Floating homes are getting more attention
these days – some for being incredibly practical or economical and others for
being quirky and conceptual. Check out our list of super cool houseboats below.
Silberfisch: The Modern Houseboat
These days, city living can be outrageously
expensive, which is what prompted Bernhard Urich along with Flo Florian and Sascha
Akkermann of the German design firm Confused-Direction to unveil their
innovative solution – the Silberfisch Houseboat.
This modern, floating home offers urban
dwellers the opportunity to live in style at a fraction of the cost, without
limiting the freedom and flexibility of relocation. This eco-friendly houseboat
is made from reclaimed wood (when possible), features a green roof planted with
vegetation and produces zero emissions.
Elena Queen of Hearts: The Luxury Houseboat
Soon-to-be-empty nesters Tim and Mary
Forsythe never imagined they’d be selling their estate to live year round on a
converted houseboat. That is, until Elena Queen of Hearts caught their eye.
Built in 1984, this 79-foot-by-26-foot boat was designed by John Amos (the
founder of American Family Insurance) to look like a Victorian riverboat.
Named after the Amos’ wife, Elena Queen of
Hearts has entertained a variety of political dignitaries (including the Queen
of Thailand). With over 1,800 square feet of layout, a lot hard work was
required to give this space a cozy feel. It now features a plethora of luxury
items such as a home theatre, hot tub and grand piano.
Instead of loading the kids into your gas-guzzling
Winnebago next summer break, you might want to consider SolarHome. Designed by
UK-based Kingsley architects, SolarHome is an eco-friendly floating home that
can safely and stylishly transport you and your family through the water. Turn boring
road trips into water adventures – or dock it trailer park style.
Made from low-carbon material, the
SolarHome features eco-friendly solar power and has been designed to function
in one of two modes – Docked Mode (which requires some infrastructure for
power, fresh water and water treatment) and Self Sufficient Mode. While in
Self-Sufficient mode, SolarHome can function for an entire year without requiring
any service maintenance.
Cosmic Muffin: The Plane-Houseboat
The Cosmic Muffin is by far the most iconic
houseboat on our list. This rare 1930’s Boeing Stratoliner (one of only ten
ever built) is the first and only land-based airplane to be converted into a
boat. Affectionately known as the Cosmic Muffin, this houseboat has a rich
Originally owned by the infamously
eccentric Howard Hughes,
the interior was converted into an executive office suite (with a little help
from Rita Hayworth). The plane exchanged hands several
times before it was deemed un-flyable in 1969 due to extensive hurricane
damage. Hughes’ former ‘flying office’ was rescued from uncertain fate by Fort
Lauderdale Realtor and pilot Kenneth W. London who then spent nearly four years
converting it into the coolest bachelor pad ever.
Now owned by a man named David Drimmer, the
Cosmic Muffin currently resides dockside in Fort Lauderdale, FL and is open for
public touring or chartering.
Kerala: The Vacation
Houseboating is one of the most tranquil
and relaxing experiences in the world. Imagine if you could take that feeling
with you on vacation abroad. Well, you can. Kerala, one of India’s most
beautiful regions, is well known for its scenic network of winding canals,
rivers, lakes and lagoons – and its equally beautiful houseboats (called kettvallams).
The design of these luxury houseboats
retains a strong sense of tradition, while incorporating modern comforts and
convenience. Constructed from a variety of local materials such jack-wood,
bamboo poles and coconut, these houseboats usually feature 1-2 bedrooms with an
attached bathroom, as well as a kitchenette, lounge, balcony and a thatched
roof. Enlist the help of trained crew for a couple hours or several weeks for
the vacation of a lifetime.
This is a guest post by Briana Davis on behalf of Canvas Craft, an industry leading
canvas manufacturer offering custom
boat covers. She writes tips, tutorials, and more on the Canvas