| Karin Bylund

YO! Home – Space Redefined

Transforming small spaces into luxurious settings may soon become a trend, especially when Simon Woodroffe’s YO! Homes appear on the market in 2016.

Imagine a 40-square-metre apartment that has been impeccably transformed to provide luxury living and plenty of space. Now, imagine furniture that can hide: a bed that can conceal itself within the ceiling or a lounge or sofa area that can be effortlessly tucked away into the floor. Make sense? Probably not, simply because many of us have not witnessed these concepts come to life.

yo home 2

Simon Woodroffe (founder of YO! Sushi) is about to change the way space is utilized, but he is adding a twist – the aspect of luxury living. A small space doesn’t necessarily have to be perceived as ‘small’ anymore, especially when designed with effectiveness in mind. Woodroffe says, ‘Since the invention of the city-center apartment, we’ve never really re-invented it. YO! Home is that new invention. Moving parts draw on a wealth of engineering technology, taken from fields as diverse as yacht and automotive design, to stage production. This allows a 40-square-meter space (the size of a one bedroom apartment) to transform into what feels like a much bigger home.’

The most important living space is, of course, the bedroom. For Simon, it posed a challenge, as he wanted to combine ease and the wow factor into the design.  The YO! Bedroom has been designed to function on the principles of counter-weighting, therefore, as one design blog (Living in a Shoebox) explains: ‘The bed harnesses only the tiniest motor to ensure it moves seamlessly and cost-effectively, but also allows for near-effortless manual movement too, in the event of a public power outage. The way this system is put together means that the bed is not only extremely cool, but also extremely safe.’

yo home 5  To give you visual, the YO! Home bed is able to seamlessly move against the wall and into the ceiling for easy tucking away, revealing only the lounge/sofa area.

What is interesting about YO! Homes is that they have listened to their fans with regard to how they would like to see space redefined. One aspect that fans did not like when it came to redefining living space was the idea of the floor doubling as a table. YO! Homes was able to take the Japanese influence and incorporate tables that electronically rise with a simple switch of a button, while seats lift manually to minimize error.

And, of course, no home is complete without its kitchen. The ‘Pocket Kitchen’ is convenience in itself with the ability to fold neatly away into the walls – and, yes, it includes the washing machine, stove, sink and storage space.  Hiding your kitchen has never been so easy!

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After completing its prototype phases, YO! Homes will be ready to launch in 2016. This game-changing concept is sure to pique the interest of many a city-dweller. Minimalist, space-conserving luxury is the name of the game.

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