Our range of sofa beds have always been a popular part of our collection, now even more so as the Panama and Cuba bases have become stock items, available on shorter lead times. As we recently received new stock of both models, now seems like the perfect time to take a closer look at each design, highlighting their differences, how you can incorporate each option into a room and the different sizing and timber options on offer.

Lets start with the Panama: a luxury sofa bed available in both three-quarter (120x200cm) and double (135x200cm) sizes and in oak and walnut. The Panama converts into a bed by pulling the base towards you by the arms of the sofa, allowing the back of the base to fall back. This is incredibly straightforward and to my mind, one of the Panama’s main selling points – the ease in which it is possible to convert the base from a sofa to a bed. Once the base is in a flat position, you just have to fold the futon out and the bed is ready to sleep on.

If you intend to use the sofa-bed as an occasional guest bed, a three-quarter should suffice. If however, the Panama will be in use more often and to be used as a bed for two people, the double would be a better fit, space permitting. Speaking of the footprint of the Panama sofa bed, the arms add 20cm overall to the width, making a three-quarter 140cm wide and a double 155cm. When in the sofa configuration the overall length is 96cm; when folded out into a bed you would require 2m of space to fold the base out flat.

The Panama is available to order in both oak and walnut, two popular timbers which should allow you to match the sofa-bed with existing furniture. If the sofa bed is to be used in a lounge as an everyday sofa you may be interested in our range of wool loose covers. We have a wide range of patterns and fabrics to choose from so you should have no problem finding a colour to match your décor.

The Panama is the perfect choice if you are trying to fit a sofa bed into a limited space; as the base folds out from the back, you only need to find space for the width of the futon mattress plus the arms of the base. If space is not an issue for you, the Cuba luxury sofa bed may be the one to go for.

The Cuba is only available in a double size (135x200cm) due to its construction. As you sleep width-wise on this base, the length of the futon mattress becomes the width of the sofa. This means that for a double Cuba, once the arms were taken into consideration (these add 23cm) you would require 223cm of space to accommodate the sofa bed, compared to the 155cm for the Panama.

You may have already noticed from the images of each base on the website, but its worth pointing out – the futon sits differently on each base – with the Panama employing a tri-fold design where the mattress is folding underneath itself to form the base, where the Cuba is a bi-fold, where the futon is simple folded in half length-wise to create the sofa position.

Instead of folding out from the back like the Panama, the Cuba converts to its bed position through clicking hinges into place to fold the futon flat.

Another difference between the two designs is the slat system used; the Panama employs a fixed slat system, made from the same timber as the base, whereas the Cuba is fitted with sprung beech slats – just like the beds in our range. If you are planning on using a sofa bed as your main bed, I would suggest taking a closer look at the Cuba – the slat system should allow a more comfortable nights sleep over time. This is not to say that the Panama is uncomfortable, its just that the pine slats do offer a firmer base that may be too firm for those that prefer a softer bed, particularly when used over multiple nights a week.

As mentioned earlier, the Cuba and Panama are stock items. However, the futon mattresses used with them are made by us to order, currently to a 4 week manufacturing lead time.

If you wanted to try our range of sofa-beds for yourself, both options are on display at our Sheffield showroom. We would be happy to show you how each base is converted to a bed and provide both timber and fabric samples.