This charming little beach hut in England named the Spy Glass is designed to look like an oversized pair of old-fashioned coin-fed binoculars. It rests atop a turntable that rotates it 180 degrees, allowing its occupants to change the view to suit.
The Spy Glass was designed by JaK Studio. Structurally, it consists of precast concrete with a translucent middle section that glows at night. It’s fronted by generous glazing and its exterior has an outdoor shower.
The beach hut measures 2 x 3 x 3 m (6.5 x 9.8 x 9.8 ft) and is accessed by a wooden door. A sleeping area juts out above and sports two port hole-style windows that resemble binocular lenses. Inside, the beach hut includes a seating area, a sink and changing area, as well as the raised sleeping area mentioned.
The Spy Glass rests atop a repurposed heavy-duty vehicle turntable that was sunken into the ground. This enables the entire structure to rotate a total of 180 degrees and face the sun, the sea, or nearby Eastbourne Pier. The turntable’s rotation is operated by a remote control unit inside the beach hut.
“We wanted to pay homage to the traditional beach hut whilst creating a modern concept for a design classic,” says Jacob Low, founding partner at JaK Studio. “A big inspiration to our project was the coin slot binoculars which allow one to gaze out to sea. As you can move these binoculars users can also move our Spy Glass to interact with the sun or coastline. It will hopefully bring a bit of nostalgia to local residents and those visiting on days out.”
The Spy Glass was commissioned by England’s Eastbourne Council following an architectural competition. The budget came to just £10,000 (US$13,000). It’s currently available to visit and rent as an event space.