A GUIDE TO HOTEL DESIGN PT 44:
6 WAYS TO ADD NATURE INTO INTERIOR DESIGN
Getting in touch with nature has moved from the eco-friendly fringes to the mainstream in the hospitality industry. Designer and author Angelina Schmidt shares tips on how designers can seamlessly add natural elements within an interior design scheme…
The indoor-outdoor trend is about more than adding some greenery into hotel lobbies. It’s rooted in the term “biophilia”, which refers to our desire as humans to connect with nature. “Biophilic design” refers to using these principles in architectural and interior design. Here are some tips on how you can extend these ideas to your room design.
From floor to ceiling and all the space between, wood is a natural choice when using nature in guestroom design, but should not be limited to the bedroom. Wooden floors in common spaces are durable, easy to clean, and blend well with countless design themes.
Make a statement in these areas with a wood ceiling (these are a trending design feature right now). Wooden accent walls add warmth and cosiness that’s hard to duplicate with other materials. Consider smaller touches like wood accent shelves or wood fireplace mantles. Wooden coffee tables, desks, lighting fixtures, and accessories will also bring a touch of nature to any room.
There are so many ways to incorporate stone into interior design. From flooring to feature walls to decorative accents, stone offers a timeless and natural charm. Surround a fireplace or cover a wall with stone veneer.
In rooms with kitchens, perhaps use stacked stone as a backsplash or around a kitchen island. Remodeling the bathrooms? How about a river pebble shower floor or slate tiles for the shower walls? Be sure to properly seal the natural stone in bathrooms and use slip-resistant materials for the floors.
The power of plants
Biophilic design is about more than plants. Greenery can play a role in helping travellers feel connected to nature. Potted plants help green up common spaces and individual rooms. Aloe, jade, and snake plants are good low maintenance choices.
For an upscale touch, consider luxe plants such as a bird of paradise or bonsai tree. Add pops of colour with strategically placed floral arrangements. Dried flowers last longer than fresh ones, and they’re the epitome of low maintenance. Faux flowers and greenery have come a long way, and they don’t need any care.
The more the better! Natural light feeds our minds, bodies, and souls and can promote a sense of wellbeing. Take advantage of natural light in as many rooms as possible. If you’re redesigning a property or building a new one, incorporate windows to let in the light and maximise the view.
Choose lighter colour palettes to reflect light rather than absorb it. Remove heavy window coverings and keep windows clean. Clean windows allow in more light and improve the appearance of your space.
Breathe life into your walls
Living or green walls are having a moment in interior design. They’re popular in office buildings, shopping centres, and hotel lobbies.
Living walls need regular care and an adequate watering system. Make sure you’ve planned for this because dead or dying plants are an eyesore.
Accessories, with Nature in Mind
Hang pictures of natural settings or landscapes, or display art made from natural items like stones, wood, or shells. Wallpaper or carpet with nature-inspired patterns is another option. So is bedding or accent pillows with floral or leaf designs.
Your guests’ connection to the outdoors doesn’t have to end at your property’s entrance. Use these biophilic tips to help incorporate nature into your room design. While these ideas won’t replace going outside, they can provide your guests with an environment that helps them feel connected to nature.
Main image credit: Pixabay