Though they may be tiny, WIRED staffer Margaret Rhodes says New York's first micro-apartment complex, Carmel Place, is actually more comfortable than it appears. After two years of development, the prefab apartment building officially began leasing at the end of November, and will open in early February 2016 for residents willing to pay $2,500 to $2,800 monthly.
The units range in size from 260 to 360 square feet, but are designed to feel almost twice as big. Stage 3 Properties partnered with Monadnock Development to design units with simple, neutral decor and space-saving, transformable furniture to maximize the living space, such as sofas that turn into fold-out beds and extendable kitchen tables.
The residents can also live large in their tiny apartments. Each unit comes with access to the lifestyle amenities provided by Ollie, a service that offers apartment furnishings and help with everyday chores. Residents can have their groceries delivered, dry cleaning fetched, and linens laundered without having to lift a finger.
By redesigning how we find our homes, these companies hint at a version of the future in which our homes, themselves, are less designed than ever—at least, by us. These new apartments are homogenized, because they need to be. After all, the “essence” of Ollie properties is to “bring micro-studios to market and eliminate all the hassle and conveniences that come with that,” says Chris Bledsoe, a founding partner at Stage 3. “It’s more like hotel branding.”