Spanish Architecture firm Abaton is no stranger to modern homes, with private residences making up most of its contracts. However, the concept of a low-cost prefab was a new challenge for the company to tackle when this home, the APH80, was proposed. Not wanting to compromise to any extreme in the pursuit of a price point, Abaton chose to downsize instead of cheapen. The result is this three-room manufactured home that packs all the utility and function of a conventional design into a significantly smaller space.
The APH80 is manufactured entirely in Spain from mostly Spanish-sourced materials, meaning to do a small part to bolster the rough economy in the country. The outside of the home is covered in a layer of concrete designed to manage heat well, while the frame is a simple wood structure. The design comes off as extremely minimal, especially given the exterior material choice, but has artful flairs that keep it from being classified as Brutalist. On the inside, the design ethos is lighter and comes complete with bright, calming finishes and forms. The entire package, assembled, costs under 40,000 Euro (though utilities and installation will add some to the final tally), making modern design easily within reach of almost any homebuyer.
For the sake of privacy and for the practical purposes of climate control, the home’s entrances and windows all can be covered by sliding concrete-and-wood enclosures. This design choice keeps the building simple, with maximum use of constrained space.
One of the keys to the home feeling as spacious as possible is the high, traditional arched roofline (often missing in other modern prefabs), which measures over three meters tall from the floor. The concrete shell of the home sits over a light wood structure, so the covering of the home’s door is easily moved out of the way whenever its occupants want natural light or a view of their property.Once opened, the largest room of the house is revealed. The main room is a living space with a small kitchen, offering light-flooded views directly out the door. Abaton designed the house to fit a specific furniture layout, and their model is full of tastefully contemporary furnishings to complement the general style of the home. It’s nothing too pretentious, but is effortlessly modern.
The kitchen is the space of the house with the most compromised space over a larger, more traditional layout, consisting of a small area set aside with a sink, counter, and cabinets. It’s no chef’s kitchen, but it’s unobtrusive and allows the home to remain compact while still offering the basics.
The bedroom is surprisingly spacious for such a slim prefab, easily fitting a large bed for two. A window to the side (complete with a sliding mechanism similar to that which shields the main entrance) provides ample light at key times of day while not being large enough to become obtrusive.
All the wood of the home is a standard feature, sourced from Spanish suppliers and installed at no additional cost. The white-stained wood is elegant and gives a touch of luxury to the space.
The bathroom is the most private part of the home, effectively separating itself from the rest of the structure without being physically far away. The darker walls help to create a mental division between it and the living room beyond.
Being a prefab, the home is brought in by truck fully-assembled to be put in place on a plot of land. This is a design challenge, but was confronted effectively by Abaton in their concept for the APH80.
A truck and crane are all that is needed to “build” the house on-site once it’s manufactured, and after that the only things that are left are utilities hookups and furniture installation.