Eco-Friendly Floating House 'The WaterNest' Making Waves

Have you ever thought about living on a houseboat? If you’re the type that loves the gentle rolling sensation of water and all of the sights and sounds that come along with being afloat, you’ve probably thought about it at one time or another. Sure it would be great to be able to weigh or drop anchor practically anywhere at most any given time, but there are some drawbacks that would come with living onboard a vessel as well. If you’re part of a couple or have kids, you’d have to make sure your “house” was always home when they arrived. Due to this, sailing off for a few hours to feel the spray on your face could present a problem.

No matter how fleeting the thought, if you still enjoy the idea of it — even if it’s merely in concept — an Italian architect by the name of Giancarlo Zema has designed a superb little WaterNest you’ll want to acquaint yourself with.


WaterNest Eco-Friendly Floating Home: Environmentally friendlyWaterNest Eco-Friendly Floating Home: Environmentally friendly


Eco-Friendly Design

No, the WaterNest is not a boat. It’s an eco-friendly nest of a home with a sleek, contemporary design that floats atop the water allowing for beautiful waterfront views and providing you with the best of both worlds. Produced by an international company called EcoFloLife, the structure itself is made exclusively of recycled materials that include laminate timber and an aluminum hull. The deceptively small dwelling (roughly 1076 square feet) takes advantage of skylights, balconies and large windows that encircle the structure for efficient lighting that gives it an open, airy feeling that belies its actual size. 

Renewable Energy

The term eco-friendly to describe the WaterNest 100 isn’t based solely on the use of recycled materials throughout. There are 645 square feet of amorphous photovoltaic panels embedded on the wooden roof capable of providing up to 4 kWp of internal electricity which supply the unit with renewable solar energy. When the windows and doors aren’t thrown wide open, climate regulation is accomplished through an integrated air conditioning system that allows for filtered micro-ventilation in the unit with floor and ceiling air grilles. The retractable system features automatic temperature control permitting classification of the unit as a low-consumption residential habitat.


The WaterNest Features a Solar Panel Roof: Renewable EnergyThe WaterNest Features a Solar Panel Roof: Renewable Energy


Uses, Positioning & Interior Design

The WaterNest 100 can be used for a variety of ecological structures such as a floating residential unit, office, business, bar, restaurant, boutique, art gallery or exhibition space. It could also be used as a guesthouse, mother-in-law cottage, B & B or even rented out for small, private weddings, depending on the chosen configuration. There are several different interior design configurations available to accommodate the specific needs of the inhabitants and/or the structure’s intended purpose. Positioning is just as flexible as the rest of the unit in the sense that the WaterNest can be placed in lakes, bays, and areas of calm seas or along rivers and atolls.


WaterNest Interior Design: There are several floor plans to choose fromWaterNest Interior Design: There are several floor plans to choose from


Eco-Friendly Features & Amenities

The interior flooring and that of the balconies is made entirely from durable teak wood to withstand humidity, temperature variations, salt and various atmospheric agents. The slats — like those on the decks of yachts — are sufficiently sized to reduce leakage while retaining the greatest visual impact. The many energy efficient windows throughout and the sliding glass doors are framed in anodized aluminum coated with thermal double glazing to obtain a good seal and so that rust will never be an issue. Kitchens and baths are fitted with long-lasting Corian surfaces and modern fixtures that are streamline in appearance.


The WaterNest Floating Home: Made entirely from recycled materialsThe WaterNest Floating Home: Made entirely from recycled materials


Domotic Technology

With one-touch technology users of the WaterNest’s domatic system can control lighting, fixture automation (drawing curtains and rolling up blinds), entertainment systems (TV and stereo), and energy-saving functions for monitoring electric and water consumption along with managing the temperature of different areas of the home. All of these control features can be customized to create the perfect environment to fit your mood or schedule at any given moment through your smart phone and accompanying app. There’s even a built-in alarm system available that not only alerts you to intruders and uses a closed-circuit TV to visually inspect your rooms remotely, but it also notifies you if there’s a water or gas leak or power outage.

Water & Waste Systems

The WaterNest 100 has a fresh water tank capacity of 1,500 liters. Only environmentally friendly soaps and detergents can be utilized onboard the floating structure. If you’re wondering what happens to wastewater, not surprisingly there’s a sophisticated integrated system for handling the purification and filtering of bathroom and kitchen waste. This waste is capable of being treated for partial reuse of water or completely purified for admittance to rivers, lakes and seas. The only maintenance in connection with the system is approximately every six months the clearance or removal of biological waste from the internal filter must be performed. Occupancy levels or the structure’s intended function (e.g. businesses) will obviously play a role in the frequency of this maintenance.


The WaterNest Floating Home: Eco-friendly furnitureThe WaterNest Floating Home: Eco-friendly furniture


Eco-Friendly Furniture

On top of everything else, Giancarlo Zema is behind several lines of eco-friendly furniture designs to compliment the interiors of contemporary living and working spaces. Some of the collections are rich and warm in appearance while others are streamlined and minimalistic. They are constructed from durable recycled cardboard and woods. Zema is also responsible for several other designs that are clearly nods to the “mod” creations of the 1960s with vibrant colors and lines reminiscent of the art of the era. These collections are produced predominantly from recycled plastics, resins and steel. All of the pieces from each of the collections would be right at home in one of these floating domiciles.

Profitable Partnerships

Giancarlo Zema and EcoFloLife seem to have thought of everything when it comes to the WaterNest from design and technology to aesthetics. Look to the team for future eco-friendly projects of this depth and character in the days, months and years ahead.