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Interior

FEATURE: inside Timothy Oulton’s self-isolation dome

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FEATURE: inside Timothy Oulton’s self-isolation dome

It may not be a hotel, but Timothy Oulton Studio’s Halodome was meaningfully created ahead of its time to shelter a luxurious home-from-home. Its dynamically designed interiors are enclosed under a dome structure – and its naturally isolating features meet the new demands of modern travellers…

Originally conceived as a refuge for visitors, Timothy Oulton Studio’s Halodome, which is nestled at the centre of a mature lychee garden in southern China, has evolved into a living, breathing test bed – the kind of experiment in sustainable architecture, materiality and hospitality that can only happen meaningfully over the course of time.

The current global situation has only served to push this testing bed to new extremes, with co-founders Timothy Oulton and Simon Laws establishing the garden their base for 2020, allowing them to continue working whilst riding out the storm.

“The Halodome is China’s first residential building certified to German Passivhaus standard.”

Designed and built entirely by the practice, the Halodome is China’s first residential building certified to German Passivhaus standard. It uses sustainably sourced FSC and reclaimed timbers alongside high performance glazing to create a soaring column free space that can be internally configured to suit the varying needs of visitors who arrive from all four corners of the globe, with guests typically staying for anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks.

Inside the luxury dome

Image credit: Timothy Oulton Studio

More recently however, Oulton and Laws have found themselves part of a small group, residing permanently in the garden; using the dome as a base from which to continue working on projects whilst simultaneously contemplating what the future holds for hospitality and design post-Covid 19. Time spent in the dome living, working and hosting local industry leaders as their businesses began to emerge from lockdown has proved an invaluable insight. It is precisely Halodome’s ability to offer a hospitable environment bridging the gap between living and visiting that has stimulated so much interest in the design this year.

“Furthermore, it [the Halodome] can offer guests the chance to escape crowded cities and reconnect with nature.” – Simon Laws, co-founder, Timothy Oulton Studio.

“The hospitality sector in is in a deep period of reflection and transition,” Laws told Hotel Designs. “Hoteliers are looking to pivot their businesses and adapt to the new normal. At the same time, there is an opportunity for the industry to actively turn towards a more sustainable future. What the Halodome does rather successfully is offer a multipurpose space that meets unique new demands – it is in itself a bubble, cocooning its occupants safely in a manner that can be easily adapted to individual or group needs. Furthermore, it can offer guests the chance to escape crowded cities and reconnect with nature in a really unique setting.”

The Halodome’s ecological, logistical and long-term fiscal credentials undoubtedly play a part in concept’s appeal to the sector. The prefabricated building can be shipped anywhere in the world in just three containers, which can be combined with the shipping of pieces crafted by the studio’s sister company – the global furniture manufacturer Timothy Oulton – to offer an entire hospitality solution where needed. Its passive energy design principles take careful consideration of sun control, ventilation and insulation, combined with modern, high performance and recycled materials, to create a building with a smaller ecological footprint and ongoing energy cost savings.

Hoteliers have found themselves charting unknown territory and the Timothy Oulton Studio team believes concepts like the Halodome can help to navigate these choppy new waters.

Timothy Oulton Studio is one of the brands that has taken advantage of our Industry Support Package. To keep up to date with supplier news, click here

Main image credit: Timothy Oulton Studio

FIRST LOOK: Bespoke by Burlington floods personality into the hotel bathroom

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FIRST LOOK: Bespoke by Burlington floods personality into the hotel bathroom

The new Bespoke by Burlington collection, which was designed in collaboration with Julie Ingham, marks a ‘new era’ for the leaders in traditional bathrooms…

With the launch of Bespoke by Burlington, Bathroom Brands Group Projects has just stretched the limits of possibilities when it comes to customisation in bathroom aesthetics.

Representing a new era of classic bathroom design, Bespoke by Burlington is a distinctive and unique collection of coloured and hand-decorated ceramics. Offering true customisation, the new products provide architects, specifiers and designers with an unsurpassed level of individuality, placing Burlington at the very forefront of modern-day bathroom design, whilst remaining true to its historic influences and style.

“The new Bespoke by Burlington collection marks a really exciting turning point for us as a Group,” explained Mick Bone, Director of Group Projects at Bathroom Brands. “Burlington’s products, in particular the Edwardian collection, have long been favourites of specifiers, designers and architects, especially within the hospitality market. Now, we can offer them even more choice when it comes to customisation, whilst maintaining the enduring quality and sought after authentic traditional style that Burlington has become known for.”

Image caption: Oriental Blossum from the Bespoke by Burlington collection

Drawing inspiration from the decorated and coloured ceramics of bygone eras, Burlington worked in collaboration with British designer Julie Ingham to create the Bespoke by Burlington collection. Made to order by skilled craft workers in Staffordshire, in England, using the finest materials, the collection is presented on a selection of Burlington’s best-selling Edwardian basins and WCs.

From the intricate hand-illustrated patterns of the Art Deco, Floral, Seascape and Cityscape decorated designs to the bold and captivating shades of the Confetti Pink, Alaska Blue and Moon Grey ceramics, the wide choice of stunning pieces broadens Burlington’s portfolio to now encompass bolder colours and exquisite decorative details, offering the opportunity to deliver truly unique projects.

Ideal for commercial, hospitality and residential design projects, Bespoke Lettering provides the ultimate opportunity for personalisation. Customers may choose between three lettering styles and a choice of two locations on selected basin sizes in Burlington’s Edwardian basin collection, the perfect individual finishing touch a bathroom scheme.

Burlington 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, please email Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: Burlington

TREND ALERT: Natural stone in hotel design lighting

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TREND ALERT: Natural stone in hotel design lighting

With designers and architects looking for new innovative ways in which to inject biophilic design, Voltra Lighting takes a look at beneficial properties of natural stone…

Cappadocia, an ancient district in Turkey, never fails to capture the imagination of discerning travellers with its high-end rock-cut hotels that exude pure elegance and character. Everything from the hotel fireplace to floating shelves and even the bathroom fittings tend to transport visitors into the lap of luxury, by virtue of being carved out of timeless and all-natural stone.

Be it luxe beach stays in Greece or heritage hotels in India, there are many such examples where floor-to-ceiling natural stone designs add a distinctly tasteful texture to the interiors. So much so that avant-garde designers are increasingly considering richly patterned accent walls of stone to be works of art in itself; doing away with the need for additional wall hangings and paintings.

Oftentimes, even a few accent pieces fashioned from natural stone can transform ordinary spaces into extraordinary interior marvels. One such decor essential is the precision-cut alabaster lamp by luxury cordless lighting brand Voltra. This vessel of light is designed to create an ambience of heightened intimacy and sophistication.

The allure of natural stone explained

Hotels can choose to adorn their interiors with the likes of stylish Italian marble, delicately polished granite, or beautifully layered slate – each of which has an inherently unique appeal.

But, here are the features that make natural stone decor elements universally captivating:

Sustainable: Luxury hotel properties that have an environmentally conscious bent will find ethically sourced natural stone decor pieces to be great for the triple-bottom-line – being extremely recyclable and fabricated in a zero-waste industry.

Classic and timeless: At a time when trends and forecasts dominate, handmade stone decor pieces will always be an elegant choice. Especially when it’s just the right balance between design and craft, stone is perfectly suited for both traditional and contemporary decor themes.

Easy to maintain: Being able to resist rot, mold, extreme temperatures and water damage, makes natural stone particularly great for high-end bathrooms, outdoor spaces and kitchens.

Incredibly durable: Trust mother nature to produce some of the most resilient and exquisite building materials there is. Classy natural stones materials such as granite and quartz are known for their durability and longevity.

Unique: Just like a snowflake, the intricate designs and colors of no two stones occurring in nature can ever be exactly alike. You may choose from variants that have delicate golden sparkles, different colors, subtle textures and complex veins. This natural diversity of form makes it possible for you to design your hotel interiors to be exclusive and distinctive.

Keeping it trendy with natural stone

The versatility of natural stone has ensured that it remains a symbol of luxury and refinement for decades now. To help your hotel interiors to stand out from the crowd, here are the latest stone-based trends for 2020:

Source local: Hotels in Brazil can use local quartz, those in Italy can choose Calacatta marble, while Lundhs Larvikite can be the stone of choice for Norwegian properties. These indigenous stone varieties, if used with vernacular architecture as inspiration, will not only tick the sustainability box but really add to the cultural richness of your space.

Super-size the tiles: The latest trend is to have large tiles, on flooring, walls or even centre tables; at sizes starting from 60x60cms. This is ideal for creating that modern, sleek look.

Experiment with stone statement pieces: Eye-catching yet understated designs of table lamps, showerheads and planters, made of natural stone, can establish tasteful imagery. Even one exquisite stone art installation can help create a one-of-a-kind look for your interiors.

Luxuriously distressed: Gone are the days when the stone had to be polished to be ready. Nowadays, a well-worn rustic look is in vogue. These distressed materials, with stunningly life-like details, are a classic choice to really suit your garden and outdoor design.

Aim for earthy vibes: Natural stone intimately connects your interiors with nature and the earth to generate versatile and old-fashioned opulence. Unify your decor by pairing your stone decor feature with plants, soil, wood, water and fire.

Voltra Lighting is one of the brands that has taken advantage of our Industry Support Package. To keep up to date with supplier news, click here.

Main image credit: Voltra Lighting

Skopos Fabrics unveils durable on-trend velvets

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With a growing trend in velvets, Skopos Fabrics launches a new collection for the contract market…

Providing a sophisticated burst of colour to contract interiors, Bonita FR velvets by Skopos are being launched this autumn to provide a simple matt, cotton-look velvet option for contract furniture.

The collection consists of 24 skus, ranging from muted tones to bright jewel colours, in a luxurious velvet, crib five backed to meet the strict FR standards for European contract requirements.

This collection meets the requirements for hospitality and leisure interiors and with a waterproof layer as standard, is also a great option for care interiors, where durability is top priority. The collection achieves 40,000 martindale rubs, meeting the needs for severe contract fabrics.

Skopos is an ISO9001 accredited company and has over 45 years’ specialist experience in the design and manufacture of high-performance FR contract fabrics for the hospitality, cruise, care and leisure sectors.

Skopos 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.

Roca puts the spotlight on the mirrors, mirrors on the wall

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Bathroom specialist Roca puts strong focus on mirrors and cabinets ahead of SLEEP + EAT on November 20 – 21

Mirrors are a vital addition to the bathroom space – it’s incredible how a seemingly simple accessory can reflect light, create a stylish design feature and bring functionality to the room.

Hotel Designs Recommended Supplier Roca has a range of mirrored cabinets in a variety of shapes and styles, offering hoteliers additional benefits, such as LED lighting and clever storage solutions to suit all bathroom sizes. Every design detail is covered, from easy fittings down to integrated demisters to prevent condensation collecting on the mirror.

Iridia mirrors provide a luxurious addition to any bathroom setting, with integrated LED lights creating an illuminated ambiance, perfect for those daily rituals. They are available in several sizes, in rectangular or round shapes and can be hung horizontally or vertically on a wall, offering a flexible design solution. The full range comes with perimetral LED lighting as well as a demister device.

The new Sol mirrored cabinets are the ideal solution to create extra storage and maximise the wall area available. Sol is a range of aluminium mirrored cabinets available in two variants, Sol and Sol Premium. Sol mirrored cabinets feature external lighting, shaver socket and adjustable shelves. Sol Premium cabinets feature all of the same functions as the standard cabinets with the addition of an internal light and integrated demister pads.

Roca will exhibit at Sleep + Eat on stand J11 where it will unveil its new bathroom collection. Roca 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.

Nature and travel inspire Banbayu’s new eco-friendly wallpapers

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Made from FSC Grade wallpaper substrate from sustainable, managed forest, each design boasts odourless inks…

Banbayu has taken inspiration from travel, nature and history to design its latest eco-friendly and sustainable wallpaper range.

Designed and produced in Transylvania, Romania, the new designs can update any room thanks to its bold patterns and quirky designs.

Plus, each wallpaper has been made with premium non-woven quality substrate that’s surface printed with eco-friendly inks.

Made from FSC Grade wallpaper substrate from sustainable, managed forest, each design boasts odourless inks.

Each ink has a very high durability and is certified to comply with the Nordic Swan Environmental Standard, which is an eco-labelling system that determines a product’s impact on the environment throughout its lifecycle, meaning no dangerous elements within them can affect the environment or a person’s health.

WATG unveils five-star Ayana Komodo Resort in Asia

Hamish Kilburn
Set across a 1.4-hectare site, the hotel resort is surrounded by a lagoon and its marine life, where guests can soak up the 180-degree views of the Flores Sea…

Design firm WATG has opened the doors to its brand-new contemporary hotel in Indonesia, The Ayana Komodo Resort, Waecicu Beach, marking the third Ayana property across Asia. Located in Labuan Bajo, on Flores Island, the hotel is the latest five-star offering in the Indonesian Archipelago, boasting 192 rooms and 13 suites.

Set across a 1.4-hectare site, the hotel is surrounded by a lagoon and its marine life, where guests can soak up the 180-degree views of the Flores Sea. “The site’s amazing location on the edge of the sea forms a destination and gateway to the Sunda Islands archipelago,” said Bill Reed, Vice President of architecture at WATG. “This is the first world-class destination in the area and it will serve as a benchmark for future development. We designed the Ayana Komodo Resort to reflect the relaxed aesthetic of the Komodo Islands, with a feeling of spontaneity and subtle sophistication.”

The area’s cultural and ecological landscape has shaped WATG’s design for the resort; named after the Komodo dragon the resort’s guest wing has a curving shape and rough textured roof that emulates the form of the reptile.

 

Meanwhile, the architecture also draws inspiration from the Manggarai Mountain range, and a collection of local materials and traditional Batik patterns to create an informed identity for the hotel.

On site, guests can also take advantage of the two large pools, six restaurants and bars, and a 420 square-meter spa.

Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay Officially Launches

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After opening its doors almost a year ago in one of the most sought-after address in the Balearic Islands, Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay is said to have become the island’s new 5-star premier hotel…

Following the launch of Nobu Marbella last week, Nobu Hospitality’s co-founders – Chef Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper – have officially cut the ribbon to Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay, which opened its doors last summer.

The faces of the brand along with owners Ian and Richard Livingstone, Daniel Shamoon and Jennica Arazi, hosted the official launch of the hotel with a traditional Sake Ceremony.

Located on the shores of Talamanca Bay, Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay shelters 152 designer rooms and is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. With a flair for drawing on all the island has to offer, the hotel provides guests with an authentic island escape, with carefully curated Ibizan-style rooms and suites, two private seafront pools, four restaurants designed by STUDIO PCH and a spa by Six Senses.

Pool area of Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay

A creative collaboration between the owners with the Madrid-based Procurement Company Professional; every detail at Ibiza Bay has been designed with the guests’ comfort in mind.

Seamlessly blending the outdoors in to capture the authentic island’s elements, the rooms and suites, two private seafront pools, restaurants and spa have been inspired by the white island, (La isla blanca), turquoise of the Balearic sea and gold from the Mediterranean sunshine.

A crisp palette has been achieved with the combination of limestone floors and whitewashed walls. The character of Ibiza Bay is drawn out by bespoke furniture made by local Spanish artisans. These pieces blend into the indigenous natural Ibizan materials such as light-coloured wood beams, “piedra laja” stone cut walls and typical white washed “biriba”, cane ceilings. Creating a luxe, chilled, lounging vibe in the lobby area are raffia lamps, a macrame hanging chair and comfortable rattan sofas are intuitively peppered with striking international design pieces.

In the guestrooms, floor-to-ceiling windows and open terraces accentuate the striking sea-views, which can been seen from 80 per cent of the 152 Ibizan style rooms and suites. Tasteful details throughout include mother-of-pearl inlay and hand-blown pendant lights with hand painted headboards that are framed in bronze and complement the woven rope over-sized armchairs. Taking inspiration from the ever-changing colours of the waters surrounding Ibiza and Talamanca Bay; flashes of celadon, turquoise, lapis and indigo can be found within the rugs, fabrics and handmade ceramics with gold present in brass details which reflect the sun. Accessed through a sleek, sliding mirrored door glamorous white marbled bathrooms are completed with Dornbracht fittings and Hollywood style brass bulb lights to the mirror for added glamour. Whilst within the main room, a cool, relaxed and comfortable vibe is achieved with organic bed linens, a ‘grown-up’ in house bar and dressing area.

Brintons designed bespoke carpets for Hyatt Regency Paris Charles de Gaulle

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Leading carpeting manufacturer Brintons has manufactured quirky bespoke carpets for the Hyatt Regency Paris Charles de Gaulle’s flexible working and meeting space, Le Campus.

The carpeting manufacturer worked in conjunction with design company Virserius Studio and general construction company, Vöcker Hospitality on the renovation, following the design brief to evoke nostalgia for university, to inspire creative thinking and enhance the exchange of ideas.

This direction led Virserius Studio to take inspiration from the structure of molecules, using the hotel’s bright colour palettes as stimulus for the bespoke designs.

“We manufactured Brintons bespoke axminster carpets using strong, really vibrant colours to stand out against the grey background,” said Mahlmann. “The pattern is made up of cubes of different sizes, and appears to fade from dark to light. The placement of the pattern is designed to draw you in as you approach a room, and as you enter reveals itself as an artwork on the floor. The carpets add a lot of value to the overall feel of the finished spaces.”

Brintons

Brintons manufactured approximately 700sqm of carpets for the renovation of the hotel. The pattern colour scheme is purposefully different in each room and the vibrant colours were chosen deliberately to match the rest of the interior design elements, from curtains to wall paint.

Brintons 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.

How to use 2018’s Dulux Colour of the Year

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Chris Johnson, design services manager at Beacon Design Services (BDS), discusses this year’s Dulux Colour of the Year, Heart Wood, how it is having an influence and tips on using the colour in the hospitality industry.

“2018 is looking to be extremely uncertain in many ways, and with an unpredictable year ahead, a colour that contrasted from this environment was desired. The panel wanted to pull together a palette of comfortable, relaxing colours – where people can feel they can shut the front door, press pause and have a place of peace,” said Chris Johnson, design services manager at Beacon Design Services.

“This is why Heart Wood and the colour palette that accompanies it, was chosen. There are a lot of softer shades, however deeper, dramatic inky blues and purples also feature. It doesn’t go too far from Denim Drift, 2017’s shade, but with a warmer palette, to ensure a calmer feel.”

BDS is already seeing this colour implemented across the hospitality industry; Chris discusses a recent case with a client.

“I suggested Heart Wood the very day after it was announced to the Best Western Royal Clifton Hotel & Spa and they loved it. They have so far completed a sample room using this colour as a feature wall,” Johnson added.

“This warm, welcoming colour has been incorporated into a mulberry and mocha colour scheme using faux leathers, luxurious velvets and textured woven fabrics. The idea behind this was to create a feeling of cosiness in the superior rooms, with their high ceilings and large footprint, and this has been achieved.”

The colour satisfies the ‘home away from home’ trend many guests are now requesting. Chris gives his tips on incorporating the colour of the year.

“Trends come and go, but it is important to consider industry announcements such as this to ensure you don’t become out-dated in your décor,” Johnson commented.

“There are simple ways you can incorporate new colours such at this, in a cost-effective way. This can be done through a feature wall, as it was at the Best Western Royal Clifton, or through cushions and fabrics – a splash of Heart Wood can add a welcoming atmosphere to hotels and restaurants wanting to avoid a cold feeling.”

Sony outlines new interior trends for 2018

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Sony has highlighted some upcoming home styling trends for 2018, with the help of interior stylists Selina Lake and Cate St. Hill.

To coincide with Sony’s recently launched pop-up space in Shoreditch featuring its Life Space UX range, new themes that the firm has revealed include Lagom, Painterly, Wabi-Sabi, Botanicals and more.

Lagom is a Swedish word that translates to ‘not to little, not too much’ and follows the hygge trend from Denmark and embraces ideas for a scandi style interior which is cosy, cool and relaxing.

Wabi-Sabi is an ancient Japanese philosophy turned décor trend that is about embracing your own authentic, and the imperfections of your space, while Painterly is the trend that celebrates colour.

Lastly, Botanicals brings the outside in with houseplants and as the trend continues into 2018, designers are thinking up new ways to give outside spaces even more Botanical style.

Other new trends set to make an impact in 2018 include rich earthy colours, slender furniture legs and jewellery-inspired lighting.

Sony’s Life Space UX design-led pop-up space is open from 11am to 7pm until January 18, 2018 at 188 Shoreditch High Street, E1 6HU.

Jean-Michel Gathy

Jean-Michel Gathy on hotel design and architecture trends in 2017

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Master architect Jean-Michel Gathy is the visionary behind some of the world’s most iconic luxury hotels, resorts and landmarks from the Marina Bay Sands swimming pool in Singapore, Cheval Blanc Randheli by LVMH in the Maldives, The Chedi Muscat in Oman, The Setai Miami to many of the most recognized Aman Resorts around the world.

Specialising in luxury hospitality design, interiors and landscape for over 40 years, Jean-Michel Gathy is always one step ahead of the design curve, forging new design trends and inspiring the world with his passion in creating innovative designs which surpass expectations and the imagination.

Jean-Michel Gathy’s “must have” architecture predictions for 2017 and beyond are centred on the themes of romantic resorts, an abundance of pools and water features, sustainability, and always incorporating local cultural elements and traditions.

His signature designs have inspired many leading architectural works which are showcased in a list of some of the most recognised hotels and resorts including the One&Only Reethi Rah, Maldives, St. Regis Lhasa, Tibet, Viceroy Snowmass, Aspen Colorado, Park Hyatt Sanya Sunny Bay, Sanya, The Chedi Andermatt, Switzerland, Aman Canal Grande, Venice, Amanwana, Moyo Island Indonesia and Aman Summer Palace in Beijing.

Romantic Resort Designs
Jean-Michel Gathy pioneers the design of romantic wraparound outdoor decks with netted hammocks suspended over water at the One&Only Reethi Rah and oversized bathrooms at The Cheval Blanc Randheli in the Maldives, featuring free standing bathtubs and outdoor showers, also referred to as “Naughty Bathrooms.” He is an expert for inventing romantic designs for couples to be intimate yet comfortable. Gathy shared, “I believe that the perfect hotel in the Maldives is a hotel where you are extremely comfortable with your spouse or partner. A Maldivian hotel needs to encourage an environment of love and life, a place for emotion and togetherness.”

 

Jean-Michel Gathy design and architecture trends for 2017

Pools & Water Features
Inspired by water, Jean-Michel Gathy redefines hotel swimming pools creating water features as incredible centerpieces. From the world’s largest rooftop infinity pool at the Marina Bay Sands overlooking Singapore’s skyscrapers to the Golden Energy pool at The St. Regis Lhasa in Tibet intricately lined with thousands of tiles plated in 24 carat gold comfortably heated between 28 to 32 degrees Celsius. Jean-Michel Gathy further shared, “I’m obsessed with water. The reason I like water in hotel designs is that it’s so peaceful and relaxing. Think about how you feel when you’re by a lake or a river – you feel calmer,” explained Gathy. “Well that’s why I try to incorporate water into all my designs. It soothes the mind. For me, a hotel without water is boring.”

Jean-Michel Gathy on design, architecture trends for 2017

Sustainability
Incorporating the natural environment and indigenous Aspen culture, Jean-Michel Gathy integrates fire, earth, wood and stone elements to the design of the Viceroy Snowmass. All materials used are LEED classified ensuring that local materials were maximized in the construction phase to minimize ongoing energy usage to support sustainability. The design inspiration behind The Chedi Andermatt by GHM is balanced between Swiss heritage and a backdrop of awe-inspiring nature. The resort is sustainably designed and executed, using locally sourced materials. “Sustainability is one of the major considerations. Each country has different regulations and codes on environmental impact and it is my job to make sure that the project meets the sustainable requirements,” Gathy shared.

Jean-Michel Gathy on design, architecture trends in 2017

Local Culture Elements
Having a passion for travel and geography as a child, Jean-Michel Gathy harmonizes the local and cultural elements of the destination to his designs. At the recently opened Park Hyatt Sunny Bay, Jean-Michel Gathy designed the Resort to balance the energies of feng shui between the sea “yin” and the surrounding mountains “yang.”

Reflecting the Summer Palace’s imperial style, the Aman Summer Palace pays tribute to the Ming Dynasty, traditional touches are evident in both design and décor including period-style furniture, lanterns, traditional fabrics and bamboo blinds.

Jean-Michel Gathy on design, architecture trends in 2017

Whereas the artfully restored, Aman Canal Grande is set in the regal world of the 16th century Palazzo Papadopoli, the textures of the original historical features – ornate cornicing, carved marble, intricate murals and wood panelling blend alongside the modern conveniences, cutting-edge design and contemporary décor. “I’m always inspired by the location of my projects; I like to honor both the landscape and local tradition. As palaces and hotels, Venice and China couldn’t be more different, yet I set out to achieve a similar aesthetic – to inject a contemporary haven within a culturally rich environment, one that offers guests an authentic yet dramatic experience,” comments Jean-Michel Gathy.

Although many designs pioneered by Jean-Michel Gathy are being adopted and mimicked by other hotels, Gathy shared that he is not concerned, he comments that “Making a beautiful hotel is about orchestrating a dance between the landscape, the architecture and the interiors. There’s this wonderful chemistry when it finally works.”

Jean-Michel Gathy and his team at Denniston Architects are currently working on over forty projects around the world, including the upcoming Mandarin Oriental and Jumeirah in Bali and The Andaz Sanya.

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