Spotlight On

FEATURE: Software and technology that is enhancing the overall hotel experience

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
FEATURE: Software and technology that is enhancing the overall hotel experience

To celebrate Hotel Designs putting the spotlight on technology, software and controls this month, the editorial team have compiled together all the latest and greatest technology pieces, both hidden and visible, that have launched to significantly help to evolve the overall hotel experience for the better.  

Edited by editor Hamish Kilburn…

Earlier this month, to celebrate the group’s 100th year anniversary, Hilton Hotels released a report supported by experts to reveal how the growing sophistication of technology and climate change will impact the hotel industry in the future. Using the results of the report as a metaphorical anchor, here is a selection of technology and software that is helping to shape the future of international interior design and, as a result, helping to improve the consumer journey within hotels.

Interactivity before checking in

With travel becoming more accessible to everyone, and the rise in alternative home-from-home accommodation, there has also been a rise of design-savvy guests checking in to hotels. Therefore, hoteliers may be interested to know that there is a range of software out there that actually allows the guest to interactively take a virtual tour of their hotel from behind a computer screen, mobile or tablet.

ACT Studios, Hotel Designs’ official photographer, is an innovative photography service that works with hotels to capture their interiors interactively. The company uses Matterport, a world leader in immersive 3D technology, offering a platform for the built environment that can easily capture, edit and share 3D models of physical spaces. The technology is able to fully capture the interior and the design of properties, including hotels and leisure destinations.

Matterport technology has already captured several spectacular hotels, resorts and travel lodges across the world. An example of this would be the Four Seasons Ty Warner Penthouse – located in New York that has hosted celebrity guests and has its own private spa room. An incredibly unique example is the Underwater Room at The Manta Resort and the Underwater Terrace – a floating underwater room as a private oasis located in the crystal clear waters of a conservation area in the Pemba Islands in Tanzania several hundred metres from shore. And up above in the clouds, Matterport has captured the Clouds Estate at Helshoogte Pass – a boutique hotel overlooking dramatic mountains in South Africa’s wine country.

Hotel Designs’ interactive hotel reviews which use the Matterport software include New Road Hotel, Hotel Gotham, University Arms and most recently Oddfellows On The Park.

Meanwhile, to improve the volume of guest bookings, STAAH is a channel management software, recognised as an innovator in hospitality technology solutions. STAAH has been using cloud-based products to help accommodation providers around the world power their online growth since 2008. Its award-winning products puts property owners in control by empowering them with technology that helps them attract, convert, analyse and maximise online reach and revenue.

Its latest products to emerge includes STAAH ReviewMinder, which follows a recent integration with booking.com API for review collection and STAAH Max App, giving users the ability to manage their property from their Mobile-On the Go. Find out more about the company’s June updates on products here.

Personalisation is key

In order to improve the holistic guest hotel experience, the evolution of behind-the-scenes technology has made a clear path for smart hotels, once considered the future, to emerge in the market. Guests checking in to a modern hotel can now expect to be able to adapt and personalise many elements, such as the AC or order room service using their phones, self check-ins are driving receptionists out of fashion, while smart door-opening solutions such as key cards or even mobile applications are fast challenging convention. Hamilton Litestat is an electrical solutions provider that designs, develops and manufactures innovative electrical accessories of the highest quality. With a vast product range, spanning consumer units, decorative switch plates and sockets, lighting control and multi-room audio, it is a one-stop-shop for all domestic wiring requirements to allow for guests to personalise their own stay.

Image of room with ceiling lights and display of Hamilton's switches

Image credit: Hamilton Litestat

A British manufacturer, Hamilton Litestat has created an enviable portfolio of switch plate and socket designs to please the hotel interiors fashion industry, as well as smart lighting control and audio systems designed to enhance the hotel guest experience. Its DMX control option allows a Red, Green or Blue colour-wash to be used as accent lighting to add drama to a space – ideal for guest rooms and restaurant/bar/public areas.’

Another emerging product that has emerged from the domestic market, and is quickly making its way into the boutique hotel sector, is Nanoleaf. The company’s canvas range allows guests to create their own masterpiece. Designed to add a dash of playful, ambient light to any room, the product, among other settings, reacts to the touch of the user. Via downloading the Nanoleaf app, guests can chose to change the colour of their wall tiles from more than 16 millions colours. What’s more, the product is drill free, easy to assemble and works with other smart devices such as Google Home and Amazon Echo.

Hoteliers interested in investing in a quality experience among high-paying guests may wish to include various portable devices for entertainment purposes. LOEWE’s mini yet mighty Klang M1 portable speaker is an excellent example of how a hotel can offer tech that gives the guests control. Thanks to its compact dimensions, exquisitely finished stainless steel case and genuine leather wrist strap, the Klang M1 is the ideal companion for guests on the go. Whether connecting to a smartphone, tablet or laptop – the Bluetooth signal is quickly detected and the devices are paired ready to stream your music. In the hotel suite, while working out or even exploring a destination on two wheels, the Klang M1 is available wherever, whenever.

Image of portable speaker (rose gold) on handlebars of bike

Image credit: LOEWE Klang M1

Technology in design

Earlier this year, Hotel Designs reported live from Milan the launch of LG’s latest innovation, the world’s first rollable LED TV. Designed in collaboration with Foster + Partners, the TV product evolved after the understanding that the modern TV is omnipresent in most living spaces, and with screen sizes getting bigger it often dominates a room even when not being used. The new LG OLED rollable screen allows freedom from walls and offers a sense of liberation to design interior spaces.

While some companies have decided to compact their technology, others have opted to go big or go home. Samsung, for example, has just announced that the hotly anticipated one-of-a-kind display, ‘The Wall Professional’, is available to order with select partners, as it marches forward with its innovation in LED and large-scale displays. A breakthrough innovation in multimedia content technology, The Wall Professional redefines the category, offering discerning customers the ultimate made-to-measure display solution fit for any business or living space. The Wall Professional is a bespoke display offering premium viewing experiences on a larger, grander scale.

Large TV display on wall with people looking (render)

Image credit: Samsung

Hidden technology

While it would be easy to focus the lens on technology that is only used and seen by hotel guests, it would not be a true reflection on the rise in technology within modern hotels. New back-of-house systems are now available to further provide more seamless service. Solutions from the likes of Infraspeak have been designed and launched for chaotic hotels that would benefit from improved operational efficiency and reduced costs of maintenance.

Image credit: Infraspeak

As well as improving communication between maintenance staff and the hotel, Infraspeak is a communication tool that is now used in other areas of hotel, such as house keeping, F&B and even energy management. Click to here to read Hotel Designs’ interview with the company’s co-founder.

Main image credit: Nanoleaf

SPOTLIGHT ON: Laura Ashley, from homes to hotels

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
SPOTLIGHT ON: Laura Ashley, from homes to hotels

One strategic acquisition at a time, Laura Ashley Hotels is injecting quintessentially British charm into the hospitality industry. As Hotel Designs continues to put Hotel Groups under the spotlight, editor Hamish Kilburn speaks to commercial designer Kay Cullen and head of brand Nimo Abdi about the company’s growing hotel portfolio…

The year was 1953 and celebration was in the air. Queen Elizabeth II was crowned in Westminster Abbey while Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tensing became the first climbers confirmed to have reached the summit of Mount Everest.

In the same year, one lady and her husband launched a design and textiles company, Laura Ashley, in the Pimlico area of London. Using silk screens, the pair started printing placemats and scarves on their kitchen table. By 1984, the company that we all know and love today’s sales grossed $130 million.

In 2013, the company followed in the footsteps of many residential designers, by entering the commercial market. The British textiles company opened its first hotel and today, 66 years after the company was founded and having won the hearts of more than 300 million hearts around the world all searching for authentic quintessentially British designs, the brand has its sights on expanding its presence within the hospitality industry with a unique platform. “The fact that we already have a brand has been a significant advantage,” explains brand manager Nimo Abdi. “Our customers are brand loyal and that has encouraged us to invest further by acquiring hotels as well as launching the Laura Ashley Tearooms.”

As guests check in to a Laura Ashley Hotel, they are welcomed in a true-to-the-brand home-from-home setting – and location seems to be at the heart of every strategic acquisition. “Obviously we do want to create that ‘wow’ factor,” explains commercial designer Kay Cullen. “But our main ethos is in the heritage. I take a lot of inspiration from the original building and try to take that from an initial concept right into where you end up.”

Image credit: Laura Ashley Hotels

The Belsfield Hotel in The Lake District is an example of blending new with old. “It’s an amazing Victorian building,” says Cullen. “It’s set right out there on the lake, and while a lot of inspiration was taken from that, it also had beautiful Italian ornate architecture that we wanted to enhance throughout.”

The hotel’s timeless architecture has been accentuated with the addition of a conservatory-like structure adding natural light and making the public areas look and feel bright, open and modern. “When we got there, everything was faced inwards, which was ridiculous,” explains Cullen. “We used Laura Ashley products that felt authentic and replicated how the building’s interiors would have looked but with a touch of modernity.”

Due to the often-hefty demands of modern-day operators and developers, most guestrooms and suites within international hotel design are imagined with the aim for them to be timeless – or as timeless as possible. Upstairs in Laura Ashley Hotels, however the guestrooms and suites are decorated with the season’s latest products, creating a ‘living showroom’ concept. “We have a design department that comes up with the main six-monthly seasons of products that we have,” explains Cullen. “I then work with that palate to understand and decide what goes into the hotels.”

The most recently completed hotel within the Laura Ashley Hotel portfolio is the conversion of the 66-key The Chace Hotel in Coventry. “It’s a building that’s hard not to fall in love with,” adds Cullen. “It’s got amazing William windows, original fireplaces. For us, it’s about bringing it back to life, which is part of my job that I love.”

Image credit: Laura Ashley Hotels

Laura Ashley’s love of creating beautiful spaces within the home has been well and truly extended to the hotel environment. Its current portfolio includes just one hote, The Belsfield Hotel in the Lake District. The Chace in Coventry and Burnham Beeches are currently on the boards, slated to open this year, with more hotels yet to be announced.

The future for the group’s footprint in the hotel design scene is now very much secure in looking for new unique buildings that with the help of its design team, they can turn into truly unmatched, British-themed hotels.

SPOTLIGHT ON: Inspirational design hotel bars and restaurants in London

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
SPOTLIGHT ON: Inspirational design hotel bars and restaurants in London

To round off our Spotlight On topic of Bars & Restaurants, Hotel Designs headed into London to pick out the best F&B facilities that are serving up a treat on the international hotel design scene… Editor Hamish Kilburn edits…

Since hotels became much more than simply a bed for the night, the in-house food and beverage scene globally has taken off. Here are a few London bars and restaurants that have emerged to be statement F&B areas within hotel design.

GMT Bar –  Hard Rock Hotel London 

Image credit: Roberto Lara Photography

Incorporating the Hard Rock “mantra”, which includes the global brands’ range of memorabilia, artwork, installations and lyrics, design firm Scott Brownrigg was tasked to complete the 900-room Hard Rock Hotel London. As well as designing quirky and edgy guestrooms, the design team, led by Senior Designer and Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30 Kate Jarrett, also created what is now London’s latest Instagrammable statement bar, which acts as an inviting cocoon from the rest of the city.

The Monkey Bar – Monkey Island Estate

Image credit: Monkey Island Estate

Monkey Island Estate is located in Bray-on-Thames. The island, with its intriguing history dating back 800 years, has been the haunt of monks, monarchs, aristocrats and writers alike. Visitors from London and beyond are transported to their own private countryside escape steeped in stylish yet laidback luxury. Designed by award-winning Champalimaud, complete with its beautiful garden terrace, The Monkey Bar is elegant, contemporary and relaxed – just like the rest of the hotel.

Sloane Place Hotel London 

Long dining table with hanging pendents above

Image credit: Sloane Place Hotel

The 50-seat café-bar in the hotel, designed by JSJ Design, required extensive structural works to open up the space, making it more accessible for guests and local clientele alike. The interior design scheme combines bold teals,timber panelling, glass and brass, maximising light and space.

45 Park Lane

modern quirky bar in 45 Park Lane

Image credit: 45 Park Lane

While the world is all too familiar of the iconic bar inside The Dorchester, its younger sibling, 45 Park Lane, located next door, is the contemporary answer to luxury in the city. The hotel’s modern-chic bar, which serves London’s finest negronis, is described as: “the vibrant beacon of contemporary culture in a luxury hotel.” It is an invigorating blend of art and landmark architecture in the middle of classical London.

InterContinental London Park Lane

Once more, RPW Design strikes again on London’s leafy iconic Park Lane. The design firm’s latest refurbishment of the guestrooms and The Capital Suite in the InterContinental Park Lane compliments the work of David Collins Studio in the hotel’s restaurant, Ella Canta.

Hotel Cafe Royal London

Image credit: Hotel Cafe Royal London

Designed by Piero Lissoni and Atelier 27, the new F&B areas sheltered in Hotel Cafe Royal London are contemporary yet timeless. The Green Bar’s cocktail list is an invitation to explore tastes throughout the ages, divided into four eras spanning over 100 years. The interiors masculine, with hues of emerald green creating a dark and moody atmosphere to compliment the cocktails served.

Main image credit: Roberto Lara Photography

SPOTLIGHT ON: 10 inspirational hotel bars and restaurants

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
SPOTLIGHT ON: 10 inspirational hotel bars and restaurants

To kickstart our Spotlight On topic of Bars & Restaurants, Hotel Designs has scoured the globe to highlight hotel F&B gems that deserve to be recognised. Editor Hamish Kilburn edits…

In 2018, according to Technomic, overall consumer spending for hotel food and beverage showed a solid 5.5 percent annual growth since 2011. In design, architecture and in service, there is a clear move to produce instagrammable F&B areas.

While the overall dining and drinking experience is becoming somewhat of a theatrical performance, we have identified 10 hotels going above and beyond – in both design and service – to ensure that they are entertaining their customers’ ever-evolving demands.

Joali – Mura Bar (Maldives)

Beach blue wallcovering with wooden roof

Image credit: Joali – Mura Bar

Overlooking a pearly beach and pool that meets the sea, The Mura Bar is designed to encourage guests to naturally relax and unwind. The hotel’s entire construction was designed to build around its natural landscape. As a result, 1,000 trees were preserved in the process, creating luscious green scenes in a natural paradise.

Gleneagles – The American Bar (Scotland)

close up of plush light blue seating

Image credit: Gleneagles

With the aim to bring back the glamour and decadence of fine dining experiences of the 1920s and ’30s and redesign a legend, Gleneagles will in May 2019 unveil the relaunch of its famous restaurant, The Strathearn following a design transformation by Ennismore Design Studio.

Conrad Malives Ranhgali Island – Ithaa Undersea Restaurant (The Maldives)

The awarding winning underwater Ithaa sits five metres below the surface, offering 180-degree panoramic views of the vibrant coral gardens surrounding it. Ithaa (meaning ‘mother of pearl’ in the Maldivian language of Dhivehi) serves contemporary European cuisine in a six-course set dinner menu.

Since its opening in 2015, the restaurant has become an Instagram sensation and its popularity led to the concept of opening the world’s first underwater hotel suite.

Hotel Gotham, Manchester – Club Brass (United Kingdom)

Image credit: Hotel Gotham

Poised to become the backdrop of Hotel Designs’ Meet Up North, Manchester’s Hotel Gotham, which opened in 2015 – read full review here, has been a major catalyst that has crowned the northern metropolis a major hot spot for hotel design and development. The jewel within the crown is located on the rooftop, at Club Brass.

Leading designers, architects, hoteliers and key-industry suppliers are expected to gather at the hotel’s exclusive members-only rooftop bar, Club Brass, for drinks and canapés above the city on July 1 for Meet Up North. Click here to purchase your exclusive ticket

Peninsula Paris – The Rooftop Bar (France)

Paris rooftop bar with curved windows overlooking a model plane

Image credit: Peninsula Hotels

Located on the sixth floor of The Peninsula Paris – and offering unparalleled views over the city – sits L’Oiseau Blanc, one of the most elegant and singular restaurants in Paris. The aviation-themed interior celebrates flying aces Charles Nungesser and François Coli who attempted to cross the Atlantic in 1927 from Le Bourget.

The Moxy, Chelsea (USA)

Dark-lit, open-planned room with lavish bar

Image caption/credit: The Fleur Room | Moxy Hotels/ Marriott International

Located on the 35th floor, the intimate rooftop bar, The Fleur Room, is open to hotel guests and locals alike. The alluring glow of light and color birth a heightened space of intimacy and mystery. The sofa material is embedded with a floral design and the bronzed furniture surfaces are smooth and polished. “Sink back into the comfortable couches and let your eyes settle on an incredible view of one of New York’s most recognizable charms – the Empire State building,” suggests journalist Hannah Kaplan who checked in to review the the kid on the block for Hotel Designs last week. Read the full review of the hotel here.

Soho House Istanbul – Club Bar (Turkey)

Refined interiors in a modern bar that is sheltered in a heritage building with bold lighting

Image credit: Soho House Istanbul, Club Bar

Sheltered within a striking 19th century mansion, which was originally designed for a Genoese merchant before becoming the US embassy for most of the 20th century. The Club Bar  is an oasis of calm, featuring decadent wallcoverings that are balanced with plush bar seating and thoughfully designed break-out areas.

Zuri Zanzibar – The Upendo Restaurant (Tanzania)

Sustainable materials - including furniture and lighting - make up the raw and rustic restaurant

Image credit: Zuri Zanzibar

Designed by Jestico + Whiles, the eco hotel’s Upendo Restaurant overlooks the entire resort. The restaurant’s laid-back Zanzibari style and live cooking shows make it the ideal place for breakfast and dinner, whilst its separate deck is ideal for private events or larger dinner groups. Peponi bar in the Zuri Zanzibar offers comfortable benches and sofas for a peaceful and relaxing ambiance.

Raffles – The Long Bar (Singapore)

Exterior of the hotel

Image credit: Raffles

Redesigned by Alexandra Champalimaud, the earthy decor of the two-storey Long Bar which will reopen this summer is inspired by Malayan life in the 1920s. The deep, rich colours and lush greenery transport patrons to the edge of a tropical plantation. In keeping with the relaxed atmosphere, guests are invited to brush peanut shells off the table and bar counter to the floor. In addition, and arguably thus making the hotel one of the early innovators for encouraging bar theatre, The Long Bar is quite possibly the only place in Singapore where littering is encouraged.

The Morpheus (China)

The sky bar, with sophisticated gold barriers between tables

Image credit: Melco Resorts & Entertainment

Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, Yí on the 21st-floor Sky Bridge at The Morpheus takes fine dining to new heights with a unique blend of regional Chinese cuisine served in tasting menu format. Yí is the first Chinese restaurant in Macau offering daily multi-course tasting menus.

Main image credit: Moxy Chelsea, New York

Making a statement in the bathroom with luxe pieces and finishing touches

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Making a statement in the bathroom with luxe pieces and finishing touches

While Hotel Designs is putting the bathroom under the spotlight following ISH 2019, recommended supplier Heritage Bathrooms shares ways in which to make statement using luxe pieces and finishing touches… 

According to the latest hotels forecast from PwC, the number of UK hotel rooms has risen significantly, increasing competition within the industry and providing guests with much greater choice.

And when it comes to the bathroom, these guests are increasingly prioritising hotels which not only have a functional space, but also provide them with a luxury experience that will live long in the memory.

By following some simple steps, this careful balance between functionality and experience-led indulgence can be easily achieved – allowing your guests to enjoy a beautiful, high-end bathroom space made up of bold, statement pieces alongside striking luxe touches.

Modern, quirky bath in contemporary bathroom

Image credit: Heritage Bathrooms

Give the gift of spa-like indulgence

Spa-inspired bathrooms provide guests with a special place to retreat and recharge during their stay. Blurring the lines between vanity areas, bathing areas and the bedroom is key to creating a luxurious spa-like bathroom space.

A statement bath is the epitome of a boutique styling, and a popular choice among hoteliers for bathrooms of all types.

To elegantly combine traditional simplicity with on-trend opulence opt for a stunning freestanding bath such as Heritage’s Madeira. The cast-iron material is also paintable, allowing for designers to select a custom shade of their choice.

Alternatively, a bath with a metallic finish, such as the Hylton from Heritage, provides an instant style statement and is available in copper, gold and stainless-steel effect finishes. The bath is acrylic and a light-weight alternative to traditional cast iron.

For smaller spaces, opt for ‘baby’ versions of roll top baths, which are smaller than the standard size and provide spa style that fits the space without compromising on luxury. We recommend styling a freestanding bath in the centre of a bathroom alongside a display table with toiletries to hand.

Evoke boudoir glamour with a bold basin

Bathroom basins are often viewed as a basic essential and can be overlooked when considering statement styling. However, a bold, on-trend basin can provide a striking, but subtle, focal point for a washroom space. A period inspired basin is an easy way to add a traditional twist to a more contemporary space, creating a boutique styled finish.

Double console basins work well in guest bathrooms and are especially ideal for guests travelling as a couple, with dual sinks and taps helping to minimise stress and create a harmonious atmosphere. The Victoria double console basin from Heritage bathrooms is a beautiful example of this style. The design draws inspiration from the Victorian era with beautiful, curved sculpted legs which offer a striking upgrade to a standard pedestal, giving an on-trend twist to traditional styling.

Alternatively, for rooms where space is not an obstacle, two identical basins in a ‘his and hers’ formation can be used to create a Jack and Jill style arrangement.  Increasingly in demand, this design will not only aid busy morning routines, but each guest will also benefit from their own personal area and additional space for toiletries.

Single basins, such as the Blenheim Console Basin from Heritage, can also provide standout boutique bathroom styling. The Blenheim showcases a wider single basin with sleek, delicately tapered legs, combining sharp angles with sumptuous curves and is reminiscent of the Baroque era, evoking boudoir glamour.

A rainfall inspired shower is an invigorating addition to a bathroom space and a popular choice for those seeking to recreate a personal, daily spa-like experience. Choose a shower with a large eight-inch rose, such as the Avenbury exposed shower by Heritage Bathrooms, for a luxurious, drenching soak.

Image credit: Heritage Bathrooms

With wet-room styled showers becoming increasingly desirable, it’s worth considering replacing shower trays with simple tiling and a glass partition to create a stylish, open plan finish. This walk-in design has a number of benefits, providing guests of all ages with ease of access and plenty of space to bathe while also making a bold style statement.

While well-chosen sanitaryware is key to the styling of the room, the smaller accessories and finishes are also vital to achieving an overall feeling of high-end luxury.  It’s important to consider how the accessories will coordinate and add to the overall styling of the bathroom space.

Stylish brassware in unique finishes, such as Heritage’s Mother of Pearl inlayed Gracechurch taps, can play a key role in achieving a high-end look – transforming taps and showers from practical items into jewellery for the bathroom. Pairing these with soft pink hues and cooler colours like greys and mints is an ideal way to make your metallics shine.

Where possible, hoteliers should look to add practical items in on-trend colours to add interest and a more sumptuous feel to the space. Shelving, statement taps, toothbrush holders and mirrors are all small, but necessary accessories that can help to transform the ambience of a bathroom.

Using mirrors in the bathroom is not only practical, but also helps to bounce light around the room which is perfect for smaller bathrooms where there is no natural light. A plain mirror, white paint or white storage might seem like an obvious choice to keep a room feeling bright, but these will only add to the clinical feel. Instead, consider an oversized statement mirror which will add an element of boutique personality and charm to the space.

With a large mirror, it is important that it’s positioned to reflect and amplify your key statement piece. For example, if you have a statement freestanding bath like Heritage Bathrooms’ Penrose, then by placing a mirror behind it you create double the impact it would have on its own. They can also be used to showcase and accentuate statement wallpapers by reflecting the pattern back into the room.

Another way to turn a bathroom a place of luxury escapism for guests, is to create a blend of the bathroom and bedroom in the design. Complementing an opulent mirror with a gilded vintage upholstered chair, antique lanterns and warm metallic accessories can result in a stunning dressing room-come-boudoir space.

For more inspirational tips and Heritage Bathroom’s full range of gorgeous bathroom products visit www.heritagebathrooms.com

In Conversation With: Patricia Urquiola on Laufen’s latest bathroom collection

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
In Conversation With: Patricia Urquiola on Laufen’s latest bathroom collection

As Hotel Designs continues its month putting Bathrooms under the spotlight, editor Hamish Kilburn sits down with designer Patricia Urquiola to understand more about her latest collection reveal with Laufen…

Patricia Urquiola is no stranger to Laufen, as the Spanish designer celebrated at ISH 2019 the launch of her third – yes third – generation of SaphirKeramik, and by doing so has created the new collection, Sonar.

Rediscovering the formal scope of the bathroom – and designed to be insurmountable in bathroom aesthetics – the expressive Sonar collection has already gone on to win an iF Design Award. The material, SaphirKeramik, was first used by the designer for Laufen in 2013 in novel washbasin designs that were simply not possible using conventional bathroom ceramics. Six years later, the material has been used in the brand’s Sonar collection and now offers even greater variety thanks to the addition of more washbasins, WCs, a bidet, a new bathtub and a suite of bathroom furniture.

I recently sat down with the designer in order to understand the context of Sonar as well as what she thinks the future holds for international bathroom design.

Hamish Kilburn: Why do you think more attention is being payed to the design of the bathroom within international hotel design?
Patricia Urquiola: I think that more attention is being payed to all aspects of hospitality and not just bathrooms. Hotel design is now all about an experience that one wants to transmit to the unknown user, and bathrooms are no exception. The design of the bathroom in a hotel project is very important, it is part of the whole room space, of the experience that a certain room can offer in terms of relax and wellbeing.

modern bathroom with colour and slick design

Image credit: Laufen

HK: What are your thoughts on color in the bathroom?
PU: My approach to colour, for bathrooms and every aspect of a project, is not absolute; it very much depends on the project. At times, color is central and it is therefore given a lot of importance and space, it becomes essential for forms to come to life. Other times, palettes are a lot more intimate with very little color and more attention to textures or materials. For example, the bathrooms at Room Mate Hotel Giulia in Milano are extremely colorful, they reflect the language that we used throughout the whole project.  On the other hand, for a recent project in Mumbai in which we featured the Sonar collection, the focus isn’t on color but rather on materials and textures: marble and wood contrast beautifully with the ceramic of the collection.

HK: How has SONAR evolved? What’s changed, in regards to bathroom technology, since the first generation of SONAR?
PU: Sonar is manufactured using a high-tech ceramic material called SaphirKeramik, a material developed by Laufen that allows for the ceramic to be very thin for an industrial product. When I started my collaboration with the brand it had already been used for previous collections, what I wanted to do was to really exploit the material’s characteristics: strong yet light, it has a glow to it and a certain amount of detail can be incorporated. I wanted to work with all these positive aspects of SaphirKeramik and experiment with three-dimensional surfaces, to try and add spatial volumes to it.

“I think that in 30 years’ time things will be very different, from the houses we will live in, the cars we will drive, the hotels we will stay in…” – Patricia Urquiola

HK: The inspiration for your latest collection was ‘soundwaves that spread in water’…Was this a lightbulb moment, and if so – when and where were you at the time?
PU: Usually inspiration comes to me in waves of moments, images, trips, people… it is hard to pinpoint it to a specific time. The strictness of architectural minimalism was definitely on my mind, a sense of lines, purity and geometry. But also water, its energy and its dynamic movement that never stops. The meeting point of these two ideas is the inspiration behind the Sonar collection, sort of a game between such contrasting shapes, between softness and severity. The lines etched on the exterior of the pieces fade on one end, disappearing back into the material, just like the waves in the ocean.

HK: In your eyes, what does the bathroom of the future (say 30 years from now) look like?
PU: That is very hard to imagine! I think that in 30 years’ time things will be very different, from the houses we will live in, the cars we will drive, the hotels we will stay in… we are moving towards a smarter future, things will be more specialised, personalised, mobile. Frameworks and systems will become more complex and we all will learn to navigate them. We are already seeing a very big change in materials, in how we make them and reuse them and this will also affect architectural projects, the way in which bathrooms will be designed and built will change radically. Spaces and functions are becoming hybrid, they are being redefined because our focus is shifting towards functionality.

Laufen is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Lighting contemporary bathrooms with Vaughan

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Lighting contemporary bathrooms with Vaughan

The Vaughan bathroom wall light collection offers a wide selection of carefully designed and engineered IP44 rated wall lights in a variety of decorative styles…

Whether a project requires contemporary designs either side of a wash basin or a more classic decorative scheme – the Vaughan wall light range offer designs to cover all schemes. The Sudbury bathroom wall light, available in brass, nickel or chrome is a popular design from the Vaughan range.

Defined by its classic scroll arm and oval fluted and scalloped backplate, this wall light is designed to be used with a lampshade to achieve a soft, diffused light.

The Sudbury has recently been chosen for bathrooms in two leading London hotels, The Ned and The Goring, and also internationally in the Hotel Sacher in Salzburg and Le Bristol in Paris.

The Art Deco inspired Olympia bathroom wall light has also featured in many recent hotel projects, such as the Blakeney Hotel in Norfolk and Hotel d’Angleterre in Geneva.   Available in nickel or chrome, both designs have opaline frosted glass to diffuse and soften the light.

To view the entire bathroom wall light collection, please visit the website.

Vaughan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Bathroom specialist Utopia Projects rounds up ISH 2019

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Bathroom specialist Utopia Projects rounds up ISH 2019

To kick-start our month of putting bathrooms under the spotlight, Utopia Projects reviews ISH 2019 by sharing its highlights of the show… 

In March, the world’s largest bathroom and heating trade fair, ISH, took place in Frankfurt Germany. With the exhibition taking place every two years, ISH this year attracted around 190,000 visitors all in search for the latest innovations. We took a handful of our clients across for the event to see what some of the world’s leading bathroom manufacturers had on offer.

The most evident trend across many of the manufacturers was digital products with integrated home automation. As with many industries technology is becoming increasingly important, and it is clear that this will be a big feature in forthcoming bathrooms. It was great to see colour feature heavily in many of the displays, with several brands presenting various colour options within their ceramic ranges; Villeroy & Boch, Roca and Laufen ranges were all offering strong and subtle tones for sanitaryware.

Including colour into your bathroom is a fantastic way to put a twist on the monochromatic trend that has been sweeping the interior design world for the past few years. A popular colour choice was black; a bold way to create a sultry and high-end space. Colour accents didn’t stop there either, with many of the manufacturers beginning to increase their special finishes beyond just taps, to shower heads, wastes and accessories. Brands such as Gessi and Victoria & Albert have introduced strong metal finishes within their brassware collections, which will create some drama in public area specifications. Having a wide array of finishes to choose from allows every element of a bathroom to be personalised to specific taste. This is due to the Brassware ranges on offer being now being in such a wide variety of finishes.

“Using large format solid surfaces, such as quartz, is becoming quite popular.”

Seamless design was another trend which we saw beginning to come through, and using large format solid surfaces, such as quartz, is becoming quite popular. These bespoke solid surfaces offer infinite design possibilities allowing every bathroom surface to be manufactured from one material, with minimal joints, creating a visually stunning design.

From all the brands displayed at ISH, a stand that really stood out to us was Gessi. This was due to their fantastic designs, not only for their products. The stand was innovative and eye catching, helping you envision how you can push boundaries for design. Gessi’s themeing for its stand was seemingly avant garde, yet on trend, following the popular outdoor-indoor trend in terms of rain showers, deep basins and large plants to finish.

Dornbracht and Alape took a very different approach to their stand, but was nonetheless as enticing. Both of their approach was subtle in comparison, teasing you into wanting to see and know more about the products. A final stand we were inspired by was by Roca. The company displayed their products as complete rooms allowing us to see variation in products as well as visualise them from a designers prospective. The video demonstration we watched on the stand of one of the mirrors showed us how futuristic and advanced the technology of a simple product can be, which is very exciting from a design point of view. We also saw that Emco is offering a lighting system which can be fully customised, even down to the shaver mirror and mirror cabinet, by one switch, to create mood and ambiance for a totally unique bathroom experience.

A final point we found interesting whilst at ISH was something which is very prominent in society today. Taking the theme of sustainability in its stride was GROHE, which launched products following a close look at consumer behaviour. By launching no less than 500 new innovations, the company’s new collections challenges conventional design of bathroom products and offers sustainable solutions designed to give consumers the ability to take better control. Roca also talked about how it is appealing to make its showers more environmentally friendly. The company plans on integrating digital showers into hotels in order to offer an incentive for users to take shorter showers for discount on future hotel stays. Multiple companies, not just Roca, are interested in monitoring how we consume water in homes, hotels and businesses, resulting in a large impact on the environment.

In conclusion, ISH once again gave an impressive demonstration of its importance for German and international visitors and exhibitors. The next ISH will be held in Frankfurt am Main from March 22 to 26, 2021.

Utopia Projects is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Messe Frankfurt/ISH 2019

7 outdoor products that are changing the hotel design landscape

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
7 outdoor products that are changing the hotel design landscape

To mark Hotel Designs’ focus on Outdoor Style, the editorial team have identified outdoor products that are vastly changing the landscape of hotel design…

There’s no doubt about it, the way in which guests consume their hotel experience is changing, and quickly. With this drastic in the demands of modern travellers, which is largely being led by the evolution of social media and technology, hotels are striving to create statement areas many of the public areas.

One way in which to do this is to create arresting outdoor spaces. Whether its bringing the indoors outdoors, shading a statement infinity pool or creating mini escapes in the landscape, it seems as if anything is possible in landscape architecture and style – and here are just some of the products that are leading the way in outdoor style.

1) Tuuci Equinox Cabana

Cabana at the end of an outdoor swimming pool

Image credit: Tuuci

TUUCI Equinox Cabana structures effortlessly transform any patio, poolside or outdoor landscape into open-air living rooms. The structure’s sleek modular design is built to custom specifications; shape, size, finish, walls, seating and lighting options. The outdoors never felt more luxurious.

Its lighting option for the TUUCI Equinox Cabana is marine-grade, LED, and features two lights per beam. Suitable for hotel demands, the TUUCI Equinox Cabana has a number of added features available, including a power outlet option to plug in electronic devices or charge by USB.

 

2) ÖÖD House – Round Wood of Mayfield 

Reflective structure in the middle of greenland

Image credit: ÖÖD House – Round Wood of Mayfield

The ÖÖD house – a stunning, 18 sq/m mini home clad in mirrored glass which blends to its natural surroundings – has been added to Round Wood of Mayfield’s collection of high end outdoor structures.

Originally envisaged as a “pop up” hotel guest room or Airbnb pad by Estonian company ÖÖD, it is now exclusively distributed and assembled by the timber and landscape specialists across the UK.

The stand-alone living space for both commercial and domestic clients, which also make ideal office spaces, guest accommodation or even yoga studios, blends beautifully into any setting courtesy of the striking insulated glazing that covers the front and sides.

Round Wood of Mayfield is one of Hotel Designs’ Recommended Suppliers. 

3) Gina Collection, JANUS et Cie 

Sleek designed outdoor furniture on patio

Image credit: JANUS et CIe

Created exclusively for JANUS et Cie by the renowned Italian design icon Piero Lissoni, the Gina collection is characterised by sensuous contours and sleek lines, precisely executed in harmonious proportion. The collection’s  Gina Recamier recently received the 2019 Red Dot Award for outstanding design and is just one example of many on the furniture market that is allowing designers to bring the interior, cosy feel in outdoor spaces.

4) Glammfire fireplaces

Red seating around low fire

Image credit: Glammfire

From the pleasure of any outdoor space, the Circus brings comfort through its fiery warmth and convenient seats; which can be conveniently stored around the central unit and can easily endure outdoor conditions. Ideal for small-size hotels, the products allows guests to hang out as if they were with friends and family around a cosy fire.

5) Pedrali Soul Outdoor

Image credit: Pedrali

Soul Outdoor is a new, special evolution of the original version made in bent wood and launched by Eugeni Quitllet last year. The inspiration is the same that the Catalan designer defines as “a link between the concrete and the abstract, between the real world and that of dreams, between past and future… the unspoiled state of creation”. An armchair able to express an idea of uncontaminated and pure creativity, defined by its soul.

A curved aluminium tubular frame, with classical shapes but solid proportions, clasps an ergonomic seat in shaped teak slats, almost like an embrace. The contrast between the two outdoor materials and the aesthetic result of the aluminium shininess make this armchair innovative and original. The lines of Soul Outdoor are accentuated by the fluidity of aluminium, which ensures strength and lightness, while presenting a strong visual impact.

6) Outdoor Poufs, Tribù

Modern and contemporary outdoor scene

Image credit: TRIBÙ

TRIBÙ’s eye for detail is evident from the accessories this luxury brand has designed to make your terrace extra cosy. This year irresistible poufs steal the show. They are available in luxurious textured outdoor fabrics, but also in outdoor leather. Thanks to the three dimensions with different heights you can make some beautiful combinations. Ideal as an extra seat or side table. Thanks to the special filling you can leave them easily outside, even if it rains.

7) Case Study: Soho House White City

Jungle-like interiors on terrace

Image credit: Soho House White City House/Modern Garden Company

Set in the former BBC headquarters, Soho House White City House is the newest and largest members club and hotel in London. Modern Garden Company were specified to create a striking outdoor area. Distinguished by its sleek modern design, Cubola is an elegant shade with a slender frame and tilting fabric roof that offers protection against low evening sun, as well as allowing rainfall to run off.

The frame is made from high grade aluminium, joined with specially developed internal corners which guarantee perfect stability, they also ensure that nuts and bolts are hidden from view. The aluminium frames are powder coated producing a very durable finish, available in two standard colour coatings, white and anthracite, although almost any RAL colour can be chosen as part of a special production.

Safety features for the Cubola include a wind sensor, which will retract the Cubola if the pre-set wind speed is exceeded, other options available include rain and sun sensors.It can be installed both freestanding or attached to building walls, and is available with sides to create partially enclosed sides/outdoor rooms.

Main image credit: Round Wood of Mayfield

IN THE FACTORY with Knightsbridge Furniture

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
IN THE FACTORY with Knightsbridge Furniture

To stitch together how Knightsbridge makes its contract furniture, editor Hamish Kilburn travels up to Bradford in West Yorkshire to step inside the modern factory that chooses to do things the traditional way…

Priding itself on being 100 per cent British-made is something that has become somewhat of a unique selling point for contract furniture company Knightsbridge.

Giving ‘in-house’ a whole new meaning, every item that has a Knightsbridge logo on it was conceptualised, sketched, prototyped and produced in the hearty West Yorkshire town of Bradford – and has been for 80 years.

In an average week, around 700 items of furniture are made in the Victorian factory – and all pieces start as nothing more than a stacked load of timber or Birch plywood, which is imported from Russia and Europe. While many factories internationally have chosen to use automated machinery to carve their frames, Knightsbridge is among the minority that still, to this day, cuts its materials by the hands of skilled workers. “Many of our employees come through the apprenticeship scheme, which is something we are very proud of,” said Craig Weston, Operations Manager at Knightsbridge. “Because everything at Knightsbridge is handmade and hand-cut, the role in the factory therefore requires a very specific set of skills, which isn’t easy to teach just anyone.”

Stack of timber

Image credit: Knightsbridge Furniture

As we walk from process to process, I notice that an arm of a chair starting to take form. “This is one of the most difficult pieces we make,” says Weston who points to the worker on the cutter who is meticulously carving out detailed incisions. “As a strategy, we ensure that we always have a higher stock of the items that are more complex to produce.” With high demand for Knightsbridge products and limited facilities, this is a resourceful method that reduces the possibility of delays in the manufacturing process.

Contract chair in the process of being upholstered

Image credit: Knightsbridge Furniture

Once each frame is cut, sanded, assembled, tinted, polished and dried, it is then ready for the upholstery process. On average, it takes the team at Knightsbridge approximately one hour to upholster a typical sofa. As the demand in hotel interior design renovations increases, the company also offers a reupholstery service whereby it will reupholster any piece of furniture (even if it’s not a Knightsbridge product). The cluster of seamstresses working is impressive and the decision to keep a cap on fabric stock is reassuring. “To reduce waste and save space, we only stock as much material as we need in this area,” Weston explains. “What’s more, although we have colour and fabric options, we will match any colour the client wants.”

Seamstress working

Image credit: Knightsbridge Furniture

Elsewhere in the factory, away from the main production line, is the design and development team. Led by Director Jason Brown, who lives and breathes by the ethos that you can’t turn down the volume on creativity, the soul of the factory is my home-from-from during my visit. “I have every furniture designers’ dream job, right?” laughs Brown. “It’s such a privilege being able to have all the tools, kit and skills to be able to prototype products in-house.” Brown is a man after my own heart who seems to wear many hats in his role. “The most obvious element to my role is that I sketch and design the future collections,” he explains. “But what most people perhaps don’t know is that my team, which is magic by the way, also have to provide the factory workers with all the technical drawings when we start producing a new product. As you can imagine, there is no margin for error in this department. We are always looking for new ways to be innovative, while being mindful of time, quality and cost for the overall business.” For Brown, like all great designers, thinking creatively and thinking commercially are difficult plates to spin at the same time. “It’s a challenge, but that’s why I love it,” he adds.

Despite Knightsbridge having the ultimate in-house design dream team, led by a visionary who clearly leads within the pack, the company is also proud to work with outside influences when designing future products. The latest collaborations to come out the factory include the likes of John Coleman, Sean Dare, Jim Hamilton and David Fox.

Knightsbridge is a modern company like no other. Proud of its heritage and confident to push boundaries, it seems as if this British-born company has all the materials, workforce and ideas – all stored under one roof – to lead the contract furniture market into another 80 successful years of business.

SPOTLIGHT ON: Fabric interior design trends

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
SPOTLIGHT ON: Fabric interior design trends

As part of Hotel Designs’ month of putting interior design in the spotlight, Mitre Linen breaks down some of the emerging trends in fabric design… 

Sustainability, classic neutral tones and tactile fabrics are key themes in interior design this year. The hospitality industry continues to adopt an environmentally friendly approach to all aspects of business operations. Warm and understated palettes complete this trend, projecting a calming and relaxing atmosphere for guests, which can be augmented with a luxurious touch of velvet.

Sustainability

Recent research from Mitre Linen reveals that 75 per cent* of hoteliers believe that environmental initiatives are now expected by guests and the desire to be more ethical in source has reached furnishings, with sustainable fabrics increasing in demand.  The new Mitre Eco range was developed in response to exactly this business need. The soft 100% per cent organic cotton bed linen has a 200 thread count, while the duvets and pillows are filled with hollowfibre created from 100 per cent recycled plastic, redirecting plastics from landfills and oceans. Mitre Linen’s Eco duvets and pillows also complies with OEKO-TEX 100, certifying the range’s skin-friendly properties.

Warm Neutrals

The return to a classic neutral palette is a subtle shift from the dominance of cooler grey tones that have pervaded colour schemes in recent years.  Creating a warmer ambiance within a hotel, these colours offer a timeless and stylish touch.  Mitre Linen recently launched two new soft furnishing ranges: Deco and Tundra, to allow a larger choice of colourways for hoteliers wanting to update their rooms.

Velvet Touch

Texture has a striking impact in a room and there is no other fabric quite like velvet to impart an opulent feel. A velvet cushion or bed runner will immediately convey luxury and indulgence.  The rich colours of the Mitre D’Arcy range of velvet cushions complement this material perfectly and work well to add a touch of luxe to natural colourways.

*Mitre connects research with 142 hoteliers conducted in March 2019

Mitre Linen is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Mitre Linen

Laura Ashley guestroom

Coventry hotel to rebrand as a Laura Ashley Hotel

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Coventry hotel to rebrand as a Laura Ashley Hotel

The Chace Hotel, in Coventry, will after major refurbishment become a Laura Ashley Hotel…

Laura Ashley Hotels today announced it is expanding its portfolio with the addition of The Chace Hotel, in Coventry.

The 66-key hotel is undergoing a major refurbishment to bring it in line with Laura Ashley brand standards. The elegant new interiors will showcase the Laura Ashley Home range and its exquisite, high-quality inherently British fabrics and furnishings throughout.

Laura Ashley guestroom

The Chace Hotel is a striking example of Victorian architecture, surrounded by three acres of attractive landscaped gardens. Original features of the building, such as the ornate fireplace and mullioned windows, create a sense of grandeur in the oak-panelled reception area. The grand sweeping staircase leads upstairs to the new beautifully designed Laura Ashley bedrooms.

The deluxe Laura Ashley bedrooms are designed to infuse a sense of tranquillity and with an effortless style, drawing inspiration from the hotel’s Victorian heritage. Carefully selected colours and fabrics complement each other to create an elegant space in which to relax and unwind. Classic Laura Ashley design adorns every surface, from plush cushions and floor-to-ceiling drapes to statement lighting and stylish mirrors.

The portfolio, which also includes The Belsfield Hotel, Windermere, and is soon to include Burnham Beeches Hotel in Buckinghamshire, aims to offer guests an authentic home from home experience against the backdrop of the Laura Ashley Home range in characterful properties in the UK.

Chris Bowron, Hotel Manager of The Chace Hotel, said: “We’re delighted that The Chace Hotel will be joining the Laura Ashley Hotel portfolio. A thorough refurbishment is underway using the Laura Ashley Home collection’s beautiful range of décor, fabrics and soft furnishings. It is an exciting time for the hotel, and we are excited to offer our guests a whole new experience.”

The Chace Hotel is already home to the Laura Ashley The Tea Room, which opened in October 2018 and is the newest addition to the tea room portfolio.

Timothy Oulton unveils lavish SS19 collection

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Timothy Oulton unveils lavish SS19 collection

The luxury design company, Timothy Oulton, which prides itself on being an authentic and daring source of energy and inspiration, unveils its SS19 collection… 

Driven by a burning desire to create experiences that touch people in a significant way, while living by the motto that “life is better with a bowler hat”, Timothy Oulton has unveiled its SS19 Collection , an assortment of items that have been designed with the idea that truly authentic materials and human-scaled design have the power to change how people feel.

With the belief that great creativity is both enduring and yet perennially fresh, the SS19 collection sees Timothy Oulton bring its authentic handcraftsmanship approach to a gamut of new visceral and richly sensorial materials, which include seleneite crystals, printed velvets, sheepskin, deep handfinished leather and reclaimed Edwardian parquetry. “I like good design, whether traditional or modern,” Oulten said in press material around the collection. using original time-honoured techniques, the studio prides itself on using only the best traditional methods in its products.

The newly unveiled collection includes an update on Timothy Oulton’s innovative lighting range. Continuing last season’s foray into natural minerals and rocks is the Selenite collection of pendants and sconces. For the large Selenite pendant, more than 560 individual crystals are affixed by hand to create a dramatic stalactite-type effect.

“We look for the most authentic, sensory materials and then think how best we can use it.” – Timothy Oulton

Meanwhile, the Inception mirrors – now available in three separate sizes – give a nod to the ’70s. Inspired by the era’s infinity mirrors, each Inception piece lights up to reveal a seemingly endless line of reflections, appearing smaller and smaller as they fade into the distance. When turned off, it becomes an elegant, everyday mirror.

Timothy Oulton's Speakeasy Monaco Bar & City

Image credit/caption: Timothy Oulton’s Speakeasy Monaco Bar & City

“It always starts with the materials first, we look for the most authentic, sensory materials and then think how best we can use it,” said Oulton when commenting on the inspiration behind the new designs. “Great interiors have the power to change how you feel, so whether it’s down time or entertaining, it’s about engaging the senses and feeling alive. That’s an energy that we try to embody in all our products, and it was very much the driving force behind our 2019 Collection.”

Among the stand out pieces is the eye-catching Studio Sofa, an addition to the Metro collection, which can now be finished in Acid Jungle velvet fabric, which is, as Oulton describes: “an expression of modern-urban cool”. The new fabric, which depicts a jungle scene against a night-time backdrop, is deliberately not pattern-matched, meaning that no single item within the collection is the same.

Also new to Metro, is the smart and sophisticated City armchair, a leather swivel chair that can transform any room into a multifunctional space. And the rugged yet elegant new Milano chair, with its minimalist oak frame and luxuriously thick leather, is the perfect way to inject style into an urban apartment. The Milano takes its cue from the Italian design movement of Rationalism and in particular the work of Gruppo 7, a group of architects who wanted to reform Italy’s architecture in the 1920s to strike a balance between classicism and industrially-inspired design. The Milano chair embodies the movement’s simplistic yet well engineered furniture with its clean lines and modern, comfortable sit.

Building on the ruggedly refined palette of the Loft range, Timothy Oulton introduces for the first time the Buck’dN Brok’n leather onto the Westminster Button sofa, its classic Chesterfield model. Previously featured on the iconic Saddle Chair, Buck’dN Brok’n is characterised by its deep scores and scratches that evoke an aged and storied life. The idea of a life well lived is also embodied by the new Edwardian collection, featuring tables and mirrors fashioned from reclaimed parquetry oak and mahogany that originally formed the floors of Edwardian dance halls in the UK.

A warm, weathered oak frame and luxuriously thick leather bring a relaxed and welcoming feel to its minimalist silhouette. Milano is perfectly suited to
contemporary interiors and evenings by the fire, just make sure the whisky’s ready nearby.

Extending the range of Timothy Oulton’s offering, the collection changes gears with the wildly luxurious long-haired Yeti Sheepskin, newly available in black and brown. Yeti is showcased on the rustic new Cabin bench, inspired by the cosy feel of traditional forest cabins, and the Trio chair, a creative reinvention of a traditional slipper chair with generous proportions.

Timothy Oulton's Loft Vignette3 Cabana Yeti

Image credit/caption: Timothy Oulton’s Loft Vignette3 Cabana Yeti

While the new collection’s dynamic accessories arguably takes centre stage, the company is also dedicated to produce sustainable items with its Noble Souls collection, which launched last year. Including three sofas within the collection, all of which have different profiles, the feather-filled sofas come in a variety of fabric finishes.

With more than 40 galleries around the world – from New York to Hong Kong to Sydney, and a flagship in Chelsea, London – Timothy Oulton continues its plan of opening new stores in great cities around the globe, with recent additions including Seoul and Abu Dhabi.

In addition to launching innovative products, the studio has also been responsible for the completion of hospitality projects such as 1880 members’ club in Singapore, The Blue Room at the Los Angeles Athletic Club, and Glazebrook House Hotel in Devon, England.

The latest collection from the brand is a refreshing insight into the mind of the visionary behind the brand. Oulton’s journey, which started in 1976 when he set up his first boutique antiques shop that was owned by his father, has led him to become one of the industry’s most creative individuals. Continuing tradition, each Timothy Oulton piece in the SS19 collection is inspired by the past, but reconceived from a modern perspective, producing yet another uniquely authentic collection that further pushes the boundaries of interior design.

Main image credit: Timothy Oulton’s Metro Collection Studio Sofa with Acid Jungle velvet fabric 

Faloria Mountain Spa Resort reopens in the Dolomites

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Faloria Mountain Spa Resort reopens in the Dolomites

In Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy’s most glamorous mountain destination, the newly renovated Faloria Mountain Spa Resort combines comfort, modernity and tradition, which together arguably defines a new model in hospitality in the Dolomites…

In its own words, Faloria Mountain Spa Resort is: “Charming hospitality in the heart of the Dolomites”. The historical hotel in Cortina, which gave its first glimpse of its new design concept last year, has reopened following an expansion and renovation.

Establishing a new benchmark in the hospitality of the entire Alpine region, the hotel features new guestrooms, a spa covering over 1000 sqm, a gourmet restaurant and new common areas. It now reopens with the aim to allow guests to live an unforgettable experience in accordance to the highest international luxury standards. The project architect Flaviano Capriotti, has designed an environment inharmony with the surrounding landscape, where Alpine tradition meets contemporary accents.

Contemporary guestroom

Image credit: Faloria Mountain Spa Resort/Andrés Otero

The new guestrooms offer guests an exclusively refined environment, where the charm of mountain furnishings is combined with a contemporary touch. The rooms are wide and bright spaces, with huge windows to enjoy an enchanting view of the Dolomites. The parquet, boiserie and tasteful details lend a delightful domestic flavour, without forgoing refinement and exclusivity.

The bed headboards are designed with botanical drawings of the local alpine flowers, selected from the Florae Austriacae atlas, written by the botanist Nikolaus von Jacquin in the 18th century. The botanical theme then becomes a common thread throughout the SPA, the common areas and the restaurant.

The Faloria Spa Resort opens a new wing, and internal restyling designed by Italian architect Flaviano Caprioti.

Image credit: Faloria Mountain Spa Resort/Andrés Otero

The new SPA Area, the largest in the entire Alpine region, is a veritable jewel. A surface area of more than 1000 square metres, where guests can enjoy a unique sensory journey with 25-metre long semi-Olympic pool, sauna, ice fountain, calidarium, vitality pool, chilling out areas and private treatment rooms. The Spa offers an emotional experience targeting all levels of perception: visual, tactile, olfactory and emotional for a regenerating holiday. Materials and colours recall larch woods, the stone of Dolomite rocks and the green of lake water, so that guests feel they are immersed in the nature of Cortina.

Main image credit: Faloria Mountain Spa Resort/Andrés Otero

SPOTLIGHT ON: Vaughan unveils timeless wall lights for guestrooms

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
SPOTLIGHT ON: Vaughan unveils timeless wall lights for guestrooms

The lighting experts at Vaughan has recently unveiled a series of wall lights available in three different finishes… 

Vaughan have recently designed a collection of wall lights specifically for guestrooms called the Malden and Medway reading lights.

Vaughan’s recently unveiled reading lights are perfectly suited for directional bedside lighting. The products are available with either a stepped backplate (Malden) or flat backplate (Medway) and come in a choice of three finishes; brass, bronze or nickel finishes with optional covering in brown or black leather.

With a highly flexible and adjustable goose neck arm with an LED spot, the Malden and Medway reading lights have quickly become an essential requirement of a guestroom.

In a recent project, Vaughan assisted with decorative lighting for the stunning transformation of the beachside hotel, Carbis Bay Hotel near St Ives, Cornwall. Vaughan supplied a collection of Vaughan products perfectly suited for the light and spacious bedrooms with sea views and one of the key products in every guest room were the Malden and Medway reading lights.

For more information on the Vaughan collection, please contact the contract sales department – contract-sales@vaughandesigns.com

Vaughan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

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SPOTLIGHT ON: March features announced

1024 658 Hamish Kilburn

Hotel Designs has officially dropped its March editorial features, which are Technology and Guestroom Lighting… 

Throughout March, Hotel Designs’ Spotlight On features will look at two highly topical features, namely Technology and Guestroom Lighting. These topics, which marry up nicely in many of the debates rippling through conversations in the industry, will be explored throughout the month in a series of editorials.

Technology 

Image of in-room ipad next to lighting controls

Image credit: Ecclestone Hotel London

Now that the industry seems to be doing away with gimmicky tools that serve little purpose for anyone checking in, the way has been cleared for sophisticated tech products to launch with the aim to amplify the overall guest experience. “Arguably, this topic has never been more relevant than it is today, which is why are exploring it so early on in the calendar.” commented editor Hamish Kilburn.

Guestroom Lighting

chandelier in a modern guestrooms

Image credit: Chelsom Lighting

Back by popular demand, Hotel Designs will continue March by shining the spotlight on lighting in the guestroom. “Thanks to certain advancements in lighting technology, we predict that guestroom lighting in 2019 will see some serious innovation,” Kilburn commented. “At the heart of this evolution, LED is still king!”

If you wish to find out more, or know of a product that we should be talking about, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk

Main image credit: Moritz Waldemeyer

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SPOTLIGHT ON: February features announced

768 511 Hamish Kilburn

Hotel Designs has officially dropped its February editorial features, which are Surfaces and Architecture & Construction… 

Throughout February, Hotel Designs’ Spotlight On features will look at two highly topical features, namely Surfaces and Architecture and Construction. These features to run throughout the month have been carefully selected by the editorial team in light of both topics harbouring popular debates among industry leaders.

Architecture and Construction 

Render of Eden Hotel

Image Credit: Tate Harmer Hotel, Eden Hotel (Winner of The Eco Award at The Brit List 2018)

In 2018, for the first time ever, Hotel Designs included architects in The Brit List 2018 – and for good reason. Continuing this celebration of amazing architects , and taking the search global, we will start the month by investigating striking examples of architecture within international hotel design.

Surfaces 

Extreme close up of 3-d surface which looks like a flower

Image credit: Anne Kyyro Quinn

Running in conjunction with the Surface Design Show, our feature on surfaces will explore the various materials used within interiors. From flooring to innovative materials in wallcoverings, we’ll go beneath the surface to bring you an accurate and well-researched insight on the future trends.

If you wish to find out more, or know of a product that we should be talking about, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk

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SPOTLIGHT ON: Major hotel openings for Q3 & Q4 2019

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Hotel Designs has started the New Year fresh by focusing the spotlight on significant hotel openings for 2019 that together are expected to transform the landscape of international hotel design. Following our start last week, here are our top picks of hotels that are launching in Q3 & Q4…

Last week, we brought you what we considered to be the top hotels that are planning on opening in the first half of this year. Following suit, we have identified even more significant launches of design hotels that are planning to cut their ribbons from this Summer onwards this year. From beachside resorts, to cliff-side eco hotels, here are the editorial team’s top picks.

Q3

Amare Beach Hotel, Ibiza
Opening: July 2019

Render of hotel's pool areas

Image Credit: Amare Hotels

Located just four kilometres San Antonio de Portmany, Amare Beach Hotel Ibiza will open its beachfront hotel doors this summer. Showcasing 366 contemporary-designed rooms with stunning views of The Mediterranean, the hotel will also include an infinity pool, three restaurants and direct access to Bou Cove, making it one of the island’s most anticipated openings of this year.

Website: amarehotels.com/amare-ibiza

Ruby Lucy, London Southbank
Opening: July 2019

Contemporary interiors in the lobby area of the hotel

Image credit: Ruby Hotels

Following the Munich-based hotel brand announcing UK expansion plans at the end of last year, Ruby Hotels will launch its first hotel outside of Germany this summer, taking the brand’s ‘Lean Luxury’ to London’s Southbank.

Ruby Lucy will house 76 rooms, ranging in size from cosy ‘Nest’ rooms to expansive ‘Loft’ rooms. A laid-back , contemporary design will see quirky touches such as the inclusion of a Marshall guitar amp in each room.

Website: ruby-hotels.com/en

Nobu Hotel Los Cabos
Opening Summer 2019

Raw materials, with hues of cream and browns, are featured in a modern guestroom with views of the ocean

Image credit: Nobu Hotels/Studio PCH

The new 200-key Pacific beachfront luxury hotel will be the first Mexican property from Robert De Niro and chef Nobu Matsuhusa’s hotel group. Both WATG and Studio PCH have blended Japanese minimalism with locally sourced Californian raw materials, such as custom furniture pieces, wood-soaking tubs, teak and stone materials, shoji inspired closet doors and Japanese inspired lanterns, the hotel’s interiors will reflect Japanese-Mexican fusion at its best.

Website: nobuhotels.com/loscabos

Raffles, Singapore 
Opening: Summer 2019

The exterior of the rich colonial Raffles Singapore

Image credit: Raffles Hotels

With the interior design led by the award-winning Alexandra Champalimaud – not to mention the hotel’s storied history being known by many as inventing the famous Singapore Sling cocktail, Raffles Singapore is expected to open it colonial doors once more this Summer.

Website: raffles.com/singapore

Six Senses Shaharut
Opening: Summer 2019

The modern low-level hotel perched on a cliff surrounded by nothing by desert

Image credit: Six Senses Hotels, Resorts and Spas

Following a milestone year for the hotel brand that aggressively extended its luxury portfolio with a number of significant openings around the globe, Six Senses is preparing to open its first hotel in Israel. Perched on the edge of a cliff in the south of the Negev Desert, the 58-suite hotel will have a focus on eco-living, banning cars on the property as well as all outdoor lighting to further minimise light pollution.

Website: sixsenses.com

Iniala Malta
Opening: August 2019

Wallcoverings reflecting the city of Malta and a large bed in a modern suite

Image credit: Iniala Malta

The 25-key boutique hotel is the result of the conversion of two baroque townhouses and a bank in Malta that overlook the medieval Fort St Angelo. Complete with original glazed baroque balconies and intricately painted ceilings and wallcoverings, the hotel is expected to blend old and new, paying distinct homage to its former shells.

Website: iniala.com/malta

Q4

Paramount Dubai
Opening: September 2019

Render of the four-tower building in Dubai

Image credit: Paramount Hotels

Slated to open in September of this year, the Paramount Hotel will be sheltered in a structure that consists a four-tower master development by Damac Properties. The 800-key hotel will stand at more than 270 metres in Dubai’s Burj area and its interior design will be inspired by the quintessential California lifestyle.

Website: paramounthotelsandresorts.com

Nayara Tented Camp
Opening: Autumn 2019

Luxury tent complete with intricate wallpaper and a large bed with netted mosquito net

Image credit: Nayara Tented Camp

Pushing the boundaries of ‘luxury glamping abroad’, the air-conditioned tents at Nayara Tented Camp in Costa Rica make the most of the views over the Arenal Volcano. The camp-themed hotel will feature 18 luxury tents; 12 of them will be mirror image tents linked together to create a spectacular two bedroom unit for families.

Website: nayaratentedcamp.com

Main image credit: Iniala Malta

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SPOTLIGHT ON: Major hotel openings for Q1 & Q2 2019

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Hotel Designs is starting the New Year fresh by focusing the spotlight on significant hotel openings for 2019 that together are expected to transform the landscape of international hotel design. Here are our top picks of hotels that are launching in Q1 & Q2…

Looking ahead, and kickstarting our Spotlight On feature on Hotel Openings, here are the most anticipated ribbon cuts that are planning to make waves in Q1 and Q2 of this year.

Q1

Hotel Bennett, USA
Opening: January 2019 

Hailed as the newest grand dame hotel to debut in the American South, Hotel Bennett is designed for travellers seeking an opulent and luxurious escape.  Overlooking Charleston’s iconic Marion Square, the hotel will comprise of 179 luxurious guestrooms and suites, a signature restaurant, , a stylish bar and lounge that will utilise reclaimed pink marble. In addition to a spectacular rooftop bar which stretches out to overlook the city’s famed park, the hotel will also feature a new destination spa for guests and locals to enjoy.

Website: hotelbennett.com

YTL Hotels’ Monkey Island, UK
Opening: February 2019

Exterior white building surrounded by leafy scenes

Image credit: Monkey Island Estate

The much-anticipated luxury hotel, designed by the award-winning Alexandra Champalimaud, will open in the historic village of Bray-on-Thames, Berkshire. The island, which dates back 800 years, has been the haunt of monarchs, aristocrats and artists, along with writers, famous performers and Berkshire locals.

The private countryside escape will consist of 27 guest rooms and three deluxe suites, plus a separate barn with 11 rooms for private hire. The estate will also feature the Floating Spa – a first-of-its-kind bespoke barge, which will offer an aray of luxury treatments.

Website: monkeyislandestate.co.uk 

Santarena Hotel, Costa Rica
Opening: February 2019

Expected to be Costa Rica’s hottest new opening, Santarena Hotel will be a bohemian gem located in the town of Las Catalinas. The 45-guestroom hotel will include three suites, a rooftop lounge and swimming pool and elevated local cuisine that is focused on sustainability and farm-to-fork dishes.

Website: santarenahotel.com

The First Roma Dolce, Italy
Opening: February 2019

Modern bedroom with maroon art above white-linen bed and a white bookshelf to the right

Image credit: The First Roma Dolce

Situated on Via del Corso, The First Roma Dolce, a new patisserie-themed boutique hotel, is set to open its doors in February 2019. The Dolce will be the newest addition to the ‘First Experience’, which joins three distinctly unique hotels together and emboldens guests to truly experience the city as locals.

The hotel will be housed within a classic 19th-Century building designed by the renowned Italian architect and urban planner Giuseppe Valadier, who is known and widely celebrated for creating the elliptical design of Piazza del Popolo.

The boutique hotel will shelter 23 refined suites and guestrooms, with views overlooking the bustling Via del Corso. With particular attention being paid to the contemporary design of the guestrooms and spacious suites, the hotel encourages guests to feel as though they ‘live’ in the city during their trip. State-of-the-art amenities include in-room fitness equipment, and ensure The Dolce will become guests’ ‘home-away-from-home’, offering an elegant yet comfortable and familiar atmosphere whilst visiting the Italian capital.

Website: thefirsthotel.com/dolce

Magashi Camp, Rwanda
Opening: March, 2019

Interiors of the tented camp at the hotel

Image credit: Magashi Safaris Camp, Rwanda

Following the success of the award-winning Bisate Lodge, Rwanda, Wilderness Safaris will continue to expand its luxury arm and ecotourism footprint by opening a new camp in Akagera National Park in March 2019. In partnership with the Rwanda Development Board and conservation group African Parks, the six-tented camp called Magashi will be situated in the north-eastern part of Akagera overlooking Lake Rwanyakazinga.

Website: wilderness-safaris.com

Hotel EQ, Kuala Lumpur
Opening: March 2019

Image credit: EQ Hotel

With a prime location in the heart of Kuala Lumpur’s Golden Triangle, Hotel EQ will be an ideal base for bleisure breaks, a trend that is expected to reach new heights this year. Set in a multi-use 52-storey building occupying floors 29-52, the hotel will feature 440 guestrooms and suites, an authentic Pan-Asian restaurant and an impressive rooftop Sky Restaurant and Lounge.

Website: eqkualalumpur.com

Q2

Lelewatu Resort Sumba, Indonesia
Opening April 2019

Exterior shot of large bed on decking overlooking majestic sea views

Image credit: Preferred Hotels

Expected to turn heads with its remote pristine beaches, Sumba Island’s latest hotel will be set on a cliffside overlooking a private lagoon and the Indian Ocean.

Scattered over 10 acres of land, the resort’s 27 luxurious villas are designed with authentic Sumbanese wooden interiors, handwoven ikat fabrics, indoor marble baths, and private pools.

Website: lelewatu.com

Ikos Aria Kos, Greece 
Opening: May 2019

White, modern and clean interiors

Image credit: Ikos Aria Kos

Ikos Aria will bring an elevated and luxury dimension to all-inclusive offerings on the popular island of Kos. Situated on the southwest coast of Kos, the five-star resort will feature 373 elegantly appointed guest rooms with chic modern interiors, all with panoramic vistas across the Aegean Sea.

Website: ikosresorts.com/resorts/ikos-aria/

Hotel Samzeo, Georgia
Opening: May 2019

The remote village of Omalo, which is where Hotel Samzeo is situated, is positioned between two mountain ranges in Geogira’s historical Tusheti region. With just 43 guestrooms and suites, the boutique hotel is entirely powered by energy efficient systems and solar power.

render of public spaces of the hotel

Image credit: VFM Leonardo

Website: preferredhotels.com

The Kitano Hotel Tokyo 
Opening: April 2019

The Kitano Hotel Tokyo nestled in Hirakawacho is currently being renovated and will open in April 2019 as a new luxury boutique hotel in Tokyo.

Website: kitanohotel.co.jp/tokyo

The Chedi Mumbai, India
Opening: June 2019

Exterior render of the towering hotel

Image credit: GHM

Breathtaking views over serene Powai Lake to Mumbai’s dramatic cityscape elegantly finish the sophisticated and thoughtful offerings of this game-changing luxury hotel in India’s City of Dreams. The Chedi Mumbai will welcome business travellers with sophisticated meeting facilities, state-of-the-art equipment and communication technology.

Seven exceptional and innovative dining options, a holistic spa and wellness facilities plus stunning venues for private events of all sizes extend our heartfelt welcome to business and leisure travellers as well as to this city’s most discerning residents. Each of the 312 generously sized guestrooms and suites will capture stunning panoramas, while tasteful interiors will reflect GHM’s legendary motto: ‘style to remember.’

Website: ghmhotels.com/en/our-hotels/

Main image credit: Magashi Safaris Camp, Rwanda

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SPOTLIGHT ON: Hotel Openings and Spas (January 2019)

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Kick-starting 2019 with a bang, throughout January Hotel Designs’ Spotlight On will look ahead to the most anticipated hotel openings for 2019 as well as relaxing you back into the year by shining the spotlight on Spas… 

Creating a sense of balance between anticipation and relaxation, Hotel Designs is starting next year by shining the spotlight on both hotel openings and spas.

Hotel openings

Image credit: Savoy Palace

Starting in January, we will be looking ahead to all the hottest and most-anticipated hotel openings that we should expect over the next 12 months. From modern metropolis’ to far-flung destinations that exude luxury, we will discover all the latest hotel design hotspots and all the unassuming gems that should be on your hotel design radar.

Spas

Image credit: The Gainsborough Bath & Spa

With the wellness trend showing no time of stopping any time soon, there is now arguably more attention as a consumer towards the hotel spa than there is on the guestroom. Throughout January we will be checking out the best spas from around the world and understanding what is it that makes a spa experience spectacular.

If you wish to find out more, or know of a product that we should be talking about, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk

Main image credit: Gleneagles, Scotland

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Spotlight On: A Year in Review – top products launched in 2018 (Part 2)

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Continuing this month’s Spotlight On feature on ‘A Year In Review’ (Products of the year 2018), we have highlighted what we believed to have been the game-changing product launches of 2018. Here is part two of our ultimate throwback…

Following popular demand of our first article that we published on the top products that have launched in 2018, we have decided to revisit the archive to dig out the many other game-changing product launches of the year.

1) Grohe: Is this the future of hotel toilets? (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Grohe

Since launching, GROHE Sensia Arena with its app-control features and three different spray patterns is becoming a popular choice among designers and hoteliers. Defined by GROHE as ‘new standard of personal hygiene’, The Sensia Arena (showcased at SLEEP + EAT) is a shower toilet, fast-becoming increasingly popular in international hotels thanks to its many unique features.

2) Skopos: Mau Loa 

Image credit: Skopos

Mau Loa adds to the Skopos print portfolio and was seen on exhibition stands throughout Autumn and Winter.

Inspired by the relaxing pace of Hawaiian life, Mau Loa (meaning ‘forever’) conveys a tranquil, exotic paradise through exquisite illustration, hand painting and mixed media.

3) Meystyle LED wallpaper (WINNER: The Brit List 2018)

Image credit: Meystyle

Wallpaper specialist Meystyle launched the Conductivity collection with the mission to rescue walls from the background. The company has done this by integrating bold patterns with LED lights and crystals to create deep visual experiences that totally transform walls and wallpaper into works of art. The sister duo went on to win Inspiration in Design – Innovative use of Technology at The Brit List 2018.

4) Interface go carbon neutral on all products

Image credit: Interface

We love a juicy eco story here at Hotel Designs, so when we heard that contract carpet manufacturer Interface was going 100 per cent carbon neutral we hit the keyboard fast to amplify to our readers. Considering there is a major focus at the moment on manufacturing eco-friendly materials, this story has to land on our list of the top product launches and announcements in 2018.

5) Morgan: Rio 2 collection (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Morgan

Contract furniture designer and manufacturer Morgan Furniture launched its new Rio 2 collection, created in collaboration with studio Integrate, at Sleep + Eat this year. Ahead of its launch, we had exclusive access to interview the architect behind the futuristic product, Mehran Gharleghi.

6) Wilton Carpets: Kinetic Collection (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Wilton Carpet

Full of energy and design, Kinetic from Wilton Carpets features striking modern patterns made for forward-thinking leisure and hospitality spaces. Using colourways drawn from the manufacturer’s new Creations colour palette, Kinetic is bursting with dynamic shades of grey, blue and green.

7) Kaldewei: Steel Enamal (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Kaldewei

Bathroom specialist Kaldewei fuses robust steel and exquisite glass together to create superior Kaldewei steel enamel. Bringing 100 years of experience to bear, the company today produces premium bathroom solutions made of a single material to a consistently high standard of quality that are appreciated all over the world.

To read part one of our ultimate throwback, click here

Main image credit: Meystyle

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Spotlight On: A Year in Review – top products launched in 2018 (part 1)

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In order to kick-start our month’s Spotlight On feature on ‘A Year In Review’ (Products of the year 2018), we have highlighted what we believed to have been the game-changing product launches of 2018. Here is part one of our ultimate throwback…

When December arrives, the finish line is in sight for our industry as we all prepare to hang up our tools for another year in order to celebrate the holidays. But just before we do, here’s a little throwback to reflect on this year’s major product launches. From new lighting ranges to the future of furniture (and everything in between), we believe this year has been a significant 365 days, with these products launching with the aim to help take international hotel design to into a new era. So, here are our top picks from those launches.

1) Bisque – rustic and rose-gold finishes (Recommended Supplier)

Bisque, the UK’s first ever luxury radiator brand, unveiled two new distinctive finishes in spring ’18 that stole the show. Rustique and Rose Copper are two styles that have been produced using an oxidation technique, creating a truly authentic finish. These bespoke designs are made to order and are available exclusively on Bisque’s Classic collection of radiators and from its newly opened showroom in Islington.

2) Duravit – XSquare (Recommended Supplier) 

In conjunction with designer Kurt Merki Jr., Duravit created a furniture range that launched in July ’18. The range is specially attuned to the design of the contemporary DuraSquare washbasins. The striking feature is the quadrant-shaped chrome profile edging the furniture. On the floor-standing model, the transition to the leg frame is absolutely seamless. The chrome profile accentuates the edges of both variants. It continues along the corner radius of the washbasin, creating harmony and a striking independence.

3) Hansgrohe – Power Rain

Image credit: Hansgrohe

Inspired by nature – think warm misty droplets – bathroom specialist Hansgrohe developed the new PowderRain spray, which many bathroom companies have followed suit. The product has been designed to make a shower feel like a warm summer rain experience. The innovative PowderRain spray is featured in a new Hansgrohe range of Raindance showerheads. In addition, as more and more hotel groups internationally pledge to reduce water wastage in their hotels, the PowderRain spray technology efficiently reduces water and energy consumption to help safeguard our planet’s natural resource.

4) Brintons (Recommended Supplier) & Timorious Beasties – The Craigend Collection

It’s nothing new that collaborations have been the focus on many suppliers’ strategies this year, with some companies going as far as partnering up with friends in different markets – all in the name of finding inspiration and pushing design boundaries. Brintons’ collaboration with Timorous Beasties is the perfect example of this – and to the suprise of nobody, the collection won Designer Collaboration of the Year.

The Craigend collection was launched in May at this year’s Clerkenwell Design Week and consists of nine designs that are inspired by textures and surfaces found naturally underfoot, all reimagined in the Brintons’ signature 80/20 blend of 80 per cent wool and 20 per cent nylon.

In designing Craigend, Timorous Beasties called upon their fascination with the often-brutal beauty of the natural world, as well as taking aesthetic inspiration from different crafting materials including paint, ink and fabric.

5) Geberit  – AquaClean Tuma (Recommended Supplier) 

Designed by renowned industrial designer Christoph Behling, the Geberit AquaClean Tuma fits harmoniously into any bathroom. Thanks to its elegant, streamlined design and compact shape (with a projection of just 553mm), the new shower toilet can add extra comfort to any sized bathroom, transforming them into an oasis of wellbeing.

The new shower toilet can be tailored to suit any bathroom due to its design cover, which is available in several colours and materials. This helps to perfectly coordinate with Geberit’s extensive range of flush plates.

6) Vaughan – The Tribal Collection (Recommended Supplier)

Among the showrooms opening their doors at Focus18 was Vaughan, which showcased a new collection with a strong focus on table lamps. Demonstrating that interior design inspiration can come from anywhere, its new Tribal collection is based on travels around the globe that Lucy Vaughan, the creative director of the brand, has experienced. The result is an array of vibrant lampshades, embroidered cushions and unusual upholstered chairs which aim to celebrate the craftsmanship and culture of fabrics Vaughan and her daughter have sourced. Each unique in their own right, the products within the collection is ideal for boutique hotels looking to create a statement, an editorial story we brought you one week ahead of this launch.

7) Moritz Waldemeyer – personalised lighting experience

Pushing the boundaries in design is something that comes naturally for lighting expert Moritz Waldemeyer. Perhaps working  with the likes of Will.I.Am to create a jacket that lights up helps, but it’s his passion for taking lighting design further that keeps Waldemeyer firmly at the top of the lighting design food chain.

In May, he provided Focus18 a specially commissioned installation, which offered an unforgettable immersive experience of light, colour and movement. Waldemeyer’s piece allowed the consumer to put any light in front of a sensor, which would then reflect the colour onto the wall.

Waldemeyer continued to put his innovative foot forward as his studio become a supporting partner of The Brit List 2018, displaying yet another pioneering lighting installation.

8) Chelsom Lighting – Edition 26

Chelsom don’t do anything by halves, including how they lavishly launch new collections. Earlier this year, the lighting company impressed the world with the unveiling of Edition 26. Taking over London’s One Marylebone – and raising the bar of global product launches – the company showcased the the new items in spectacular fashion as each lit up the room with innovation, style and forward-thinking design.

If you launched an innovative product 2018, or know of a new product that you believe is a game changer in international hotel design, then we want to hear all about it. Please email Zoe Gurrier or call +44(0)1992 374059.

 

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Spotlight On: 5 inspirng art and photography hotels from around the world (part 2)

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Following the success of our article on 7 inspiring art and photography hotels from around the world, and to end our Spotlight On feature focusing around Art and Photography, here is part two… 

It’s official: art and photography is taking over Hotel Designs, and it is doing so in some serious style, highlight major accents on the walls from around the world. Following part 1, here is our second trip around the globe to source the best examples of art and photography hotels.

1) The Banke Hotel 5*, Paris

The Banke Hotel 5*, as with all the Derby Hotel Collection’s properties, holds invaluable pieces of art from the private collection of Jordi Clos, the project manager of the group. Unique pieces are displayed on every floor for the pleasure of visitors and guests alike. On each level, and inside striking suites, guests can marvel the works of art, showcased in museum-style glass presentation boxes.

The hotel exhibits Derby Hotels Collection’s most important collection of ethnic and archaeological jewelry from Africa, Pre-Columbian America and Asia. The collection is permanently displayed on each floor of the hotel in glass cases classified by culture. From Papua New Guinea, China, India and Tibet to the ancient tribes of Africa. Particularly notable are the ritual necklaces from Papua New Guinea, silver and ivory bracelets from Sri Lanka, shaman costumes from the Ivory Coast and talisman boxes from the Mali desert.

2) The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas

The Cosmopolitan lobby digital art installation, curated by art consultant Susan Walsh, combines architecture, contemporary art and technology to create an unexpected and dynamic experience. Eight 15′ digital columns and a panel spanning the length of the front desk continuously display a curated library of digital art, transforming the space into an immersive living narrative that incorporates elegant, fantastical and often poetic interpretations of life’s travels. In addition, clouds made from lego pieces hang above guests’ heads in the public areas.

3) The Hilton Imperial Dubrovnik 

Behind a large check-in desk, set within timber-panelled wall surround, is a triptych of artworks by Croatian artist Antonia Čačić, specially-commissioned for the project by the scheme’s art consultants ARTIQ. The 3m-long abstract triptych incorporates a palette of soft hues inspired by the colours of the Dalmatian coast.

4) The Anthenaeum, London

Turning heads in London’s leafy Mayfair – not as leafy as its exterior – is The Anthenaeum. Withing the striking building hangs a stunning art narrative that has been curated by the talented art consulant, Robin Greene. The main entrance creates a warm first impression for guests as representations of perfumes compliment each pillar.

5) The Dolder Grand Hotel

Image credit: The Dolder Grand

Since the reopening of the Dolder Grand in 2008, more than 100 works of art by prestigious artists have graced the premises of this luxury hotel in Zurich. The most striking piece is arguably Andy Warhol’s “Big Retrospective Painting”, spanning 11 metres, which takes pride of place above the reception. Experience art at the Dolder Grand with our art ipads.

Main image credit: David Biedert

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Spotlight On: A Year In Review (products)

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Throughout December, Hotel Design’ Spotlight On will be throwing it back to the major products that have launched over the last 12 months… 

Next month, as the industry starts wrapping up the year, Hotel Designs will be giving you the ultimate throwback, highlighting the major products that dropped in the hotel industry this year.

By revisiting this year’s international trade shows – including Milan Design Week, Clerkenwell Design Week, Decorex, 100 % Design, designjunction and SLEEP + EAT – we will bring you all the hottest product launches.

We will cover everything from the idea of personalised lighting to new bathroom furniture, impressive carpet collaborations to apps that allow consumers to purchase items in the hotel (and everything in between). Hotel Designs will be celebrating the products that have launched to become gamechangers in 2019 and the international hotel design.

If you wish to find out more, or know of a product that we should be talking about, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk

Main image credit: Deadgood, Brintons, Grohe, Hansgrohe, Hamilton Litestat, Bang Olufsen, Chelsom Lighting

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SPOTLIGHT ON: Reaching new creative heights with artist Beth Nicholas

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Having created striking artwork for some of the world’s most stylish interiors, was The Address Downtown artist Beth Nicholas’ most challenging project to date? Editor of Hotel Designs Hamish Kilburn sits down with the artist to find out more…

Known artist Beth Nicholas is used to seeing her masterpieces on the walls of some of the world’s finest examples of hotel design. Among working with clients such as Christian Louboutin, Langham Hotels and Waldorf Astoria, one of the most challenging briefs came recently when she was asked to create a large art installation for The Address Downtown Dubai‘s lobby area. I was fortunate enough to catch up with Nicholas after the hotel had reopened and she could finally take a sigh of relief now that her art is the first impression for guests checking in.

Hamish Kilburn: What was the design brief?

Beth Nicholas: Essentially, I was just asked to paint big, really big. I have never had a commission that was 8.5 metres before – and it was gob-smacking figuring out how to do that. I don’t tend to get design briefs from clients that often. What I get instead is people asking me about specific colours. With The Address Downtown we developed a colourway that had both silver and gold in it, as well as my iconic blue.

Soho Myriad, who were the art consultants for that, really like to challenge their artists. Quite often, they ask you to produce something larger than what you would usually go, but this particular project took that to new heights, literally. I don’t think they have ever commissioned anything quite that large.

“Honestly, I have never seen marble like it; it’s utterly beautiful!”

 

HK: In regards to this particular project, what inspired you? 

BN: Honestly, I have never seen marble like it; it’s utterly beautiful! There is some marble in that entrance lobby that is purple and they have split the marble down the middle and turned it. The result is like a mirror image, a bit like when you were a child and folded paper over paint. My work resembles that material in a lot of ways with a lot of natural formations that are very similar to some of the lines and shapes within marble. I had been given a lot of information about the space and the rest of the colours that were used in the hotel. That inspired the work.

“To be honest, everything that could go wrong did go wrong.”

HK: How long did it take?

The brief came about a year and half before I produced the work. The production of the pieces took three months, and my normal technique did not work. To be honest, everything that could go wrong did go wrong. I had to hire a warehouse outside Newport. It was an old, former carpet warehouse and there were holes in the ceiling. I remember it like it was yesterday. It was Autumn, so the rain had started. I would come into the space in the morning to find raindrops on my work. On top of this, I had to essentially create a new technique because my usual technique did not work at that scale. That was terrifying.

On top of all of that, my work takes a while to dry. As the weather was getting worse, my pieces would take longer to dry and I was running out of time. As a solution, I hired massive turbo air dryers – it looked like a scene out of Singing In The Rain – and eventually I figured it out, but it was certainly a challenge.

“I often think of my work in relation to that beautiful Japanese pottery, where they fill the gaps with gold.”

HK: Tell me more about how Wabi-Sabi has influenced your technique

BN: I have been in love with the aesthetic of Wabi-Sabi for a long time. Every time I describe what it means, it’s different. Wabi-Sabi is a Japanese concept that is very difficult to translate into English. Part of Wabi-Sabi is to appreciate the concept of transients that move and shape over time. I often think of my work in relation to that beautiful Japanese pottery, where they fill the gaps with gold. If you look at my work, you see similar cracks as you do in ceramics. I can’t produce a painting that is exactly the same as the last one, and so my work is very detailed. So Wabi-Sabi, for me, is the exploration of how things have changed and developed, which is why there is so my synergy between my work and the environment.

Nicholas’ work is evocative of oceans and the minerals beneath the earth as well as aerial photographs. The paintings are rendered in ink and applied to sheets of paper which are illuminated from behind, further enhancing their impact.

Since launching her eponymously-named company, Beth Nicholas Studios, in 2009, Nicholas’s paintings have won plaudits for their beauty and originality, are created through a unique method which she constantly evolves through trial and experimentation.

Image Credits: Portrait of Beth Nicholas © Mae Maciver; Beth Nicholas art commission at Address Downtown, Dubai, June 2018 © Nicolas Dumont, courtesy of Address Downtown ”

 

 

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SPOTLIGHT ON: 7 inspiring art and photography hotels from around the world

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To kickstart this month’s spotlight focus on Art and Photography, Hotel Designs editor Hamish Kilburn has scoured the globe – from Africa to London – for interior design made inspirational by the use of thoughtful art and photography…

As interior designers, hoteliers and architects prepare to attend this year’s highly anticipated Hotel Designs Brit List 2018, the editorial team at HD have been hard at work to pinpoint key interior design stories that are worthy of a place in this year’s list. One key area that has been a ‘make or break’ element in the applications we and our judges have read has been the clever use of art and photography. It seems, while many hotels from around the world are cutting their art budget, Britain’s best new hotels have a carefully curated selection of fine pieces that further layer a sophisticated sense of place into the property. Therefore, in order to give credit where it is due, here are seven sensational hotels who, unlike others, are using art and photography to stand out in order to claim their title as a leading art and design hotel.

1) Matetsi Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Our art and design journey starts in Zimbabwe, at the sumptuous and striking Matetsi Victoria Falls. Approximately 40km from the ultra colonial Victoria Falls Hotel, Matetsi is the premium way to experience Safari in the area. Creating an inspiring interior design story in a place where nature very much rules is a challenge for even the most experienced design houses. It is therefore a credit to the owner, John Gardiner, who put his faith in a local designer instead. Kerry van Leenhoff was tasked to create the dramatic interiors that are also comfortable within the luxury lodges. Answering this question with style and a well-proportioned sense of place, Leenhoff decided to include an abstract piece of art with yellow accents in each of the 18 suites. Part of a wider story – of course – put all of these pieces together and there forms a map of the 123,000 acre reserve. The Telegraph reported that Leenhoff designed the spaces “to be a nature retreat, with every comfort and diversion one might dream of,” and I have to agree that the local designer that the owner believed in has done just that.

2) The Silo Hotel, Cape Town 

Image credit: The Silo Hotel, Cape Town

Heading slightly south, to the vibrant landscape of Cape Town, South Africa, we check in to the Silo Hotel. The owner, and avid art enthusiast, Liz Biden, has carefully curated a Royal Portfolio of art, of which each piece is inspired from her travels around Africa. In a press release, Biden explains: “I have always included wonderful art at each of The Royal Portfolio properties. Art brings a space to life, it creates warmth and tells stories. But moreover, art takes you on a journey which evolves as we evolve. Our guests love to enjoy the art collection at our properties. The Silo will take that art experience to a whole new level with a focus on contemporary African art…”

3) The New Majestic, Singapore

Image credit: New Majestic Hotel

Each of the the 30 rooms at New Majestic Hotel have been decorated in an individual style in collaboration with different artists and designers. The hotel collaborated with art consultancy firm Asian Art Options, which selected nine Singaporean artists to create and integrate an element of local art around the hotel.

In Room 201, guests will find the work of pop artist Justin Lee, who juxtaposes Asian and western motifs with Oriental Girls Go West. Lee explored commentaries on women’s standing in society. Elsewhere, Heleston Chew produced anamorphic messages that can be decoded only by viewing them from particular vantage points around the room. Safaruddin Abdul Hamid (aka Dyn) produced a mural depicting the façade of Hotel 1929 on the eight-metre wall of the gym. Miguel Chew integrated laser cut figures in polished aluminium, depicting sensual and romantic silhouettes that reflect the plays of light and darkness of the room. Other artists featured are Lee Meiling, Tay Bee Aye, Kng Mian Tze and Sandra Lee.

4) Henry Jones Art Hotel, Australia

Image credit: Henry Jones Art Hotel, Australia

Further east still, the Henry Jones Art Hotel in Tasmania doesn’t lack character as it is situated on Hobart’s waterfront in a converted row of former warehouses that date back to the 1820s. The hotel, which gives industrial-chic a more meaningful definition, shelters an ever-changing exhibition. It asks a diverse range of Tasmanian artists to present pieces. The result is more than 400 pieces of art and photography scattered around the property and a constant stream of creative individuals checking in to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere.

5) Dolce Hotels & Resorts, The Alexander, Indianapolis 

Image credit: Dolce Hotels & Resorts, The Alexander, Indianapolis

A few weeks ago, we explored the concept: art outside the frame in the hotel.  The Alexander redefines the art of hospitality by transforming every area of the hotel into a riveting space for commissioned works of art. The lobby, for example, features a 3D wall installation of birds flying out of a record player.

6) 21C Museum Hotel Nashville

Image credit: 21C Museum Hotel Nashville

Founded by two contemporary art collectors, the Nashville-located hotel is, like the other seven hotels in the collection, centered around a multi-venue contemporary art museum — with exhibition space free of charge to the public. The hotel is woven into the fabric of downtown, welcoming both visitors and locals to enjoy the curated exhibitions, cultural programming, and culinary offerings at Gray & Dudley. Just a few blocks from Nissan Stadium, Bridgestone Arena, and the entertainment along Broadway, 21c is an art-filled escape from it all.

7) The Langham, London 

Image credit: The Langham, London

Completing our tour of the globe to find inspiring art and photography hotels, we arrive in London, one of the major design hubs of the world – and for good reason. The Langham, London – and more specifically, the Sterling Suite and the Club Lounge, feature the perfect blend of quintessentially British art. Curated by Susan Walsh and Robin Greene, with the overall design overseen by Richmond International, the team worked hard to sensitively and effortlessly inject life into the interiors of these area with an abstract take on British culture.

Main image credit: The Silo Hotel, Cape Town

 

 

 

SPOTLIGHT ON: Photography/Artwork & Show Season Recap

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Throughout November, Hotel Designs will be shining the spotlight on the importance of photography and artwork while also reflected on what was a busy and successful show season, which is not quite over yet…

Next month, Hotel Designs will investigate how photography and artwork is used within international hotel design in order to create personality and a strong sense of place. In addition, it will reflect on Show Season’s London Design Festival and Independent Hotel Show and will highlight what the industry can expect ahead of this year’s highly anticipated SLEEP + EAT.

Photography, artwork and wallcoverings

This month, ARTIQ will conclude its nationwide search to find the best young artists trying to make a name for themselves. Now in its sixth year, The Graduate Art Prize 2018, established by ARTIQ and global law firm Herbert Smith Freehills in 2012, is open to all final year students on BA and MA degree courses at British art colleges or universities. In addition, the Hotel Designs editorial team will catch up with the artist behind the sensational newly designed lobby at Address Downtown, Dubai in order to understand the challenges of creating the 8.5-metre-high paintings that now frame the luxurious first impressions upon arrival.

Show Season Recap 

Image caption (left to right): Hamish Kilburn (Editor, Hotel Designs), Emma King (Head of Interior Design, Europe), Chris Hill (Director of Operations, Daniel Thwaites) and Anant Sharma (CEO, Matters of Form)

As we hit the halfway point in regards to Show Season as the industry prepares for SLEEP + EAT, Hotel Designs will reflect on the highlights from both London Design Festival and Independent Hotel Show in order to pinpoint the main events and what the trends look like for 2019 and beyond.

If you’re a supplier in either of these categories and want your products to reach more than 41,000 hoteliers, interior designers and architects per month, there are plenty of ways you can get involved with these features next month, from supplying an opinion piece to working with us on a targeted mini-series.

If you wish to find out more, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk

Image credit: ©-Nicolas-Dumont-courtesy-of-Address-Downtown

 

 

 

SPOTLIGHT ON: Is Chelsom’s new lighting collection on your Radar?

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Radar from Chelsom is one of the signature lighting ranges from the brand-new collection Edition 26, presenting a selection of contemporary urban fittings that would be an impressive addition to a wide variety of interior genres.

Following the launch of Edition 26, hospitality experts – and Hotel Designs Recommended Supplier – Chelsom’s Radar takes industrial chic to new lighting levels.

Shallow perforated metal coolie shades in Brushed Brass are supported by detailed knurled lampholder covers, finished with contrasting Satin Black metalwork to give an industrial look. The fittings contain LED squirrel cage filament lamps for decorative impact whilst creating a warm ambient light effect.

Desk, ceiling and wall variations are available with the latter offered as an individual or duo of coolie shades. The range is priced with and comes complete with lamps as shown.

To read the exclusive Q&A with the leaders behind the brand, click here.

Chelsom are one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.