Described by its designer Joscha Weiand as "the world's first tent house," Hangout is a semi-permanent shelter aimed at travelers and festival-goers. In attempting to fuse stay-at-home comfort with the practicality of a tent, Weiand has his sites firmly set on the "glamping" (glamor plus camping) dollar.
If you were to imagine two wooden ends of a shed (a rather tall one, admittedly) connected by a tarpaulin instead of a roof, floor and walls you'd have the fundamentals of the Hangout in your mind's eye. Why Hangout, though? The makeshift abode includes a net strung from the wooden frame from in which one can store either luggage or oneself depending on need. The net is reached by a ladder built into the wooden facade.
An advantage of the tarp that stretches from floor to floor over the top of the structure is that it can be unstitched from the wooden frame to open up the Hangout to one side. One facade has a stable door while the other has a window which contains Hangout's most impressive trick: a table that fills the window when not in use, but can be folded down either inside or out as desired.
If there's a down side to the design it appears to be that the Hangout is not self-supporting. The facades must be tied to strong vertical external supports to prevent the whole thing collapsing in on itself the minute you put weight on the hammock. But the need to tie the Hangout to trees or columns adds to its visual identity and sense of fun - at least as much of the point as practicality.
The sheer size of the thing means that Hangout is not remotely portable, but then portability isn't the idea. Hangouts would be provided by city authorities, farmers, festival organizers or campsites, especially when anticipating an influx of visitors during special events.
"It was originally created for tourists coming to an urban environment, but its potential is so much greater," Weiand told Gizmag. "For example Hangout could be used in areas which have been struck by disasters, to help people that have lost everything."
"It is even possible to print on the tarp," Weiand added, pointing out Hangout's potential to host advertisements.
The Hangout is yet to launch, but will be on show at Dutch Design week between October 20 and 28.