Are you a lover of all things retro? The designer of Goldy Caravans is. Coming from a family of gifted tinkerers, he’s been fascinated with vintage cars since he first got his Sunbeam Alpine as a 14-year-old. Some years ago he started renovating older caravans but found there were too many shortcomings to make it commercially viable. That’s when he came up with the idea of making a modern vintage caravan. It started as a Google Sketchup design that got turned into a design, tweaked and realised in its current form, and manufacturing started at home on the Gold Coast. What resulted was a wonderful vintage caravan with the many advantages of modern manufacturing.
Goldy Caravans Is Locally Sourced
Goldy Caravans are located on (yes, you guessed it) the Gold Coast of Queensland. They’re working with local businesses to design and manufacture their caravans. The upholstery has, for instance, been created by local artisans in Currumbin Valley. A local designer has helped with the interior design and they have sourced a supplier for their cladding. More about them later. Goldy seems to bring the Gold Coast vibe into its essence. Imagine a postcard your aunt sent you from a Gold Coast holiday in the late 1970s and you’re well on your way to understanding the cultural makeup of this caravan.
Goldy Caravans Use Modern Materials
The caravan is made of fibreglass composite panels. Building with this material makes the caravan light and strong. This allows the design to incorporate some large windows that give the caravan a light and airy feel. The caravan is finished off with mostly marine-grade materials, with the exclusion of a wooden kitchen workbench. The van will be a breeze to maintain. The tare weight of this caravan is just 1,000kg. That puts it in the field of pop-tops and some of the smaller hybrids. This makes it a good option for anyone wanting to tow a caravan with a smaller vehicle.
The design is, as you can see, unapologetically retro. From the curve of the roof to the wheel arches and the interior design, it all hails from a different era. It evokes long days on the beach followed by quiet evenings with friends. The relaxed vibe of the van is sure to inspire time out with family and friends. I’m sure that you’ll no doubt see these popping up as AirBNBs. Depending on your local laws, you can often rent these out without needing planning permission. Beachside property owners could roll one of these into their backyard and instantly stand out in the field of accommodation in their area.
I can also see them making a perfect base for a food truck. Many food trucks have gone for the retro vibe, which sometimes entails renovating an old van. You could shortcut the heartache of finding and renovating the older van by buying brand new from Goldy.
To me, the design evokes the idea of relaxation. A day of leisure punctuated by a surf followed by a game of cards at the table. There is music playing quietly, a few drinks and we’re laughing easily and enjoying company. Whether my life can match these humble ideals is another question but at least this caravan gets me wanting for the simple life.
There are some things missing from their design that will be deal breakers for many people. For instance, the caravan we looked at didn’t have an ensuite. You’ll be making a trip to the toilet block if you need a midnight twinkle. (See below where we discuss ensuite options.) Apart from the fridge and some bench space, there isn’t a fully functional kitchen, but options are available (eg a convection stove element).
The cafe dinette converts into another bed if you need additional sleeping space.
Who Is The Goldy Retro Caravan For?
That’s a good question. Goldy Caravans has only just been launched so we’ll have to wait and see what sort of audience it gets. Looking at the caravan and what it offers, I’d say a younger crowd will be attracted to it. The caravan I saw didn’t have an ensuite, which would worry some older caravanners. That said, the Goldy comes in two versions. One with an ensuite and one without, made possible by swapping out a cabinet. There is also an outside shower/toilet option available from August that can be assembled in under 5 minutes. I love the beach and have been known to select holiday accommodation based on whether or not there was an outdoor shower. A retro caravan with an outdoor shower really gives a knod toward a younger beach bound audience. Or people like me who aren’t ready to give up and grow old yet. I can also imagine the vintage car scene will love these. You often see vintage cars heading down to meets pulling pod trailer-style caravans. Often the pod will match the car that is towing it. That makes for a very cool and uniform look but what if you want a bit more space? Where do you go then? To Goldy Caravans perhaps. Goldy Caravans will be on display at the Sunshine Coast Expo on the weekend of the 19-21st of August. It will be a wonderful opportunity for potential buyers to inspect this unique Aussie-built caravan. Or you can view the range of Goldy Caravans here.