House inspired by Tom and Jerry is one big playground
By Stu Robarts
August 8, 2014
Keeping kids occupied can be a job in itself. That is, unless your house is one big adventure playground. Jerry House, designed by Thai architecture firm Onion, has nets, ladders and tunnels that provide both an environment in which kids can play and a means of moving around the house.
Including elements in a house that encourage play can sometimes be overlooked, but there are all sorts of possibilities. The stairs of the Panorama House in South Korea provide a place for children to watch TV and incorporates its own slide, while visitors to New York's SkyHouse can jump on a yellow blanket in the attic and take a thrill ride down its 80 ft (24 m) slide to the bottom.
Onion was asked if it would would be possible to create a house that encouraged play for the owners' four sons. The architects took inspiration from the Tom and Jerry cartoons, using Jerry's home (hence the name) as a starting point for its designs, and came up with the Jerry House holiday home in Cha Am Beach, Thailand.
The house was created with running, climbing, hiding, hanging and falling in mind. An atrium the height of the house features five levels of nets, each with a small hole and a ladder in a different place. In this way, it is possible to traverse the levels of the house using only the nets. Individuals can drop down one net at a time and be caught by the net below due to the varied placement of the holes.
The lowest net provides an outlet into a space attached to the main living area, with soft balls and mats catering for play alongside the area in the house in which the family spends most of its time.
Tunnels are used to link spaces in the house, such as bedrooms and sleeping spaces. Family members can use the normal passageways or crawl through the tunnels to reach their destination. When locked from the inside, some of the rooms are accessible only by tunnel. A hidden door, meanwhile, provides a link between the main living hall and one of the bedrooms.
Color is also used with consideration throughout the house. Shared areas, such as main living hall, the living room and the dining room are painted white, while bedrooms are personalized.