What is Asian Zen Style?

Asian Zen Style is a tranquil and minimalist interior design approach influenced by the simplicity and natural elements of Zen philosophy.


The Asian Zen Style in interior design gracefully captures the essence of tranquility, balance, and harmony inspired by the Zen philosophy, which originates from East Asian Buddhism. Focused on creating serene environments that facilitate relaxation and peace, this style heavily emphasizes natural elements, simplicity in form, and minimal clutter. The aim is to craft spaces that provide a reprieve from the bustling world outside, encouraging mindfulness and contemplation.

Central to the Asian Zen Style are clean lines, neutral color palettes, and the inclusion of organic materials such as wood, stone, and bamboo. Furniture is often low to the ground, mirroring traditional Japanese seating arrangements, and is chosen for its functionality and understated design. Decor is kept to a minimum, with each piece thoughtfully selected to add to the room's sense of calm without overwhelming the space. Nature plays a significant role, with elements like indoor plants, water features, and natural light being pivotal in bringing the outside in.

One of the key concepts in Asian Zen Style is the notion of ‘Ma’, referring to the thoughtful use of space or emptiness as an element of design. This principle encourages the intentional leaving of open spaces, which are viewed not as empty but as areas full of potential. Lighting, too, is carefully considered, with natural light being preferred. However, soft ambient lighting is used to maintain the peaceful atmosphere during the evening.


Asian Zen Style is prevalent in homes seeking a peaceful retreat atmosphere, especially in bedrooms, living rooms, and spaces designated for meditation or yoga. Businesses such as spas, wellness centers, and minimalist cafes also commonly adopt this style to enhance their ambiance of calm and relaxation.


  • What is the philosophical basis of the Asian Zen Style?

    The philosophical basis of the Asian Zen Style is the Zen philosophy from East Asian Buddhism, which emphasizes tranquility, mindfulness, and the appreciation of simplicity and nature.

  • How does the Asian Zen Style incorporate nature?

    The Asian Zen Style incorporates nature through the use of natural materials, indoor plants, water features, and maximizing natural light. These elements are integral to creating a connection with the natural world and enhancing the room's sense of calm.

  • Why is furniture often low to the ground in Asian Zen interiors?

    Furniture is often low to the ground in Asian Zen interiors to mirror traditional Japanese seating arrangements, which promotes a closer connection to the earth and supports the minimalist and uncluttered aesthetic of the style.

Practical Application

To apply the Asian Zen Style to your interior, start by adopting a minimalist approach, reducing clutter to create a serene space. Embrace a neutral color palette and incorporate natural materials and elements that evoke tranquility. Be intentional with your furniture and decor choices, ensuring they are functional and contribute to the peaceful ambiance of the room. Finally, allow plenty of open space and natural light to enter, utilizing soft, ambient lighting to maintain a calm atmosphere.