Many of the earliest settlements in the New World, including aboriginal and Viking homes, were built directly into the earth, and Casa JJ, a home in San Luis, Argentina, takes cues from that style of architecture. Though the home uses modern materials like concrete, it is embedded into the sloping landscape around it, making it an efficient and environmentally friendly living space.
One of the biggest benefits of building a home with an earthen berm is that it makes for a powerful natural thermometer. If the conditions in the area aren't too extreme in terms of temperature, an earthen roof and walls keep the interior of the home cool during the summer while serving as ample insulation during the winter. Casa JJ does just that thanks to the temperate clime of Argentina in which it sits.
Image Credit: Walter Salcedo