A pair of exhibitors at next weekend's Dwell on Design show will have a new take on living in a bubble. AirClad, a British company that makes an inflatable pool house, and CasaBubble, a California firm that designs pneumatic backyard guest rooms, are trying to capitalize on the outdoor-living and small-space trends with structures built using little more than lightweight PVC and air.
“The idea was to be able to spend the night under the starry sky as comfortably as in a hotel bedroom,” said Frederic Richard, a native of France who splits his time between Paris and Santa Ynez, where he began distributing CasaBubble in April.
CasaBubble, pictured at right, is a sphere that holds its shape with air blown by quiet turbines, which use less than 100 watts of electricity per hour to run — roughly the equivalent of a light bulb. The sphere is fully pressurized in as little as 15 minutes, and the air inside is refreshed as often as seven times per hour, preventing humidity and condensation from clouding the bubble. The design has two doors, but only one can be open at a time or the structure will collapse.
CasaBubble was designed by Frenchman Pierre-Stephane Dumas and is manufactured in France. The portable living space is designed to be used as an outdoor guest room, a dining room, a children's play area or a pop-up shelter at the beach. It's available in 30 colors and five sizes, weighing 53 to 190 pounds.