Mexico's recycled concrete tube hotel


July 10, 2011

Tubohotel in Mexico houses rooms created from recycled concrete tubes (Image: Luis Gordoa/T3arc)

Tubohotel in Mexico houses rooms created from recycled concrete tubes (Image: Luis Gordoa/T3arc)

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Though the idea of sleeping inside a concrete tube probably doesn't sound that appealing, architect firm T3arc have found a way to make sleeping inside a pipe not only comfortable but also a holiday experience. Mexico's Tubohotel, which opened in 2010, is a unique and affordable holiday destination created from recycled concrete tubes. Located approximately 45 minutes south of Mexico City in the village of Tepoztlan, Morelos, the rooms of the hotel are stacked in a pyramid shape, reflecting the Aztec pyramid of El Tepozteco that overlooks the town.

The original pipe hotel concept comes from German architect, Andreas Strauss, who created Dasparkhotel in 2006. The T3arc architects drew inspiration from Strauss and expanded on the idea to create two-story triangular modules. By stacking one tube on top of two base tubes, they were able to create a striking visual display without impacting the surrounding natural environment.

TheTubohotel offers 20 concrete rooms, each measuring 2.44 m wide and 3.5 m long (8 ft x 11.5 ft) and is simply furnished with a queen size bed, desk light, fan, and under-bed storage. The rooms overlook a central courtyard, which is otherwise completely surrounded by lush native trees. Unfortunately they couldn't come up with an idea to squeeze in a bathroom but guests have access to two communal bathhouses located on the hotel property.

One night's accommodation at the Tubohotel costs 500 pesos (approx. US$42).

Source: T3arc via archdaily

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Bridget Borgobello Bridget is an experienced freelance writer, presenter and performer with a keen eye for innovative design and a passion for green technology. Australian born, Bridget currently resides in Rome and when not scribbling for Gizmag, she spends her time developing new web series content and independent cinema. All articles by Bridget Borgobello

Greetings! How ironic! Just yesterday I noticed a stack of concrete tubes and was wondering what could be done with them, evidently the tubes had been there, unused for quite some time. What a novel idea! How about using the tubes as emergency shelters, like say, in the woods or even remote locations? How about a cabin in the woods? The possibilities are endless! GOD Bless!


Recycled from what? They look like sewer pipes.



@ Eletruk - They\'re probably Culvert Tubes, used for creating run-off. No sewage \"reminders\".

While DasParkHotel made all of us think, I\'m still using them to create cisterns and aquaponics tanks for fish-farming. You find them at DOT auctions on a fairly regular basis. The hard part is hauling them off... ;)

Stand it on end, seal the bottom with more concrete and a healthy dose of something like Hydroseal (use the ORGANIC - Food Grade sealant if you want to drink the water or raise fish) and that 8\' diameter concrete tube will hold 2500 gallons of water, easy... and best of all, it\'ll last freakin\' forever!

AND... it\'s common knowledge that the space inside that same tube is EASILY converted to a standard bathroom, probably much like the one in your own home. You even get a cool, easily constructed \"plumbing run\" under the floor.

With a handful of them, you could build a pretty cool little house in the woods... provided you have a good graded road to your site, of course.

Stack THAT, Gizmag! :)

Renaissance Ronin

personally, i am all for recycling things to create \'green\' architecture and structures. It\'s out of the box thinking, it makes the world greener, and it reusues what would otherwise be wasted. this idea is worth its weight in gold, much like using shipping containers to create sustainable housing here Great ideas. It gets people thinking outside the box.

Jens Appelgreen

It seems like a few of these could be the basis for a relatively easy to build hobbit home for those so inclined.


$42 a night for a place w/out a bathroom in the room isn\'t working for me. They need to have one tube for the bed and another for a bathroom. The creative part would be how you make the connection. Since you can\'t walk thru either tube, you\'d have to have the entrance to the suite be between the 2 tubes. One option, align the tubes axially with a 4 foot minimum separation between them for the entry. The down side would be reduced view outside. Option 2 is to have the tubes side by side and have a glass box for the entrance and connection section. That would give light and view from both ends of both tubes. Option 3, set them at an angle to each other. This could be used to create courtyards between seperate units. There are several other ways of doing this but I\'ve made my point. If you added a third tube for a living area, you could create a pretty delux feeling space.


I\'m not staying there.


Those who know the area will agree with me: I just don't know how three piled tubes can "reflect the Tepozteco Aztec pyramid" and "without impacting the surrounding natural environment". But, it certainly could be an acceptable concept for the famous "Ciudad Nezahualcóyotl".

Roland Pondevie

Is it cooler in them during the heat waves?

Bob Humbly
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