Tiny Architecture

Great architecture doesn’t need to be big to make a big impression. Working with limited resources and restricted space can bring out some of the world’s brightest architectural gems. From tiny homes to tiny churches, the square footage of a structure has never been a defining character of fantastic design.

The smallest house in Amsterdam

The smallest house in Amsterdam is a popular tourist attraction, located at Oude Hoogstraat 22 in the old city center of Amsterdam. The house measures just 2.02 meters (6 feet 8 inches) wide and 5 meters (16 feet 5 inches) deep, colloquially referred to as the “Smallest house of Europe” and is a fairly typical representation of an Amsterdam canal house, only miniaturised.

Purchased by the city, Amsterdam’s smallest house is just 5 metres deep and 2 metres wide. Image source

Located on the edge of the former site of the Sint-Paulusbroederklooster monastery, this small strip of land was purchased by the city after adjacent buildings were demolished in 1733. When originally constructed, the house consisted of just one storey, and between 1768 and 1787, two upper floors and an attic were built.

World's smallest church, St. Anthony of Padua Chapel

The world’s smallest church is located southwest of Festina, Iowa in the United States. Measuring a meagre 12 ft by 16 ft (or 3.7 metres by 4.9 metres), St. Anthony of Padua Chapel is able to seat a maximum of eight people. The privately-owned tiny church is open to the public at no cost during regular opening hours.

Built as a thank you for returning her son home safely from war, St. Anthony of Padua Chapel is just 12 feet by 16 feet. Image source

The church was originally constructed to fulfill a vow made by Johann Gaertner's mother. She swore that she would construct a chapel to God should He return her son safely from Napoleon’s Russian campaign. The soldier returned home unharmed, and as a result the chapel was built from locally-quarried stone in 1885.

Carrés d'étoiles

Created as a new concept for luxury camping and sustainable tourism, Carrés d'étoiles are cube-shaped micro houses that allow guests to sleep under the stars in amazing locations across France. Constructed from recycled wood, the cube features a platform bed underneath a transparent dome, as well as a €500 astronomical telescope, a star chart and astronomy games, making it ideal for stargazers.

Carrés d'étoiles are mini-mobile homes that are the perfect getaway for star gazers in France. Image source

The portable cabins were designed to stand almost anywhere which having little to no impact on the natural environment. Created by Louis and Nathalie Blanco, there are currently 23 cubes available for rent in 12 locations across France, including the bucolic Omignon wildflower meadow site in Picardy in the north, and a site on the banks of the Durance river in deepest Provence.

Tiny House Kit

The tiny house movement has built up momentum, especially in the wake of the economic downturn, and a growing number of people are downsizing in order to be more economical and ecological. Tiny House UK is a UK-based company that provides a special Tiny House Kit for those looking to keep things small.

Ecological and economical tiny homes start at just £6,500. Image source

They look similar in size to a typical garden shed, but inside are extremely comfortable, boasting all the modern amenities including domestic appliances, composting WC and kitchen units sold as extras. Warm, cozy, and starting at just £6,500, these miniature mobile homes could offer a viable alternative for first-time buyers.

Tiny Coffee House architecture competition

Coffee Shop culture is bigger than ever, and Northern Europe have officially claimed the title of the biggest coffee-drinking countries in the world. Countries like Finland, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, and Sweden are all in the top ten, with as much as 12 kg of coffee per person being consumed each year!

To help the Scandinavians keep warm during the winter months, Bee Breeders is partnering with “Kremm Coffee and Gelato” for the Big Tiny Coffee House Challenge to create a series of iconic coffee kiosks that could be constructed in capital cities across Europe.

Open architecture competitions

  • Closest Deadline first
  • Project competitions first
    Selected winning projects have the potential to be constructed
  • Ideas competitions first
    Experimental competitions with the focus on pushing the boundaries of creativity
ideas COMPETITION
The Last Nuclear Bomb Memorial

Design a memorial that speaks to the cause of ending all nuclear weapons programs

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 15
Jan 27
Apr 21
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Toronto Affordable Housing Challenge

Design affordable housing solutions for Toronto

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 16
Jan 28
Apr 22
Register now
project COMPETITION
Omuli Museum of the Horse

Reimagine a historical primary school into a museum for horses

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 14
Jan 26
Apr 23
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
SKYHIVE 2021 Skyscraper Challenge

Fourth annual competition to redefine the modern-day skyscraper

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 17
Jan 29
Apr 23
Register now
project COMPETITION
Sleeping Pods on a Cliff

Design a series of sleeping pods for a Portugal yoga retreat

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 18
Feb 01
Apr 27
Register now
project COMPETITION
Tiny Kiwi Meditation Cabin

Design a meditation space in New Zealand

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 21
Feb 02
Apr 28
Register now
project COMPETITION
Spirala Community Home

Create a community home for the Spirala Ecological Village

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Dec 22
Feb 03
Apr 29
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Berlin Techno Booth

Bring back techno music to the streets of Berlin by designing individual dance booths

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Mar 23
Apr 20
Jul 06
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Modular Home Design Challenge 2021

Design a modular dream home

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Mar 24
Apr 21
Jul 07
Register now
essay COMPETITION
Essay: Modular Architecture

How modular design has impacted architecture?

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN THE BOOK
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Mar 25
Apr 22
Jul 08
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
Hospice - Home for Terminally Ill

Design a safe and supportive space for those struggling with a terminal illness

Prize: MONETARY AWARD
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Mar 30
Apr 27
Jul 13
Register now
project COMPETITION
Romantic Cabin For Two

Design a romantic and secluded cabin for two in New Zealand

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + CONSTRUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
Mar 31
Apr 28
Jul 14
Register now
ideas COMPETITION
MICROHOME 2021 - Small living, huge impact!

Design a new concept of small-scale architecture

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PUBLICATION IN MAGAZINE
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
May 11
Sep 07
Nov 02
Register now
project COMPETITION
Legendary Bird Home 2021

Design a bird home to fund wildlife charities

Prize: MONETARY AWARD + PRODUCTION
Eligibility: OPEN TO ALL

registration deadlines

Remind me
May 11
Sep 07
Nov 02
Register now

ARCHITECTURE COMPETITIONS

Newsletter