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Architectural Detail: Conversation Pit

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Conversation pit is an architectural feature, popular in the period between 1950s and 1970s, that looks like a small pit in the floor furnished with seats and often a table. Today you can still see conversation pits in homes and outdoors functioning as space for sitting, conversing and watching TV.

Conversation Pit Ideas

Architectural Detail: Conversation Pit

Eero Saarinen’s Miller House, originally built in 1957

Conversation pits that made sunken living rooms popular can be small or big but they differ from said living rooms by being just a an area within a room.

You can also build a conversation pit outfoors as part of your deck or terrace or as a lounge space near a swimming pool. In the outdoors conversation pits are often enhanced with fire pits.


A conversation pit is a great way to bring people closer together and, as the name suggests, start conversations. It is especially helpful for spacious open layout homes where creating intimate space is challenging.


A conversation pit can be round or square and it might be double to provide space for seating. Depending on the depth some pits may feature stairs that allow easy access to the seats. The seats are placed along the pit’s perimeter so that all people are facing each other.


A conversation pit at home can differ from the one outdoors depending on the materials used. Indoors, a conversation pit can be covered with carpet for more comfort and warmth. Seats often feature soft cushions and throw pillows while the outdoor pits can feature only wooden seats.

Sunken Living Room

Sunken living room is similar to a conversation pit, only the latter is smaller and only extends to the middle of the room. A sunken living room can also be seen in modern architecture in complex structures.

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Mona Liz

I am an interior design and fashion enthusiast with a passion for writing, gathering up interesting/alternative home design ideas. I love lofts, canopy beds, fluffy throws and rugs, but also cats, food, and video games.
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One Response to “Architectural Detail: Conversation Pit”
  1. Eddie Alfaro Says:

    I always liked this style of decor. It is interesting how the floor is lowered and creates a space for people to talk and hangout.

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