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Blow-Up Architecture for Throwing Parties Anywhere [Slideshow]

Inflate, a UK-based inflatable-architecture firm, has extended its business into the United States, which is fantastic news for those of you sick of partying at the same old crappy watering hole: Now, you can throw together your own chic little bar anytime, anywhere, just by blowing it up.

The company, founded in 1995, specializes in minimalist temporary structures, from ice cube-shaped huts to big, Bucky Fuller-esque domes. Most are made out of ripstop nylon, and they’re inflated by intermittently blowing fans (instead of an inner tube), which makes them sturdier and more flexible than plastic inflatables.

Mostly, they’re used for business events: fashion shows, retail shops, trade shows, and the like, but you could totally buy ’em for private parties, too — if you’ve got the cheese. Inflate’s U.S. rep Norman Roberts tells us: “the smaller units start around $1,300, the large 80′ diameter domes run around $70,000 and there are many many options in between.” Yoikes.

Inflatable buildings, of course, aren’t new. (Read a fascinating history about them here.) What sets Inflate apart is sleek design. The company was founded by a Royal College of Art grad who obviously knows the difference between a kiddie jumphouse and something that looks like a cross between an igloo and an alien colony. Which is to say, awesome.

[Images courtesy of Inflate]

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