This Tiny Transforming Apartment Is a Playground For Pets

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By Jen Woo
Sim-Plex Design Studio creates a home that shifts and adapts, with dedicated nooks and crannies for three people, a parrot, and a cat.

The name says it all. Pets Playground is a multifaceted 453-square-foot residence in Yuen Long, Hong Kong, that puts the family’s most important members first—their fur babies.

The tiny apartment is filled with clever space-saving solutions, including built-in storage and transforming furniture.

The tiny apartment is filled with clever space-saving solutions, including built-in storage and transforming furniture.

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As the house is shared between a young couple, one of their mothers, a cat, and a parrot, Pets Playground is all about creating balance between partners, generations, and species.

The two halves of the home can be sectioned off with sliding glass doors—one side for the parrot, and one for the cat. 

The two halves of the home can be sectioned off with sliding glass doors—one side for the parrot, and one for the cat. 

The doors are birdhouse-shaped to match the pets theme.

The doors are birdhouse-shaped to match the pets theme.

Sim-Plex Design Studio created a private space for each member of the family, as well as communal spaces for everyone to gather—essential for striking harmony between multiple personalities under one roof.

A view into one of the apartment's many cat holes.

A view into one of the apartment's many cat holes.

The cat, prowling in the dining area. 

The cat, prowling in the dining area. 

"Pets Playground not only is a project designed for pets, but also a standpoint to achieve a balance between privacy and communion through spatial layout, bringing a new inspiration to the co-living social problems of young and elderly," explains Patrick Lam, founder and creative director of Sim-Plex.

A view of the master bedroom.

A view of the master bedroom.

The resident kitty exiting the cat house in the mother's room. 

The resident kitty exiting the cat house in the mother's room. 

Sim-Plex created a flexible layout to fulfill the many living requirements of the residents and to provide activities for their pets. The couple’s parrot enjoys basking in the sun, so its cage is located in the living room in front of a large west-facing window that captures warm afternoon light. A sliding door closes off the raised living area so the parrot can safely come out of its cage for some exercise, without fear of interaction with the cat. 

The extra wide cabinet top is specifically designed to hold the cage. Underneath lies extra seating for when the full dining table is rolled out of the kitchen cabinet. 

The extra wide cabinet top is specifically designed to hold the cage. Underneath lies extra seating for when the full dining table is rolled out of the kitchen cabinet. 

Sliding fritted glass doors provide privacy and sectioned-off spaces when needed. 

Sliding fritted glass doors provide privacy and sectioned-off spaces when needed. 

The sliding glass doors in the center of the home separate the couple’s master bedroom and living room from the mother’s bedroom and the dining area. The materials and color palette shift slightly between the two spaces, with light maple and gray tones in the master bedroom and living area. and white oak in the other two rooms.

A bench by the door doubles as a litter box. 

A bench by the door doubles as a litter box. 

Clean lines and an airy palette continue in the bathroom.

Clean lines and an airy palette continue in the bathroom.

The playground aspect of the home applies most to the mother’s cat. The dining table is integrated into a cabinet to provide more room to roam, and the cabinets create a sort of fort with round holes and walkways to explore. At the entryway, a seat doubles as a kitty litter box enclosure.

The dining area unfolds from a cabinet. 

The dining area unfolds from a cabinet. 

When more seating is required, the family can simply roll out more table space. The extra seating comes out from under the bird cabinet in the living room.

When more seating is required, the family can simply roll out more table space. The extra seating comes out from under the bird cabinet in the living room.

All wooden furniture is made from ecologically sound melamine-faced board to prevent the cat from scratching. This material choice also reduces exposure to formaldehyde, which is commonly used in composite wood products. In the mother’s bedroom, a built-in cat house sits in the wardrobe, while a catwalk and a cubby with steps floats above the bed.

Situated above the bed is a catwalk and cubby with steps. 

Situated above the bed is a catwalk and cubby with steps. 

The mother's bedroom cabinet holds a built-in cat house.

The mother's bedroom cabinet holds a built-in cat house.