in workshops.

Arranged around a central courtyard, the house was built on the site of a former brickyard off Lordship Lane. The largely enclosed site allowed the architect to use translucent polycarbonate panels for the walls.

155c Lordship Lane, SE22 8HX. Sunday 10am - 5pm.

Clock House

Clock House by Archmongers Architects

Revamped by Archmongers director Margaret Bursa to provide a home for her own family, this 1960s terraced house has been given a contemporary update with glazed tiles and an elaborate staircase.

Many similar mid-century terraces have weathered a long period of being considered deeply undesirable to find new fans and a new aesthetic in the hands of London's architects. "Often there are few original details that are worth retaining, so they can provide a blank canvas," explained Bursa.

48c Berriman Road N7 7PS. Saturday 10am - 5pm.

Find out more about Clock House »

Alexandra Road Estate

Open House preview

Designed by Camden Council architect Neave Brown at the height of his skills, Alexandra Road is that rare thing – a popular and much-loved Modernist housing estate in London.

Open House is opening up a number of apartments throughout the estate's striking stepped concrete terraces, as well as the original Tenant's Hall.

Tenants Hall, Langtry Walk/Rowley Way, NW8 0SW. Saturday 10am - 5pm.


Folds House by Bureau de Change Architects – shortlisted for 2014

A growing thirst for contemporary design has transformed the market for house extensions in London over the past few years, and Folds is an excellent example of the innovative spaces that architects have designed in response.

Created by Bureau de Change Architects, the extension gets its name from its pleated roofline, which creates the illusions that it has been squished on to the back of the owner's house in north London.

10 Mount Pleasant Villas. Sunday 10am - 1pm.

Find out more about Folds »

Map House

MAP House by SAM Architects

Paolo Vimercati and Melanie Schubert of SAM Architects created this mews house for themselves after buying and demolishing a garage hidden behind some heritage-protected houses in Camberwell.

Although the house is new, it is built using hundred-year-old bricks to create a link between the "unashamedly modern" structure and its surroundings, and features a folding facade on the ground floor.

25 Canning Cross, SE5 8BH. Saturday and sunday, 10am - 1pm.

Find out more about Map House »

Kew House

Kew House by Piercy&Company

The house that launched a hundred perforated rusty facades across London, Piercy & Company's 2104 Kew House has been one of the most popular homes on Dezeen and the inspiration for many similar designs since.

The family home is slotted behind the old walls of a 19th century stable and consists of two weathering steel-clad volumes. It was shortlisted for the RIBA's house of the year in 2015.

10 Cambridge Road, TW9 3JB. Sunday 10am - 5pm.

Find out more about Kew House »

Walter Segal self-build houses

Open House preview

This group of 13 self-built homes was constructed by residents during the 1980s, based on a method developed by architect Walter Segal and is one of the most celebrated precedents for today's so-called "self-build revolution".

Many of the homes have been extended and modified since following the same basic building principles, creating an unusual group of houses in amongst the housing estates, Victorian and Edwardian terrace and new skyscrapers of Lewisham.

Walters Way, Honor Oak Park, SE23 3LH. Sunday 1pm - 6pm.

This year's Open House London architecture festival runs from 17 to 18 September 2016 and includes 750 buildings.

The full, recently redesigned guide to all the properties included can be downloaded from the Open House website.