Camp Rockaway: Queens Designer Kent Johnson Wants to Bring Luxury Camping to Far Rockaway

May 20, 2014

And the glamping trend continues…

Designer Kent Johnson has just launched a Kickstarter campaign that aims to bring a “luxurious” tent campsite to the Rockaways. From fully furnished tents with crisp white linens, to private fire pits and hot tubs overlooking Jamaica Bay, this is not your everyday man’s campsite. And if you think the idea sounds crazy, think again. It’s actually an initiative inspired by the area’s past, which once found incredible success!

camping at the rockaways in queens early 1900s

Recreational camping in Rockaway was popularized in the early 1900s by beachgoers looking for an inexpensive escape from the city. As the area saw a significant annual influx of individuals over the summer months, unsurprisingly, the development of beach clubs, boardwalks, hotels, tent communities, and roller coasters came shortly after.

Johnson’s modernized plan includes creating a full-service space with Safari-style canvas tents raised on platforms, accommodated with queen-size beds and other luxuries akin to a hotel. “Bring your surfboard, bring your bike, bring your boogie board — but everything else we’ll have set,” Johnson told DNAinfo.

constance hockaday's boatel nyc

Image © Michael Depasquale

Though the idea may sound a little out there, we wouldn’t be surprised if it takes off amongst NYC’s hip set. Just three years ago, artist Constance Hockaday launched the Boatel at Marina 59 — a wildly popular installation where visitors were invited to hang out at the dock and stay overnight on a boat. The project started out with just a handful of floating installations in 2011, but when it reopens this summer, there will be 16 “seafaring” vessels up for rent (you can’t actually undock). Boats are already expected to be booked up through the season.

For Johnson, if all goes as planned, the camp will be open by Memorial Day 2015. The designer-cum-surfer is also hoping that his idea will help spur a renaissance for the area, which has suffered a great deal post Hurricane Sandy.

Feel inspired to support Camp Rockaway? You can get in on the action here.

[Via DNAinfo]

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