Ten living rooms with imaginative floor plans


As the trend away from open living continues, our latest lookbook focuses on 10 interiors with broken plans that show how more privacy can be achieved in the home.


A broken plan is an interior space that has been zoned to accommodate different activities and privacy levels without being divided into individual rooms.

This is typically achieved using ephemeral or semi-open partitions, but sometimes cleverly arranged furniture such as bookcases, different flooring, or split levels can also be used to achieve the effect.

This is the latest round up of our Dezeen Lookbooks range of visual inspiration for the home. Earlier lookbooks illuminate attic extensions, mezzanines and Scandinavian living rooms.


Fruit Box, UK, by Nimtim Architects

Adaptable, semi-open partitions made of plywood and planed softwood divide the ground floor of the London townhouse, which was recently redesigned by Nimtim Architects.

Each partition is not structural and is currently positioned to differentiate the kitchen, dining and living areas. However, they are designed so that, depending on the family’s future needs, they can be filled in for privacy or simply removed to maximize open space.

Learn more about Fruit Box ›


An apartment divided by cupboards

Kevin, Hong Kong, from JAAK

Interior design studio JAAK replaced walls with custom-made cabinets when renovating this Hong Kong apartment to create a bright and flexible living space.

The bedroom, accessible via two steps, is behind a built-in desk with a Normann Copenhagen armchair to provide privacy. The only completely closed room is the bathroom, which is hidden by a secret door.

Learn more about Kevin ›


An apartment divided by curtains

Apartment in Sant Andreu, Spain, by Oriol Garcia

A split-level floor, bookshelves and white curtains define the different areas of this 45 square meter apartment, which was remodeled into your own home by architect Oriol Garcia.

The curtains and bookshelves separate the sleeping and bathing areas from the cooking and lounge areas. A secluded winter garden was created at one end of the lounge with a small step and a change in the flooring.

Find out more about apartment in Sant Andreu ›


Open shelf carpentry

Knightsbridge Mews, UK, from Echlin

Echlin redesigned this London home with a number of clever floor plans, including a basement level with a sunken seating area to ensure the rooms are connected but visually separate.

On the ground floor, tailor-made open shelves separate the work and living areas from the dining room, which is furnished with tubular and banquet seating.

Learn more about Knightsbridge Mews ›


Open shelf carpentry

Architect’s workshop, Russia, by Ruetemple

A floor-to-ceiling plywood partition with built-in shelves creates different work and relaxation areas in this art studio, which is located in the garage of a house in Moscow.

The wooden structure also includes a desk, a large L-shaped sofa with gray upholstery, and a staircase that leads to a hanging sleeping platform with rope balustrades.

Learn more about architects’ workshop ›


A white living room with a marble partition

Penthouse Antwerp, Belgium, by De Meester Viegen Architecten

A two-ton slab of marble sandwiched between the ceiling and a steel chimney adds to the broken floor plan of this penthouse in a 1960s building in Antwerp.

The marble works in tandem with a large volume behind it, which is clad with walnut veneer and contains functional rooms to divide the living areas of the apartment into living room, bedroom, dining room and office.

Find out more about Antwerp Penthouse ›


A kitchen with a glass partition

Museum Square House, Spain, by Pauzarq

The layout of this apartment in Bilbao was based on the original concrete beams that were exposed during a renovation by the Spanish studio Pauzarq.

In one room, a U-shaped half-timbered glass partition wall encloses a dining table to lift it off from the kitchen behind it. The aim was to close the kitchen and still let light into the room.

Find out more about Museum Square House ›


A penthouse with wooden partitions

Penthouse BV, Belgium, from Adjo Studio

Large floor-to-ceiling wooden elements were used to transform this open plan penthouse in Hasselt into more practical spaces.

Made from cherry wood veneer, the elements take the form of kitchen cabinets, wardrobes and bookcases. Their arrangement also helps maximize the light from the glazed walls that wrap around the exterior of the apartment.

Learn more about Penthouse BV ›


A dining room with white walls

House CT, Italy, by Pietro Airoldi Studio

When renovating this apartment in Sicily, the architect Pietro Airoldi Studio removed all partitions to maximize the light. However, to define the interiors in zones, bespoke cabinets were introduced.

The main living area of ​​the apartment is separated from the dining area by a plywood and MDF partition that contains storage space and openings to maintain a visual connection.

Learn more about the house CT ›


A bright blue staircase

Fin House, UK, from RA Projects

A light blue steel staircase resembling a sculpture breaks through the white-walled interiors of this London home, which was redesigned for fashion designer Roksanda Ilincic.

The stairwell, which runs through the middle of the house, should create a separation and at the same time offer “permeability”, according to architect RA Projects. On one floor it contains shelves and is used to separate the kitchen from a living room on the other.

Learn more about Fin House ›


This is the latest in our line of lookbooks with curated visual inspirations from Dezeen’s image archive. For more inspiration, check out previous lookbooks with mezzanines, U-shaped kitchens, and quiet living rooms.



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