Houses of Light and the Little Village

Houses of Light and the Little Village

Mukou Leimondo Nursery School

What is reminiscent of a prison from the outside, is actually a small paradise for children.

As if no-one should know about it, yes, as if it was a place of secret pleasures, the façade does not reveal in the slightest what is actually going on inside. A lattice of white wooden slats covers the side facing the street from top to bottom, and would suggest a two-storied building, if it weren't for a square opening that revealed the sky.

In the interior, the Mukou Leimondo Nursery School by Archivision Hirotani Studio is probably one of the most beautiful and creative concepts for nursery schools that exist. The appearance of the large central rooms is characterized by bright wood in the flooring, wall cladding, and furniture. This conveys a relaxed and appealing atmosphere. But the true magic of the place is found in the rooms in between.

Houses of Light

'House of Light', the architects call five fabulous rooms, that are supposed to make the children feel at home. These high rooms consist of wooden volumes that tower the ceiling of the central rooms by far. At the upper end of every 'house', there is at least one skylight, but which faces a different direction in each house, producing different lighting situations depending on the daytime or season. Small halogen lights support the skylights and create a dreamy mood.

The Little Village

The Houses of Light are only one side of the ingenious spacial concept. The site in Kyoto was too small for a playground or a garden, so this outdoor area was just moved to the roof of the building. So there is a large space in the open air for wild romping. This playground is enclosed by a wall, shielding the children from views, and protecting them from their own potentially reckless actions. Only the square opening mentioned at the beginning provides an exciting view at the rushing bullet train. But this is not all. The five Houses of Light jut from the floor as large wooden huts, and transform the roof into 'the Little Village', as the architects call it. Overhangs in front of the skylights create small, shady verandas from where the children may look inside the Houses of Light.

A Masterpiece

There won't be many nursery schools that offer children such a versatile and fanciful use of space as in the Mukou Leimondo Nursery School. Like in so many other projects in Japan, they also got the most out of the limited spacial options. The solution is even that good, that we should actually be thankful that there even had been a problem at all. And, therefore, we should wish Archivision Hirotani Studio aplenty similar spacial challenges for the future.

Project details


Completion: 2013


Site area: 2147,74 m²

Building area: 1113,03 m²


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jamesriyadi33's picture
jamesriyadi33 25. August 2015 - 10:46

Last night My spouse and i examine fresh document however I believe I'll examine that yet again as i get a vacation to Pulau Tidung Pulau Seribu