The American pre-fabricated shelter company Jupe has launched its travel module, a temporary flat cabin with birch wood floors and a light frame designed by Liz Lambert and Cameron Sinclair.
The geometric Skirt the pods, named after the planet Jupiter, are a futuristic alternative to traditional glamping tents and yurts.
Jupe’s design team, who have worked for the rental platform Airbnb, electric car makers Tesla, and rocket makers Space X among others, set out to create a sci-fi-style product inspired by travel in space.
“We turned to ideas that inspired and excited us,” said Jeff Wilson, co-founder and micro-entrepreneur of Jupe.
“Remember that 2001 Monolith: A Space Odyssey? It last sent signals to Jupiter from the moon. It looks like a few of these planes were sent back to Earth. We intercepted them and created Skirt.”
The fire-retardant canvas stretched over aluminum poles forms the angular nacelle, which tilts upward to a ceiling height of 11 meters at the highest point.
LEDs along the poles can be used to provide illumination in the dark.
Skirt is designed to work off-grid with the light frame, wifi, electrical outlets and USB ports powered by solar panels or batteries.
“Experiencing the natural wonders of the world shouldn’t mean having to disconnect while remaining in a less than inspiring living space,” Wilson said.
Extras offered by the company include a porch, lockable safe, cooler, speakers, and an Amazon Alexa voice-activated device.
Each shelter rests on a frame which lifts the tent part from the ground. The birch floor tiles lift up to allow occupants to access the storage space below, which Jupe designers say can hold up to ten suitcases.
The entrance to the 111 square meter cabin can be left open to frame the scenery, and slender windows that open to the side provide additional ventilation.
A palette of sand tones was selected for the interior of the pods, which are designed by boutique hotel designer Liz Lambert and Cameron Sinclair, who was previously head of social innovation at Airbnb and co-founder of Architecture for humanity.
A step leads to a platform with a double bed with a mattress and bedside lockers are slightly sunk into the ground. Built-in furniture includes a desk, chair and ottoman.
The company has made the pods, which are made at a factory in Los Angeles, available for pre-order now, with the first flatpack kits due for delivery in January 2021.
Jupe was founded by investment banker Cameron Blizzard and Jeff Wilson, whose former micro-housing start-up Kasita closed in 2018.
Earlier this year, the company developed mobile intensive care units for hospitals overwhelmed by coronavirus patients.
The photograph is by Sam Gezari.