Ultramodern glamper obliterates line between modular home and caravan
Slovenian RV maker Adria ups the camping game with one of the swankiest camping trailers the world has ever seen. Eriba's Touring 820 took European caravan design to the next level earlier this year, and the Adria Astella straight knocks it out of the ballpark. Consolidating the expertise of its prefab home and RV divisions, Adria designed the Astella to travel from campsite to campsite or plant roots and serve as a more permanent nature cabin. Either way, it's a cushy living pod that brings modern comforts to the wild spaces that lack them.
We've spent some time covering Adria's camper vans, but the company also has a full line of more permanent shelters, from stylish mobile homes (like the one pictured below), to safari-style glamping tents, to water-top floating homes. With the all-new Astella introduced at this year's Dusseldorf Caravan Salon, it drops the walls between those businesses, offering a mobile living pod that looks like a prefabricated holiday home but rolls like a camping trailer. Buyers can choose whether to use it as a caravan or plop it down more permanently on a slice of scenic land.
"Rather than start with a good benchmark product like a regular caravan, we started with a deep dive into the holiday experience we wanted to deliver," explains Erna Povh, Astella project leader. "The result is a really innovative and unique home. Some would view it as a caravan, albeit a luxurious one. Others see it in the same light as a mobile home, a static caravan if you like. Whatever you decide to call it, think of it as your own luxurious holiday home, set down where you most like to spend your time but moveable at the end of the holiday season or when you want to change the location."
"Homey caravan" or "rolling holiday home," buyers will be getting an effortlessly sleek, stylish piece of nomadic living. Boxy without being boring, the Astella features a stretched rectangular body with smooth corners and bright edge lighting on its face. The most exciting detail of the build from a caravan perspective is the panoramic French doors that open wide to bring the outdoors inside, a very big step up from the average opaque RV side door. One Astella floor plan even has a separate set of French doors leading into the bedroom.
Structure-wise, the Astella's glossy shell is built from a sandwich of composite wood inside and polyester outside, split by foam insulation. The floor is reinforced with a hardwood frame, the double-glazed windows built from a special ruggedized acrylic.
Inside, Adria promotes a sense of space and openness without eliminating discrete rooms. Regardless of floor plan, the rear is occupied by a private bedroom, a cozy space to retire, away from the main living area.
The 9-m (29.5-foot) 704 HT floor plan is positioned as a luxurious couple's retreat but has the ability to sleep four people thanks to the convertible sofa. The rear bedroom features a transverse spring bed, along with storage cabinets and nightstands. The 704 dry bathroom directly in front of the bedroom is split into a port toilet room and starboard shower and features a design inspired by boutique hotels.
Moving forward, the main living area is an open combination of homestyle living room and expanded kitchen. Gone is the traditional dinette, replaced by an L-shaped couch sitting across from a media center with glassware curio and available TV.
The large, L-shaped kitchen is pushed to the front of the caravan, on the other side of the French doors. It includes the usual dual-burner stove and sink on the main Corian countertop. The smaller counter to the left features a full cutting board worktop above an oven. A standing height fridge/freezer stands next to the smaller counter, before the kitchen gives way to the living room.
The loss of a dining area might be a dealbreaker for some, but the open, TV-room design seems a tradeoff we'd be willing to make. You could always eat outside or on a folding table next to the couch.
Those who simply can't live without a dining room can move up to the flagship 10.9-m (35.8-foot) 904 HP configuration, which splits the central living area and front kitchen with a bar-height dining table with stools. This floor plan loses a little of the openness of the 704 due to the addition of the dining area, dual-side sofa layout and bookshelf, but it gains space, sleeping up to six people with a combination of the rear bedroom, convertible sofas and upper bunk bed. The kitchen loses the size and L shape of the 704 HP's, and the enlarged rear bedroom has a longitudinal bed in place of a transverse.
The 9.5-m (31-foot) 754 DP is a 2-/4-sleeper layout that flip-flops kitchen and living area, housing a front-corner sofa layout and central kitchen block. It includes a longitudinal bed and panoramic window in the rear bedroom, and its dry bathroom is in a single room on the port side, rather than a split layout.
Much like the aforementioned Eriba Touring 820, the Astella is a smart home on wheels, or at least it can be. It has a Wi-Fi hotspot and optional Adria MACH (Mobile Artificial-intelligence Communication Hardware) mobile app to keep full cabin control at your fingertips. The app remotely controls and monitors lighting, onboard climate, fridge setting, battery, water and gas. It also offers trailer manuals, leveling information, and points of interest (POI) navigation.
According to the price sheet we picked up at the Caravan Salon, the 2020 Astella 704 HP starts at €54,499, the 754 DP at €53,499 and the 904 HP at €59,999. The show model that you can see more of in the gallery is a 754 DP optioned modestly up to €55,276.