New York City is infamous for its cramped living quarters and outrageous rents. Entrepreneur Graham Hill chose to make the most out of his rather small digs. The TreeHugger founder is raising eyebrows with his 420-square-foot apartment that can transform into eight different rooms.
"We also think we can get the functionality of a larger apartment in less space," explained Hill in a video posted to Gizmodo.com, noting that New Yorkers feel that they can manage small spaces better. "That’s really good for the environment. It’s also really good for their pocketbook."
When he says "really good for their pocketbook," we assume that he means relative to the average price for said space in Manhattan. Hill’s loft is in the more expensive neighborhood of SoHo.
"I think that simplifying your life gives you a little more time, a little more ease, and might actually make you a little happier," he said.
At first glance, Hill’s apartment looks like a simple studio. But then the entrepreneur begins moving aside bookshelves, opening cabinets, and removing furniture from drawers and closets. Hill uses an aforementioned bookshelf that moves from the wall to divide his living space in half and create a bedroom. The main bed comes down from a wall behind the couch. On the other side of the makeshift wall, two bunk beds fold down from the other permanent wall. In that set-up alone, Hill creates a bedroom and guest room, in addition to his kitchen space and bathroom. His kitchen has a dishwasher that operates on two gallons of water, a combo microwave/conventional oven, and a refrigerator built into a drawer. The bathroom consists of a sink, shower, and separate room with a toilet.
Hill obtained the apartment’s design through crowdsourcing.
"We got 300 entries from around the world — some really amazing stuff," he explained. "We ended up selecting these two Romanian architecture students, Adrian [Iancu] and Catalin [Sandu]."
The final result is based largely on the students’ prints. The apartment was purchased in 2009, and the first photos of the redesigned space hit the Internet three years later.