“I have a castle in the Côte d’Azur, which is 3.66 m by 3.66 meters. It’s for my wife, it’s extravagant of comfort, of kindness.“
– Le Corbusier, evoking his shed Cabanon, Cap-Martin, 1952.
It is with that quote that the designers of Monocabin introduce their creation: a tiny, 26 sq.m. vacation home on Rhodes. And it is more than fitting.
Monocabin’s dimensions may be small, but the vision behind it is big. And indeed, looking at the full range of amenities offered by the property, it’s difficult to imagine what more one could want for a vacation home built for two. It’s elegance made simple.
Located in the upscale residential neighborhood of Ialysos in Rhodes, the tiny home features a bedroom, bathroom and kitchen. Large windows near the ceiling ensure the space is flooded with natural light while also ensuring a sense of privacy.
The living space is further increased by the outdoor patio area which in Rhodes’ warm climate, is designed to function as a type of outdoor living room. There is also a separate outdoor shower and even a workout station with fitness equipment such as TRX, exercise balls and free weights.
But the Monocabin is much more than a mini-holiday home; it is a prototype for a highly affordable and highly efficient modular home that its creators hope could soon be mass-produced and shipped all over the world.
Industrial Design Meets Architecture
The fact is that the home was not designed by an architectural firm, but by Mandalaki Design Studio, a Milan-based product design and consulting firm founded by a Greek – Italian team.
“We collaborated with an architect but we are essentially design studio. I personally have studied interior design and industrial design – that’s why we saw Monocabin more as a product than as a house,” says George Kolliopoulos, co-founder and brand director of Mandalaki. “We also designed everything inside it like the furniture and the kitchen.”
According to Kolliopoulos, the Monocabin built on his home island of Rhodes was just the first step in an ambitious plan. “In the future we hope to be able to sell kits online that include everything you need to build a Monocabin as a package.”
While the Monocabin on Rhodes is connected to the electricity grid, the ultimate goal is to incorporate a solar roof into the design, allowing the building (which has an A+++ energy efficiency rating) to be energy independent. The homes could be shipped anywhere in the world and would be able to be constructed in a mere 2 months, at an estimated cost of 25,000 euros.
The fact that they are built around concrete panels also means that future versions could be extendable and customizable to meet specific needs.
“We have had a lot of interest in Germany, Greece, Italy, Rhodes and the USA and we are in talks with partners about how to proceed, how we can realize this project.”
A Liveable Space and Gallery in One
For now though to get the Monocabin experience one has to travel to Rhodes where the home is available for rent via Airbnb for roughly 90-100 euros per night depending on the season. Located only 200 meters from the sea in an attractive neighborhood, Monocabin offers an interesting accommodation alternative to the island’s large hotels.
The space also functions as a mini gallery for other creations by Mandalaki such as their Myeki Ring, a light and energy source for charging electronic devices, or the Sofia, an attractive wood and glass aroma diffuser and light. Limited edition works by other artists and designers will also be used to further enhance the space.
“I’ve stayed there for a month. It may only be 26 square meters but because the ceiling is 3 meters high it doesn’t feel small at all. It feels very comfortable,” Kolliopoulos told Greece Is. “It’s a small space with a big heart.”
For more information visit monocabin.com.