Mr Maxwell, Ibiza

An extra room in the sun

How can you create a striking new room for your home, without the headache of building work and red tape? For Richard Maxwell, it was a simple matter of installing a customised geodesic dome.

Richard owns a holiday flat in rural Ibiza and wanted to make more of the available space. The only option for expansion was out on the roof terrace – but this came with potential challenges.

“We wanted to build an extension but were faced with years of planning applications for permission which were likely to be turned down,” he explains.

Why a dome?

Rooftop terrace dome, IbizaBecause a geodesic dome qualifies as a temporary structure, there’s no need for planning permission and the usual miles of red tape. He chose the SOLARDOME® POD because it was “too beautiful to miss, light and easily transportable.” Another unexpected advantage was that “it excited and enthralled our neighbours, who could have easily objected under the community rules”.

International shipping, easy installation

The dome was shipped out to Ibiza in February 2014. According to Richard,

“Solardome delivered on time, with everything perfectly packaged. Having a professional understanding of international shipping I was quite demanding on this issue, and Solardome delivered.

The dome came with full self-assembly instructions and as Richard explains, “the installers we used found it simple and easy to erect.”

Primed for warmer weather

The SOLARDOME® POD was customised with extra windows and blue UV film, designed to reduce heat in warmer climates. Besides its practical application, the film is visually appealing: “It has ended up being a beautiful feature, gorgeous.”

A new roof terrace space

Now, Richard uses the dome as a sun room in winter, and as a spare bedroom for visitors. Having the dome has changed the way he uses his home:

“It allows us to make more of the terrace in winter and have our family visit our small flat when we are there.”

Inside, the dome is furnished with two single futon sofa beds.

“We have just spent a week sleeping inside it in August with the door and opening panels wide open,” he says. “We were lucky to experience a wild thunder and lightning, tropical storm – fantastic through the blue film.”

An all-round thumbs up

It’s an unusual addition to a traditional Ibizan roof terrace – so what do Richard’s friends, family and neighbours think of the dome?

“Everyone adores it,” he says. “Here in Ibiza many people are tuned into Buckminster Fuller’s philosophy and designs, but no one has seen one so fully realised.”

At a glance

Location Ibiza
The challenge To provide a relaxing sun room for a roof terrace in a hot climate.
The solution SOLARDOME® POD
Dome specification 2-frequency geodesic dome
Diameter – 3.62m / 11’ 10”
Height – 2.22m / 7’ 4”
Volume – 15m3 / 529ft3
Internal Area – 8.83m2 / 95ft2


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