A kindergarten shaped like a cat, a skyscraper shaped like an elephant, a hotel shaped like a crocodile — these are just a few of the forms that animal-shaped architecture has taken. Whether to reflect the role of the building, like a fisheries department shaped like a fish, or just for the sheer whimsy of it, like roadside attractions shaped like dinosaurs and whales, this “zoomorphic” style appears all over.
Here are 25 examples of animal architecture from around the world:
Tirau, New Zealand
(photograph by Emilee Rader)
(photograph by Sandy Austin)
An information center and a wool outlet shaped like a dog and sheep.
DUCK OF FLANDERS
Flanders, New York
(photograph by Allison Meier)
An egg shop shaped like a duck.
LUCY THE ELEPHANT
Margate City, New Jersey
(photograph by Silver2Silicon)
A building shaped like an elephant.
FRESHWATER FISHING HALL OF FAME
Fishing hall of fame shaped like a musky fish.
DOG BARK PARK INN
(photograph by erin_pass)
(photograph by Jacob Feuer)
B&B shaped like a beagle.
(photograph by Paula/Flickr user)
The Macau Pavilion at Expo 2010 in Shanghai, shaped like a rabbit.
A building in a Japanese park shaped like a whale.
(photograph by Simon Burchell)
A Philippines building shaped like a crab.
BALADE DES GNOMES
A hotel room shaped like a Trojan horse.
Niagara Falls, New York
(photograph Steve Moskowitz)
A building in Niagara Falls shaped like a turtle. (Want to redevelop it?)
(photograph by Nagaraju raveender)
A fisheries department shaped like a fish.
Dadswells Bridge, Australia
(photograph by KnitSpirit)
(photograph Sascha Grant)
A tourist complex shaped like a koala.
(photograph by Jarcje/Wikimedia)
A skyscraper shaped like an elephant.
(photograph by Meredith P.)
This train station is shaped like a cat, and has a cat station master named Tama. In fact, there’s also a train there with a cat face:
(photograph by Doug Wertman)
A swimming hole structure shaped like a whale.
(photograph by Don Graham)
A gift shop shaped like a dinosaur, which also houses a creationism museum. Seriously.
A Holiday Inn shaped like a crocodile.
CONCH SHELL HOUSE
Isla Mujeres, Mexico
(photograph by Theron LaBounty)
A house shaped like a conch shell.
Mexico City, Mexico
(photograph Mahfuz Ahmed)
A house shaped like a nautilus.
KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN
(photograph Kevin Trotman)
A KFC shaped like a chicken.
(photograph by Peter Woodard)
A viewing platform shaped like a bull (sadly torn down in 2007).
(photograph by Never House)
An oceanographic park shaped like a fish.
(photograph by cobalt123)
A steakhouse shaped like a longhorn skull.