Can a McMansion successfully coexist with nature?

A description of a large Coral Gables, Florida house suggests McMansions and nature can successfully mix:

Since the major asset of living in coastal Miami is nature, we’ve never understood the draw of a McMansion that fights its setting. Unfortunately, the city’s got street after street of homes incongruously designed, then slapped on lots stripped of fauna.

Not this beauty, though! Set on two lakefront acres in Coral Gables filled with sabal palms, live oaks, palmettos and ferns, the home is built with floor-to-ceiling windows that fill it with light and allow the outside to fill in as the most glorious decor, giving each room a loft-like, secluded feel.

While not everyone can afford — or even wants — a massive 12,231-square foot, $8.9 million home, the principle applies on scale: more nature is better!

There are two perspectives to this mixing and I don’t think they agree:

1. A home can be enhanced by its interaction with nature. This is linked to several factors: the size of the lot (just how much nature is around the home), the landscaping around the house (which is more like sculpted nature), and how the architecture and design of the home allows for more views or spaces for interaction with nature.

2. Critics of McMansions would suggest they are antithetical to nature and conservation. Big homes require lots of resources to construct and maintain. Additionally, they tend to be associated with suburban sprawl and lots of driving. A big home might be nicely married to nature but it is still an excessive use of resources.

This posting does seem to be making the point that many McMansions try to adopt natural elements but fail. Like my first point, a well-done connection to nature might be able to gloss over other problems with McMansions. However, I think there are still some out there who would argue that McMansions can never really promote nature.

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