MINI Living at China House Vision

October 2018

MINI Living's Urban Cabin initiative has grown to become a huge success in a relatively short space of time since it first popped up in 2017 at the London Design Festival. Designed by Sam Jacob, the initial cabin was intended to show how city dwellers can adapt to their surroundings while showcasing a home for the future.

Fast forward to this year, after successful Urban Cabin projects by both Bureau V in New York and FreelandBuck in LA, and we arrive in Beijing.

It's become a tradition that MINI Living works alongside a local architect or designer on the cabin, as they can provide the team with an uncompromised, local view on the area of which it will be installed.

The Beijing project was no exception, and for the fourth interpretation of the MINI Living Urban Cabin concept, the team enlisted the help of Penda co-founder Dayong Sun.

"Each MINI Living Urban Cabin creates a maximum quality of living within a very limited space in a specific situational context", explains Oke Hauser, Creative Lead at MINI Living. "The result is a global network of creative residential solutions in which people all over the world feel at home, while at the same time providing a public space for innovative forms of co-living".

Dayong graduated in 2012 with Master of Fine Arts from CAFA in Beijing. His thesis was about a research in bionic architecture and got honoured with “Best Outstanding Graduation Design” at the CAFA Architecture Session 2012.

He has been invited to participate at the International Youth Designer Workshop in Milan, worked as a project architect for Graft Beijing (2005-2010) and Graft Berlin (2008), as an Architect and Researcher at Tsinghua University Institute and as a Senior Architect for HMD in Beijing (2012).

In late 2012 he founded Penda together with Chris Prech – a venture that has seen the pair create hotels, store interiors and large-scale landscaping projects.

With a forward-thinking outlook, the pair's company ethos seems perfectly aligned with the mission of MINI Living:

"By drawing different perspectives from western and eastern history, Penda seeks the fundamentals in architecture and to interpret and integrate them into one cross-cultural design-language," the duo say. "Therefore we are interested in the questions of how life evolved throughout history, what influenced its process up to the present and what architecture can add to increase the quality of life for the future."

MINI Living was first launched in 2016, with the mission to explore creative uses of space. The initiative seeks to answer challenges in the field of architecture and interiors through an approach that combines design knowledge, experience and interaction.

But perhaps the most important element of all is the involvement of the public, and MINI Living tries to showcase all its installations installed at major design weeks – for example, its Do DisturbBreathe and Built By All installations, that took place during Salone del Mobile in 2016, 2017 an 2018 respectively.