You can chuck the Alessi lemon squeezer out of your new Pebbles apartment. And you can fling the Gaggia coffee maker too.
Because according to Le Corbusier, the 20th century’s greatest modern architect, all you need in a holiday rental apartment is a bed, a chair and a place to clean your teeth.
The proof is in Le Corbusier’s five Unités de Camping holiday residences near Monaco, which opened to the public last month.
Thousands of visitors have already hiked the coastal path from Roquebrune-Cap-Martin train station to this splendid seaside sight. Built in 1957, these five idealistic cottages envisioned how we would holiday in 2015.
But first, let’s talk architecture. Swiss-French genius Le Corbusier was a minimalist who designed for the masses. His famous Unités des Habitation, designed in Marseilles in 1947, decreed that locals would be happy in a multi-coloured apartment block with shared rooftop gardens.
He was right. There’s a waiting list to buy property in that Marseilles tower block today.
While on holiday on Cap Martin, Le Corbusier dreamt up a similar home for holidaymakers. Like his Marseille creation, it had to be inexpensive, easy-to-build, and feature just enough trappings to keep tourists happy.
His newly opened Unités de Camping takes this vision to extremes. The five wooden cottages are only 8m2 (86sqft). That’s the average size of a bathroom in of our Nice properties for sale.
But the interior design is inspired. Modular beds unfold to create a temporary table and chair. Slats open to allow cross ventilation. Close the shiny window blinds – they double as shaving mirror.
What can we learn from architectural ace Le Corbusier? Two things.
Firstly, size isn’t everything. It’s not how big it is, but what you do with it that counts. Buy a sun-kissed studio apartment from Pebbles and you can hit the same beaches, bars and boutiques as your billionaire neighbour, just as Le Corbusier did on the pricey peninsula of Cap Martin.
Secondly, clutter isn’t cool. The most popular apartments from our rental agency, Nice Pebbles, blend Habitat minimalism with open kitchens and sun-filled spaces. If you want to visit a junk sale hit the local brocante instead.
Le Corbusier’s Unités de Camping is open for guided visits at 10am and 2pm Tuesday to Sunday. Adult entrance is €15, €10 for families, students and children.