European cities with the most beautiful homes, according to Pinterest
Everyone thinks that they have the most beautiful home around. From the rush of warm air as you walk through the front door on a cold winter’s night, to that first sip of tea as you recline after a busy day of work, all these little moments make us feel that our house is a special place to live.
But objectively some houses are more stylish, more dazzling than others. Houses where extra effort has been put into the interior, where every corner has been meticulously designed and redesigned. Houses that stop you in your tracks, which stand out from the rest.
Intrigued by a 50% surge in searches for ‘most beautiful European cities’, as landlord building insurance experts we wanted to find out just that. And to do so we made use of one of the most popular image sharing sites around: Pinterest. On the site, users can ‘pin’ particular images or links that they find appealing, or if they are particularly enamoured with a certain theme or subject they can set up boards dedicated solely to them.
By tallying up all the pins and boards which pay homage to a city’s housing and architecture, we’ve managed to definitively rank which European and UK cities have the most beautiful homes.
The 10 most attractive European cities
Coming out on top, as the city with the most beautiful homes in all of Europe, is London. The UK’s capital recorded a whopping 68,531 pins, twice as many as the next most pinned city. There are also 653 boards dedicated to the city’s outstanding architecture. This leaves it with an aesthetic home score of 9.81.
So what makes London so beloved by this burgeoning online community? One contributing factor is the sheer variety of architecture within London. From the English Baroque style buildings which rose up across London in the wake of the Great Fire, to the slick modern stylings of today’s new builds, across the city there is something for everyone.
Another contributing factor is the wealth of the city. London remains one of the richest cities in the world, and is by some barometers the most affluent city in Europe. An outrageous 272,400 millionaires call the city home. With money no object for some, interiors within the luxury flats and apartments of London are some of the most ostentatious and eye-catching around. Images of such opulent interiors will understandably appeal to the Pinterest fanatics.
In second place is the German capital: Berlin. For so long a city split into two, since the fall of the Soviet Union, Berlin has become a popular destination for jet setting weekend breakers. And it’s easy to see why when it is home to such beautiful buildings. Berlin’s homes have attracted 27,439 pins, along with 435 boards, giving it an aesthetic home score of 9.62.
Berlin has gone through a number of overhauls with much of the city’s architecture demolished and re-built throughout the 1950s and 60s. The city therefore has an exceptionally modern flavour making use of Bauhaus and Brutalist stylings. An acquired taste for some, there is still a certain romance to the hard edgings and monochrome colourings of Berlin’s buildings which has earned them a cult following.
Paris, the city of lights, will have to begrudgingly accept third place on our list. The city that birthed Coco Chanel, Jean-Luc Godard, and Kylian Mbappe has received 26,557 pins and garnered 366 boards. Totalling up to an aesthetic home score of 9.43.
The long stretches of classical cream buildings, punctuated by narrow buildings has made Paris one of the most beloved cities by tourists and photographers alike. And Paris’ interiors are just as noteworthy. Thanks to their large double windows, and their matching of classic and modern styles, Paris has some of the most slick, stylish homes on the continent.
With a total of 25,061 pins and 345 boards, Amsterdam is fourth on our list. The Dutch capital’s aesthetic home score of 9.25 is certainly thanks to the blisteringly colourful buildings which overlook the Amstel river.
In contrast to the other cities on this list, Amsterdam’s architecture is more down to Earth. Whereas other European capitals are packed with skyscrapers, very few buildings in Amsterdam exceed six stories, giving the whole city a more personable air.
Despite the colour that adorns the outside of so many buildings, Amsterdamers opt for a more minimalist style indoors. Apartments are often filled with clean crisp white walls, with black furnishings in turn creating a startling, intriguing space.
The Eternal City has survived deranged dictators, invasions, and the fall of an empire, but how it does fare against the masses on Pinterest? Pretty well in the end. Rome recorded a total number of 19,420 pins, along with an additional 294 boards. This has given it an aesthetic home score of 8.97.
A lot of the interior designs in Rome take inspiration from their historic surroundings. Classical styles making use of curved lines and calm colourings match perfectly with the sand coloured walls of the city. Many interiors make use of the iconography of the city, featuring religious imagery that wouldn’t be out of place in the Sistine Chapel.
Perhaps a surprise entry this high up on the list, Naples used to be cruelly derided by sections in the North of the country as the sewer of Italy. Yet, clearly this is not the case. Naples has recorded a total 19,420 pins, along with 289 boards on Pinterest. This has given it an aesthetic home score of 8.97, thus joint with Rome.
Naples’ proximity to the Mediterranean Sea has had a huge impact on its interior designs. Homes often have an aqua vibe, making use of deep blues and cyans in homage to the sea that powers so much of the local economy, as well as tribute to the local football team. It is not unusual to see imagery of powerful swordfish leaping out of the water, or old-fashioned fishing boats manfully fighting against the tide. In some houses you might even find shrines to the late Diego Maradona, who inspired the Neopolitans to their first Italian league title back in the 1980s.
The English poet and intellectual John Milton described Athens “as the eye of Greece, mother of arts and eloquence”. Something which bodes well for a strong score from Pinterest. There are 15,274 pins dedicated to the Greek capital, along with 235 boards. This gives Athens an aesthetic home score of 8.59.
Although the Acropolis grabs most of the attention, there is more to Athens’ architecture than the ruins which overlook the city. The architecture of Athens is a fusion of modern European stylings, along with a hint of the Middle East. What stands out about Athens are the whites and yellows of the brick buildings which look particularly beautiful at sunset.
One of the most romantic cities in Europe, Venice is joint seventh on our list. The city has garnered 12,661 pins, and has 275 boards dedicated to its beauty. This gives it an aesthetic home score of 8.59, the same as Athens.
Venice is unlike any other city. With no roads, all the city’s travel occurs on its intricate network of 150 canals. This is something which naturally affects Venice’s architecture. Beneficiaries of the renaissance, Venice’s architecture is more conservative than some other Italian cities. There is an understated grace to the city’s buildings which gives them a sense of timelessness. Inside there is a strong emphasis on continuity, with many interiors retaining the magic of the city’s past.
One of the most unique cities around, there is nowhere quite like Barcelona. Famed for its football heritage and Gaudian architecture (more on that later), the Catalonian capital has received 10,708 pins and inspired 213 boards. Thus earning it an aesthetic home score of 8.30.
Barcelona is well known for its cosmopolitan mix of modern and gothic architecture. For every Torre Glores, a bullet like skyscraper of metallic colourings, there is a Sagrada Familia, a stunning gothic castle covered in intricate details. Inside, Barcelona is influenced heavily by the chic stylings of Paris and Milan, whilst also maintaining hints of its own heritage with occasional shots of colour.
The Spanish capital is tenth on our list. Madrid has attracted 9,447 pins along with 188 boards. This has given it an aesthetic home score of 8.11.
Madrid’s most notable buildings are in large thanks to architect Antonio Palacios. Palacios was Spain’s pre-eminent architect in the first third of the 20th century, and designed eclectic buildings such as the Palacio de Comunicaciones and Banco del Río de la Plata. All of which enabled Madrid to live up to its status as capital city.
Top 10 UK cities with most beautiful homes
Of course you don’t have to travel across the continent to see beautiful homes. As there are many architectural delights right on your doorstep, as the UK itself is home to many stunning builds and stylish interiors.
As the undisputed champions of Europe, it is no surprise that London are also crowned the city with the most beautiful homes in the UK. In the UK standings, London has an impressive aesthetic home score of 9.63. Unsurpassable.
Situated on the River Avon, and crowned the best British city to live in in 2014 and 2017, it’s easy to see why Bristol is so high on our list. A total number 13,425 pins are dedicated to the city in the south-west along with 161 boards. This has earnt Bristol an aesthetic home score of 9.08.
One of the hilliest cities in the UK, the whole history of Britain is visible on Bristol’s streets. Parts of the fortified city date as far back to the medieval era, whilst there are also glimpses of the Tudor era in some of the pubs and houses that populate Bristol. And it is this sheer variety which captures the imagination of the Pinterest users. From the grand Georgian halls to the modern builds that popped up in the wake of the Blitz, Bristol is a city which drips with heritage.
So often labelled as Britain’s second city, Birmingham finishes third in this list. After receiving 8,478 pins, along with 116 boards, Birmingham ends up with an aesthetic home score of 8.52.
Birmingham has one of the most modern architectural styles in the country. Many of the city’s most recognisable sites such as the Bullring and New Street Station have all had major overhauls. Outside the centre there are some lovely buildings which indicate the city’s industrial past, particularly in the Bournville area. Whilst for more opulent housing look to leafy Edgbaston.
A city built by the industrial revolution, Manchester is fourth on our list. With a tally of 4,433 pins and 176 boards, Manchester has earned an aesthetic home score of 8.15.
Although Manchester does not benefit from the historic buildings enjoyed by Bristol or Bath, it is still a city full of variety. A vast array of architectural styles have left their imprint on this Northern powerhouse, including Venetian Gothic, Art Deco, and Neo Classical. The city itself has undergone various periods of regeneration. The City Council has embraced various unusual builds to showcase the city’s rebellious character. In particular, the rejuvenation of the east of the city over the last decade has also been one of the great British architectural success stories of the last decade.
Originally named Castle Rock, Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital and its second most populous city. Edinburgh received more pins than Manchester, with 5,233 being inspired by the city. Yet it garnered just 110 boards which is why it is joint fourth with Manchester. Edinburgh received an 8.15 on the aesthetic home score.
Edinburgh is home to some of the world’s oldest high-rise buildings. Due to the narrowness of the streets, as well as the desire by the then townsfolk to live within the defensive walls, the city planners had no option but to build upwards. Although many of Edinburgh’s oldest buildings were destroyed in the great fire of 1824, there still stands some structures within the city that are in excess of 1,000 years old.
The steel city is sixth on our list. There are a surprising 11,087 pins dedicated to the South Yorkshire city, a number that surpasses both Manchester and Edinburgh combined. Where it is let down is its lack of dedicated boards, with just 79 setup to honour the city’s homes. This leaves Sheffield with an aesthetic home score of 7.97.
Sheffield is another Northern city which came of age during the Industrial Revolution, with most of the city’s older buildings coming from that era. A victim of the blitz due to its abundance of factories, the city underwent a major rejuvenation just after the war. In recent years, Sheffield has benefited from rapid localised economic growth along with an ever expanding University.
A port city on the south coast of Devon, Plymouth is seventh on our list. Plymouth’s history dates back to as far as the Bronze Age, so it has been a long road to being judged by the users of Pinterest. And it has performed quite admirably. It has earned 5,173 pins alongside a total number of 90 boards. This gives the coastal city an aesthetic home score of 7.78.
Plymouth’s history defines its housing. Its status as an industrial port and fishing hotspot are clearly visible in the layout of the city’s residential streets. Houses are packed tightly together in a terrace formation, which in previous decades would’ve been filled with fisherman ready to get the catch of the day. Like many UK cities, its city centre was re-built in the wake of the war, giving it a strong hub for shopping and arcades.
The reigning UK City of Culture, it should come as no surprise that Coventry appears in our top ten. The second largest city in the west midlands, Coventry received a total number of 2,951 pins, along with 81 boards. This has given the city an aesthetic home score of 7.04.
Coventry was famously described as a Ghost Town by local band The Specials due to the economic turmoil and mass unemployment the city experienced in the 1980s. Yet, all has changed now, with the city undergoing a renaissance. And there is set to be more change ahead as the council has greenlit a £450m regeneration project in the city centre.
Therefore, when you factor in Coventry’s new builds, along with the famous cathedral ruins, it is no surprise Coventry has caught the eye of Pinterest’s users.
A cathedral city with origins that stretch back to the era of the Romans, York is ninth on our list. A total of 4,717 pins eclipses both Manchester and Coventry, yet it is let down by its dearth of boards on pinterest. There are just 44 boards dedicated to the city. This leaves York with an aesthetic home score of 6.49.
Considerable effort has been made to maintain the city’s unique character. The city itself is surrounded by a green belt in order to restrict development encroaching onto York’s historic buildings. York has some of the oldest buildings still standing in the UK. ‘The Shambles’, one of the most famous streets in the country, is home to a series of shops and houses which were built in the 14th and 15th century. Something which understandably appeals to Pinterest’s fans of medieval architecture.
The second Scottish city to appear on this list, Glasgow sneaks into our top ten. The fourth most populous city in the UK, Glasgow has received a total number of 2,235 pins alongside 63 boards. This has earnt Glasgow an aesthetic home score of 6.12.
Glasgow has consistently been in a race with itself to build enough houses to keep up with its own population growth. Therefore, there is an eclectic mix of building styles across the city. Glasgow’s tenements are of particular note. They are large blocks filled with various types of accommodation including flats and apartments. Many of Glasgow’s tenements were built in the 1800s, giving them a unique charm.
Protecting your beautiful home
Whether you live in a semi-detached, terrace, or apartment block, if you believe that your home is beautiful then it is worth insuring.
We offer home insurance which covers you against the cost of repairing or rebuilding your home should the worst happen. We are opposed to the rise of one-size-fits-all, unsatisfactory home insurance policies, which is why we try to offer a bespoke service to suit every beautiful home.