As the song says, “the times they are a-changing,” and as attendance at houses of worship continues to decrease, many small churches have closed their doors. But the architecture is so gorgeous that it seems a shame to just bulldoze the vacant church buildings. So Zecc Architects, an innovative firm in Utrecht, Netherlands, maintains the building exteriors while renovating the insides.
This is the now-defunct St. Jakobus church in Utrecht.
You'd never guess that the inside foyer would look like this.
Keeping the arches and windows, the architects divided up the space into smaller, more homey sections.
The ultramodern lines are striking against the original stained glass windows.
Clean angles and very contemporary art and design keep this home from looking too kitschy or cute.
And the floating walls and ceilings make for some surprising places for the natural light to come in.
Can you imagine the acoustics in here?
The dining room table is one of the centerpieces of the home, perfect for entertaining guests.
The lofted bedroom gets plenty of natural light.
The renovated church previously served as a showroom for antique furniture for six years before getting the full makeover.
But it really shines as a home.
And from this angle, you'd never guess it was meant to be anything else.
Credit: Yatzer | Photography: Frank Hanswijk