This compact apartment titled the Riviera Cabin is located in La Spezia, a coastal town in the Liguria region of Italy. The architects from the Italian studio llabb have redesigned the 35 sqm (377 sqft) space in order to divide it into a living area and sleeping area, inspired by the nautical culture (which is a strong peculiarity of this region) and space optimization solutions used inside sailing boat cabins.
The key element of the design is a multi-functional wall that crosses the interior space of the apartment. The wall accompanies, as a path, a visitor from the entrance to the living room, the heart of the house. In the vestibule, the wall houses a technical room as well as the primary storage space and a small dressing room/closet. The master bedroom is accessible through two large doors, and its interior – imagined almost like the inside of a whale’s ribcage – is bound by structural wooden ribs. The final part of the wall, through a small door and steep staircase, leads to the second sleeping area above the master bedroom, inspired by an attic of a small fisherman’s house. Small openings give light to this area and also provide a view of the living room.
The multi-functional wall is made of okoumè, which is also called marine plywood, and laminated in white and blue. The continuity between the hull and the sky is interrupted by the waterline which, from the entrance, leads the eye along the entire apartment. The kitchen, placed at the end of the wall path, is stretched slightly like an inflated sail.
This article is a part of the ‘Compact Living’ series. You can read about other designs of compact houses and apartments on this page.