Popular Architectural Design Styles for Modern Luxury Homes

12:53 Jan 2022

Why a specific architectural style makes for top billing when it comes to designing your luxury home? The reasons could be many; suitable to a particular climate, surrounding landscape and buildings, or having the heritage imprint, among others. Modern luxury homes boast of top-of-the-line features, design, comfort, and convenience. However, choosing a particular luxury home design when preparing custom home plans can be tricky with a plethora of building designs available. Among the many architectural home designs available for you to choose are Colonial, Traditional, Craftsman, Mediterranean, Modern, and others.

Remember, luxury homes should be emblematic of excellence in design, style, convenience, and aesthetics. They should stand out in your neighborhood as distinctive examples of architectural design. So, before you lose out in the maze of designs of modern architecture homes, let us take you through some of the popular architectural design styles. Additionally, you may want to view our detailed resource on building design and its insights about architectural home design.   


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Top architectural design styles for modern luxury homes

 Luxury homes by definition should reflect class, style, and aesthetics for everyone to marvel at and feel great about. The best architectural design styles for custom home plans that you can choose from to build your dream luxury home in the appropriate setting are:


Exuding a sense of nostalgia of a bygone era, the colonial home style can be found in many states. As one of the oldest architectural styles, it took shape in the 17th century when the early European settlers to the USA built their homes inspired by the architecture of their country of origin. With time, these designs came to be known as the colonial architecture that embraced within them styles that were prevalent in countries such as the UK, Spain, the Netherlands, Portugal, and France. Colonial-styled homes have distinct characteristics based on the region.

For instance, the homes in New England use wood as the preferred material whereas homes in the Hudson Valley are primarily built with brick and stone. The distinct characteristics of these homes include a symmetrical design in the exterior accented by dentil molding. Also, each home has a central chimney mounted on the steep roof. The typical building design comprises two stories with bedrooms on the second floor and the family room on the first floor. The staircase finds a pride of place in the home and happens to be a center of attention. The other design features in colonial homes may include an front porch columns, formally defined rooms, strategically placed arched windows, and a bookshelf, among others. You may read our blog if you want to know more about luxury home design.  

Cape Cod:

This classic home style traces its origins to the colonists who had moved to New England in the 17th century and is named after the region of origin, Cape Cod. Built by timber and other materials, these homes, first seen in Massachusetts, could withstand the harsh winter. The characteristics of Cape Cod homes are the low ceilings that prevent snow buildup on roofs and a central chimney.

At present, the Cape Cod style has evolved into three variations – the half-cape, the three-quarter cape, and the full cape. The earliest and also the simplest variation happens to be the half or single cape characterized by a front door and two multi-paned windows on either side of the front exterior.

This style graduated to a three-quarter cape where in addition to the presence of a front door and two multi-paned windows on the three-quarter side of the home, is the addition of a single-window on the other side as well. The last variation of the full cape was mainly the preserve of the wealthy in the eighteenth century. However, today, it is characterized by a front door at the center flanked by two symmetrical windows on either side.

Architect Royal Barry Wills can be credited with reviving the Cape Cod style in the twentieth century. He went about popularizing the architecture home design by selling the floor plans to his clients looking for a classic suburban home for just a dollar.

The popularity of this architectural design among the crème de la crème can be gauged from the fact that Actor Dakota Fanning bought a 4,428 square-foot Cape Cod home in the Valley Village for a princely sum of $2.95 million. The attractive mansion has features such as a double-height central hall, an elegant chandelier, a mantel fireplace, a master bedroom having a glass-enclosed steam shower, and walk-in closets, among many others.


As the name suggests, the craftsman home came about from the Arts and Crafts movement of the early twentieth century. Similar to the bungalow style, the craftsman style marked by simplistic architecture initially faced flak from traditionalists for going against the tide of what was then the Victorian style.

The highlight of this particular design is a symmetrical structure and the use of natural materials such as wood, brick, and stone. The features include a low-pitched roof having hipped gables, wide front porches, pedestals extending to the ground level, overhanging eaves, and handcrafted wood or stone work.

Craftsman homes have open interiors to allow family interaction and the easy movement of people residing there. One can customize this particular type of Houston architecture by including features such as cabinetry, bookcases, built-in furniture, or even eating nooks.

To cite an example, the Gamble House in Pasadena designed between 1908 to 1909 can be said to be a quintessential Arts and Crafts home. The use of natural materials and unique craftsmanship mark the beauty of this house that was thought of to be a winter home for David and Mary Gamble, a member of the Procter and Gamble company. Interestingly, the architect, Greene had custom-made this home to suit the rustic landscape of Pasadena. You may view our video to know about the features of a luxury home in Houston.


Again, dating back to the seventeenth century when agriculture was the principal activity for immigrants to earn a livelihood, the houses built on agricultural lands were called farmhouses. Now, the farmhouse architectural home design has evolved into a distinct style of luxury homes imbibing a classic look.

The hallmark of a farmhouse, besides being located in a rural setting, is the presence of outdoor porches. The front porch provided shade to the homeowners who used to work in the field, especially during the summer season. The initial farmhouses were built using locally available resources.

But now, wood is the preferred material with the exteriors being reinforced by clapboards to prevent moisture and wind from reaching and damaging the foundation.

According to Elizabeth Drake, an interior designer, building a modern luxury home with a farmhouse style is to stay away from the decor that offers a suburban look. Rather, colorful patterns form part of the interiors to fashion a rustic palette.

Among the examples that can be cited to highlight the farmhouse style design is the Knowlton Residence in Quebec, Canada featuring the traditional and classic elements. The gabled farmhouse has two sides to it wherein the white main house complements the snowy landscape outside. The contemporary setting of barns and agricultural sheds notwithstanding, the residence has a sliding door made of glass with metal framing. The large custom windows made of weathered wood overlook the snowy countryside to let the residents soak in the beauty of mother nature.


The modern architectural home design traces its origin to the first half of the twentieth century. But the real push to the style was received after the Second World War when architects began toying with styles that went beyond the traditional use of steel, glass, and concrete. It was mainly inspired by the art movement of modernism and rejected the neoclassical architecture that was the norm throughout the nineteenth century.

Differing from contemporary architecture, the modern home design harps on functionality while keeping simplicity at its core. The design style has been credited to Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe, one of the renowned architects who designed the first open office concept. This led to many architects designing homes without detached rooms or partitions. Valuing function over form, a modern home style design consists of an open floor plan.

To cite an example of a modern home, the Broadmoor residence built in the seventies was transformed into a modern luxury home by David Coleman, the renowned architect. Located in Seattle, the exterior of the home has wooden planks complementing the greenery outside. Flaunting a minimalist interior design, the home has a function-oriented interior paired with an open floor plan. Also, the large windows let the natural light inside making the home look bigger and grander.


 The above-mentioned Houston architecture design styles can be your preferred palette to choose from while designing a modern luxury home replete with all modern conveniences. Your Houston architect too can present you with a raft of design styles, which you can know more about in a blog featuring the popular architectural design styles.  So when you decide to prepare custom home plans for your luxury home design, you will have the knowledge to identify your preferred architectural design style.


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