Friday, October 21, 2011

The Perfect Table

Our dining area (boatspeak: "dinette") is in the same room as our living area (boatspeak: "salon"). It's not only that there is no wall separating the two areas, but rather that they are the same area--the couch (boatspeak: "settee") doubles as the seat for the dining table, for example. The arrangement make sense in terms of saving space, but a high dining table gets in the way of conversation in a living room. Fortunately, Sea Gem's original owners replaced the fixed dining table, which really breaks up the room, with a table that folds and collapses into a coffee table. The result is that, by reconfiguring the table, the dining room converts into a comfortable, open living room.

Here is the table in its coffee-table configuration:


The halfway point:


And here it is as a dining table:


It may not be apparent in the pictures, but when viewing the room as a whole, changing the configuration of the table really does change the character of the room. As with everything on a boat, we need to do more with less, and our ability to use one room for two distinct functions is a great space-saver that does not compromise livability. Also, the base of the table has extra storage space for wine, nonperishable food, etc, making it even more of a space-saver. The engineering is also very clever--it moves up and down on hydraulic pistons and even slides towards and away from the seat (I never really thought about it before, but you sit much closer to a dining table than a coffee table). There is nothing this table can't do.

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