Tracy Caruso Discovers the Best Room in the House
The least-known room in the house you never knew you needed is called a “snug.” It is a cherished small cozy room that provides a comfortable atmosphere to relax and unwind. Snugs have been enjoyed by historical figures in the arts and politics, such as Winston Churchill, Mark Twain, and Ernest Hemingway. Snugs are famous in some European countries, mainly the UK and Ireland. The cozy and comfortable space is designed for relaxation and is often used for socializing or enjoying a drink. Snugs can be part of one’s home but are usually found in traditional pubs, providing patrons with a more private and intimate area.
My husband and I are currently living in an apartment that has what realtors refer to as a home office or study. They can’t call it a bedroom because there are no windows. When I first saw it, I said what’s this joke of a useless space that I’ll never use? Why didn’t they make the living room bigger? It turns out that this space has become my absolute favorite place to be. For example, I’m writing this article from the comfort of a little couch in a cocoon-like room that I now call my snug. A snug can be used as a cozy area for a cocktail. I use it to curl up to read or write. A friend told me he knows someone who has one loaded with bean bags that she affectionately calls the “orgy room.” To each her own.
I had never heard of the term snug before until last weekend when I went into a friend’s home for the first time, and she showed me her little snug room. She told me it’s a European term. Of course, I loved that and discovering that my snug obsession wasn’t unusual. Many love the cozy, protected feeling this little room provides. I’ve even seen my husband typing away on his laptop when he feels like being tucked away. He can’t resist the charms of the little room.
A snug is often a small, intimate room separate from the main living areas in homes. It is typically furnished with comfortable seating, such as plush sofas or armchairs, and may feature a fireplace or a small bar area.
Snugs in pubs are usually tucked away from the main bar area, offering patrons a more private and secluded space. They often have wood-paneled walls, dim lighting, and a traditional feel. Snugs in pubs are famous for those seeking a quieter and more intimate setting to enjoy a drink or have a conversation, which is all very well and good, but I’m all about the home snug, which I plan on never living without again.
The history of snugs can be traced back to the 19th century in the United Kingdom and Ireland. They were created as private pub rooms to cater to specific clientele, such as women, families, or regular customers. The term “snug” itself is believed to have originated from the word “snuggery,” which means a comfortable and snug place.
One of the most famous and iconic home snugs is found at 10 Downing Street in London, England. 10 Downing Street is the official residence and office of the British Prime Minister. Within this historic building is a private snug known as the “Cabinet Room.” This room serves as a meeting space for the Prime Minister and their Cabinet members to discuss and make crucial decisions. The Cabinet Room is known for its cozy and intimate atmosphere, with wood-paneled walls, a large table, and comfortable seating. It has witnessed countless significant moments in British politics and symbolizes power and authority.
Can someone explain to me the trend of having a living room and a ‘snug’? Aren’t they the same thing? Who needs a living room they never go in?
— Alexandra Cameron (@Alex_Cameron) July 1, 2023
Many famous indulged their creative pursuits in their dedicated snug spaces. Many of the people who enjoyed a cozy room have been writers.
Virginia Woolf: The English writer and feminist is known for her love of solitude and introspection. She often retreated to her private writing room, the “writing lodge,” a snug space within her home. Woolf valued the seclusion and tranquility it provided for her creative work.
J.R.R. Tolkien: The renowned English author of “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy was known for his love of nature and creating a cozy atmosphere. He had a study within his home called the “Hobbit Room,” a snug space adorned with books, artifacts, and a fireplace. Tolkien cherished this private space for writing and imagination.
Reading nook 🥰 pic.twitter.com/rlijZBAEu9
— Shelby☀️☕️🌲 (@mytravel_goals) June 28, 2023
Agatha Christie: The famous English crime novelist had a private snug within her home known as the “Snuggery.” It was a comfortable space where she would relax, read, and gather her thoughts. Christie valued the privacy and tranquility of this snug, which allowed her to focus on her writing.
Roald Dahl: The beloved British author of children’s books had a writing hut called the “Gipsy House,” which could be considered a snug. This small, private space in his garden gave him solitude and inspiration for his imaginative stories.
Mark Twain: The American writer had a study within his home in Hartford, Connecticut, known as the “Billiard Room.” This snug space featured a fireplace, bookshelves, and a billiards table. Twain often retreated to this cozy room to write and relax.
Ernest Hemingway: The American writer had a private study within his home in Key West, Florida, known as the “Writing Studio.” This snug space was a separate building behind his house, offering him seclusion and a peaceful atmosphere for writing.
Frida Kahlo: The Mexican artist had a small bedroom/studio within her home known as “La Casa Azul” (The Blue House). This snug space was filled with her artwork, books, and personal belongings. Kahlo spent significant time in this intimate space, creating her iconic paintings.
— Towoko (@ToWoKo) July 2, 2023
One of the critical characteristics of a snug is its ability to offer privacy and seclusion. The enclosed nature of the space allows individuals or small groups to have intimate conversations without being disturbed by the hustle and bustle of the central area.
Snugs have been around forever, but modern interpretations have emerged. Many contemporary homes and establishments incorporate snug-like spaces, such as reading nooks, home theaters, or relaxation areas, where individuals can unwind and enjoy personal activities. Wherever I go live, one thing is for sure; I will always have a snug of my own.
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