A New Class of Camper
Pictured above is the latest innovation in classy folding campers for chic nomads. Does the camper’s design remind you of anything?
If you chose the Sydney Opera House as the inspiration behind this camper, you’re absolutely right. Belgian designer Axel Enthoven modeled his design, fittingly called Opera, after the modern aesthetic of Australia’s most recognizable building. Below is photo of the Opera as a prototype.
Though it folds out to become a mini-masterpiece of canvas and stainless steel, Opera starts out as a compact 4-wheel trailer that hooks up to your car.
The common trailer shape is deceptive in its simplicity. It’s only when you pull up to your campground that the real fun begins. Opera is not like an ordinary camper and comparing it to one would be like saying attending the actual opera is the same as catching a movie matinee. Once you set up the camper (it’s electric and takes only 5 minutes to unfold at the press of a button, no messing with tent poles here), Opera offers you absolute luxury in a classic tent setting. Advertising copy bills Opera as “Your Suite in Nature,” and the description is accurate.
Though it only measures an economical 7 meters once expanded (around 23 feet for us non-Europeans), Opera is packed with modern amenities not usually found in pop up campers.
The floors are teak, the interior walls are high-grade cotton, and the finishings are done up in oak, corian, and stainless steel for a contemporary, rich feel. The lighting is entirely LED.
Opera contains two electrically adjustable beds that can easily be turned into a double bed, as well as a mobile stove, barbecue (folds up to fit into the kitchen), hot and cold running water, and ceramic toilet. The camper has its own gas supply, negating the need to lug around an extra container.
Other amenities include a wine cabinet, heating (a must for chilly winter nights under the stars), an espresso bar, and an enclosed veranda with the aforementioned teak flooring. The camper has a small baggage area that’s great for storing folding chairs, groceries, and other smaller items. Another interesting touch is a built-in compass, so campers can correctly position the Opera to catch morning sunshine if they arrive at their campground too late to determine which way is east.
Opera made its debut at the 2009 Design at Work trade fair in Kortrijk, Belgium and has since gone on a world tour, with a stop at the 2010 International Design Biennale St. Etienne and, more recently, the Sydney Opera House itself. As of June of 2011, there have been several improvements made on the original design. The most interesting is the KinderOpera, a kind of “add-on” tent that expands the dimensions of the Opera and allows it to accommodate up to 6 adults.
[Related: Vacation Rentals Belgium]
Of course, such luxury doesn’t come cheap. According to their website, the current price for a bespoke Opera is €27,680. The €340 delivery fee isn’t included. They’re working on creating a more affordably priced version of Opera, hopefully to be on the market in the fall of 2011. If you do decide to purchase one, the company has published a guide to classy campgrounds exclusively for Opera owners. For everyone else, there’s a short YouTube video about the Opera that’s good for a daydream. Watch it below.