A Cocoon for Modern Urban Nomad in Amsterdam’s Canal District

A Cocoon for Modern Urban Nomad in Amsterdam's Canal District

Project: Cocoon for Modern Urban Nomad
Architects: Équipe Amsterdam
Location: Centrum Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Year: 2020
Photo Credits: Chrysanthi Karakasi
Text by Équipe Amsterdam

In the shared garage of the house on the canal, all kind of vehicles are coming and going. Bicycles, skates and longboards, scooters, a motorcycle and a tiny city car that only just fits in. The space behind is quiet. The former lightwell, now covered, was only being used as a back entrance and for storage space. A steep staircase leads to a modest street side studio. Other than that, not much is happening here, except for abundant daylight striking the flaking walls.

A Cocoon for Modern Urban Nomad in Amsterdam's Canal District

In the serenity of this forgotten passage, Équipe created a space for the modern urban nomad. After some drinks in the bar around the corner, this working traveler can crash in a contemporary cupboard-bed, hanging over the alley like a cocoon. A small staircase leads to the floating bed plateau illuminated by a skylight. Once the sliding doors are closed, you are secluded. Then it is just you and your view of the canal houses’ facades and the sky above.


The main material is straightforward plywood. Next to this light coloured birch wood, two other colours were used: Little Green’s Aquamarine and a pop-off colour orient red. Jung’s light switches, in Le Corbusier colour “Rouge Vermillon 31”, set the tone. Inspired by the string lights, vintage light fixtures have been repainted and fitted with red fabric cables. Those red lines leading to the custom winder block, create a playful graphic pattern along the walls.

plan 1

The expert will note that the red fence reveals Dom van der Laan’s harmonious series of proportions. The composition of wooden volumes is also based on this three-dimensional expression of the golden ratio. That harmony brings with it a tranquility that allows the silence of the city to sink in.


storage space

plan 2

A Cocoon for Modern Urban Nomad in Amsterdam's Canal District

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