Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Havaleena Torch Is A Bright Idea

Sometimes simple ideas are the best ideas. And one of the simplest I've seen recently was invented and developed by a company that doesn't normally make gadgets. They specialize in hillside architecture.

Specifically, Tayo Design Studios is best known for some extraordinary architecture in Argentina, Brazil, Spain, and the United States. In California, you can find their work along Quail Drive in Mount Washington, inside condos in Echo Park, or standing out among some of the newer Montecito residences in Santa Barbara County. The designs are modern, linear, and exceptionally striking.

Although successful in their niche as specialty contractors, they sometimes have other ideas too. One of them is a remarkably smart solution to portable sustainable lighting at home or on the go.

The Havaleena Torch is a bright idea for portable light. 

Using one of the more energy efficient and environmentally-friendly lighting solutions — LED lights — Tayo Design Studios was able to design and manufacture an under-covered but design savvy lighting solution that they call the Havaleena Torch a few years ago. The most common design shopped around was simple too.

By pairing three lights together, Tayo Design Studios could make softly illuminated centerpieces for picnic tables and other outside dining venues. Owners could even set the mood by changing the color filters — turquoise, blush, green, or blue. They could be mixed and matched, creating a single color glow or something more festive.

As an alternative, Tayo Design Studios also designed wooden stands so each light (which can also be used as a handheld) can stand on its own. Or, as I was introduced to it, with 40- and 60-inch extensions made from the same anodized aluminum. My friends had added an iron spike so the extended light became our perfect beacon on the beach.

I can easily see that the same concept could be applied anywhere. The lights could be used as a marker near a campsite or along a lakeshore. In either case, it could help distinguish your site or dock, especially if you are unfamiliar with the area. Being able to change the filters makes it easy too. Some colors work better under different circumstances.

In considering the design, there are only two possible improvements that could be made. It would be ideal to add solar charging capabilities to the lights, extending their battery life and making them even more sustainable. The second hold back for some people is that although I like the idea of changing the filter color, not everyone else is keen on the idea. They seem more interested in a simple color filter cap.

Otherwise, the Havaleena Torch is a simple but superior design idea that immediately captures everyone's attention. Although the lights are mostly sold as a mood-setting novelty, they have plenty of functional applications too. They aren't merely decorative. They can add light and mark the right spot.

About principal Toedoro Amadeo Berndt.

After Toedoro Amadeo Berndt was born in Misiones, Argentina, it didn't take long before he showed an interest in designing and building. It was this interest that propelled him to study at the Universidad Nacional del Litoral in Santa Fe, Argentina.

As a young graduate, he faced considerable challenges as Argentina was suffering from political instability and economic implosion. Eventually, after completing several green projects in Argentina and Brazil, he moved to Spain to work at the Vicente Olmedilla studio in Madrid.

After being exposed to some of the newest methods of sustainable construction in Spain, he moved to the United States to lead Tayo Design Studios with his sister Monica Berndt. Monica Berndt is a veteran marketing executive who also has a remarkable talent for interior design and land development.

The Havaleena Torch Illuminates 6.1 On The Liquid Hip Richter Scale. 

LED lights are bright, energy efficient, and give off little to no heat. As a smart design solution, they really can't be beat. And yet, it's the functional aspect of the design that seems undersold. The only other challenge for the Havaleena is their depth of distribution. They are sometimes hard to find.

Currently, only one item was listed on Amazon, making it a better bet to purchase them direct from the site or even from the architectural site that introduced them. However, you may need PayPal to get them. Conversely, it was cool to see that Tayo Design Studios has added a hanging mobile version.

As an alternative, check out the solution from Brinkman or Tiki Torch SolarLights. Neither capture the spirit or craftsmanship of the Havaleena as a viable portable light, but seem more suited to the singular-purpose backyard variety only.
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