Design tourism / Published on July 7, 2021
If you haven’t heard of “glamping” yet, you’ve only been confined by restrictive COVID-19 sanitary measures in the past year, you’ve been hiding under a rock for a few years now!
Although at first the ideas of glamour and camping might sound contradictory, they actually go quite well together. Let’s just say: Trying it is adopting it!
In recent years, the trend has grown in such ways that the luxury hotel and lavish resort industry, campgrounds and national parks around the world have expanded their offer and diversified their accommodations.
Here is our glamping solutions pick of the week from around the world that showcase unique designs and seamlessly integrate themselves in the lavishing landscapes and natural habitats that surround them, standing out as magnificent examples of design and execution.
By Juli Pisano, INT.design.
DÔMES CHARLEVOIX, Petite-Rivière-Saint-François, Québec, Canada
Design by Bourgeois Lechasseur architectes
Photos: Maxime Valsan
Les Dômes Charlevoix, designed by Canadian architecture firm Bourgeois Lechasseur architectes, offers a unique experience of glamping in one of three geodesic domes delicately niched in the landscape with a breathtaking view of the St. Lawrence River. Come daytime, they blend in their surroundings. Come nightfall, they shine in the night like candles in the wind.
The clients, three young entrepreneurs from the Quebec City region, wanted to create an extraordinary rental project. The domes’ delicate implantation gives access to a unique landscape while preserving the surrounding nature. Fully autonomous and lusciously comfortable, the domes offer an eco-luxurious camping experience in sync with nature.
Planted according to the mountainside topography, the domes are comprised of a wooden deck on which the dome sits. It houses an overhanging spa in nature. Inside, a black volume of services is positioned in the centre: the faces open to house a kitchen, a bathroom, the main bed as well as a secondary bed above the volume. The grey canvas and the wooden fireplace create a warm and cosy atmosphere. As for the fenestrated part on the south side, it offers a breathtaking view of the river and maximises solar gains.
Teardrop-shaped tents let you spend the night dangling from a tree amongst those of Belgium’s Borgloon Forest. Looking for an alternative to the usual touristy destinations post the pandemic? The Tranendreef project started gaining attention because in fact people are looking to camp outdoors because it is safer, budget-friendly and avoids crowds.
Designed by the Dutch artist Dre Wapenaar, these ‘Tranendreef’ tree tents blend architecture and sculpture into one functional structure.
Suspended above the ground, the tent basically hangs on the tree like fruit. The guests use a ladder to get in and out. It can host two adults and two small children. Originally installed as part of a public art project called ‘Pit’ (hence the avocado shape we assume) organized by Z33, it brought art into the public space of Borgloon.
If you crash landed in paradise, where would you find shelter? If there was a flat box from Tree Tents International on board, it might be in a Fuselage Cabin.
British company Tree Tents International has gone after the clamping boom in the United States with what it calls a green alternative to the conventional “glamping pod.” In other words, the 3- by 5-meter Fuselage can be set up almost anywhere, without clearing land or using construction equipment. You can put it on stilts or suspend it from a tree. It ships in a flat box and built to last.
The Fuselage has an aluminium outer skin and a modular wooden and aluminium frame. Its aesthetics are inspired by modern aerospace design. As one enters, the sensory experience of being immersed in woodland follows you over the door mat. The wooden interior and the calming warmth of the wood stove creates a homely space and huge windows are a recognition that the natural vistas are the best wall decoration of all.
The Fuselage is designed to be erected at a remote site rather than lugged around from site to site. The basic model costs about $33,500 (U.S.) and eco destinations around the world are setting up some for leisure rental uses. Canopy and Stars in Britain’s Gloucestershire county springs to mind.
ZOOBOX, Eastman , / Potton / Port-au-Persil, Québec, Canada
Design by Le Vertendre d’Eastman
Zoobox-type ecological and fun rentals are already well known and appreciated by loyal initiates. Quebec company Le Vertendre d’Eastman recently launched the sale of 60 new and improved Zooboxes in Eastman and Potton in Estrie and Port-au-Persil in Charlevoix. It has launched its Zoobox manufacturing plant in Sherbrooke… glamping pods made in Quebec.
The third generation of units will more comfortable and spacious than previous generations, with closed bedrooms that will provide more privacy. Along with the climbing wall and movable roll-up tub will be added a human-powered “hamster wheel” and a giant Lite-Brite set.
The composition of the mini chalets will also be improved, such as the quality of the building, insulation and resistance over time.
Remember that Zooboxes are self-sufficient in energy, disconnected from the electrical network and powered by solar panels. The goal? Leave a minimal ecological and energy footprint on protected wildlife reserves of more than 300 acres.
› Consult: Le Vertendre