- Juan Baraja
Portable homes are not something that have typically been associated with high style. Often, portable or prefabricated dwellings favour function over fashion. Yet the idea of a prefabricated home—manufactured efficiently and sustainably and shipped to a chosen location—continues to captivate designers. Ábaton, an architecture and construction firm based in Madrid, is committed to bringing high design to prefabricated homes. ÁPH80 Portable Home is one such design: a stunning combination of alluring materials, functionality, and sustainability.
ÁPH80 is a series that is designed to be prefabricated and portable. The homes are designed and manufactured in Spain, but can easily be replicated and placed nearly anywhere. Easily transported by road, it is easy to imagine ÁPH80 blending in to a modern suburb or completely off the grid in a rural setting. The flexibility of this portable home, combined with its style and attention to detail, makes the prospect of this new type of dwelling all the more appealing.
The dwelling is designed to comfortably house two people. The interior is comprised of three rooms: a living room and kitchen, a bedroom, and a bathroom. At 27 square metres, the space is by no means large, yet the carefully crafted design makes it feel surprisingly roomy. The gabled roof helps give an open feel to the entire space, while light interior walls contribute to the spaciousness. Storage is incorporated in the least cumbersome places: in cabinetry that matches the wall colour or floating shelves positioned out of sight line. Floor to ceiling windows, revealed by the facade panels sliding away, bring the outdoors in. This feature allows the user to connect to their surroundings—no matter where their ÁPH80 home may be.
The exterior facade, designed to look like cast-in-place concrete, is made of grey cement wood board. The wood covering the interior walls is sourced sustainably from Spanish Fir trees; they have the added benefit of being a hypoallergenic building material.
All of Ábaton’s designs aim to minimise the impact of construction on the environment. Managing both the design and construction of their portable homes allows a high degree of control over the finished product. Ábaton’s designs rely heavily on low environmental impact and recycled materials, and all are designed with energy efficient components built in. According to Ábaton:
ÁPH80 embodies the principles and objectives of Ábaton: wellbeing, environmental balance, and simplicity.
Living with less, in style, and in harmony with the environment. ÁPH80 checks all of the boxes, and the fact that it is designed to be portable is the icing on the cake.