Introducing the Nook Utility Spa- it’s got a shower big enough for two, perfect for after a day of surfing or camping. But that’s not all. Need to hold a meeting on the go? How about transforming your Nook into a board room? Or maybe your furry friend needs a spa day – we’ve got you covered. And the best part? It’s totally adaptable to your needs, but always waterproof and durable. So go ahead, get as dirty as you want playing in the mud, because with a Nook, you can store your gear, strip down, spray off, and still get a squeaky clean snooze.
VAN TOUR | BIG BATHROOM??? By Nook Vans
How do you pack more features and functionality in the same, very compact package? This is not a question of if you can do it but of how you approach the problem. California-based conversion specialist Nook Vans is placing all bets on modularity.
Vanlife is more than just a trendy hashtag on social media, that much goes without saying. For a large number of perpetual nomads and travelers, it’s a way of life before it’s Instagrammable content, and for them, functionality and convenience are of the utmost importance. Nook Vans aims to offer both functionality and convenience without compromising on aesthetic considerations.
One way in which they do that is through modularity, and the flagship Nook model is a good example of that. Based on the 4×4 Mercedes Sprinter van, this conversion aims for the company’s “most agile design with everything you need to get lost.” Few words, big mission if we ever saw one.
If tiny houses are a downsizing challenge, van conversions are even more so due to their even more compact footprint. Compromise is the name of the game, and in the case of vanlifers, it almost always translates into sacrificing a bathroom to get at least some semblance of a comfortable home.
The Nook doesn’t. Not only does it not give up on the idea of a proper bathroom (so no more going number 2 in the middle of the kitchen and then tucking away the toilet inside a cupboard!), but it actually offers a spa bath that doubles as a garage or extra storage room. It’s called the Utility Spa, and it’s the brainchild of LA-based designer Kyle Fishburn. There’s also a full kitchen onboard, a lounge area, and even workspace.
This is possible by means of modularity, which paves the way for multi-functionality. The section at the rear is a wet bathroom with a steam shower and a dry-flush toilet when you need it, and it becomes a storage unit or a garage when you’re on the road. With some careful organizing and proper customizing, it could even be both at the same time, though admittedly, it won’t be as comfortable.
The interior is as spacious as any other van conversion, so you get approximately 67.2 square feet (6.2 square meters) of interior space, but it packs more features. The key is, again, modularity. The kitchen hides in plain sight – Nook Vans calls it the Hideaway Kitchen, and it’s a concept they developed – while the living area doubles as both lounge and bedroom. Ample storage is available throughout, including under the couch, in the kitchen block, a wardrobe, and even a lockable cabinet for valuables.
To keep the space from feeling too crowded or overwhelming, styling is minimalist, almost utilitarian, with sleek surfaces, light bamboo, and strong washable canvas over metal. The result is that the Nook is an actually cozy mobile home while retaining a certain elegant vibe as well.
The kitchen is an excellent example of that. At first sight, it’s a single block of furniture that would probably be used for storage. In reality, it integrates a deep sink with a folding faucet, a slide-out dual-induction stovetop drawer, removable bins, and sizable fridge. It’s “basically a culinary transformer on wheels,” the company says – and it’s not just a figure of speech.
Perhaps just as importantly, the Nook is customizable to a certain extent.
Add solar panels and an off-grid kit, and you’ve got yourself a mobile home with extended autonomy, which you can drive off the road if that’s where your nomadic life takes you. Add an EcoFlow package, 5 to 5kW battery, and 175 to 800W of roof-mounted solar cells, and you’re set for going off the grid. Nook Vans also offers upgrades for wheels and tires, suspension, and roof racks, so you can turn the mobile home into an all-terrain machine.
Further personalization is limited to a choice of colors and materials, but Nook Vans promises they’re enough to create your dream van-slash-home. Optionals range from radiant heated floors to go with the 17k BTU diesel heater, AC, optional recirculating shower for the on-demand water heater, Starlink, and antenna with dual SIM card modem and Wi-Fi.
Nook Vans offers three basic models, each with a range of optionals that count as customization. The Nook and Nook+ are based on the diesel Mercedes Sprinter frame, while the eNook uses a modified Ram ProMaster as base. A conversion takes between 8 and 18 weeks to complete and requires a $5,000 deposit to secure.
The company doesn’t offer an MRSP for any of the models because prices vary depending on the options you choose from that given list. However, if you were thinking there might be a “but” with the description of this seemingly perfect van conversion, it’s probably pricing. A Nook similar to the one in the photos in the gallery specced as a luxury apartment with two large beds, listed for $189,000 in August this year.