CLOSE
Airbnb
Airbnb

Book a Night at the Smallest House on Airbnb

Airbnb
Airbnb

Guests paying a visit to this Boston Airbnb better pack lightly. As the Boston Globe reports, the artist behind the cozy space describes it as "the smallest house in the world."

Sculptor Jeff Smith credits the tiny house movement as the inspiration behind his pint-sized dwelling. But while traditional tiny homes typically range from 100 to 400 square feet, Smith's creation is a mere 25 square feet total.

Despite its size, the structure boasts many of the same amenities you'd find in a regular home—with some limitations. Guests have access to running water through a sink connected to a refillable water bottle. Once they're finished using it, any leftover water is deposited into flower boxes outside. The home also features a propane-powered stovetop, a skylight, six porthole windows, and a "toilet" (or a covered hole above a drawer of kitty litter).

Visitors—who can reserve a spot now for $55 a night—will still have to make do without several of the comforts we take for granted. While the home has a space to prop your laptop, WiFi is not included. It lacks heat and air conditioning as well, so the summer and winter months may not be the best times to book your stay.

If guests are unhappy with the home's location, they're free to move it elsewhere. The house comes on wheels, and according to the Airbnb page it's small enough to fit inside "a regular-sized van."

The project originally began as an art piece, but Smith now tells the Globe he's excited to see how it can function as a living space: "I want to see how it goes with someone renting this place out, and hear back from them and see what they say."

[h/t The Boston Globe]

All images courtesy of Airbnb.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
Stones, Bones, and Wrecks
Buckingham Palace Was Built With Jurassic Fossils, Scientists Find
iStock
iStock

The UK's Buckingham Palace is a vestige from another era, and not just because it was built in the early 18th century. According to a new study, the limestone used to construct it is filled with the fossilized remains of microbes from the Jurassic period of 200 million years ago, as The Telegraph reports.

The palace is made of oolitic limestone, which consists of individual balls of carbonate sediment called ooids. The material is strong but lightweight, and is found worldwide. Jurassic oolite has been used to construct numerous famous buildings, from those in the British city of Bath to the Empire State Building and the Pentagon.

A new study from Australian National University published in Scientific Reports found that the spherical ooids in Buckingham Palace's walls are made up of layers and layers of mineralized microbes. Inspired by a mathematical model from the 1970s for predicting the growth of brain tumors, the researchers created a model that explains how ooids are created and predicts the factors that limit their ultimate size.

A hand holding a chunk of oolite limestone
Australian National University

They found that the mineralization of the microbes forms the central core of the ooid, and the layers of sediment that gather around that core feed those microbes until the nutrients can no longer reach the core from the outermost layer.

This contrasts with previous research on how ooids form, which hypothesized that they are the result of sediment gathered from rolling on the ocean floor. It also reshapes how we think about the buildings made out of oolitic limestone from this period. Next time you look up at the Empire State Building or Buckingham Palace, thank the ancient microbes.

[h/t The Telegraph]

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Ker Robertson, Getty Images
arrow
architecture
5 Scrapped Designs for the World's Most Famous Buildings
Ker Robertson, Getty Images
Ker Robertson, Getty Images

When an architect gets commissioned to build a skyscraper or a memorial, they’re usually not the only applicant for the job. Other teams of designers submit their own ideas for how it should look, too, but these are eventually passed over in favor of the final design. This is the case for some of the world’s most recognizable landmarks—in an alternate world, the Arc de Triomphe might have been a three-story-tall elephant statue, and the Lincoln Memorial a step pyramid.

GoCompare, a comparison site for financial services, dug into these could-have-been designs for Alternate Architecture, an illustrated collection of scrapped designs for some of the most famous structures in the world, from Chicago's Tribune Tower to the Sydney Opera House.

Click through the interactive graphic below to explore rejected designs for all five landmarks.

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios