Future City Living with YO! Home
London Design Festival: Imagine an eighty square metre one bed city apartment with a bed that elevates up into the ceiling to reveal a sunken lounge, where your wine cellar pops up out of the floor at the touch of a button, and a sliding wall tucks away to keep the space open or slides out to create a second bedroom and office. This is the YO! Home set to revolutionise city living and change the way we think about and use the space within our homes.
At 100% Design, Simon Woodroffe, entrepreneur and chief of the YO! brand, put the prototype into action and talked of how it uses ‘twelve moving parts’ incorporating technology and mechanics from theatre sets, a previous career of Woodroffe’s. Essentially, this is one eighty square metre room but you decide how you want to use it. And as this one space becomes four maybe five separate rooms at different times, the space doubles, even trebles in its usable size. When the bed is lowered from the ceiling, the bedroom becomes eighty square metres, when the bed is elevated the sunken seating is an 80 square metres space.
This concept is definitely is a big step on from some of the ideas I have seen for compact living. As in the set of a movie or theatre production, ‘scene shifting’ springs to my mind and I wondered why mechanical technology such as this isn’t used more often in the home and also why it hasn’t been done before? Cost maybe? Or a good idea that nobody has come up with until now? Also what about the surfaces and finishes, would the buyer be restricted? Woodroffe said that the interior would be different for each home and could be chosen from a selection of contemporary styles and designs. And of course, the aesthetic would look different from one big city to the other. And price? The YO! Home is still a prototype but Woodroffe thinks the cost maybe 5%-15% more than a standard apartment of the same size but this would outweigh the cost of having to furnish and decorate your home from scratch.
What do I like about the YO! Home? Firstly, how its just one space, and that with ‘scene changes’ it becomes multifunctional and really maximises the space available. I like the flexibility – do I want my bedroom to feel 80 square metres, or do I want the bedroom to ‘disappear’ and for the living and seating area to feel spacious. Also, the use of under the floor for what I am calling ‘pop-up’ items. We may have seen a wine cellar/cupboard located beneath the floor, by why not a place for printers and snack bars, or sunken dining.
The first individual apartments could be available in eighteen months time and from there we could see full developments of YO! Homes in all our major cities. As Woodroffe said, our children’s children will look back at how we live today, see it as quite primitive and say ‘why didn’t their homes have moving parts’!
What do you think? Could you live in a YO! Home?
More info over at YO!
Photography: Design Lovers Blog