London-based designer Marco Monterzino has converted a 36ft canal ice breaker dating back to 1908 into a luxurious miniature dwelling. Named ‘LIZ’, the boat was found during an exploration of the waterways in the former coal mining regions of northern England. All systems and interiors were designed, restored and created over a period of ten months. In the UK, thanks to historic licences, it is possible to cruise freely throughout the capital’s waterways with stays that go up to two weeks per mooring. For this reason, Liz represents a contemporary alternative to traditional dwelling solutions in a time defined by London’s increasing housing crisis.

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The goal was to create a living space that would provide all dry land comforts in 18m2, would work within a tight budget and time-frame and would also embrace and enhance the historic fabric of the vessel. Coming from a repurposing angle, the choices of interiors reflect the desire to maximise the perception of light and space, which takes shape as an uninterrupted open plan layout that goes from bow to stern. Thanks to the use of high efficiency insulation and onboard systems, it has been possible to achieve over two weeks of endurance off the grid.

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all images © Marco Monterzino

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