5 creative uses of glass in architecture tips, Home windows glazing, Building facade openings guide

5 Creative Uses of Glass in Architecture Guide

28 March 2022

The Crystal Palace in London was one of the world’s first large-scale glass structures.

Since then the use of glass in architecture has increased significantly offering an excellent choice for both style and function in all different kinds of buildings. In today’s world, there are some truly impressive glass structures.

5 creative uses of glass in architecture

For a rundown of 5 of the most creative uses of glass in architecture, keep reading.

Clear Thinking: 5 Creative Uses of Glass in Architecture

  1. The Louvre, Paris

The Louvre is one of the most famous glass buildings in the world, and a remarkable use of glass in architecture. The pyramid structure makes this building stand out as a very unique landmark.

The architectural design was not the most difficult part of this, but rather the glass which the architect (I.M. Pei) insisted be clear. At the time most glass had a blue or green tint, and this new glass took around 2 years to manufacture.

  1. The Gherkin, London

The Gherkin is a great example of the use of glass in modern architecture. The entire outer layer is double glazed to improve the thermal comfort of the building.

Despite the curved shape of the building almost every pane of architectural glass used is flat except for the cap at the very top.

  1. House Cafe Kanyon, Istanbul

The House Cafe Kanyon is a dining experience located in the Kanyon shopping mall. The structure is made up of a walnut floor, a steel frame, and a glass shell. This gives it a sense of separation from the mall that it resides in.

Storefront glass doors are not uncommon, and help make spaces feel bigger. This structure takes things to the next level with glass walls and a glass ceiling, creating a space that feels both open and enclosed at the same time.

  1. Willis Tower, Chicago

The Willis Tower in Chicago gives visitors a very unique experience. While most skyscrapers have glass windows all over, few have glass balconies like this.

Near the peak are several glass boxes that extend outwards from the building which you can step into. When you look down all you’ll see is the street 1,353 feet (412 meters) below.

It’s safe to say this isn’t any standard commercial glass as that would present some serious health and safety risks. The glass consists of three layers, each half an inch thick. It is all tempered to ensure its durability.

  1. Glass Houseboat by X-Architects

The Glass Houseboat designed by X-Architects is one of the most impressive and luxurious houseboats on the planet. It has two levels, both of which have glass windows from floor to ceiling on all sides.

It’s located off the coast of Dubai and anyone on board will have an uninterrupted view of the city and the open sea. The design was inspired by Farnsworth House, another incredible piece of architecture by Miles Van Der Rohe.

The Appeal of Glass in Architecture

There has been a wide range of uses of glass in architecture over the years. Glass can be used in a range of ways to make buildings stand out and impress onlookers. On top of that, it allows people to see in and out, which in some circumstances makes all the difference.

If you’re interested in more architecture-related articles, check out some of our other blog posts.

Comments on this guide to 5 creative uses of glass in architecture article are welcome.


Windows Posts

7 reasons why you should replace your old glass windows
7 reasons why you should replace your old glass windows

Where should you check out sash windows

Top Window Styles Architects Love

How to choose best casement windows for your house

Wisdom of Choosing Aluminium Windows


Residential Architecture

House Extension Designs

House Designs

Landscape designs

Comments / photos for the Clear Thinking: 5 Creative Uses of Glass in Architecture page welcome