December 29, 2010

In Praise of Bed Alcoves

Extreme Bed Alcoves
Hotel Aire de Bardenas in Spain via Remodelista

In his landmark tome (and my favorite architectural book of all), A Pattern Language, Christopher Alexander explains why Bed Alcoves are a winning design idea.

Pattern #188 - Bed Alcove 

Bedrooms make no sense. 
Don't put single beds in empty rooms called bedrooms, but instead put individual bed alcoves off rooms with other nonsleeping functions, so the bed itself becomes a tiny private haven.

 Floor plan view of Bed Alcove
Christopher Alexander's A Pattern Language

Imagine having full use of rooms that go largely uninhabited during the day, just because there is a big bed hogging the middle.  Bed alcoves save so much space, you might find yourself being able to build significantly smaller, or forgo that addition altogether.  Plus, they are an incredibly cozy and delightful place to sleep.  That is why all of the bedrooms in THE CONCORD GREEN HEALTHY HOME will employ Alexander's clever pattern.

Some inspiration:

Kid favorite
Clearly, designer Suzanne Kasler is a big fan of the bed alcove concept, as these next three photos show:


Cottage - unknown, Modern - Piet Boon, Exotic - unknown, Kid Favorite - Sandell Sandberg.


  1. I love the bedrooms! I really like loft beds in bedroom and this site has a lot of good examples of them all. Thanks for the great photos.

  2. Pattern Language by Alexander has been our go-to book for remodeling and helping us to know some things to look for when buying a home for the last 35 years. Bought it in Berkeley and it has traveled with us all over the US.
    So lovely to see you mention it here!


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