Top 5 stories of the week: Suites in the sky, defining trends and X marks the spot in Toronto

    Hamish Kilburn
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    In the same week Hotel Designs’ announced a new floating hotel in Edinburgh, a mountain of so-called 2019 trends and major openings were among the highlights of this weeks headlines, as editor Hamish Kilburn reports… 

    January arrived, and what inevitably followed was a plethora of emails of which each subject claimed to have the answers to this year’s must-have trends (I use the term loosely). And while it’s interesting to read all about whether the ’70s will or will not makes its return, or whether chrome really will replace the brushed-brass finishes, hotel designers must ensure that whatever they produce is timeless. The age-old argument between whether it’s best to be fashionable or stylish is never more relevant than it is in hotel design. Style, in our industry at least, wins every time over ever-changing fashion. It is somewhat hypocritical of myself, therefore, to have uploaded a piece about flooring trends this week, but I urge you to approach this topic with a pinch of salt. If trends were concrete (and I’m not referring to the industrial-chic bathroom look that was ‘in’ in AW19), international hotel design would become static with nothing ever changing. My hope is that this piece, along with all my features I have the pleasure of writing for Hotel Designs, can be seen as a guide – one opinion among many, if you like, with the ‘many’ referring to our wonderful readers of course.

    To start the conversation over the weekend, leaving trends aside for now, here are five headlines that have grabbed the attention of our industry this week.

    1) New luxury floating hotel launches in Edinburgh

    Image credit: Fingal

    Developed by The Royal Yacht Britannia’s trading company, Royal Yacht Enterprises, Fingal, a new floating hotel with 23 luxury cabins that are each named after Stevenson lighthouses, has launched.

    The hotel, which will be permanently berthed in Edinburgh’s historic Port of Leith, includes considered design that offers high specifications of craftmanship and finishes with nautical touches and polished woods throughout. Sumptuous Scottish leathers and the finest linens are in colour palates inspired by Fingal’s journey from land and sea.

    Read more about Fingal >

    2) SPOTLIGHT ON: Major hotel openings for Q3 & Q4 2019

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

    Image credit: Iniala Malta

    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.

    Read more about the major openings in Q2 & Q3 >

    3) Checking in to Hotel X – the luxury Canadian hotel that stands alone

    outdoor pool

    Image credit: Hotel X Toronto

    Juxtaposing the neighbouring buildings in the Liberty Village area, which were once cut off from the rest of the city of Toronto, Hotel X Toronto is the new sought-after boutique kid on the block that is making waves as a new kind of luxury experience in a city that welcomes more than 40 million tourists each year.

    Read more about Hotel X here >

    4) Hotels At New Heights: Airlines’ race to launch luxury suites in the sky

    The bedroom of The Residence

    Image credit: Etihad Airways

    Travelling the world today is arguably the most comfortable it has ever been. And it comes with few raised eyebrows that the long-haul travel market is dominated, without a shadow of a doubt, by the airlines. In 2017, National Geographic reported that air travel is predicted to over the next 20 years. In the same year, Forbes reported that within just 12 months more than a staggering four billion passengers travelled by plane, which set a new record. But with slower forms of travel, such a luxury cruises and iconic train carriages, making their return in popular demand, airlines are having to adapt for the luxury market – and each other – in order to welcome guests into suites in the sky.

    Read more about suites in the sky >

    5) Radisson Blu opens two hotels in Abu Dhabi

    Two new Radisson Blu-branded landmark hotels have arrived in Abu Dhabi, one of which is located on the vibrant and iconic sea walk of Abu Dhabi, while the other is situated in one of the UAE’s cultural gems, known as the Garden City for its natural springs, plantations and lush palm groves.

    Read more about the Radisson openings here >

    To keep up to date with all the international hotel design news as it happens, follow Hotel Designs on Twitter.

    Hamish Kilburn / 11.01.2019


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