Antti Lovag: The ‘Habitologist’ We Can’t Get Enough Of

Antti Lovag’s Palais Bulles, Théoule-sur-Mer, France

Antti Lovag doesn’t consider himself an architect. Instead he titles himself a ‘habitologist’, his own creation, vaguely defining a man who creates a habitat for men. Our favourite of his ‘habitats’ is of course The Palais Bulles – that which ‘helps bodies, ideas and feelings to flow freely’ through its smooth, round soft shelter. In this organic architectural design Lovag abstained from using the straight line as to his mind it is a sin against nature, being so scarcely visible in the natural world. Instead, he aimed to channel mankind’s anscestrial habitats in this construction, taking inspiration from caves.

Certainly an extravagant take on the caveman’s dwelling, The Palais Bulles is a 13,000 square foot labrynth of spheres. The home consists of 28 bubble rooms, an amphitheater with the capacity of 500 guests, three swimming pools and several gardens. All of which look out onto a view of the French Riviera from the abundance of windows.

If you think the exterior is wild, then the interior makes a pretty good match. Part of Lovag’s work as a ‘habitologist as opposed to an architect is designing an environment which blends the roles of furniture and architecture. For instance The Palais Bulles is home to Lovag’s unique pivoting table. Believing that ’round’ is the idea form for its lack of awkward, inaccessible angles, Lovag created a table that rotates and pivots to minimise the effort of someone setting it for a meal.

Wilder still is The Palais Bulles’ social calendar. Bought in 1984 as a holiday home by couturier and art patron Pierre Cardin, the house is regularly employed as an exhibition space for contemporary artists and designers. Notably James Bond’s 40th birthday was held there by MTV in 2002 along with Raf Simons’ Cruise collection for Dior in 2016. If you’re lucky enough to do so, vacationers are also able to stay for the price of $1,100 per person per night.

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