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      Inside Hart Shoreditch, London’s latest lifestyle hotel

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inside Hart Shoreditch, London’s latest lifestyle hotel

      The 126-key hotel, which is in the heart of Shoreditch, has been designed by Fabled Studio and draws inspiration from East London’s past as a centre of craftspeople and makers. Hotel Designs takes a peek inside…

      East London lifestyle hotel, Hart Shoreditch Hotel London from Curio Collection by Hilton, which has recently opened, was designed in collaboration with London-based interior design consultancy Fabled Studio. The 126-key property seamlessly blends the vibrant heritage and modern-day creativity of East London, through its thoughtfully designed spaces.

      “Gone is the tired aesthetic of exposed graffitied brick walls, filament lightbulbs and mis-matched furniture to create a bright, fresh and life-affirming space.” – Steven Saunders, co-founder and director of Fabled Studio.

      Image credit: Hart Shoreditch/Gary Edwards

      Drawing inspiration from East London’s past as a centre for craftspeople and makers, the hotel’s design narrative is deeply rooted in showcasing the industries that thrived there including furniture makers, metal workers and silk weavers. In keeping with the Curio Collection by Hilton portfolio, the hotel will give visitors to London the chance to experience one of the city’s most sought-after neighbourhoods and discover its unique history.

      Image caption: The lobby | Image credit: Hart Shoreditch/Gary Edwards

      “We set out to create a brand-new identity for a Shoreditch hotel and restaurant/ bar by delving deeper into the stories and history that the East End has to tell,” said Steven Saunders, co-founder and director of Fabled Studio. “Gone is the tired aesthetic of exposed graffitied brick walls, filament lightbulbs and mis-matched furniture to create a bright, fresh and life-affirming space. Natural textures and a muted architectural colour palette create a crisp canvas which we have dressed with soft sage velvets, woven linens and Kilim patterns to offer an elegant and mature space to enjoy.”

      Luxe guestroom

      Image credit: Hart Shoreditch/Gary Edwards

      Hart Shoreditch takes its name from one of the building’s previous occupants, The Harts, who were cabinetmakers in the 1800’s. The distinctive space encapsulates East London’s rich industrial and artisan past. Design details including a steel re-bar and copper staircase, and contemporary, bespoke mahogany lights have been designed to replicate cabinetmaker’s boxes and pay homage to the building’s earlier artisan life.

      Soft textures, furnishings and warm lighting will guide guests through to Tavla, the hotel’s bar where guests and locals alike will be encouraged to relax and spend time throughout the day and into the evening. Here, textured woven stools are mixed in with lounge chairs in muted tones and softened textures giving the space a modern, residential feel. The restaurant BARBOUN, boasts an industrial-luxe aesthetic with rattan and Thonet-style chairs and partitions inspired by the Victorian furniture makers workshops of Great Eastern Street. Warmth and softness is brought into the space through natural linen café curtains, drapery in deep oxblood and upholstery in nude leather; as well as the asymmetric architecture of the vast timber ceiling replicating the beamed structure of a factory warehouse. A striking steel re-bar and copper staircase sits towards the back of the space along with a central cascade of moon chandeliers.

      Guests can choose from nine room and suite categories, all of which feature a soft and elegant colour palette of white and grey with striking burnt orange and deep green accents. Predominantly contemporary in style with copper mirror detailing and simplistic modern furnishings, the guestrooms are warm and inviting with subtle design details throughout such as saddle-stitched leather strapping and copper rendered marmorino textures. Copper leafed bedside mirrors are embossed with woven lace etchings in a nod to the deep-rooted Huguenot history of nearby Spitalfields. Bathrooms feature a combination of materials which come together to create a sophisticated, urban space. Luxurious marble showers and rolltop baths with impressive views across Shoreditch are complimented by contrasting concrete vanities, herringbone flooring, bold geometric tiling and paired back brass detailing.

      Hart Shoreditch is also home to two unique meeting spaces which have been designed to emulate the look and feel of 18th century Huguenot townhouses synonymous with East London and its silk weaving past. A classic London aesthetic intertwined with modern textures and details set against soft green walls.

      Image credit: Hart Shoreditch

      Located in the heart of Shoreditch on Great Eastern Street, the hotel is conveniently situated just a moment’s walk from Shoreditch High Street underground station and within walking distance of the neighbourhood’s independent boutiques, vibrant bars, restaurants and famous markets such as Brick Lane and Spitalfields.

      Main image credit: Hart Shoreditch

      Stylish emerald green and golden poster above comfortable king size bed with headboard and pillows in dark green bedroom

      Upcycling: “Revamp, don’t replace,” says surface brand Architextural

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Upcycling: “Revamp, don’t replace,” says surface brand Architextural

      The trend for upcycling shows no sign of abating; businesses are increasingly looking to upgrade their interiors on a budget and without the upheaval of ripping out and replacing furniture, explains surface brand Architextural

      Stylish emerald green and golden poster above comfortable king size bed with headboard and pillows in dark green bedroom

      Upcycling taps into the trend for sustainability that continues to be big news; it is better for the environment for venues to make use of what they already have and give it a new lease of life, rather than replacing it wholesale and sending old furniture and fittings to landfill.

      This is where vinyl wrapping processes come into their own, providing a fresh new look in a multitude of styles, quickly and easily.

      Wrapping is a simple process, whereby an existing surface is covered with a self-adhesive film. Architectural finishes are highly engineered, durable films, designed to look and feel like real-life materials. The films are applied with heat, by skilled installers, to provide a realistic hardwearing finish. This allows clients to create bespoke furniture using less expensive materials, wrapping them to look like authentic marble, wood or concrete. With thousands of finishes available, the possibilities are vast.

      Modern loft living room with black steel slats 3d render.There are concrete floors , Decorate wall with pattern of black steel slats.Furnished with dark gray fabric chair.

      Image credit: Architextural

      Diverse applications

      Architectural films can be used on a wide range of surfaces, including walls, lifts, doors and FF&E.

      Such films are conformable for 3D applications, meaning their use is not limited to flat surfaces. Almost any surface can be wrapped, making films ideal for the commercial environment. What’s more, they can even be applied over existing substrates.

      As the surface finishes are conformable, they can be applied to curved structures to create eye-catching designs. This provides a key advantage over laminates that require edge banding, whereas films offer the opportunity to wrap fully over edges to completely seal them.

      “Wrapping is also highly durable – lasting for an average of 12 years on interior surfaces.”

      Environmental benefits

      On average, it costs seven times more to rip out and replace interiors. Refurbishment with architectural films is a way to upcycle existing fixtures and fittings, rather than send to landfill.

      It’s a budget-friendly option for architects when costs are being squeezed, allowing businesses to refresh a venue more frequently or at a lower cost. Wrapping is also highly durable – lasting for an average of 12 years on interior surfaces – meaning it can work out more cost effective over the lifetime of the product, when compared to fabric, paint or veneer.

      a clean living room with black wallcovering

      Image credit: Architextural

      Less day-to-day disruption

      It’s also easier for businesses, as vinyls are applied in situ, with no noise, mess or waste – allowing the venue can stay open throughout. Little equipment is needed, with minimal prep, meaning less downtime and inconvenience.

      All finishes are fire tested and meet building regulations. And as the product is a PVC solution, it is fully water and heat resistant, as well as and hygienic, all of which are important in high-traffic venues such as gyms, bars and restaurants.

      With a world of possibilities at their fingertips, companies looking to reduce costs and improve their sustainability would be wise to look at upcycling using self-adhesive finishes to refresh spaces with minimal disruption to the business.

      Architextural 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: Architextural

      Case study: a bespoke approach to lighting two hotels

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Case study: a bespoke approach to lighting two hotels

      To showcase Heathfield & Co’s bespoke approach to lighting design, Hotel Designs explores how the brand designed unique lighting schemes for two well-known hotels in London… 

      From cruise ships and shared working spaces, to five star hotels and restaurants across the world, Heathfield & Co’s bespoke portfolio showcases more than 40 years of knowledge and experience in commercial projects. Here are just two examples that illuminate the brand’s creative approach to lighting.

      The Curtain

      Located in the heart of Shoreditch, The Curtain is a 120-key go-to for London creatives.

      Starting with the client’s initial brief, Heathfield & Co’s bespoke team worked closely with U.S. based Duncan Miller Ulmann to design unique lighting to suit the sophisticated urban city aesthetic.

      From an initial project review, through to final delivery and site support, Heathfield’s dedicated project managers led every stage of the process, ensuring the budget was met and final designs were perfectly executed.

      Adjustable bedside wall lights, perforated ceiling pendants and picture desk lamps were among the bespoke products designed, developed and manufactured exclusively for this stylish hotel.

      Kimpton Fitzroy

      Combining contemporary interiors with the original features of its 19th century building, the Kimpton Fitzroy in Bloomsbury is a London hotel like no other.

      Collaborating with the creative teams at Tara Bernerd and Russell Sage Studio, Heathfield’s dedicated team of product designers and engineers created a series of extravagant chandeliers and sleek wall lights to complement the hotel interior. Specialist finishes and materials were developed and produced for the project to achieve a truly unique design.

      Heathfield 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: Heathfield & Co

      First look: the ‘different by design’ vision of Japan’s debut Aloft hotel

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      First look: the ‘different by design’ vision of Japan’s debut Aloft hotel

      W Design International has completed Aloft Tokyo Ginza, which is scheduled to open in October 2020. Before then, Hotel Designs got a sneak peek inside…

      Showcasing innovative creations of Japanese and international artists under the concept ‘different by design’, Aloft Tokyo Ginza, which will open in October 2020, will mark the brand’s arrival in Japan.

      W Design International (W/D/I), assigned by Sankei Building, initiated the overall design and realiastion of Aloft Ginza by combining old-school aesthetics inspired by Ginza’s social stories and industrial design. The new 16-storey boutique design hotel with rooftop bar is filled with radiant and iconic works by select artists. W/D/I curated a total of 11 artists whose installation-art was allocated to embody the ambience at Aloft Ginza.

      With more than 16 years of experience on hospitality design projects across Japan and the Asia Pacific region, W/D/I is specialist firm in the hospitality design sector, providing strategic and creative solutions for projects in Japan and beyond.

      “The guestrooms, including four suites, have been designed with a relaxing, rock-chic vibe.”

      True to its ‘Ginza Vogue’ flair, the eclectic style of the 205 loft-like guestrooms, including four suites, have been designed with a relaxing, rock-chic vibe. The hotel is the ideal accommodation for global travellers who love open spaces and stylish boutique design. “Ginza Vogue” also pays homage to Toshiro Mifune’s 100th birthday, a legendary Japanese actor who was loved by film fans internationally.

      The ‘different by design’ scheme has been achieved largely by W/D/I collaborating with lightning, audiovisual and music design by WORKTECHT to create one-off meaningful experiences. The atmosphere created was inspired by the Miyuki-Zoku movement from 1964, where Japanese teenagers expressed a cutting-edge and sophisticated style (the suffix “zoku” means “subculture” or “social club“). Meanwhile globally in 1964, pop art changed the art world. Artists like Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein became superstars, and many of them collaborated. W/D/I visualised this Ivy-fashion and rock spirit for “Neo Miyuki-Zoku” in 2020.

      Aloft Tokyo Ginza is located less than a five-minute walk away from both Ginza Station and Higashi-Ginza Station, and will open aptly while the city is preparing to face the greatest sporting event in modern times, the Olympics Games, ideal for savvy international travellers who are expected to attend.

      Main image credit: Aloft Hotels/Marriott International

      Inside Selina Brighton, a new rough-edged boutique jewel

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inside Selina Brighton, a new rough-edged boutique jewel

      Selina Brighton is a 31-key boutique hotel that is about to open its doors to an experience-led hospitality adventure on the South Coast. Ahead of its opening, editor Hamish Kilburn takes a peek inside…

      Selina, the experience-led hospitality group for the modern nomadic traveller, has opened its third property this summer with the launch of Selina Brighton in the heart of the vibrant, boho city centre.

      The timely arrival of Selina Brighton offers what is describes as the ‘ultimate staycation in 2020 and beyond’, and boasts unparalleled sea views from each of its 31 uniquely designed private rooms, suites and shared rooms. 

      Playful, colourful and just a little bit cheeky is what we seem to be gathering from the hotel’s style – we’ve also been told to expect the unconventional.

      Image credit: Selina

      “We’re thrilled to bring our unique Selina concept to one of the most exciting cities in the UK, and in such a thriving and bohemian neighbourhood full of culture, individuality and a place to cultivate hedonism and escape social restrictions,” said General Manager, Hugo Carvalho. “We can’t wait to open our doors and provide a new hub for the Brighton community; a fairground for daring and unadulterated fun.” 

      Selina sign above the entrance

      Image credit: Selina

      Designed to reflect Brighton’s ocean-front location and the city’s creative spirit, interior designer Tola Ojuolape collaborated closely with Selina’s workshop team, using materials that represent and embrace the community. As a result, each of the rooms has been given a quirky and whimsical twist, offering something new and unique to the accommodation sector in the city.

      31 rooms range of categories including lofts, suites, family rooms that accommodate up to four, standard and micro-sized double rooms, with a further 19 opening in 2021 including shared community rooms which fit up to six guests. 

      Social spaces are inherent in each of Seina’s properties, and the brand will be hosting specially curated programming, engaging workshops and unique pop-ups throughout the year in its Brighton property that are in-line with new social distancing guidelines.

      The aptly named restaurant, The Old Pier, is set to become a Brighton favourite, serving a range of delicious dishes with a side of sea views, including sourdough focaccia with whipped burrata and fermented honey, Mexican style cactus salad and mac’n’cheese croquettes with truffle mayo. 

      The understated lobby area will also be utilised as a social space for guests and locals alike, offering a grab and go coffee shop for your morning pick-me-up, as well as a sizable retail space selling products from local brands.

      In addition, and to answer modern demands, a co-working space will also be launching for locals to use as a community hub with artwork created and curated by local artist Amy Isles Freeman, whose work themes around female sexuality, freedom and joy.

      Selina currently operates +70 urban, beach, jungle and mountain-side locations across 20 countries worldwide and is developing a global infrastructure for nomads and remote workers who want to make the world their classroom, office, and playground.

      Main image credit: Selina

      5 minutes with: the founders of Avenue Interior Design

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      5 minutes with: the founders of Avenue Interior Design

      Following the completion of a handful of luxury hospitality projects in the States, Avenue Interior Design has become known for its refusal to be defined by any one style, as editor Hamish Kilburn learns when he interviews the firm’s founders…

      Avenue Interior Design, led by founders Andrea DeRosa and Ashley Manhan, has positioned itself as a small yet mighty powerhouse in an industry full of giants.

      Most recently, the firm spearheaded the design for Palms Casino & Resort’ renovation ‘From Dust to Gold’, and brought their skills to boutique properties such as The Ramble in Denver, La Serena Villas in Palm Springs as well as SLS Baha Mar.

      With the world of hospitality slowly re-opening, there remain concerns and hesitations among operators and travellers on what will become of the industry. I speak to DeRosa and Manhan, two level-headed designers who understand and respect how design evolves around cultural shifts, in order to explore how the pandemic has affected hotel design decisions.

      Hamish Kilburn: Let’s dive straight in, how will public areas look in the post-pandemic world?

      Ashley Manhan: Business and convention travel will likely lag compared to leisure travel as we see safer at home orders lift. Convention travel has been a critical component for many hotels as occupancy and F&B revenue are strongly tied to properties located near convention venues or for properties that have large meeting facilities.

      A luxury F&B interior area with plants and cute seating

      Image credit: SLS Baha Mar

      Andrea DeRosa: Accommodating large groups and conventions may require smaller breakout rooms with improved air circulation and potentially live streaming speakers to these smaller rooms. On the F&B front, buffets and family-style plating will likely be put aside for individual plates or packaged meals.

      HK: What new/different materials might go into hotel builds now?

      AD: Given that COVID-19 transmission has found to be primarily airborne, much consideration is going into upgraded air filtration systems. Increased ventilation and better filtration will be essential components of healthy building strategies. Additionally, we may see the use of mobile and handled UV disinfection systems for sterilisation and disinfecting of high use spaces. In terms of interior finishes and materials, and those selected for FF&E, designers will face the added challenge of selecting materials that can withstand more frequent cleaning and disinfecting.

      AM: In terms of lobbies, our current clients are requesting short-term solutions for partitions and countertop shields at transaction points, check-ins, and other places social distancing may not be feasible.

      Fitness spaces will likely decrease in size- a trend for some properties already in major urban areas with access to specialised gyms and studios. Look for more in-room fitness options and equipment like yoga mats and lightweight dumbbells.

      Restaurants face some of the largest obstacles in terms of social distancing and the use of PPE by diners. Restaurants will surely seat fewer guests to accommodate for social distancing protocol. Menus may go digital or restaurants may offer apps to place orders from your own device. Larger service counters for pickups or extended “grab and go” options maybe also be more prevalent as people warm up to the idea of eating out again.

      Modern interior design in a clean open bar area

      Image credit: SLS Baha Mar

      AD: In the short term, we are seeing many hotel brands unrolling programs to build guest confidence and implementing quick, sometimes temporary solutions now while permanent solutions are analyzed and explored. Long term, we anticipate pandemic related measures to be modifiable to give operators the option of adjusting to meet current health risk levels. Such modifications may include digital occupancy signage, movable partitions, and digital projections indicating recommended social distances in queuing areas. A large part of the equation is understanding guests’ demands, expectations, and associations with these changes. There will certainly be varying levels of concern depending on where in the country/world the guest is traveling from. Those guests from the hardest-hit areas are likely to expect greater measures than those traveling from areas less affected. Ongoing observation of guest behavior will inform decisions owners and operators make for long term modifications to their properties.

      HK: How can hotels shelter these new hygiene protocols without disrupting the design or the experience?

      AM: Taking into consideration that guest safety and wellbeing is, and always has been, a top priority for any property, the next priority remains firmly rooted in good design. Ownership teams require that our commitment to creating a hospitality quality experience remains the top priority just as it was pre-pandemic. Modifications to properties should be subtle, flexible and well-intentioned. This includes careful consideration to the function of the space, the circulation of guests through the space as well as more obvious elements like materials, furnishings and even wayfinding. Creating more space for guests to comfortably, and naturally, socially distance may be as simple as removing a few clusters of lounge chairs in a lobby or replacing a communal table with a series of smaller, movable tables that can be situated individually or easily paired together.

      AD: Incorporating decorative, movable screens or drapery also allows for social distancing flexibility while providing a thoughtful, well-designed element to the space. Graphics, signage, and font styles can be utilised in a way that provides informative guidance on precautions or protocol in a way that is consistent with the design language of the brand or property. For new build properties, especially food and beverage venues, you will likely see more fluid floor plans with fewer permanent features to allow for flexibility in furniture layouts and the function of a space.

      A blue interior scheme inside a junior king room

      Image credit: The Ramble Hotel

      HK: Have you already begun incorporating any changes into the hospitality projects you’re working on?

      AD: Many of the modifications we’ve made for our current projects have been temporary or short term solutions that will allow our clients to adhere to guidelines as outlined by local jurisdictions. Before making more costly or broad-sweeping modifications, our clients are waiting to gauge guests’ expectations and behaviours to ascertain what long term modifications should look like. For instance, the addition of automated faucets and hand soap dispensers seem like a logical move, however, for many properties that have been without revenue for the last few months, the expense of a modification requiring any construction or electrical work may be out of the budget. Scale is a monumental consideration as well. The cost of making such a change in a hotel with 50 keys is likely more feasible than making that change in a hotel with more than 1,000 keys.

      HK: Have you made any changes to guestrooms in the projects you are working on?

      AM: Guestroom size, function, and programming have also been a hot topic amongst designers and Ownership teams. In recent years the emphasis was on creating public spaces so dynamic and engaging it drew people out of their rooms and into the lobby, restaurant, bar, pool, etc. Guestroom sizes were generally shrinking and the furnishings were becoming paired down and multi-purpose in their design. It will be interesting to see if guestroom sizes increase to become more of a mini-sanctuaries that offer personalised guest experiences.

      Hotel Designs will be discussing topics such as adding personality in public areas and reassuring the post-corona consumer at Hotel Designs LIVE on October 13. If you are a designer, architect or hotelier, click here to participate for free.

      Main image credit: Avenue Interior Design

      Case study: Bentley & Studio Waldemeyer’s fresh approach to lighting design

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Case study: Bentley & Studio Waldemeyer’s fresh approach to lighting design

      To celebrate its 100 year anniversary, Bentley Motors approached Studio Waldemeyer to help the brand create all aspects of illumination on the most sophisticated concept car in the company’s history…

      The vehicle Bentley Motors showcased to mark its 100 anniversary displays the future of luxury craftsmanship with seamless fusion of materials and intelligent curation of technology, whilst introducing light as a new luxury material – all highly relevant when centering the focus back to lighting solutions for tomorrow’s hotels.

      Bentley, which is a brand that has flirted with hotel design for many years with a handful of luxury hotel brands sheltering ‘Bentley Suites’, approached Studio Waldemeyer to join their design team and help design and engineer all aspects of illumination on the show car.

      The car manufacturer’s challenging design brief required a completely new approach to light design and engineering. Studio Waldemeyer created an innovative tool chain, seamlessly merging the latest in parametric design tools from the world of computational architecture with electronic circuit design software. This approach not only allowed the perfect 3D integration of light in the complex surfaces of the car, but also the turnaround of the project in record time.

      Close up of the centre console of the Bentley car

      Image credit: Bentley Motors

      The Bentley EXP 100 GT is by far the most complex and challenging project for Studio Waldemeyer up to date and represents the perfect combination of artistic expression and technical innovation the studio is know for.  Entering a new creative discipline the studio has yet again helped to raise the bar of innovation, in this case producing the most sophisticated illumination in the history of vehicle design.

      Starting at the very prominent front grill, the illumination continues along the central spine into the interior space and finishes off with the sophisticated treatment of the rear horseshoe panel and 3D rear light clusters. While the approach to the project was that of a holistic 3D body of light, each area had its own challenges – be it the exotic materials, complex curvatures and the interaction with specialist design teams and craftspeople.

      Attention to detail was paramount – the flying B logo required a weeks worth of hand polishing before receiving the tiny bespoke LED component that illuminates its wings. Different approaches were taken for every material – be it the hand woven silk or the 5000 year old river wood. The interior contains two hand blown crystal pieces that visualise the inner workings of the car’s AI. Collaborating closely with Cumbria Crystal, Studio Waldemeyer worked on the 3D design, implementation and illumination of this central feature.

      The champagne cream interior with led lighting of the car

      Image credit: Bentley Motors

      The biggest research effort went into the external illumination. Starting from the sculpted surfaces of the car’s exterior, thousands of LEDs had to be placed at precise locations, requiring large numbers of different bespoke circuit board designs. This is a unique problem for an industry that is normally geared to make large numbers of a single design. Since no design tools existed for this task, the studio created their own: merging parametric 3D software with PCB design programmes. The manufacture of these unique pieces of electronics was done in Italy – a country famous for its long tradition in fine craftsmanship.

      The concept car created a splash far beyond the automotive world and continues to receive praise in the press – garnering coverage in publications such as Wallpaper and Forbes – whilst collecting some of the most prestigious design awards in the process.

      Studio Waldemeyer 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: Studio Waldemeyer

      citizenM has arrived on the USA’s west coast

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      citizenM has arrived on the USA’s west coast

      Designed by architecture and design firms concrete and Gensler, citizenM Seattle has opened its doors, marking the brand’s arrival on the west coast of the USA…

      Inspired by the neighbourhood and the boundaries between analogue and digital blur, citizenM Seattle has opened its quirky doors.

      The seven-storey building is positioned on the corner of John Street facing Denny park and Westlake avenue that runs all the way towards lake Union. The area is home to the headquarters of Microsoft and Amazon and characterised by the iconic Space needle.

      Image credit: Richard Powers for concrete

      The concept design of the architecture and interior was led by Rob Wagemans from concrete, the firm behind other citizenM properties in areas such as Amsterdam, Munich, Shanghai and Copenhagen. The project work was executed by the Seattle team of architecture and design firm Gensler.

      All 264 rooms are prefabricated modular units stacked on top of each other, creating a building with a series of large bedroom windows which are typical for the architecture of citizenM.

      The ground floor public areas are spacious with lots of daylight coming from the large store front windows facing the street.

      Image credit: Richard Powers for concrete

      The bar with a large bottle rack and skylight above it, together with the elevator core wrapped in a bespoke art piece by local artist Jeffrey Veregge make this a remarkable citizenM.

      Main image credit: Richard Powers for concrete

      Inside the latest luxury lifestyle hotel in Mayfair, London

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inside the latest luxury lifestyle hotel in Mayfair, London

      From the people who brought us the renowned Cliveden House and Chewton Glen comes The Mayfair Townhouse, which is slated to open this Autumn…

      Curious, engaging and witty, The Mayfair Townhouse is said to deliver the unexpected and redefines what it means to be a London hotel – think  Oscar Wilde meets Alice in Wonderland.

      Part of Iconic Luxury Hotels, this will be the fifth property in the portfolio, but promises to offer a new unexpected personality from what the brand is traditionally known for. Bringing a new lifestyle product into one of London’s most distinguished neighbourhoods – The Mayfair Townhouse is the new charismatic ‘kid on the block’ – a product that has never been experienced in Mayfair.

      “We’ve created a product – a personality – that’s exceptionally unique to our collection at Iconic Luxury Hotels.” – Andrew Stembridge, Executive Director of Iconic Luxury Hotels.

      “There is nothing like The Mayfair Townhouse,” said Andrew Stembridge, Executive Director of Iconic Luxury Hotels, who has been instrumental in developing this outstanding lifestyle hotel for London’s Mayfair. “When the property debuts in Autumn 2020, you will see something that has not yet been done. We’ve created a product – a personality – that’s exceptionally unique to our collection at Iconic Luxury Hotels. We’re looking to give London and travellers from all over the world, something fresh, something totally different and something totally unexpected. This is a new and exciting chapter for Iconic Luxury Hotels, and as we welcome our second property in London, we look forward to creating remarkable memories in the heart of Mayfair.”

      Render of the entrance to the bar

      Image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      A carefully stylish, imaginative home for the modern traveller – the essence of the new Townhouse invites discerning travellers who appreciate an intuitive, perceptive level of service and a guest who above all, has a refined palette for curiosity. Without the traditions of a regular hotel, there is no room at the Townhouse that has not been thoughtfully curated. The hotel bridges the gap between ritzy high-end lavish hotels and the corporate enterprise properties that currently stand in Mayfair.

      When guests walk through the doors of this new Townhouse, expect the unexpected. Moments of surprise await around every corner of the fifteen connected Georgian buildings that line Half Moon Street, which was once the setting for Oscar Wilde’s most famous play, The Importance of Being Earnest. Built from 1730, Half Moon Street was a colourful haunt for bachelors, bohemians and artistic types in Victorian London. During this time many of Half Moon Street’s townhouses were split into residential apartments for the elite to live before marriage. Iconic fictional characters, Oscar Wilde’s Algernon Moncreiff and Bertie Wooster in P. G. Wodehouse’s comedies resided here. Moments of this history and culture are immersed throughout The Mayfair Townhouse’s discreet address, and quickly become the central pillars of design and personality of the eclectic house.

      A refined Mayfair restaurant inside the hotel

      Image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      Dandy is the cornerstone theme and design language of The Mayfair Townhouse – building on the historic connections with Oscar Wilde, Half Moon Street and the dandy lifestyle associated with Mayfair. Capturing this playful spirit to create a new era of the Dandy, Goddard Littlefair has helmed an authentic, quick-witted design of the Townhouse. Telling the tale of Oscar Wilde’s world through an imaginative design, Goddard Littlefair has revived the interiors of the townhouses of which seven are Grade-II listed, bringing to life the Georgian spirit and blending this with a contemporary rhythm. The fox, the hotel’s mischievous motif, is woven throughout the hotel, from the art collection showcasing a series of fox images, to intricate design elements throughout the property.

      The design delves into the personalities of the original inhabitants of the area, taking inspiration from characters like Wilde and his contemporary aesthetes, and also the flamboyant aesthetic movement of that period. The result? A contemporary Georgian style interwoven with English eccentricities, capturing the adventurous mischief of the dandy. Twists of the unexpected, curiosities, and a humorous, playful design tone resonate throughout the hotel through various fabrics and colour palettes, to create a flamboyant dressing on the residential townhouse.

      Luxe dining area

      Image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      If the walls could talk. Art plays a pivotal part of the hotel, with Minda Dowling, a leading art specialist, curating unique and unusual pieces for The Mayfair Townhouse to further bring each space to life. The hand-picked collection includes both known names and emerging artists, to celebrate different creators of our time all with their own wow factor. Take Clarita Brinkerhoff’s peacock sculpture for instance – the piece sits at 67 inches high and is made out of 25,000 Swarovski crystals. Guests are invited to learn about the art through special QR codes that have been developed – so guests can scan and absorb details.

      The aptly named Dandy Bar is the heart and soul of the Townhouse. This is where you’ll find refuge from the bustling streets of Mayfair. A theatrical, dimly lit atmosphere that creates a place to see and be seen. Dandy Bar epitomises bespoke cocktails. Take The Mayfair Dandy for example – an avant-garde take on the classic Dandy cocktail once enjoyed by hedonists of the area, or AR Lenoble Brut Champagne, Oscar Wilde’s favourite. Of course, the design evokes the dandy spirit. Lampshades have silk pleated shades, seating is covered in printed velvets and leathers with marble, brass and high gloss timbers adorn the room. The flamboyance of feathers in flapper outfits and the traditional gentleman’s pocket inspires the design of the Dandy Bar.

      A London hotspot bar

      Image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      Flavours of whimsy yet practicality make its way through the Townhouse’s individually designed guest rooms and suites. From the functional Classic Rooms, to the indoor-outdoor living themed Garden Suites, to the Dandy muse ‘Penthouse Suites’ – every corner of each room is thoughtfully designed and appeals to what the discerning modern traveller is seeking today.

      Super luxurious guestroom/suite

      Image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      Expect to find the highest quality linens and robes, superb bathrooms, luxury mattresses, his-or-her toiletries, good lighting and intelligent use of space. Little touches reflecting the hotel’s quick-witted personality include minibar contents from local artisans, flamboyant spare socks, takeaway mints and in-room cocktail kits using the dandy’s ingredient of absinthe.

      A very plush yet minimalist bathroom

      Image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      With no traditional restaurant at The Mayfair Townhouse, you’re invited to the Lower Ground floor – a vibrant space located downstairs off the entrance lobby. Appealing to the modern nomad traveller, this is a place to work, explore and connect with the personalities of the time, and enjoy breakfast. Take in the whimsical characters on the walls as you enjoy this convivial Library-esque space. Beyond the walls lies a further dining room, which instils a feeling that it belongs to the residence’s owner. Your own private versatile oasis which can be used for private dining, or a ‘meeting of the minds’ gathering place.

      From Autumn onwards, The Mayfair Townhouse is where you’ll find both luxury and the joy of the unexpected. Guests come for the exceptional service and inspiring atmosphere and leave with a renewed confidence that choosing personality over conformity is always worth it.

      Main image credit: Iconic Luxury Hotels

      Is this the most isolated hotel in Sweden?

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Is this the most isolated hotel in Sweden?

      Pater Noster, described as a ‘home on the horizon’, is an unedited destination in Sweden where no hotel designer has dared to design – until now, that is. Editor Hamish Kilburn explores how a team of entrepreneurs, hoteliers, restaurateurs, designers and professional sailors have given this island a new purpose…

      In the outpost of the archipelago that form the Pater Noster islands – one of Sweden’s most windblown, barren and exposed places – you will find an unlikely hotel experience that rises from the point where two straits (The Skagerack and Kattegatt) meet.

      It is marked by a lighthouse; a masterpiece that gave hope and guided seafarers safely for more than a century. Adjacent to it, the keepers and their families built their home, a small-scale community on an island dictated by the elements that had always been perceived as uninhabitable. Until now, that is.

      A dramatic view capturing the lighthouse and houses surrounding them

      Image credit: Pater Noster

      A team of Swedish entrepreneurs, hoteliers, restaurateurs, designers and professional sailors have breathed new life into the lighthouse master’s old home, creating nine design-led guestrooms, accommodating up to 18 guests.

      Entrance to the building

      Image credit: Pater Noster

      Award-winning design agency Stylt, which has completed projects such as Stora Hotellet and HUUS Hotel, in Gstaad, was responsible for the concept and interior design. “During my 30 years within the hospitality business, I have rarely come across such a unique destination”, says Stylt’s founder and partner in the lighthouse project Erik Nissen Johansen. “It’s all there – the remote location, the fantastic nature, the extreme weather conditions, the thrilling history – and soon, great hospitality with a dash of roughness and low-key luxury.”

      With the project being so isolated in the middle of the sea, logistics were perhaps the main challenge. “The extra layer of freight combined with heavy winds made things interesting,” Nissen explains. “We had an incident when our new DUX beds arrived at the dock. It was a rough sea and we lost a large box in the water. It quickly disappeared, and all the legs to 24 beds were drifting towardsDenmark. Luckily, we managed to catch all of them with our smaller boats, but they will probably rust faster than normal.”

      The interior design has completely been inspired by the destination, even down to the fruit bowl that is a repurposed piece of driftwood that washed up on the shores as the work was being completed. “When we were completing building the large dining table, a piece of driftwood just floated ashore,” Nissen tells Hotel Designs. “It was as if the island wanted to help.” The washed-up item was upcycled into a fruit bowl that now rests on a large dining table that was so large it had to be manufactured inside the property.

      Image credit: Pater Noster

      The artwork in the dining hall, shot by underwater photographer Christy Lee Rogers, hangs in a respectful bow to the hundreds of shipwrecks that surround the island. The photographic works together push the possibilities of movement, colour and light.

      “This is a home, not a hotel, filled with history.” – Mirja Lilja Hagsjö, Chief of Operations at Pater Noster.

      Ship and artwork in hallway

      Image credit: Pater Noster

      The entire site, which is only about 250 metres long and 120 metres wide, includes a restaurant, a bar and outdoor café. “The spirit of the old lighthouse master is all over the place” explains chief of operations Mirja Lilja Hagsjö. “This is a home, not a hotel, filled with history.”

      Pater Noster is an apt example how to meet the new demands within the world of hospitality, offering genuine guest experiences with a strong cultural heritage. Depending on the weather, the island is reached by boat or helicopter. It’s perfect for smaller groups looking for a one-off experience, hosting meetings and private parties as well as a range of activities such as deep-sea fishing, sailing, kayaking, scuba diving and visiting the legendary lighthouse itself.

      The property is the result of like-minded people, all of whom have different crafts and skills, coming together with a common aim: to put the island on the travel bucket list of all modern travellers and explorers. These individuals behind the project are entrepreneur Olle Langenius, Mirja Lilja Hagsjö (Chief of Operations), Zana ”Sassa” Usorac – (F&B), Frida Langenius och Carl Sylvan – transportation and sea adventures and Erik and Elisabeth Nissen Johansen (design and concept).

      Throughout August, Hotel Designs is exploring inspirational hotel concepts from around the world. If you would like to be included in this editorial series, please tweet @HotelDesigns.

      Main image credit: Pater Noster

      Inside Bermonds Locke – an alternative hotel experience

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inside Bermonds Locke – an alternative hotel experience

      Ahead of speaking at Hotel Designs LIVE in October, Lifestyle hospitality brand Locke will open its third London property this September. Before then, Hotel Designs has managed to get a behind-the-scenes glance at the interiors inside Bermonds Locke

      Designed to be lived in, and offering an alternative to traditional hotels in the post-pandemic world, each individual studio apartment inside Bermonds Locke is equipped with fully fitted kitchens and modern living space.

      Combined with activated public spaces and a locally-led cultural programme, Bermonds Locke will simultaneously allow guests to enjoy the benefits of a lifestyle hotel. The flexibility of the home-meets-hotel format appeals to a broad range of travellers across the leisure and business markets, for both extended and short stays. As the demands of contemporary travellers rapidly change, Locke’s burgeoning success and European expansion plans put it at the centre of the future of travel.

      “We are delighted to open our third property in London with Bermonds Locke,” said Stephen McCall, CEO of edyn. “Locke aims to liberate guests from the confines of a typical hotel room by creating beautiful apartments that are designed to be lived in. The type of guest we’re accommodating wants to explore life as a local, and so the Bermondsey neighbourhood has played a significant role in defining the aesthetic, partners and programming.”

      “Concrete testing cubes destined for landfill find new purpose serving as a plinth for a six-metre long terrazzo tables in the ground floor workspaces.”

      Image credit: Locke

      Bermonds Locke marks the first collaboration for the brand with London-based interior architecture studio Holloway Li. Paying homage to nature’s wonder in both aesthetic and eco-responsibility, Holloway Li have created a living experience out of re-purposed construction materials in both the public areas and private apartments. Concrete testing cubes destined for landfill find new purpose serving as a plinth for a six-metre long terrazzo tables in the ground floor workspaces; whilst in the rooms bespoke bed frames woven out of blackened rebar are accented with linen canopies to infuse old ideas of the concrete jungle with a new sense of sanctuary.

      “We are really excited to be partnering with Locke to pave a new design direction for the brand’s home-meets-hotel concept,” explained Alex Holloway and Na Li, Co-Founders Holloway Li. “By challenging the purpose of materials, we hope to highlight how a circular material economy can generate an incredibly unique aesthetic and a new kind of living experience – doing more, with less.”

      Image credit: Locke

      Bringing the changing gradient of the desert sunset to south London, Locke’s signature studios on the upper floors will be dipped in blue, beige and grey hues and saturated vibrant pinks on the lower floors. Responding to a narrative and concept developed by Heather Tierney from Wanderlust (the visionary behind cult US restaurant The Butcher’s Daughter), Bermonds Locke evokes the Southern California cool of Joshua Tree, the Mojave Dessert and Abbott Kinney – a culture and food destination comparable to Bermondsey Street.

      Rendering of bar with lots of plants around it

      Image credit: Locke

      Situated within walking distance of some of London’s favourite spots, guests can enjoy the energetic Bermondsey Street – home to some of the best bars, restaurants and art galleries in London. To the north of the property, guests can meander through the cobbled streets of Shad Thames and Maltby Street Market– the smaller, slightly more charming younger sister of Borough Market. As with all Locke properties, Bermonds Locke comes fully staffed by a team of House Hosts, offering excellent insight to ensure both long and short-term visitors have access to the best local knowledge and insider tips.

      The opening of Bermonds Locke comes as the brand continues to expand both within the UK and internationally. With further openings planned in Dublin, Berlin, Lisbon, Munich and Copenhagen, Locke is also slated to open its fourth London outpost in Dalston in late 2020.

      Main image credit: Locke/Nicholas Worley

      Insane hotel concepts for the post-pandemic world

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Insane hotel concepts for the post-pandemic world

      To celebrate Hotel Concepts being this month’s ‘Spotlight On’ feature, here are some insane hotel renderings that offer drastic solutions for hospitality and hotel design in the post-pandemic world…

      Let’s face it, it’s going to be a while before the industry reflects the same buzz and energy as it did before the Covid-19 outbreak. Protocols around cleaning and social distancing are inevitably changing the way in which hotels are used and perceived. With this month’s Spotlight On feature being on Hotel Concepts, we have decided to look past incredible architecture and have instead identified three new perceptions on how hospitality and hotel design can adapt post-pandemic.

      A pre-warning: they are a little ‘out there’, but how else is the industry expected to develop, evolve and challenge conventional theories?

      The human zoo hotel, conceived by Bill Bensley

      Image credit: Bill Bensley

      Earlier this year, the eco warrior Bill Bensley – who is confirmed as our headline speaker at Hotel Designs LIVE – responded to a hotel brief by designing a hotel where guests are caged while wild, exotic animals roam free. The ‘human zoo’ hotel concept, which will be targeted to luxury travellers who are seeking for unparalleled experiences, will shelter 2,400 ‘human cages’ that will actually look more like high-end, design-led guestrooms that frame an uninterrupted and uncorrupted view on natural the wildlife below.

      The site where the hotel is being conceived is situated on a 2,000-hectare plot, which will reinstate wetlands to encourage biodiversity. With the concrete aim being firm to free wildlife from captivity, Bensley’s concept has recently reached a milestone, gaining approval from Southern China’s Communist Party to relocate abused animals from zoos in the country, to be released onto the roughly 2,000-hectare piece of land where the ‘human zoo’ will be located.

      Although the concept was drawn up before the pandemic, it is an interesting idea nonetheless to flip the luxury consumer journey upside-down. By doing so, the Bensley has yet again put the emphasis on wildlife, nature and sustainability, all of which have experienced neglect amongst the chaos of Covid-19.

      The hotel of the future according to Gettys Group

      The (potential) future of hotel sleep, as imagined by Gettys Group

      Image credit: RC Aradio of Blue Core Creative/Getty Groups

      Since June of this year, Getty Group has been developing concepts that aim to address the significant industry-wide challenges posed by Covid-19. 325 hotel owners, designers, architects, and hospitality educators are participating in the research, including brands such as citizenM, Four Seasons, Hilton, IHG and Marriott.

      Technology and personalisation (two topics we will explore in Hotel Designs LIVE) continue to play important roles. ‘BedXYZ’, which is described by Gettys Group as an “optimised and gamified sleep platform,” involves temperature-regulating engineered fabrics in the guestroom. Meanwhile, touchless technology will allow guests to control the room’s lighting, scent, sound, temperature and even the firmness of the bed via their smartphone.

      Al fresco guestrooms

      a room in the middle of nowhere

      Image credit: Zero Real Estate/Appenzellerland

      This isn’t anything new; Jade Mountain in Saint Lucia, for example, is an architectural marvel with its innovative concept to remove the fourth wall in order to open up the interiors to the natural elements. However, new hotel concepts have emerged recently that are showing completely open-air rooms in the middle of nowhere. One of the developers that is leading the way is the aptly named Zero Real Estate. The theory behind the layout, with the bed being perched on a wooden platform, is that the natural landscape becomes the backdrop. Removing surfaces altogether to eliminate boundaries is a drastic strategy in the post-pandemic world, which will not work for everyone, but it certainly works to deepen one-off experiences for luxury modern travellers.

      If you have a hotel concept that you would like us to explore, please tweet us @HotelDesigns. If you would like to participate in Hotel Designs LIVE, where many of the above topics will be explored, click here.

      Main image credit: Zero Real Estate

      Inside the first ‘luxe lifestyle wellness resort’ in Grenada

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inside the first ‘luxe lifestyle wellness resort’ in Grenada

      Opening on October 1 2020, The Point at Petite Calvigny will be the first dedicated luxury lifestyle and wellness resort on the island of Grenada in the Caribbean. Editor Hamish Kilburn writes…

      With just three design-led villas and 12 suites nestled on an 11-acre estate on the south coast of Grenada, The Point at Petite Calvigny is the island’s new ultra-luxury resort.

      The resort, which slopes down to Benji Bay, features a privately accessed secluded beach, a state of the art gym and wellness centre including The Petite Spa, five swimming pools, a beach bar and restaurant and a private marina.

      Chris Ashby, the property’s owner who, in collaboration with Adriana Hoyos Hospitality, took it upon himself to design the interiors following his extensive travel experience, fell in love with the raw, natural beauty of this part of Grenada and its stunning views. This ultimately inspired him to create the luxury ‘cloistered sanctuary’ where the outside world is left at the ‘entrance/gate’. “The Point is the first luxury resort in Grenada that is totally focussed on wellness,” Ashby explains. “We offer discerning travellers the perfect combination of luxury accommodation in a peaceful setting with the ability to design their stay exactly as they wish. I am proud to say that The Point is owned by a Grenadian, was built by Grenadians and is staffed by Grenadians.”

      No effort was spared in creating the perfect ambiance, which included changing the orientation of the buildings following recommendations from a Feng Shui consultant who advised that they be aligned ‘with water in front and mountains in the background’. As a result, all the buildings stand in an optimum location in order to capture uninterrupted views of the waters of Benji Bay, the unspoilt marine sanctuary of Woburn Bay and the private resort of Calvigny Island.

      Image caption: The hotel has been configured to capture uninterrupted views of the waters of Benji Bay, Woburn Bay and the private resort of Calvigny Island. | Image credit: The Point at Petite Calvigny

      The Point at Petite Calvigny, which was developed by C.A.C Partners Ltd., has been built to the highest eco standards without compromising on comfort or luxury. There are many hidden eco-friendly elements such as environmentally compliant building materials; super insulated walls, UV filters on windows and doors to minimise energy consumption; rainwater harvesting to provide drinking water and a wastewater treatment system that produces water to irrigate the gardens.  All toiletries are vegan friendly and free from parabens, sulphates and phosphates while the spa incorporates local products such as scrubs made using natural, local ingredients.

      “Designed in a contemporary West Indian style with warm wood finishes, all the rooms are spacious and bathed in natural light.”

      Reflecting the wellness focus of the resort and Grenada, all accommodation has been named after crystals such as Citrine and Blue Lace. Designed in a contemporary West Indian style with warm wood finishes, all the rooms are spacious and bathed in natural light from floor to ceiling windows that allow for magnificent, unobstructed views of the bay and nearby islands. Inside the rooms, nautical artwork further reflects the property’s unique sense of location, as does the lighting and sensitively designed furnishings.

      Image caption: The clean design of the interiors feature interesting lighting, natural materials and a large nautical map of the region. | Image credit: The Point

      Image caption: The clean design of the interiors feature interesting lighting, natural materials and a large nautical map of the region. | Image credit: The Point at Petite Calvigny

      Each of the three split level villas have three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a private infinity pool and deck with a grilling station. The 12 single-floor suites have two bedrooms, two bathrooms, private balconies and share two large free form swimming pools, a swim up bar and outdoor grilling station.  A selection of fresh herbs are available for guests wishing to add a little extra flavour to their barbecue.

      Image caption: Exterior image of one of three villas available at the resort. | Image credit: The Point.

      Image caption: Exterior image of one of three villas available at the resort. | Image credit: The Point at Petite Calvigny

      Both the villas and suites have fully custom kitchens, dining and living rooms and internet-based TV. Extra touches such as oil diffusers, mood lighting, high quality hypo allergenic bedding, insulation to reduce sound and black out curtains help to enhance sleep performance.

      The Point is specially designed to promote rest and rejuvenation. To take this up a level, and in order for the service to match Ashby’s aim, a complimentary consultation with the hotel’s ‘Vibe Director’ is available to each guest in order to create a stay that is perfectly attuned to their specific needs.

      Places like this sanctuary within the Caribbean are highly coveted. The Point Private Residence Club is the first and only luxury residence club on the island of Grenada.

      In conclusion, every detail of The Point has been specially designed and curated for the discerning eye – from the location and architecture of the residences to the carefully manicured tropical gardens and exceptional experiences – it is a paradise that is naturally self-isolating in its own unique corner of the world.

      Main image credit: The Point at Petite Calvigny

      Feature: a new era of luxury hospitality has begun

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Feature: a new era of luxury hospitality has begun

      To coincide with the opening of Birch, which has been described as a ‘next-generation escape’ hotel just outside London, editor Hamish Kilburn considers how Covid-19 has challenged the luxury hotel market by hearing from international architecture and interior design firm Red Deer on the luxury hotel’s design story…

      Even after lockdown, Covid-19 has created a distance between us, which is predicted to last for a while. Although we will meet again as we did before, architecture firm Red Deer believes that a new shift in the luxury market will emerge from our time apart.

      “For Red Deer, luxury comes from the creation of a meaningful emotional connection between the hotel guest and the space they inhabit.”

      Red Deer considers the term ‘luxury’ as degraded through overuse, and the parameters of what constitutes a ‘luxury hotel’ can be difficult to define. The concept can be specific to each individual guest, based on their own expectation, habits and culture. For Red Deer, luxury comes from the creation of a meaningful emotional connection between the hotel guest and the space they inhabit.

      Image credit: Birch/Red Deer/Adam Firman

      “Millennials represent only about 32 per cent of spending in the personal luxury market, but by 2025 they are expected to make up 50 per cent of the total market,” writes Forbes contributor Pamela N. Danziger. “Some 130 per cent of market growth in the next seven years will be attributed to the Millennial generation.”

      Rejecting traditional wealth values

      The luxury industry has often been aligned with indulgence and excess rather than sustainability and connections. Quality craftsmanship and experiences may continue to command a premium price tag, however, Millennials are creating a new focus towards sustainability. Both Millennial and Gen Z groups’ expectations from luxury brands are very different from those of Gen X and Baby Boomers who favour traditional wealth values. Social connections and insider knowledge are of more importance to these younger consumers who are more likely to make value-based acquisitions and purchases. Luxury weaves its way through their experiences, free time, travel, community, self-growth and security.

      For the Birch hotel project, a 140-key hotel that is set within 55 acres of nature just outside of London, Red Deer deconstructed the meaning of a hotel and pieced it back together to ensure that no element was intrinsic without careful consideration. The obvious need for a bed and bathroom are present, however, more attention was given to the contemporary ‘luxuries’ such as a TV, telephone and smart lighting systems to ascertain their place in a luxury hotel for an increasingly younger generation of guests.

      “With Birch, the firm felt it crucial to collaborate with local artists and makers to create some unique pieces in the rooms.”

      Image credit: Birch/Red Deer/Adam Firman

      As the landscape for luxury hospitality has evolved, the onus is now focused on creating a unique and personalised one-to-one experience for guests. This bespoke experience is a key driver throughout the design of Red Deer’s projects. With Birch, the firm felt it crucial to collaborate with local artists and makers to create some unique pieces in the rooms and challenge the idea that uniformity was essential for large batch furniture specification.

      The most prominent of these pieces is a bespoke valet stand constructed by Jan Hendzel Studio, utilising recycled plastic orbs by sustainable material designer Charlotte Kidger, textured vases by ceramicist Emma Louise Payne and hand-beaten copper bowls by metalsmith Lucie Naujalis. It’s a piece that is intimate and personal, telling a story of three different elements brought together in a single form that is simultaneously light and robust, whilst able to be easily taken apart when required and updated over time. It’s a piece designed to stimulate the guest’s senses and spark their curiosity.

      Before the pandemic, the global luxury market was predicted to reach €1.3 trillion by 2025. As the hospitality industry enters a challenging period in Q2/3 2020 it is ever-important for the designers and hotel investors to consider the changing market needs and place social connections and insider knowledge alongside premium experiences at the forefront of their business models. Hotels aren’t just bedrooms with smart technology, but memory-making experiences that create value and loyalty.

      Image credit: Birch/Red Deer/Adam Firman

      Red Deer believes Birch to be an example of how hospitality projects should be approached, considering a long-term commitment to sustainability within a renovation or new build as a crucial component of architectural design.

      Main image credit: Birch/Red Deer/Adam Firman

      Gessi on ‘dreaming big’ in bathroom aesthetics

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Gessi on ‘dreaming big’ in bathroom aesthetics

      Success in design is based on pleasure, beauty and imagination. Innovative bathroom brand Gessi dictates the recipe to create a happier present: to revert to dream big…

      Forward-thinking bathroom brand Gessi has always worked in tandem with the excellences of Italian fashion, food and furniture.

      This includes collaborations and exchanges of ideas from which products and concepts transversal to the different disciplines are born, intended to interpret the present, improve life and plan the future.

      Image credit: GESSI

      “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams,” wrote Eleanor Roosvelt; this time full of uncertainties filled the man with anxiety, leading him to give priority to negative information and feelings, so it became more difficult to focus on good things, to imagine the future, especially an attractive future.

      Stress and anxiety prevent us from being able to dream. By drawing on imagination and dreams, it is possible to model the future with hope and optimism, such as the launch of a holistic Architectural Wellness program.

      2 modern showers in ceilings with marble walls

      Image credit: GESSI

      Have we stopped dreaming?

      “When my daughter was seven, one day she asked me what I was doing at work. I told her I was working in college – my job was to teach people how to draw. She stared at me in disbelief and then said: “do you mean that they forgot hot to draw?” – Howard Ikemoto (artist and art professor).

      There is something wonderfully simple in the way children see life. it’s a way of seeing where everything is possible and this means that they don’t see any reason why they can’t grow up to become an astronaut, a cowboy or a princess.

      For some reason, we stopped dreaming. We actually stopped believing that dreams were possible.

      “All men dream; but not equally. Those who dream at night In the dusty recesses of their minds wake up during the day to discover that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, because they can carry out their daydreams, to make it possible.” – T. E. Lawrence

      The founder of Gessi talks about the horizon line that goes away every time you try to reach it. “The real meaning of life” says the entrepreneur, “is in that path that brings you closer to the goal, not the goal itself and the values that accompany this path are as fundamental as the people who get on the boat with you.”

      Modern bathroom

      Image credit: GESSI

      In a few words is expressed all the philosophy of Gessi: a continuous trend towards improvement, positivity, courage and a success based on people, humanity and feelings. In a nutshell, the ability  to dream big.

      “The important thing is to start dreaming again,” says Mr. Gessi, “we need to imagine big, almost unthinkable things; new Eiffel towers, new pyramids, we need to go back to the moon”.

      That’s true, a pragmatic  need for tangible things, bridges, road, seems to be prevalent but we also need a new access to the poetry of things, to return to see butterflies in the city, to recreate an access to the imagination of beauty, of the magnificent.

      Why is it important to dream?

      Gessi recalls, according to scientific researchers, that once we project ourselves into a dream, changes begin to occur in our brain, we establish neurological traces that literally change our brain to make it look like the brain of the future. In other words, the brain begins to make us feel that the future we want to create has already happened.

      When we feel the emotions of our future- whether it’s gratitude, joy, freedom, abundance, enthusiasm, love and so on – creative thoughts in the mind can become real experience: the body receives the chemical signals of these emotions, essentially the body receives the signal that the event has already occurred.

      The greatest projects, the greatest entrepreneurial stories always arise from imagination. This is more true than ever for food, fashion and design industries.

      Gessi has always thought of the bathroom as “private spaces” of the living, where personal needs, exceeding the functional aspect, are satisfied at an higher level and in a high and “other” dimension by the everyday and the usual, therefore places that go beyond the reality of their hygienic function, they draw on the dream, the emotional sphere, the psychophysical pleasure.

      The bathroom brand believes that innovating means fulfilling dreams and anticipating needs. Its projects are born from creative freedom and from an always original trait, with a passion for objects that free themselves from codified and prescribed function to reinvent themselves to new uses: empathetic, friendly, enjoyable objects. Objects that improve people’s lives.

      Gessi 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: Gessi

      Building which will be the rosewood hotel in Shanghai

      Rosewood announces new hotel in Shanghai

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Rosewood announces new hotel in Shanghai

      Shanghai is a strategic addition to the Rosewood Hotels & Resorts brand, expanding its footprint in Asia. Rosewood Shanghai will join nine properties in operation and six in development across the continent…

      Following recent announcements from the luxury brand to open hotels in St Barths, Madrid and Sardinia, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has been appointed by Shanghai-based property development company, Lonsen Land Group, to manage Rosewood Shanghai.

      Building which will be the rosewood hotel in Shanghai

      The new 200-key hotel in mainland China, which will join nine properties in operation in the continent, is set to break ground in 2022, with an expected opening in 2028.

      Ideally situated in the heart of Shanghai’s Jing’An District and Suhewan area, an emerging business and cultural hub, Rosewood Shanghai will offer travellers unparalleled access to the city. The announcement of Rosewood Shanghai underscores the brand’s careful, selective growth strategy in Asia and across the globe, as well as the strength of its impressive property pipeline, which is now the most robust in Rosewood’s history.

      Occupying prime real estate within a mixed-use project designed by renowned international studio Foster + Partners, Rosewood Shanghai is set to transform the city skyline. Occupying the top floors of the site’s landmark building, which will be one of the tallest complexes in the city’s Puxi district at 320 meters, the hotel will deliver unique design conceived to showcase its expansive views of the metropolis. In keeping with the brand’s guiding A Sense of Place® philosophy, the destination’s storied history, rich culture and dynamic spirit will serve as additional inspiration for the property’s design ethos and bespoke programming.

      “The country’s largest city and economic hub, Shanghai embodies several of our key brand values – innovation, creativity and originality.” – Sonia Cheng, chief executive officer of Rosewood Hotel Group.

      “As we continue to grow the brand throughout Asia and specifically mainland China, Shanghai has long been a priority destination in which to plant the Rosewood flag,” said Sonia Cheng, chief executive officer of Rosewood Hotel Group. “The country’s largest city and economic hub, Shanghai embodies several of our key brand values – innovation, creativity and originality. We are thrilled to bring a new standard of luxury to the region and thank our partners at Lonsen Land Group for the opportunity they’ve given us to do so.”

      Rosewood Shanghai will offer 200 guestrooms and suites, five food and beverage establishments and Asaya, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts’ revolutionary wellness concept.

      “For many, Shanghai is known as “Mo Du”, the Magic City; cherished for its rich cultural heritage, modern lifestyle offerings and captivating social scenes,” says Mr Ruan Xingxiang, chairman of Lonsen Land Group. “With the brand’s A Sense of Place® philosophy and referencing to the success story of its trophy property in Hong Kong, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts makes an ideal partner of us to reinvent Shanghai’s charm as a destination to the affluential explorers from around the world.”

      Rosewood Shanghai will join Rosewood’s collection of distinguished city and resort properties in Greater China, which currently includes Rosewood Hong Kong, Rosewood Beijing, Rosewood Sanya and Rosewood Guangzhou. Additional projects in development in the region include Rosewood Chengdu and Rosewood Ningbo, both set to open in 2023, along with Rosewood Shenzhen and Rosewood Taipei, which are planned to open in 2024.

      Main image credit: Rosewood Hotels & Resorts

      Sneak peek: inside “the most stylish hotel in Crete”

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Sneak peek: inside “the most stylish hotel in Crete”

      CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa – one of Greece’s most hotly-anticipated new hotel in 2021 – is expected to open in Crete on August 1. Ahead of the doors opening this weekend, Hotel Designs got a sneak peek inside…

      It must come as a compliment to the Italian designer Gian Paolo Venier that his latest hotel project, CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa, which opens this weekend, is already being hailed ‘Crete’s most stylish hotel’.

      Taking luxury, gastronomy and design to a new level on the island, the property will open with a mind-body balancing spa, four gastronomic restaurants, stylish rooms, suites and villas with private plunge pools and unrivalled vistas of Spinalonga Island.

      A stone’s throw from sought-after Elounda, CAYO is situated in peaceful Plaka, a quaint village lined with boutiques, traditional tavernas and a sun-soaked beach.

      Image credit: CAYO

      “CAYO was created with the environment in mind – alongside its innovative reusable energy sources, guests are greeted with a seedling, which they can plant anywhere around the resort.”

      Drawing from a calming and neutral palette, Venier has blended cool greys, soft blues and greens with brushed marble, chic glass and stone in a nod toward the historical locale and architecture of nearby ancient city of Olous.

      Image credit: CAYO

      Awash with natural daylight, guestrooms and suites offer uninterrupted views of the ocean, complete with private terrace and heated plunge pool. CAYO was created with the environment in mind – alongside its innovative reusable energy sources, guests are greeted with a seedling, which they can plant anywhere around the resort. 

      Image credit: CAYO

      With a farm to fork ethos, the menus at CAYO’s four restaurants use the freshest seasonal produce, locally-sourced from selected eco-friendly farms and the resort’s own organic garden. Curated by Chef Lefteris Lazarou, the first Greek chef to be awarded with one Michelin Star, dishes range from authentic Greek to modern Mediterranean fare. In the spa, ancient rituals are combined with cutting-edge treatment techniques, based around the concept of the spiritual, cultural and natural environment.

      Image credit: CAYO

      Promising to promote inner-peace and restore wellness, CAYO Spa houses three spacious treatment rooms, steam, sauna and relaxation pool. From Yoga and Pilates to detox therapies and mental wellbeing, the fitness centre takes guests on a personalised journey, and the expert team are on hand to curate a 360’ programme. 

      While you cannot question the thoughtful design scheme and meaningful hospitality initiatives that the hotel shelters, the jury is out as to whether this is the most stylish hotel in Crete. Feel free to let us know your thoughts over on Twitter. Whether or not it deserves that bold status, there is no denying that its opening will take the destination’s luxury and gastronomy status up a rank or two. 

      Image credit: CAYO

      Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester to re-open in August

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester to re-open in August

      Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester, which will host MEET UP North on May 6, 2021, has sensibly decided to delay its reopening until August 28, allowing its team to put…

      Following the government announcement on June 23, which highlighted that the hospitality sector could re-open once more from July 4, The Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester started to work on its re-opening plan.

      The Manchester-based luxury hotel, which will host MEET UP North on May 6 2021, was among one of the first hotels in the UK to close its door to the public and offer its rooms to NHS key workers during the Covid-19 crisis. Having operated throughout the Covid-19 lockdown period due to hosting NHS professionals, the hotel has already had first-hand experience of operating under rigorous guidelines and processes in order to protect the NHS team and its own volunteers in the building. In a statement, the hotel said: “This has given us valuable insight to how to do things even more safely than we used to before the virus outbreak.

      In order to adapt its protocols to face the post-pandemic world, the hotel released a statement, which said: “Even though our doors are not officially open, members of our sales and commercial team have returned to the business and will be dealing with any guest enquiries as we head towards our re-opening date of the August 28.” 

      Within the statement, the hotel outlined some of its new health and safety measures, including increasing the frequency of sanitising all public areas and facilities, PPE, increased signage and contactless check-in.

      MEET UP North, which was forced to postpone this year due to the Covid-19 spread, will take place in Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester on May 6. To find out more about the event, and how to secure you tickets, click here.

      Main image credit: Stock Exchange Hotel

      Hotel Designs LIVE: ‘eco warrior’ Bill Bensley confirmed as headline speaker

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Hotel Designs LIVE: ‘eco warrior’ Bill Bensley confirmed as headline speaker

      Back by popular demand, following last months debut event, Hotel Designs LIVE, which will take place on October 13, has  announced the renowned ‘eco warrior’ Bill Bensley as its headline speaker…

      Last month, the industry gathered for Hotel Designs’ debut virtual conference, which broadcasted a series of debates and discussions.

      Following the positive response, highlighting how well the virtual event was received, Hotel Designs LIVE (part two) will welcome yet more internationally renowned designers, architects and hoteliers in order to start relevant conversations like no other.

      If you are designer, architect, hotelier or developer, click here to secure your complimentary virtual seat in the audience for Hotel Designs LIVE on October 13.

      The next edition of Hotel Designs LIVE, which takes place on October 13, will focus on sustainability, adding personality in public areas, reassuring the post-corona consumer and the revival of smart technology post-pandemic.

      Editor Hamish Kilburn, who will host the event, explains: “When we launched Hotel Designs LIVE as a meaningful way to keep the industry connected throughout lockdown, it was our mission to select engaging and thought-provoking topics that would resonate with our audience. The next Hotel Designs LIVE will look past the short-term issues and solutions that emerged during the pandemic, and will instead focus the editorial lens on wider topics, with sustainability expecting to dominate the general tone of the event. It is important to for us to continue discussing new ways to challenge conventional ideas in order to find sustainable, alternative methods when it comes to design and service – and who better to discuss this than the eco-warrior himself, Bill Bensley?”

      Affectionately known as the ‘Willy Wonka of Design’, Bensley is a dedicated eco-warrior and a highly qualified jack of all trades – gardener, fisherman, architect, interior designer, lover of all things natural, and most of all, a wide-ranging explorer of as many corners of the earth as he can. Most recently, he made headlines for unveiling his plans to design a human zoo after publishing his white-paper on sensible sustainable solutions.

      Sustainability is at the core of everything I create as a designer.” – Bill Bensley.

      When interviewed by Hotel Designs in 2018, the award-winning designer described himself in three words as: “serious, inquisitive and wacky”. Bringing all that energy to discuss innovative and sustainable solutions, Bensley will join Kilburn on the virtual stage to explore how design, architecture and hospitality can coincide with nature. “Sustainability is at the core of everything I create as a designer,” Bensley told Hotel Designs. “I am simply ecstatic to join Hamish Kilburn for Hotel Designs LIVE where we will talk about how, as an industry, it is essential for us to work together to design hotels with meaning, and rework conventional ideas and methods in the process – all to create a more profound and considerate international hotel design landscape that puts nature first.”

      Hotel Designs LIVE takes place virtually on October 13. Bensley is first speaker of the event who has been announced, with the full panel being unveiled next week.

      If you are a designer, architect, hotelier  or developer and would like to find out more about Hotel Designs LIVE, or book on to any or all of the above sessions, you can do so by visiting the event page.

      If you are a supplier to the hotel design industry and would like to promote your latest product or services to the Hotel Designs LIVE audience, please contact Katy Phillips via email or call +44 (0)1992 374050.

      IN PICTURES: inside Bellonias Villas, Santorini

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      IN PICTURES: inside Bellonias Villas, Santorini

      With Greece becoming a popular go-to destination post-lockdown, Hotel Designs explores the interior design story of Bellonias Villas in Santorini, created by Greek firms K Studio and Interni by Moda Bagno…

      Natural, simple elegance is at the heart of Bellonias Villas, which is made up of 26 beach suites scattered alongside the black volcanic Kamari beach, on the east coast of the island of Santorini overlooking the mountain of ancient Thira.

      This boutique hotel is also home to Elia Restaurant, a pool-side cocktail bar, and its own private stretch of beach, making it the ideal choice for couples and families who seek stylish, unpretentious luxury and beachside relaxation in a peaceful part of Santorini.

      This is a contemporary project that conveys the passion and creativity of the local owners, in combination with the innovative & fresh thinking of up-and-coming Greek architects & artists. The exterior bar, pool area, restaurant and reception were designed by Athens-based design gurus K Studio. Interiors are by Greek company Interni by ModaBagno. Drawing inspiration from the unique landscape of Santorini, the designed environment is composed of natural materials such as wood and stone, with a contemporary aesthetic.  

      Stylish white interior suite overlooking the sea

      Image credit: Bellonias Villas

      The hotel’s beach suites reflect this philosophy of modern elegance paired with the traditional beauty of simplicity. Pressed cement floors and built-in beds and sofas are complemented by selected designer pieces and artistic details adding flashes of colour to a largely monochrome backdrop. This fusion of traditional Cycladic elements with a modern design concept creates a sophisticated environment with a warm, natural feel. 

      The 26 suites come in a variety of shapes and sizes including: 

      The honeymoon suite

      Image credit: Bellonias Villas

      Located on the upper level of the hotel, framing direct sea views from its balcony and its private outdoor hot tub is The Honeymoon Suite. An indoor staircase separates the upper level bedroom from the lower level, which features a spacious bathroom, a fully equipped kitchenette and a living area for lounging. 

      Superior Sea View Suite

      Image credit: Bellonias Villas

      These suites offer direct sea views from a furnished balcony or terrace, and sleep two adults in an airy open plan space, with double bed, a fully equipped kitchenette and bathroom. Sea View Suites are located either on the upper level or on the ground floor. 

      Apartment Suite

      Image credit: Bellonias Villas

      Apartment suites, expected to be in popular demand post-pandemic, have a furnished garden view terrace or balcony, and come in a variety of sizes, comfortably accommodating up to five people – perfect for families. There is one bedroom, plus a separate living space that can become a second sleeping area if required. A fully equipped kitchenette with dining area and bathroom complete the apartment.

      Studio Suite

      Small but perfectly formed, the Studio Suites sleep two adults in a double or twin beds, with furnished garden view balcony or terrace, fully equipped kitchenette and bathroom. 

      Elia Restaurant

      Image credit: Bellonias Villas

      With an inspiring open air setting, and delicious food by award-winning Chef Christos Papageorgiou, Elia is one of the finest dining options in Santorini. Set between the seafront of Kamari beach and the hotel’s chic pool area, the restaurant has a stylish yet unpretentious ambiance and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

      Within the hotel, a wellness area includes whirlpool tub, gym, steam, sauna and treatment room is available for guests to book on request. 

      A note from the editor: If the industry has learned anything during its forced hibernation over the last few months, it’s that simplicity and authenticity is going to be a significant demand for consumers checking into the post-pandemic world. Stripping interiors to reveal a minimalist design, exposing the architecture of a building, and injecting personality into private and public areas with interesting lighting concepts, and stylish art and the use of meaningful colour – much like what Bellonias Villas does so effortlessly – is going to be 

      Main image credit: Bellonias Villas

      FEATURE: inside Hilton Garden Inn at Heathrow airport’s £4.2m renovation

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      FEATURE: inside Hilton Garden Inn at Heathrow airport’s £4.2m renovation

      For optimists, the timing couldn’t be better for Hilton Garden Inn Heathrow Airport Hotel to unveil the result of its £4.2m renovation, which now shelters new guestrooms, meeting areas and a few Covid-friendly adaptations. Editor Hamish Kilburn takes a look inside…

      Following a number of openings and completed projects that have emerged since lockdown, I, like many, am feeling optimistic about the future of hospitality post-pandemic.

      The latest significant project that has opened its doors following an extensive renovation is Hilton Garden Inn London Heathroom Airport Hotel – and I am pleasantly surprised by the attention to detail in the design scheme as I step inside to have a look round.

      Although Hilton Garden Inn sits below some of the more desirable brands in the Hilton cluster, the hotel is fit for purpose – it is positioned steps from Hatton Cross Station, and offers easy access to all terminals at Heathrow Airport. What’s more, the newly refurbished hotel, which is the brainchild of Swedish design team DOOS, is warm, comfortable and even knocks on the door of luxury. 

      Image credit: Hilton Hotels

      As part of the £4.2 million renovation, all guestrooms have been refurbished, with 205 undergoing a light refurbishment and 159 undergoing a full refurbishment and upgrade to Deluxe King Rooms. Additional areas of focus include the reception, restaurant, bar, and gym. Four innovatively designed meeting rooms within the pavilion conferencing area in the gardens of the property have also been completely renovated. Further enhancements to the MICE offering include the creation of three additional meeting rooms within the main building and the renovation of a further three meeting rooms, creating a total of 10 bespoke meeting areas. 

      Each guestroom boasts the brand’s signature bedding featuring fresh, white duvets and crisp linens creating the perfect balance between comfort and support.  All bedrooms are fitted with optimum design elements to create a restful stay with stylish headboards, sophisticated lighting fixtures that fill the open space and soft furnishings. The theme is maintained through the upgraded Deluxe King Rooms which offer a larger en-suite bathroom and more luxurious settings, with additional plush sofa and unique lounge design features. The new bathrooms have been completely renovated and now feature large walk-in showers and modern, spacious vanity countertops.

      A total of 10 new and newly refurbished meeting and conference rooms have been added to the hotel’s offering. Three brand new distinctive meeting rooms are available in the hotel’s main event space, with the existing three rooms boasting full renovations. The refurbishment continues through the outdoor Pavilion event space located in the gardens of the hotel, where four modern and professional rooms with their own personalities have been created. With these built-for-purpose event amenities, Hilton’s professional spaces offer slick technology, modern menus and expert planners and service teams who are on hand to help guests create special and memorable experiences for up to 300 people. A new shop area has also been completed offering grab & go food, freshly brewed Piacetto coffee, refreshing cold drinks and convenient amenity travel items.

      In-house guests at Hilton Garden Inn Heathrow Airport will find greater convenience and more personalised experiences with Hilton’s refurbished health and wellness facilities, including a light and spacious purpose-built gym with state of art cardio and strength equipment by Technogym including the new high-intensity Technogym Bike where you can join interactive live spin classes from One Rebel studios in London.

      In response to the impact of Covid-19, the property has responded by implementing key protocols relating to cleanliness and hygiene. This has been done with the protection of customers, employees and collaborators in mind. The hotel is the first in the UK to receive the Certificate of Assurance from Bureau Veritas for its measures in response to Covid-19 prevention, as well as being a part of the rigorous Hilton CleanStay programme.

      Owned by Pandox AB, Hilton Garden Inn London Heathrow Airport offers amenities including complimentary WiFi throughout the hotel, a 24-hour business centre, a state-of-the-art fitness centre, full cooked-to-order breakfast, craft cocktails and shareable plates for dinner, that appeal to those travelling for business or leisure.

      Main image credit: Hilton Hotels

      PRODUCT WATCH: Crogiolio tiles by Casa Ceramica

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Crogiolio tiles by Casa Ceramica

      Crogiolio by Casa Ceramica is a series consisting of small-sized ceramics and stoneware tiles, with multiple identities…

      Crogiolio is a collection of seven; ‘Lume, Zellige, Scenario, D_Segni Blend, D_Segni Scaglie, D_Segni Colore and D_Segni’, that together interprets the craftsmanship and manual skills of traditional potters.

      This caters for contemporary taste, while retaining their uniqueness. A collective of versatile and distinctive products that incorporate ideas and impressions from past times. This collective reproduces the look and feel of tiles made by hand: inspired by the flaws typical of crafted ceramics. Carefully graduated colours create intense, constantly changing, hues. Perfect for intimate, comfortable and authentic interior design schemes.

      The glossiest of glazes, vibrant textures and colours. Irregular brush-strokes and old-fashioned decorative motifs: “what looks genuinely handmade is actually the product of a sophisticated technology.” This genetic make-up is shared by all the latest additions to the Crogiolo collection, with different stylistic inputs but the same narrative strength: D_Segni Blend, Scenario, Lume and Zellige. Light and carefully calculated imperfection are the key to Lume and Zellige. This porcelain stoneware series was created through leading-edge research into ultra-glossy glazes.

      Lume reinterprets the irregular beauty of hand-made majolica tiles, in the unusual 6×24 cm size. Using subtle variations in; hue, density of colour (in 6 shades), and variations in patterning, it makes every module unique and generates variegated compositions for installation with narrow joints.

      Zellige, on the other hand, is the 10×10 cm version of the traditional, exceptionally glossy, Moroccan glazed terracotta tiles. Its irregular edges, textures and colours (12) create the perfect replication of an exotic, hand-crafted product.

      Strong graphic motifs and geometric patterns make up the identity of Scenario. A 20×20 cm stoneware with a “brush-stroke” effect inspired by the Marazzi collection of the same name, created by painter and potter Venerio Martini in 1958. The uneven application of the colour recalls the hand-decoration process in used at the time. There are two surface variants: Semi Matt in three colours, suitable for the floors and walls of residential and light commercial locations, and Ultra-Glossy in five colours with a Mediterranean flavour.

      The new StepWise technology is central to D_Segni Blend. The collection of porcelain stoneware cement tiles in the 20×20 cm and 10×10 cm sizes are produced with latest-generation glazes. This provides a super-matt surface combined with a wealth of colour, in more than 40 pattern varieties and multiple tones of the same shade. All of D_Segni is enhanced by the ornamental exuberance of the mix decors, with 16 different motifs. All six colours in the range offer outstanding anti-slip performances, with no reduction in the soft surface “feel”. The resulting product is both; poetic, high-tech and, like all the other Crogiolo collection series, has a special ability to bring tradition into contemporary architecture.

      Casa Ceramica 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: Casa Ceramica

      Marriott International opens 800th property in Asia Pacific

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Marriott International opens 800th property in Asia Pacific

      A milestone opening underscores the continued development of the Marriott International portfolio in Asia Pacific with brand debuts expected across the region throughout 2020…

      Months after claiming to open more than 30 luxury properties in 2020, Marriott International has announced the opening of its 800th property in Asia Pacific, the JW Marriott Nara, marking the brand’s the entry into Japan.

      The company also expects the EDITION and Aloft brands to debut in Japan before the end of the year. Across the Asia Pacific region throughout 2020, the Moxy brand anticipates its first hotel opening in China.

      “We are encouraged by recent trends, especially in China, where demand has been driven primarily by domestic tourism.” – Craig S. Smith, Group President, Asia Pacific for Marriott International

      “We remain confident in the resilience of travel, our owners and franchisees, guests and associates as well as the future prospects of lodging in Asia Pacific, our second largest market, ” said Craig S. Smith, Group President, Asia Pacific for Marriott International. “We are encouraged by recent trends, especially in China, where demand has been driven primarily by domestic tourism, and we will continue to focus on strengthening our footprint in this important, growing market.”

      The group in Asia Pacific has, on average, added close to 80 hotels per year in the last three years, with its pipeline growing by nearly 10 percent annually over the same time period. In the first half of 2020 alone, the company recorded 73 new signings, including 43 in the Greater China region.

      “These highly anticipated brand debuts are a testament to the confidence that the owner and franchisee community has in Asia Pacific, as well as Marriott International’s long-term vision, especially in today’s challenging business climate,” said Paul Foskey, Chief Development Officer, Marriott International, Asia Pacific. “Our owners and franchisees trust and choose Marriott International because of our overall reputation for product quality, our powerful and differentiated portfolio of brands, our Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program with more than 142 million global members, and our proven track record of operational excellence.”

      In the last three years, the hotel group in Asia Pacific saw a 20 per cent increase in the number of conversion hotels added to the portfolio on an annual basis. Conversions allow owners and franchisees to plug into the Marriott system at a quicker pace compared to opening a new build hotel. This year, the company signed Singapore’s first two Autograph Collection hotels – Marriott International’s dynamic collection of independent hotels that champions individuality – both anticipated to fly the Autograph Collection brand flag in 2021.

      With six billion domestic trips made to China in 2019 alone, largely attributed to a rise in average disposable income, demand for brands positioned at a moderate price-point has gained momentum among both travellers and hotel owners. To meet this growing demand and support franchisees, the group has introduced an “Enhanced Franchise” model. Under this model, Marriott will appoint a general manager for the first year of a hotel’s opening to help train and equip franchisees to leverage Marriott’s powerful systems.

      Marriott International recently debuted the AC Hotels by Marriott brand in Asia Pacific with three AC by Marriott hotels in Malaysia earlier this year and the AC Hotels Tokyo Ginza earlier this month. AC Hotels by Marriott celebrates the beauty of modern design with its European soul and Spanish roots with hotels that are intuitively designed. Also in Japan and situated on the edge of a 1,300-year-old garden set on former royal palace grounds, the 158-room JW Marriott Nara is the first offering from the JW Marriott brand in the country. Additionally, expected to open by the end of this year, the EDITION Toranomon in Tokyo is slated to be the brand’s debut in the country.

      With millennials expected to return to travel first, the anticipated opening of the Moxy Shanghai Xujiahui this year is expected to be an ideal addition to the vibrant cosmopolitan city. The millennial-focused Moxy brand features lively public spaces, minimalist design elements and rooms fitted with custom furniture that offers a playful style of traveling.

      Note from the editor: while milestones like these should be celebrated as exceptional achievements, it’s also worth understanding that, as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak, the demand for hotel development, hospitality and tourism in this region specifically is expected to suffer. It is therefore my hope that familiar hotel brands, like the ones that Marriott International shelters, will re-engage with the modern traveller, giving them much needed assurance to explore destinations beyond their reach once more in the post-pandemic world.

      Main image credit: Marriott International

      Morris & Co. collaborates with architectural designer Ben Pentreath for AW20 collection

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Morris & Co. collaborates with architectural designer Ben Pentreath for AW20 collection

      Ben Pentreath, renowned architectural and interior designer, collaborates with Morris & Co. to create a joyous collection of colour and iconic pattern, new for AW20. Hotel Designs explores…

      Ben Pentreath’s Queen Square collection for Morris & Co. is the result of a seamless meeting of minds between an iconic brand and one of the country’s most sought after interior designers.

      The latest collection, which was named after the street that sheltered the Morris & Co factory and showroom, features designs across 18 fabrics and 18 wallpapers and creates nostalgic familiarity.

      “It was a wonderful experience to be let loose in the Morris & Co.” – Ben Pentreath, architectural and interior designer.

      Now, more than ever, the world is in a reflective mood, finding pleasure in the simple things; an ethos shared by William Morris, who designed from a place of appreciation and understanding. With a love of the English countryside and the beauty that surrounds us, this collection showcases the longevity of expertly crafted design, filling our hopes and hearts with positivity.

      “I’ve always loved the designs of William Morris, and we’ve used his superb, timeless papers and fabrics in many of our decoration projects over the years,” said Pentreath. “So it was a wonderful experience to be let loose in the Morris & Co. archive: we’ve taken many original patterns, and recoloured them in a palette of my favourite colours, to cast his designs in a completely new light.”

      Claire Vallis, creative director at Morris & Co. adds: “Working with Ben has been the most wonderful experience – his knowledge and clear vision have been instrumental in how we’ve used the products. Combining our passions to create his vision has been phenomenal, and seeing patterns that we know so well in a completely different light is incredibly exciting. We’re delighted with how joyful this collection is.”

      Preserving the integrity of Morris’s production methods has been paramount throughout this collection, with all 18 wallpapers surface printed on paper to retain their original look and feel. Similarly cotton/linen cloths provide the closest match to archival Morris & Co. design books, with each design screen printed for an unrivalled intensity of colour.

      Queen Square will be styled exclusively by Ben at his stunning Dorset home, with photography featuring in the collection’s design books. Revival designs such as Blackthorn and Daffodil appear alongside the much- loved Willow Bough wallpaper and the favourite scrolling frescos of Bachelor’s Button fabric and wallpaper. Saturated colours exult at the wonder of life, leaning towards an altogether brighter future and the enduring legacy of exceptional design.

      Morris & Co. 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: Morris & Co.

      Hotel Designs updates in-house event calendar

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Hotel Designs updates in-house event calendar

      In the wake of pandemic, Hotel Designs has made a few amendments to this year’s in-house event calendar. Editor Hamish Kilburn explains…

      The internal whole team at Hotel Designs and Forum Events have been working tireless, reacting to the latest government guidelines, in order to organise premium networking events that are safe and effective for designers, hoteliers, architects, developers and key-industry suppliers.

      Ahead of officially opening nominations for The Brit List Awards 2020, here’s some clarification around the latest amendments to this year’s in-house events.

      Hotel Designs LIVE | October 13, 2020 | Virtual event

      The next Hotel Designs LIVE will take place on October 13 (more details on the line-up and how to participate coming soon).

      In order to continue to create conversations like no other, Hotel Designs has launched Hotel Designs LIVE, a one-day virtual conference to serve the industry during the Covid-19 crisis.  

      In addition to the live seminar sessions – and to ensure that the event is bridging the gap between hospitality suppliers and designers, architects, hoteliers and developers – the conference also included structured ‘PRODUCT WATCH’ pitches around each session, allowing suppliers the opportunity to pitch their products and services in a ‘live’ environment to the hospitality buyers that are tuned in.

      The inaugural Hotel Designs LIVE, which took place online on June 23, defined the point on international hotel design’s most relevant topics with the help of some of design, architecture and hospitality’s leading figures as well as identifying the latest product innovations on the market.

      #HotelDesignsLIVE

      The Brit List Awards 2020 | November 12, 2020 | Virtual event

      The Brit List Awards is back for another year to identify the leading interiors designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers operating in Britain.

      Following last year’s spectacular event, the nationwide search to find Britain’s leading interior designers, hoteliers and architects has begun.

      Unlike previous years, due to the outbreak of Covid-19, The Brit List Awards 2020 will take place as a virtual event on November 12, with a live winners’ party (MEET UP London) scheduled for January 28 2021 at Minotti London.

      Simply click here to apply/nominate free of charge for The Brit List Awards 2020.

      Sponsors:

      #TheBritListAwards2020

      MEET UP London/The Brit List Winners’ Party | January 28, 2021 | Minotti London

      For Hotel Designs’ first live networking event staged since lockdown, The Brit List Awards 2020 is gatecrashing MEET UP London.

      Sheltered safely inside Minotti London’s premium and spacious Fitzrovia showroom, MEET UP London will welcome the shortlisted finalists and winners of The Brit List Awards 2020. As well as celebrating Britain as a design and hospitality hub, the event will be themed ‘Inspiring Creativity’. To aptly mark this, Hotel Designs has invited an award-winning sound designer and functional music innovation Tom Middleton and award-winning research entrepreneur Ari Peralta to become headline speakers at the event. 

      Applying principles of neuroscience, behaviour and psychology, the visionaries will respond to MEET UP London’s theme by immersing our audience into a sensory experience like no other before. This will be followed by an engaging talk discussing how and why sound should be considered when designing the hotel of the future. From Jet Lag to Mindfulness solutions, their unique collaboration represents the synergy and creativity needed to future-proof hospitality.

      MEET UP North | May 6 | Stock Exchange Hotel, Manchester

      In response to the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic, MEET UP North has been forced to postpone its plans until next year. The event, which is Hotel Designs’ leading networking evening in the north, will return to Stock Exchange Hotel in Manchester on May 6, 2021.

      Considering the vast amount of hotel projects currently on the boards in the north – many of which are slated to complete and open this year – the theme of MEET UP North will be Manchester On The Boards. The city, which has hosted the concept since its launch in 2018, will once again welcome leading designers, architects, hoteliers, developers and suppliers for the industry’s leading networking event in the north.

      Sponsors:

      If you would like to sponsor any of our upcoming events, please email Katy Phillips, or call +44 (0) 1992 374050. 

      In Conversation With: Penta Hotels’ new MD, Rogier Braakman

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      In Conversation With: Penta Hotels’ new MD, Rogier Braakman

      In February 2020, weeks before the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared a pandemic, the new Managing Director of Penta Hotels Worldwide was announced. Following what we can only imagine was a turbulent start to his role, Editor Hamish Kilburn catches up with Rogier Braakman to understand his plans for the lifestyle hotel group…

      It’s hard to recall that a few months ago, before the words ‘furlough’ and ‘pandemic’ were being splashed across the daily news channels, the industry as a whole was feeling rather optimistic about 2020. New colour trends were being predicted, hotel groups were expanding, and, in February 2020, the news broke that Rogier Braakman would take over from Eugène Staal to become Managing Director of Penta Hotels Worldwide, marking a new era for the group. 

      As regions were seeing record-breaking levels of development, Covid-19 sent its shockwave through all industries – arguably hitting hospitality the hardest – which decimated sales and marketing strategies as businesses went into survival mode. “It is the biggest burden of every business owner being forced to suspend operations for an undefined time,” explained Braakman in a press release that was released at the time. “Since opening, we have operated our hotels 24/7, 365 days a year, and hadn’t had to close for a single day. Yet, instead of carrying out our initial plans, we have been working around the clock to temporarily suspend operations in many hotels, restructure our processes and ask for many intense sacrifices from all team members and stakeholders. Despite all this, we have been putting a lot of effort in bringing in new innovations and improving our product throughout all hotels.”

      Following the lockdown, and after what can only be described as one of the most challenging months for all hoteliers, I sat down with Braakman (virtually) to understand more about his role.

      Hamish Kilburn: Where were you self-isolating during the Covid-19 pandemic?

      RB: I make a weekly commute between our family home in the Dutch forest and our Frankfurt Penta office, always adhering strictly to all Covid-19 regulations. I feel privileged to be able to enjoy my family life and the positively contagious Penta-spirit!

      Image caption: The lounge inside Pentahotel Berlin

      Image caption: The lounge inside Pentahotel Berlin | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      “But what sets us apart from other lifestyle brands is that our ‘neighbourhood’ promise extends to the wider community and environment, which we have committed to protecting through various initiatives and our goal of being carbon neutral by 2030.” – Rogier Braakman, Managing Director, Penta Hotels.

      Hamish Kilburn: What makes Penta Hotels a unique lifestyle hotel brand?

      RB: Penta Hotels are characterised by our lively neighbourhood brand that emits a happy camper ambience. The positive attitude of our staff and our unique interior design makes us a model host. We have created a comfortable environment for our guests with a relaxed atmosphere centered around our buzzing Penta Lounges in every hotel, which function on a 24/7 basis where all our guests’ needs are catered for in one space. But what sets us apart from other lifestyle brands is that our ‘neighbourhood’ promise extends to the wider community and environment, which we have committed to protecting through various initiatives and our goal of being carbon neutral by 2030. In keeping with the Penta spirit, we don’t ever do single acts of charity, but instead offer ways that our guests can take part in giving back so that they too can feel a part of our community. However, lately we have had the tendency of exchanging the word ‘lifestyle’ more and more with the word ‘lively’, which we believe nowadays is more spot on.

      Hamish Kilburn: Can you explain a little bit about Penta Hotels’ plans for expansion?

      RB: Our focus is to grow our brand in prime locations in secondary cities or secondary locations in primary cities across Europe. Expansion should arise as a result of our strategy, rather than the other way around.

      Image caption: Suite inside Pentahotel Moscow | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      Image caption: Suite inside Pentahotel Moscow | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      Hamish Kilburn: You mention that lockdown has allowed you to look at new innovations and improving your product throughout all hotels. Can you elaborate on this?

      RB: With the pandemic we’ve had to adapt quickly to the new normal, or as I heard an entrepreneur recently say, a ‘temporary abnormal’. In just over a month, we managed to think up and execute our Between Us campaign, based on the notion that although Covid-19 has forced more physical distance between us, it can be seen as an opportunity for bonding and creating solidarity between people. Through this campaign we are allowing our guests to feel comfortable, safe, but also have fun with social distancing. It includes the VIP Rock Star Service where we’ve mapped out routes guests can take around the hotel and Penta Lounges that limit interaction with others, cashless payments, and introduced excellent hygiene training for our staff members that includes no housekeeping, but also exciting perks like free Take Care package on entry, and free bag of snacks every morning at your door.

      The campaign sets us apart from our competitors because it shows we are seizing the pandemic as an opportunity to learn how to better accommodate our guests, by finding new ways to create a safe and comfortable space. So far, guest feedback has been really positive.

      Image caption: Meeting room inside Penta Hotel Paris | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      Hamish Kilburn: What advice would you give the rest of the hospitality industry at this time?

      RB: Unfortunately, COVID-19 is a predator and it will stay around for a while, so we are having to take a real ‘don’t crack under pressure’ attitude as we adapt to new circumstances. In order to do this, we have to stay strong and try our best to turn this crisis into a success by playing to our strengths, as well as recognising which things weren’t working well even before the crisis. Our strengths have always been a positive attitude and creative approach, and we are making sure to always be direct with each other, not beat around the bush, and take immediate actions to make our hotels safe.

      Hamish Kilburn: How will lifestyle hotels, which typically focus heavily on utilising public areas, differ post-pandemic?

      RB: This predator is going to remain for a long time – so we’re going to need to work with it. We have revisited our business operations and figured out how best to safely and securely reopen, and although we do not want our hotels to serve as extended intensive care units, we need to make sure that all hygienic measures are in place and that people feel safe. Luckily, we don’t have small lobbies and most of our Pentalounges are extensive spaces in which we’ve been able to encourage social distancing with our Between Us campaign, by mapping out distanced routes and introducing cashless payments.

      We do not want our brand standards to vaporise due to all these extra precautions, so we had to redefine our new operating standards within the ‘temporary abnormal’. This means taking serious precautions that alter the Penta experience, including no more housekeeping, and training our staff on additional hygiene procedures. For example, when you check in, you’re given a ‘Take Care’ bag from Penta, and we’ve even made our own ‘Penta Pointer’ which is similar to a keyring that can be used to open all access points within the hotel, therefore reducing the risk of being contaminated. We’re also doing trials with heat cams to see how our guests are responding, and introduced the Penta Hotel app, which isn’t fully in place yet, but it means everyone can check in from home using their own device, or even chat to our reception team.

      Image caption: Fitness area inside Pentahotel Leipzig | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      Hamish Kilburn: What does lifestyle in ‘lifestyle hotel’ mean to you?

      RB: A lifestyle hotel means ensuring all our guests are happy campers, and however brief or extended their stay, they are made to feel part of our community. Instead of custom reception areas we have created social spaces in every hotel called the Penta Lounge, areas with 24/7 service where guests can check in, but also chill out, do some work or play on our games consoles. At our hotels, there is always an initiative that guests can take part in that benefits the wider community and environment, and our social staff members are always willing to engage with any problem a guest has

      Hamish Kilburn: What do you love most about the hospitality industry?

      RB: What I love best about hospitality is working with people, and I was drawn to Penta because it is an appealing and distinctive hotel brand centered around people, with a buzzing community spirit. I believe success comes from guest satisfaction and high-quality service, which is only possible when you have a team of brilliant staff members that communicate well with one another and our guests. I share Penta’s vision for a modern approach to hoteliering, where giving back to the community and providing a relaxed, neighbourhood feel is at the centre of its brand. Penta has had a rocky climb in the last year or so but our positive staff with their can-do attitude, have really helped with recent difficulties. Their team spirit and desire to truly make Penta a success has made me feel extremely supported and inspired my confidence that we will continue to succeed in the future.

      Image caption: The lounge inside Pentahotel Moscow | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      Image caption: The lounge inside Pentahotel Moscow | Image credit: Penta Hotels

      Hamish Kilburn: Can you explain Penta Hotels in three words?

      RB: Relaxed, positive, friendly

      Hamish Kilburn: If money or development were not obstacles, where in the world would you like to open a hotel?

      RB: Every self-conscious city with a sustainable, interesting and appealing backcountry deserves a Pentahotel.

      Penta Hotels, which has 28 operating properties across Europe and Asia, represents a new generation of neighbourhood lifestyle hotels offering modern-minded individuals and business travellers comfort and style in a relaxed atmosphere. Known for its unique interior design and attitude, the lifestyle brand stands for true innovation in the industry’s upper- midscale segment.

      Main image credit: Penta Hotels Worldwide

      “The bathroom is a sanctuary in times of stress”

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      “The bathroom is a sanctuary in times of stress”

      Bathroom solutions from Kaldewei create wellness oases for your home-from-home interiors…

      People are currently spending a lot of time within their own four walls – what with working from home, childcare and other daily duties, we often have little room for relaxation and soothing moments.

      At times like these it is the bathroom that is the best space for calm, retreat and silence, where we can recharge our batteries. As a manufacturer of premium bathrooms Kaldewei sees itself not only as a lover of design but also as a source of inspiration for a relaxed wellness areas. With the perfectly coordinated design combination of Miena washbasin bowl, Meisterstück Conoduo bathtub and Conoflat shower, the bathroom is transformed into a stylish place for regeneration.

      Treat your senses with the Meisterstück Conoduo

      The Meisterstück Conoduo forms the basis of a soothing bathroom. This bathtub is key with its sophisticated design and impeccable aesthetic: architectural, geometric and seamless. For the perfect bathing experience, the Sound Wave bathtub audio system is available on request. This system turns the bathtub into an elegant sounding body. With a smartphone, laptop or tablet, you can enjoy your music collection via Bluetooth in a completely new way. Now all you have to do is lean back and relax – comfortably propped up, perhaps, with a Kaldewei bath cushion that moulds itself perfectly to your neck. with, a valve that allows you to adjust it to your required level of cushioning at will.

      Image caption: The Meisterstück Conoduo | Image credit: Kaldewei

      Floor-level Conoflat shower rounds off design concept

      For superb comfort with no compromises, Kaldewei also offers accessible solutions that are a must in the modern bathroom. Thanks to the ingenious design concept, the floor-level Conoflat shower is the perfect visual complement to the tasteful Conoduo bathtub, it provides an extremely flat design with no tripping hazards. The enamelled waste cover integrates smoothly into the floor-level surface of the shower. This delightful feast for the eyes in your own bathroom is completed by the Miena washbasin bowls. Delicate, fine-edged, in gorgeous colours and in minimalist design, the venerable company’s classic product line fits perfectly into the coordinated concept for wellbeing in the bathroom.

      Sustainable, hygienic and long-lasting: Kaldewei steel enamel

      Hygiene is particularly important in times like these – especially in the bathroom. As with all of its high-quality products, Kaldewei also uses its unique material – Kaldewei steel enamel – for this bathroom concept. The non-porous vitreous surface guarantees hygiene and ultra-easy cleaning. When you wash your hands, dirt and germs are simply rinsed away with the water – no tiresome wiping and cleaning required. In addition the material is exceptionally robust so it can’t be damaged by cosmetics or cleaning agents. A further plus for steel enamel: it is 100 % recyclable. In other words, this elegant combination of steel and glass not only looks fabulous but also allows you to do your bit towards resource conservation.

      Kaldewei is one of Hotel Designs’ 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 caption: Miena washbasin bowls, Meisterstück Conoduo bathtub and Conoflat shower | Main image credit: Kaldewei

      Nobu to open debut hotel in Africa

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Nobu to open debut hotel in Africa

      Global lifestyle brand Nobu Hospitality, founded by Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper, has announced it will open its first hotel in Africa in 2021…

      Where rich heritage meets Nobu Hospitality’s contemporary flair, Nobu Hotel Marrakech will be located in the Hivernage district, steps from the historic heart of the city, souks and vibrant Djemaa el-Fna.

      Transformed into a luxury lifestyle destination, the hotel will house 71 spacious guest rooms and suites, a selection of dynamic dining venues and rooftop spaces, a 2,000 sq. ft luxurious spa and fitness centre, indoor and outdoor swimming pools and meeting and event space.

      King Mohammed VI’s “Tourism Development Strategy Vision 2020” plan has been the driving force at encouraging foreign investment in Morocco’s tourism sector.  His Majesty has outlined great vision and Nobu is pleased to be entering the market at this exciting time.

      Ahmed Bennani, President Hivernage Collection said, ‘The partnership with Nobu Hospitality with the launch of the Nobu Hotel and Restaurant Marrakech will enable our existing Pearl Hotel to be taken to next level. It is further significant, as the launch in Marrakech will be the first Nobu Hotel in Africa. Marrakech as a destination fits seamlessly within the Nobu Hotel collection and we expect it will be embraced by locals and the strong base of European and US Nobu customers.’   Daniel Shamoon, Director MC Hotels comments, “We are very pleased that Marrakech will become a part of our growing collection of Nobu Hotels joining Marbella and Ibiza Bay. In a time when our global society and economies are fragile, we maintain our continued belief and commitment to hospitality.”

      Trevor Horwell, Chief Executive Officer Nobu Hospitality comments, “We are excited to be working with Ahmed Bennani and his Hermitage Collection, and again with Daniel Shamoon and MC Hotels on this exciting project.  An increasing number of hotel owners today want to maintain the integrity of their properties, whilst having an appetite to work with us to enable complete differentiation, revenue advantage, and leveraging our food and beverage prowess.  The global health and economic crisis have underscored this, and with Nobu’s strong appeal to the local market as well as the international traveller, we are pleased to provide such advantage.”

      Bathroom inspiration: 400 colours by Bette to choose from

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Bathroom inspiration: 400 colours by Bette to choose from

      German bathroom manufacturer Bette offers its baths, shower trays and basins in more than 400 colours – and also creates bespoke colours for large projects…

      Bathroom brand Bette can create its baths, shower trays and washbasins in more than 400 colours because of the way its products are made.

      Each item is individually manufactured in titanium-steel, before its durable BetteGlaze enamel finish is applied and fired. Bette mixes colour pigments into the BetteGlaze enamel finish, prior to application, which is why such a huge range of colours, including gloss, matt, shimmering and glittering options, are available.

      Bette’s unique finish not only allows more than 400 colour options, but the glazed titanium-steel results in products that keep their good looks for many years, are easy to clean, 100 per cent recyclable and come with a 30 year warranty, making them ideal for both contract and residential projects.

      22 matt colours

      Some of Bette’s most popular colours are its 22 exclusive matt options. These colours are often selected for Bette’s flush-to-floor shower trays, as well as its baths and basins. The colours take their inspiration from natural stone colours, and also include matt white.

      Bespoke colours

      In addition, if customers working on large projects require a specific colour that Bette does not currently produce, the company offers the option of creating a bespoke colour.

      Bette’s approach to colour

      Sven Rensinghoff, head of marketing at Bette comments: “Our glazed titanium-steel baths, basins and shower trays can be given attractive visual depth through the colour selection. Our goal is to not only use colour as a decorative element, but to support the spatial effect of our products.

      “Coloured products can provide eye-catching dashes of colour, for example, the spotlight can be put on the washing area by selecting the round BetteCraft washbasin in luminous green or a soft shade of blue. Eye-catching special effect colours, such as our Midnight black glitter colour, or the ever-changing Forest colour, can create impact and visual interest that changes as the lighting alters.

      “In addition to innovative and eye-catching colours, Bette also offers a wide range of timeless, discreet shades including pastels, earth and stone colours and matt options. These can help to radiate a calming effect and convey a natural cosiness and are some of our most popular colours. For example, more than 40 per cent of Bette customers currently choose timeless, natural, matt colours for their Bette glazed titanium-steel shower floors.”

      Bette 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: Bette

      INDUSTRY INSIGHT: sustainable art in hotels

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      INDUSTRY INSIGHT: sustainable art in hotels

      Driving the industry to search for and specify sustainable art, Artelier explores sustainable artwork in luxury contexts…

      The drive for sustainability has grown tremendously in the last few years, with individuals and businesses alike becoming committed to sustainable values.

      The drive for sustainability has grown tremendously in the last few years, with individuals and businesses alike becoming committed to sustainable values. What once was more of a fashionable trend has rightly become a major cross-sector movement, and increasingly diverse industries are promoting eco-conscious practices. Most importantly, consumers are holding companies accountable for their claims, and want them to do more than swap out plastic straws or reuse cups. This has led to a push for innovative new concepts, uses of materials, and structural changes, so that the needs of projects are met in a significantly more sustainable way.

      Within sectors such as luxury hospitality, a major question has arisen over how to deliver the exquisite interior design that a discerning clientele have come to expect, whilst also being sustainable. Naturally, the two do not need to be mutually exclusive – much of cutting-edge luxury design now favours natural materials and a stripped-back simplicity, which lends itself to sustainable products. A key way of sustainably creating adding luxury to these spaces are intelligently curated artworks. Sustainable artworks can bridge the gap between creating a stunning aesthetic experience and promoting environmentally responsible design.

      As art consultants, Artelier have discovered first-hand how art can enhance and deepen a project’s focus on sustainability. Here, Artelier’s curators offer their insight into the dilemmas faced by luxury industries, and explore how inventive artists can create sustainable artworks by transforming humble materials into stunning installations.

      The dilemma of decorating sustainably

      After the architectural and engineering efforts in new-build projects, it is critical for the interior design to likewise be sustainable, whilst creating the right aesthetic impression. Few luxury items, however, can offer sustainability, since often they are made from materials like precious metals and rare marbles. Artworks are in themselves luxury items, and can meanwhile be produced with full sustainability in mind – artists can take basic and sustainable materials and through their craftsmanship make them luxury items. Rather than being a ‘token’ sustainable element, a newly commissioned artwork can reflect the owner’s own sustainable philosophy as each aspect of producing the artwork can be transparently low-impact.

      The idea of bespoke items and artworks has long been at the height of luxury, and so many private clients have supported artists through commissioning artworks. In their pursuit of the bespoke and one-off, patrons have championed low-volume craftsmanship for their willingness to pay for artworks to be hand-made specially for them. In recent years, technology has advanced so much that a similar visual effect can be achieved – eye-catching surfaces can be cost-effectively created by companies with faux metals, resins and plastics. Whilst they meet the tastes of clients and can be seductively beautiful objects, the materials used to create these effects are not sustainable. When private clients instead choose to invest in commissioned artworks, they not only receive an ultra-bespoke interior feature, but a significantly more sustainable option.

      Image credit: Artelier


      Natural materials

      While some contemporary artists actively use ancient craft techniques, more broadly many artists authentically engage with sustainability through using exclusively natural materials. Taking humble and widespread materials such as wood, they are able to creatively transform them into fine art. The artworks communicate the natural beauty of earth’s resources, and deeply connect viewers with the environment by making them experience nature in new and surprising ways.

      One such artist is Christian Burchard, who creates wood sculptures from a tree species native to the area surrounding his studio in Oregon, USA. His expressive carving creates poetic and dynamic sculptural compositions. He aims to show viewers the essence of the wood’s natural structures, allowing the material to ‘speak its own language’, rather than imposing onto it. Artelier commissioned a collection of Burchard’s work for superyacht Pelorus (115m). The client and the interior designer used a neutral palette within the interiors, as they wanted a pure and natural design that utilised organic materials. They approached Artelier for us to identify artists that were in tune with their own materials, and would contribute to the sustainable feel of the overall design.

      Artist Stuart Ian Frost’s creates site-specific installations from natural, and often foraged, raw materials. Each installation is created specially for its landscape, and Frost seeks to evoke the particularities of the individual environment. He draws inspiration from local geographical features and the raw materials themselves, but also often looks to incorporate the culture and architecture of the area. Like Burchard, Frost’s artworks seek to present nature in an unfamiliar, yet illuminating way, encouraging the viewer to challenge their own perceptions of the materials. His large-scale sculptures playfully incorporate pattern and organic shapes to transform the raw materials, giving them a newfound vitality. Meanwhile, his smaller scale artworks use foraged natural materials, such as bird quills, and represent them in expressive geometric designs.

      Found materials are also central to British multi-disciplinary artist Sir Richard Long, who uses basic materials like mud or rocks to create sculptures, paintings, and installations. In so doing, he pushes the boundaries of which materials are typically considered suitable for fine art. Many of his artworks are created while on walks in landscapes, a primordial engagement between man and earth, and are left to be reclaimed by nature. His gallery artworks likewise present a visceral engagement with natural resources, such as his paintings created from mud from the Riven Avon in England; Long uses his bare hands to paint, preserving his gestures by leaving his hand and finger prints visible.

      In such ways, many artists are naturally resourceful and low impact, by their use of foraged and natural materials. Conceptually, many of these artists are also inspired by how the natural world can be represented to viewers, in a way that emphasises man’s harmony with nature rather than dominance over it. Within a sustainable project, these artworks bear special significance, as they symbolise the objective behind incorporating sustainability – a re-evaluation of how humankind interacts with the environment, and how we can better preserve and respect natural resources.

      Sustainability in the world of hospitality

      As modern, eco-conscious people travel the world, they seek hotels that are likewise committed to sustainability. Hoteliers and hospitality designers must respond to this demand, and while efforts to promote environmentally conscious operations like reducing washing or plastic waste are worthwhile, sustainability has to be a key concern from the initial stages of hotel design to be more deeply effective.

      However, when considering the sheer scale of hotels and how hotel areas will be used, ensuring sustainability throughout the hotel poses more obstacles than in private spaces. Many materials, for example, need to be more hard-wearing: carpets that use synthetic fibres are easier to clean, and often need to be synthetic in order to comply with fire safety regulations. Meanwhile, while materials like marbles or metals can be used sparingly in private properties, they are simply not sustainable at the quantity required for hotels.

      Image credit: Artelier

      For a hotel project to be truly sustainable, sustainability has to be a core consideration from the inception of the project. It has to be considered in everything from structural materials and utilising natural sun and ventilation, to being rigorous in sourcing reputable interior suppliers who prioritise sustainable production. In order to make sustainable hotel design more than simply tapping into a trend, new hotels have focus on longevity – much negative environmental impact comes from the waste of replacing worn-out features.

      Considering this level of care to incorporate sustainability, it is essential that decorative aspects are not an afterthought to the project. After great effort has gone into sustainable design solutions, artworks can be overlooked, and in reality not be that sustainable. Whilst on an individual basis each artwork’s sustainability may not be a major source for concern, together they can make a significant impact. If every room features artworks as well as the lobby, stairwells, and spa areas, irresponsible sourcing and using even small amounts of unsustainable materials can quickly add up. It is essential, therefore, to work coherently with specialist art consultants who are able to make sourcing sustainable art straightforward, and curate the entire collection for minimal environmental impact.

      In addition, sustainable artworks bring many benefits to the hotel project. If a hotel decides to compromise on luxury materials in favour of sustainability, and opt for a more neutral, pared-back approach to interior design, the artwork can become the accent or focal point in the space. Sourcing art is further a great opportunity for supporting local artists, as artworks can be created from local materials and shipping costs are minimised. Supporting sustainable artists also makes for an engaging way for the hotel to promote its values and reflect its context.

      Image credit: Artelier

      Communicating sustainability through art

      With the move towards environmental concern, many mass-producing companies have tried to meet this demand by providing ‘sustainable’ products. However, is there really space for this in the future, when increasingly the move towards sustainability goes beyond natural materials, but also sustainable practices in the studio? Clients are trying to achieve a sense of connection in their projects, and so the individualism of makers is in itself becoming increasingly more valued. Bespoke artworks are a more authentic and personal way of decorating. A specially commissioned artwork can symbolically convey the central concerns of a client, and communicate their focus on sustainability.

      Image credit: Artelier

      Ever since artworks were created by ancient civilisations, artists have used their work as a traditional form of visual communication, that goes beyond simply decorative enhancement. Art engages the viewer’s attention and creates atmosphere, producing an immediate and non-verbal understanding. A basic material transformed into a large-scale art installation instantly conveys to viewers the artist’s commentary on man’s relationship with the natural world. For instance, in a commission for the headquarters of a company at the forefront of recycling innovation, Artelier commissioned a mobile sculpture that embodied the company values. Created from sustainable steam-bent wood, the mobile constantly evolves and transforms, representing the concept of recycling forms.

      Art offers a way to combine luxury with truly sustainable practices, and is one of the few products to be able to do so. But it more than simply decoration – art is able to tell a story. It communicates the deeper essence of the project, and is an evocative way of representing its sustainable values. The skill of the art consultant is to be able to source artworks that stay true to the project’s commitment to sustainability, and curate them in such a way that conveys the message to a wider audience.

      Artelier 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: Artelier

      PRODUCT WATCH: 2 pieces that demonstrate timeless core of Timage

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: 2 pieces that demonstrate timeless core of Timage

      Timage’s background in the architectural and yacht sectors has resulted in a high quality and varied product range. Hotel Designs identifies two pieces that perfectly define the brand’s timeless core both on and off the water…

      The hospitality sector can benefit from this collection of marine-grade components which all fit the company’s sustainable philosophy of “buy to last” and that quality is timeless.

      When beautiful design is also brought into play then you have the recipe for success.  Two key products that perfectly demonstrate the company’s core beliefs, albeit with very different purposes, are the Piacentini table lamp and both the Iseo and Montisola director’s chairs.

      Piacentini

      The Piacentini table lamp – A new icon and a unique product designed by Christian Grande Designworks. The table lamp takes its name from its main inspiration, the works of Marcello Piacentini.  Piacentini was one of the great early 20th century Italian theorists and the main proponent of Italian fascist architecture.  Designed and hand-crafted in Italy with the finest materials, the lamp’s luxurious deco design is embodied in its refined components, brass and marble, bringing together some of the finest materials in two stunning forms.  Both materials offer a solidity and permanency to the product, once again drawing attention to its source of inspiration.

      The modern interpretation of a classic design language is demonstrated using the latest LED technology, incorporating an “invisible” touch dimmer on the marble base.  This marble piece can be specified in several standard Italian varieties of stone.  It is also possible to use a customer supplied marble for situations where the lamp must match another material already in use in a space.  The brass metal elements are available in a range of different finishes or platings for a versatile product to suit a wide variety of interior styles. The rotating lamp shade is adjustable and allows the user to arrange the lamp for best use, making the Piacentini a practical solution for bedside or side table application.

      Montisola & Iseo

      Functional and stylish seating is always in demand within the hospitality sector. The answer to this requirement is the director’s chair – an iconic and classic piece of design. Originally intended as an outdoor seating solution, the director’s chair was then adopted by the yacht community and quickly, by association, became a symbol of luxury.  Within the hospitality sector, the director’s chair has also been welcomed thanks to its ability to bring a comfortable seating solution to a wide variety of spaces.  Whether it is a balcony, terrace, poolside bar or perhaps even a restaurant environment, the director’s chair promises to bring an elegant but relaxed feel whilst continuing to be a flexible tool in the creation of seating areas.

      The Montisola and Iseo director’s chairs elevate this practical piece of furniture design to an entirely new level, bringing together some of the finest materials in two stunning forms penned by Christian Grande Designworks. The chairs are made from solid teak and are available in a wide range of Maria Flora outdoor fabrics. Both models of chair feature exquisite details such as mirror polished hinges and leather protective pads on the feet to avoid marking any flooring.

      The director’s chair is the ultimate space saving solution and these models too can be neatly folded away when not required.  Each chair is also supplied with a tailored carry bag.

      Timage 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: Timage

      IN PICTURES: Inside the soon-to-open Hotel Fariones, Lanzarote

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      IN PICTURES: Inside the soon-to-open Hotel Fariones, Lanzarote

      The new five-star Hotel Fariones, which will open in Lanzarote in September of this year, will shelter laid-back luxury. Editor Hamish Kilburn gets a sneak peek inside…

      Hotel Fariones will open in Lanzarote on September 1, having undergone a significant refurbishment under the privately-owned PY Hotels & Resorts family that also owns the acclaimed Princesa Yaiza resort.

      Located in the centre of Puerto del Carmen on the southeast coast of the island, the hotel boasts an enviable beachfront location surrounded by palm trees with direct access to an idyllic sandy cove and the extensive Playa Grande beach. 

      Featuring 213 contemporary rooms, guests can choose from a range of categories, all with outdoor terraces and many with panoramic views over the Atlantic Ocean. There are a range of spacious suites accommodating up to four adults, including the impressive 150m² Royal Suite Fariones with an expansive outdoor terrace and private Jacuzzi.

      Image of interiors of suite in the hotel in Lanzarote

      Image credit: Hotel Fariones

      A spectacular sea view infinity pool and two heated outdoor Jacuzzis encircled by palm trees provide a tranquil setting at all times of day. 

      A rooftop pool and lounge bar will launch in the second phase of the hotel’s opening. The rooftop will provide one of the best locations to watch the sunset in Lanzarote, with views over Fuerteventura and The Isla de Lobos.

      rooftop pool in hotel

      Image credit: Hotel Fariones

      The hotel will offer a variety of restaurants to suit every palate. The main à la carte restaurant, Restaurant Atlantico, will serve fresh local fish and shellfish with traditional Canarian influences, whilst a snack bar will serve light lunches on a sophisticated outdoor terrace overlooking the ocean. A buffet restaurant will launch in phase two, along with Kaori restaurant specialising in Asian Haute Cuisine.

      Stairway to ocean front

      Image credit: Hotel Fariones

      Open year round, Hotel Fariones is the ideal destination, with a quirky interior design scheme that is complimented further by Lanzarote’s 365 days of sunshine. 

      Image credit: Hotel Fariones

      Gessi unveils holistic Architectural Wellness program

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Gessi unveils holistic Architectural Wellness program

      Gessi Architectural Wellness is a revolutionary concept, which allows the customer to immerse emotionally in the fusion of light and water, perfectly merged into “holistic” wellness areas. Hotel Designs explores…

      The bathroom brand Gessi has become synonymous with wellness with its aims to create unique environments, characterised by authentic beauty, innovation and technology that represent the best in bathroom design.

      Architectural Wellness was born from Gessi’s passion and research for innovation, technology and architecture. The creative solution brilliantly blends all these elements together. Architectural Wellness matches the most advanced attainments in lighting engineering by the historical brand Artemide with the science of water by Gessi.

      Gessi Architectural Wellness is a revolutionary concept, which allows the customer to immerse emotionally in the fusion of light and water, perfectly merged into “holistic” wellness areas.

      The large shower that helps to evoke wellness

      Image credit: Gessi

      Harmonising design, customisation and “five sense wellness” functions to a new level, the Binario System of the Program provides for the ceiling installation of rails similar to those used in the lighting industry. In these locations, customisable in number, length and shape, the user can place modules with different functions: waterfall, atomisation, rainfall, designer lighting spots by Artemide or chromo-therapy lights and sound loudspeakers. Gessi has developed the lighting technology with Artemide following a long-standing collaboration in this field. The technical ceiling rail, where the chosen elements for lighting, water and sound are fitted, can be arranged and customised in almost infinite ways even adding new modules. It can even be extended beyond the shower area in order to provide lighting and sound to the bathroom and it could create architectural compositions.

      A wellness setup with bathroom and outdoor space

      Image credit: Gessi

      The System provides for the greatest liberty in customisation of the wellness experience by allowing the user the management of manifold water and light functions according to the his/her needs and pleasures.

      Gessi 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: Gessi

      FEATURE: inside Timothy Oulton’s self-isolation dome

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      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

      PRODUCT WATCH: Stock Collection by Ulster Carpets

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Stock Collection by Ulster Carpets

      The collection by Ulster Carpets is full of quick contract carpet solutions…

      Ulster Carpets understands that many projects require quick turnaround times and speedy delivery. That’s why many of its stock ranges are becoming ever more popular within the commercial market.

      From contemporary styles to traditional elegance, the diversity of Ulster’s stock ranges means there is a stock collection to suit every type of project and the quality, extensive colour and design options will leave interior designers spoilt for choice.

      Here’s a look at some of the stock designs on offer:

      • Vescent – The eclectic new contract stock collection features six contemporary designs – Linea, Arbor, Nebula, Calx, Vapor and Nexus – in 21 colourways. The neutral colour palette reflects modern textile trends, while a flash of colour is added for those seeking something different. From structured designs to more organic styles, the secret to the success of Vescent is the diversity of the collection.

      • Fusion – Striking patterns and colourways that have been designed to make an impact set Fusion apart. The selection of blues, greys and neutrals are perfect for current colouring demands, while the scale of the bold designs is tempered by the use of texture to accentuate the softness and practicality of the axminster pile.

       

      Image credit: Ulster Carpets

      • The Mix – this collection, typifies our core values of design, excellence, customer focus and outstanding product quality. Designed exclusively to meet the varied demands of the international hospitality industry, The Mix consists of 8 contemporary designs that are as eye-catching in public areas as they are in guestrooms.

      Image credit: Ulster Carpets

      As well as design choice, Ulster also provides quality. As we control every aspect of the manufacturing process, we can guarantee the quality of every carpet. Carpets in the Stock Collection are manufactured in a hard wearing combination of 80 per cent wool and 20 per cent nylon in a variety of colour matching widths making them perfect for a wide range of busy contract applications, including bedrooms and suites; corridors; meeting rooms; and public areas.

      Vescent, Fusion and The Mix are just three examples of our comprehensive stock collection, giving you an unrivalled level of choice.

      Ulster Carpets 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: Ulster Carpets

      FIRST LOOK: 2020 Outdoor Collection by Minotti

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      FIRST LOOK: 2020 Outdoor Collection by Minotti

      Borders between the indoors and outdoors cease to exist in the 2020 Outdoor Collection by Minotti, which was marvellously coordinated by Rodolfo Dordoni. Editor Hamish Kilburn shares his first peek of the collection…

      Long before the pandemic disrupted our social lives, the industry had identified a rising interest in open-air living.

      A demand for biophillic design, combined with a desire to explore new sustainable approaches and materials to evoke wellbeing, opened the door so that designers could flirt with nature to design innovative spaces.

      Minotti, very much a pioneer behind changing the definition of premium outdoor furniture, has used this approach for some time now in its designs for furnishing open-air areas. The brand realised early on that spaces with an inviting, relaxing vibe – whether they are corners of urban nature, exteriors nestled in the lush green landscape or overlooking the tranquil waters – evoke a natural sense of luxury and escape.

      The 2020 Outdoor Collection develops these principles with targeted design proposals, which originate from different design cultures but are conceived to co-exist in a harmonious dialogue. It focuses on the independence of the individual pieces, each with its own identity and original personality, but also with the versatility required to design compositions that can furnish large spaces, and to be mixed with other elements of different styles from the 2020 Outdoor Collection.

      The collection, coordinated by Rodolfo Dordoni with Minotti Studio, hosts pieces by leading international designers, such as GamFratesi, Marcio Kogan / studio mk27 and Dordoni himself. The outdoor furniture pieces are based on the main geometric shapes – square, rectangle, circle -, one of the characterising features of the 2020 Indoor Collection. The couture aspect, another leitmotiv of Minotti’s interior design projects, can be found in the sophisticated juxtaposition of the materials, in the choice of precious natural wood types, in the exquisite finishes, the textures and the tactile feel of the textile coverings.

      Statement pieces of the 2020 Outdoor Collection, coordinated by Rodolfo Dordoni with Minotti Studio, include:

      Sunray – Rodolfo Dordoni Design

      Lifestyle shot featuring Minotti sofas outside

      Image credit: Minotti

      Sunray designs a new, open-air landscape where exquisite design and carefully researched comfort join forces to create an intimate, relaxing atmosphere. With its enveloping design, the Sunray seating system is inspired by the desire to design situations that convey a sensation of intimacy and relaxation, in line with the concept of open-air living that imitates the comfort and beauty of indoor furnishing solutions.I

      It is designed both to play a leading role in outdoor settings and to complement the other furnishing pieces in the collection.
      It juxtaposes different shapes and materials: its airy surface in natural teak wood defines its horizontal line, while the curved backrest with interwoven cords gives it a dynamic allure.

      The system, composed of pieces that can be used alone or combined together, offers a variety of compositional solutions thanks to the high versatility of its elements. The family is composed of armchair, sofa, end element with or without extending top, chaise-longue, loveseat, daybed with reclining backrest, and square and rectangular coffee tables.

      Sunray Meg – Rodolfo Dordoni

      Simple coffee table next to outdoor minotti sofa

      Image credit: Minotti

      With a simple and clean design but a vibrant personality, the Sunray Meg coffee tables add a distinctive splash of colour to outdoor settings.
      The Sunray Meg family hosts a series of versatile, practical coffee tables in various sizes and heights that blend in perfectly with the most diverse compositions of the Outdoor collection.

      The simple, airy design of the metal tubular structure in polished Bronze finish allows for its combination with all the products in the collection. Its distinctive feature is the colour of the top in stratified HPL laminate, available in glossy lacquered White, Rust and Khaki Green finishes, blending in seamlessly with the palette of the outdoor textile collection.

      EDITOR’S PICK: Florida – Rodolfo Dordoni

      Luxury outdoor minotti sofa on terrace

      Image credit: Minotti

      Natural teak is the wood chosen for Florida to complement the mood of the 2020 Collection and design living compositions blurring the boundaries between indoors and outdoors.

      The wide range of elements in Florida allows for the creation of many linear or sinuous compositions that meet the increasingly common need to enjoy smaller, more intimate spaces, as well as convivial spaces also in outdoor environments.

      The seating system presents itself as a carefully-designed collection of soft and geometric volumes, defined by profiles in eco-leather suitable for outdoor use, available in four colours – Light Grey, Dark Grey, Brown and Sand. The structure of Florida is in metal, appropriately treated to resist corrosion, and it is immersed in a foam padding, then covered in waterproof fibre and fabric, making it weatherproof.

      The Florida coffee table features feet in solid natural teak wood and a top with shaped edge in Pietra del Cardoso, in a brushed finish. Due to its mineral composition, Pietra del Cardoso is exceptionally compact and extremely weatherproof.
      The backrest cushions are attached to the wooden rear supports thanks to refined Pewter coloured metal frog fasteners, allowing for the quick release of the cushions and consequently an easy removal of the coverings. The feet are made of solid natural teak wood, as are the rear reinforcements that support the padded backrest.

      Fynn Outdoor – GamFratesi

      Low reclined outdoor chairs by Minotti

      Image credit: Minotti

      In Fynn, Scandinavian values meet Italian tradition. A contemporary design for outdoor spaces in teak wood, crafted with fine cabinet-making workmanship.

      With a completely innovative approach, the fine cabinet-making process used for the manufacturing of outdoor wooden furniture is applied to a family of outdoor furnishing pieces in solid teak, combining sophisticated workmanship with an ultra-contemporary design.

      Characterised by an interwoven frame that hosts soft seat and backrest cushions, Fynn has in the armrest its signature element.
      Elongated and slightly curved, rounded and smooth to the touch, it is completely handmade: its precise, well-defined line identifies the entire family, composed of armchair, lounge and dining little armchairs, benches, footstools, coffee tables in different sizes and a dining table.

      The Fynn Outdoor armchair and little armchairs feature a distinctive ultra-lightweight aesthetic with a simple structure in teak. The frame is interwoven with wicker-effect cords in Mud colour, hosting a padded seat and backrest cushion, designed as a single element. The informal rigour with which Fynn Outdoor hosts the padded element designs a comfortable seat.

      The bench completes the family. Its cushions sit on a frame interwoven with wicker-effect cords in Mud colour.
      The coffee tables also share the same line as the wooden armrest, which designs a slight curve also found in the rounded sides of the top. The central part of the coffee table is enhanced by the presence of the top in Pietra del Cardoso, creating a sophisticated combination of materials.

      Daiki Outdoor – Marcio Kogan/studio mk27

      The low-level Daiki outdoor chair by Minotti

      Image credit: Minotti

      The Daiki seats, born out of the Brazilian architect’s passion for Japanese culture, go outdoors, where the open-air space is conceived and experienced as an extension of the indoor living area: a veritable tribute to Japanese design culture.
      The Daiki family includes armchairs with a deep seat, available both with and without arms, a dining little armchair and a footstool.

      Created using sophisticated wood crafting techniques, the curved shell in solid teak comprises two elements joined at a 45° angle, with a sloping backrest that guarantees maximum comfort. In the outdoor version the shell offers a snug fit for the stitched cushions, and is set on a stainless-steel frame with Bronze-coloured varnished polished legs.

      A design that also explores and reinterprets the American Mid-Century atmospheres, injecting new life into the style of contemporary outdoor furnishing with its clean, bold lines, exquisite teak working technique and balanced proportions.

      Block Outdoor – Rodolfo Dordoni

      Luxe white Minotti table

      Image credit: Minotti

      With its sculptural look and frame in solid wood inspired by Brutalist architecture, Block Outdoor stands out for its big personality.
      Structured in the form of a block of solid wood, the base of the Outdoor version of the Block coffee table retains its solid volume in the shape of an “L” or an upside-down “T”, but it is proposed in natural teak.

      The top, with smooth edges resembling a river pebble, and tactile finish, is available in Pietra del Cardoso or with a plastic look in White glossy lacquer plastic finish.

      The Block Outdoor coffee table is available in two different heights, both with rectangular top.

      Avery – Minotti Studio

      Patterend rug by Minotti

      Image credit: Minotti

      With its modern vibe and reassuring, sophisticated colour, the Avery rug elegantly furnishes outdoor spaces. The Avery rug stands out for its woven mesh structure, made with special looms that are exclusively custom-engineered for Minotti. It is the result of a semi-artisanal crafting process, which involves assembling strips of material sewn with high tenacity yarn. The acrylic fibre used to make it respects and enhances its characteristics of permeability, breathability and suitability for humid environments.

      In conclusion, by using the same designers and styles in both areas of the 2020 collection, Minotti and the masterful designers behind each piece have further blurred the line between indoor and outdoor furniture, and in the process have taken luxury furniture into a new era.

      Main image credit: Minotti

      PRODUCT WATCH: AXOR Edge, transcending boundaries in bathroom aesthetics

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: AXOR Edge, transcending boundaries in bathroom aesthetics

      13 years after the first collection with French designer Jean-Marie Massaud, Hotel Designs speaks to the designer about AXOR Edge; a striking symbiosis of geometrical form and precision manufacturing…

      Using a new ultra-precise manufacturing process ordinarily reserved for diamond milling and space construction, the collection still transcends boundaries in aesthetics and technology. Asymmetrically combined cubes set smooth polished surfaces against intricate texture to yield a design that is strong yet delicate.

      black scene showing the AXOR Edge range

      Image credit: AXOR Edge/hansgrohe

      Design: geometric, architectural, and asymmetrical

      The collection is defined by avant-garde expression, celebrating the interplay of perfectly proportioned plains and edges in an asymmetrical form. Partially enriched with a fine texture, the three-dimensional mixer offers a more tactile experience with water. For those who prefer a more minimalistic appearance, AXOR Edge is also available without texturing.

      Every element of the mixer, including the handle and the spout, has perfect 45° chamfers. Ordinarily recognised in the field of construction as a safety measure, here the chamfers pay testament to the small architectural details and overall virtuosity of design.

      Technology: precision at the heart of design

      Especially developed for the production of AXOR Edge, a state-of-the-art diamond-cutting machine assures accurate planes and contours. The diamond-tipped tool, which is more commonly seen in the space and laser industries, is used here to mill the chamfers with the same high base quality required for diamond milling.

      With high speeds of 60,000 revolutions per minute and hyper-controlled temperatures, allowing a variation of barely 0.1 degree, the result creates tolerances that are 600 times finer than conventional methods of milling brass: ultraprecision. Line by line, precision-pointed pyramids are created in this way, reflecting the interplay of light and shadow in a such a way to inspire a pause in a world of fast-moving transience.

      Jean-Marie Massaud tells Hotel Designs: “In my collaboration with AXOR, we always seek to provide a better user experience. With AXOR Edge, we have answered the demand for refinement and uniqueness. More than a mixer, each product in the collection is a jewel, a masterpiece, a unique architectural object drilled from a brass block and then dressed with personal finishes. A real functional piece of art that shares your intimacy for life – that’s my understanding of luxury.”

      Close up of tap

      Image credit: AXOR edge/hansgrohe

      AXOR Edge is available for the washbasin, bath, bidet and with shower thermostat modules. Manufactured in the vacuum chambers of the AXOR production plant, AXOR Edge is available in five polished AXOR FinishPlus surface colours, from Polished Brass to Polished Black Chrome.

      hansgrohe 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: hansgrohe

      3D printing in bathroom brassware design: GROHE publishes first RIBA-approved CPD seminar

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      3D printing in bathroom brassware design: GROHE publishes first RIBA-approved CPD seminar

      GROHE published the seminars 3D Printing for Advanced Bathroom Fittings on July 2 and 8, sharing its expertise on 3D printing manufacturing innovations and its potential to transform the bathroom design landscape…

      GROHE, global supplier of complete bathroom solutions and first leading European sanitaryware brand to launch 3D-printed taps, is now able to share its expertise on the innovations behind 3D printing manufacturing and its potential to transform the bathroom design landscape, with the architect and design community via its newly RIBA-approved CPD seminar.

      3D Printing for Advanced Bathroom Fittings dissects 3D printing technology, its place in the manufacturing sector and its ongoing growth across many industries due to its ability to create small batch custom manufacturing in a much more sustainable and accessible way. The seminar delves into GROHE’s application of the technique and how the brand has instrumented a new design freedom for interior architects and designers, providing them with the opportunity to procure customised products for bespoke client specifications in the future. The session also sheds light on the positive sustainability impact 3D printing can have on reducing CO2 emissions and saving water thanks to less wastage and more efficient use of raw materials.

      “Now we have acquired first-hand experience and understanding of 3D printing, we want to share this knowledge with architect professionals to challenge the status quo around manufacturing processes and help inspire a more widespread shift in thinking when it comes to considering sustainable options.” – Glen Wilson, Head of Projects at GROHE UK.

      “Sustainability, along with quality, design and technology, are at the core of GROHE’s brand values and are implemented across all of our processes; from carbon neutral production across all our global plants and our pledge to remove all plastic packaging by 2021, to the exploration of alternative sustainable production methods and the consequential development of its Icon 3D range”, says Raj Mistry, GROHE Marketing Director at GROHE UK, who developed the latest training seminar. Glen Wilson, Head of Projects at GROHE UK adds, “Now we have acquired first-hand experience and understanding of 3D printing, we want to share this knowledge with architect professionals to challenge the status quo around manufacturing processes and help inspire a more widespread shift in thinking when it comes to considering sustainable options. The more information architects have at their fingertips, the more they will understand the potential of this technology for bathroom specification”.

      Bookings for 3D Printing for Advanced Bathroom Fittings sessions are available for all design professionals to book now. All RIBA-registered architect attendees who complete the sessions will acquire one hour of continued professional development.

      GROHE 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: GROHE

      PRODUCT WATCH: Chandelier by Buster + Punch

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Chandelier by Buster + Punch

      With lighting playing a vital role in all first impressions, Hotel Designs takes a closer look at the modern interpretation of Chandelier by Buster + Punch

      Designers and architects are often willing to think outside the box in order to evoke a lasting first impression.

      When it comes to lighting in public areas, however, often opting for a simple, clean and striking design scheme can make the brightest statement. A pendant chandelier, for example, will complement a modern and contemporary interior design style.

      Chandelier by Buster + Punch is an eye-catching lighting display that can work in many lifestyle and luxury settings. Designers can choose from classic diamond or cascade formation, as well as a 19-pendant drop or a 31-pendant drop.

      The dimmable lighting product aims to immediately set the tone by allowing users to personalise the brightness so that they can achieve the right ambience in all public areas. As well as the lobby and dining areas, designers may wish to add the pendent chandelier in the stairwell in order to add a new layer while acting as a decorative feature that also provides much needed functional lighting.

      The bespoke heavy metal chandelier is a stylish LED light for large stairwell spaces or living areas.  The chandelier is teamed with the brand’s critically acclaimed LED Buster bulbs available in gold, smoked or crystal finishes. The brand’s heavy metal solid metal pendants are available in smoked, bronze, steel or brass.

      Buster + Punch 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: Buster + Punch

      PRODUCT WATCH: Neptune radiator by Castrads

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Neptune radiator by Castrads

      An update to the classic Princess radiator for the 21st century, the Neptune collection by Castrads offers flawless casting, smooth flowing lines and is effortlessly elegant…

      Ridged shoulders, sleek feet and a striking pinched top are all quirky characteristics of the Neptune collection by Castrads, an updated aesthetic to a classic design.

      The Neptune is available in both two and three columns and in four heights across the range.

      The Neptune 2 Column, available in heights of 520mm, 620mm, 720mm and 920mm and has a depth of 180mm. Great for achieving a high heat without imposing in the room too much.

      The Neptune 3 Column, available in heights of 620mm, 720, and 920mm and has a depth of 200mm. Perfect for large rooms where you require a lot of heat and for providing a real statement piece.

      Image credit: Castrads

      The Neptune can be finished in a stunning range of bare metal finishes or paint from Little Greene, Farrow & Ball and Benjamin Moore.

      Our curated collection of accessories, including valves, shrouds and base plates and wall stays, can be finished in a range of colours and will complete the look.

      All of Castrads radiators are tested in accordance with EN442 by BSRIA to ensure that we offer the highest standard of quality.

      Castrads is one of the brands that has taken advantage of our Industry Support Package. To keep up to date with supplier news, click here. And, if you are interested in also benefitting from this  three-month editorial package, please email Katy Phillips by clicking here.

      Main image credit: Castrads

      INDUSTRY INSIGHT: Make a statement with a striking tiled feature wall

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      INDUSTRY INSIGHT: Make a statement with a striking tiled feature wall

      CTD Architectural Tiles explains how designers create an eye-catching moment in the lobby with a tiled feature wall…

      Interior design is vital to the success of today’s hospitality spaces: where, in a world of social media and photo sharing, it becomes a key component of a guest’s stay.

      Feature walls provide energy and vibrancy to liven up any hotel space, from the lobby to the restaurant to the bedrooms, and are sure to make an impactful first impression.

      The purpose of a feature wall is to draw the eye to a particular area – this is likely to be the room’s existing focal point. In the bathroom, this might be a shower wall, whereas in the bedroom, it might be the headboard behind the bed. In any case, it should be used to create an eye-catching centrepiece, around which the rest of the room will flow.

      Image caption: Genesis range by CTD Architectural Tiles

      All a space needs is one beautiful feature wall to make the room really stand out. Whether you’re working with a client who wants to make a statement in a large, grand hotel, or you’re working in a smaller, more bespoke space, a feature wall can be used to make an impact in a variety of ways.

      Typically, most designers will tend to use paint or wallpaper when creating a feature wall, but tiles actually offer a more effective alternative – especially for bathrooms. With so many textures and colours to choose from, tiles are a great way to add visual interest to an otherwise plain space and can often create a much more impressive impact! Tiles come in a variety of finishes, sizes and colours, making them the perfect option for creating style.

      Image caption: The Metallic collection by CTD Architectural Tiles in bathroom setting

      Image caption: The Metallic collection by CTD Architectural Tiles in bathroom setting

      Patterned, textured and wood effect tiles all look great as feature walls. Textured tiles add warmth and depth, while contrasting colours can be used to make a striking wall pattern. Meanwhile, wood effect tiles can be used to create a final look ranging from rustic and weathered, to modern and elegant, depending on the hotel’s overall aesthetic.

      CTD Architectural Tiles offers a wide range of tiles for all styles of hotels, ideal for creating a beautiful feature wall. Most recently, it has launched a new collection called Genesis, which offers cutting-edge design with an interesting variety of textures and decorations, inspired by sensory touch and visual sensations. Presented across ten different formats, from tri-dimensional design to nature patterns, the smooth colours of this range are perfect for creating a feature wall in minimalist settings. White and Sand present a more neutral option, whereas Black, Deep Blue and Red offer a truly intense option for statement walls.

      Another one of CTD Architectural’s most stylish collections for creating a tiled feature wall is the Metallic range. These enamelled stoneware tiles are inspired by crude steels and metals, creating an on-trend look of modernity and urban style. These tiles are guaranteed to bring a strong personality to any space and the collection offers both a smooth and a structured surface for greater versatility in designing a feature wall for any hotel space.

      CTD Architectural Tiles 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: CTD Architectural Tiles

      Rosewood to arrive in Sardinia

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Rosewood to arrive in Sardinia

      The ultra-luxury property in Sardinia is to shelter Rosewood Hotels & Resorts’ debut island resort in Italy…

      With recent announcements stating that the brand is preparing its arrivals in Madrid and St Barths – and now Sardinia – it’s safe to say that Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has embarked on a new chapter of luxury hotel development.

      The most recent news from the brand is that it has been appointed by Quianto Capital Limited to manage Rosewood Porto Cervo, which will open on Sardinia, Italy in 2022.

      Joining sister properties in Tuscany and Venice as the group’s third opening in Italy, this latest jewel in the collection will bring Rosewood’s signature style of ultra-luxury hospitality to one of the most sought-after holiday destinations in the Mediterranean.

      “Rosewood Porto Cervo will showcase our visionary, innovative ambition for creating one-of-a-kind resorts through Rosewood’s uniquely sophisticated lens,” says Sonia Cheng, chief executive officer of Rosewood Hotel Group. “We look forward to showcasing our brand’s A Sense of Place philosophy as we create a luxurious haven in Sardinia,”

      “The three-story Rosewood Porto Cervo will feature 65 guestrooms, including 26 suites, all complemented by spectacular 180-degree ocean views of the Mediterranean Sea.”

      The resort will be located in Costa Smeralda, Italy’s jet-set destination, known for its stunning white sand beaches and turquoise water.  Just 1.5 kilometers south of Porto Cervo town, the three-story Rosewood Porto Cervo will feature 65 guestrooms, including 26 suites, all complemented by spectacular 180-degree ocean views of the Mediterranean Sea and thoughtful amenities, which are finely tuned to the desires of today’s affluential explorers. A modern oasis, the resort’s serene design aesthetic will exude a captivating estate-style atmosphere coupled with personalised services and exceptional privacy.

      Set to become the new social nexus of Sardinia, Rosewood Porto Cervo will house a spectrum of distinctive dining and leisure concepts designed to reflect the surrounding nature and local culture.

      “We are honored to join hands with Rosewood Hotels & Resorts,” says Petra Hofer, chief executive officer of Quianto Capital Limited. “We are proud to showcase the rich offerings of Sardinia, as well as Rosewood’s refined ultra-luxury hospitality, to create a new legacy and world-class retreat in the Mediterranean.”

      Furthering Rosewood’s reputation for exceptional culinary standards, the resort will feature four versatile dining venues for an ultra-luxurious island experience. A bistro and lounge bar will serve sumptuous dishes and handcrafted cocktails inspired by the flavours and colours of local produce, while the property’s pool bar and beach club will host lively music with the sun-kissed shoreline as a backdrop.

      “As the strategic advisor to Quianto Capital Limited during the operator selection process, we held firm on finding a luxury hospitality partner that would add the most value to reflect the destination’s unique culture, history and geography in the design and operation of the hotel,” says Enrico Meneghetti, chief executive officer of Enma Capital & Partners Limited. “Through its A Sense of Place philosophy, Rosewood Porto Cervo will definitely achieve this goal.”

      In addition, the resort will be expressly designed as a sanctuary for renewal and rejuvenation. From signature spa journeys to body therapies, guests will be spoiled with an array of bespoke experiences that will harmonise the body and mind, improve well-being, and leave guests feeling serene, radiant and refreshed.

      The architecture and design team that will create the Sardinian jewel is yet to be announced. Meanwhile, Rosewood’s luxury journey of expansion into new destinations continues…

      Main image credit: Pixabay

      PRODUCT WATCH: A world of mirrors

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: A world of mirrors

      Following designer Peter Mance’s editorial gaze into reflective surfaces, Hotel Designs takes a look at Mirror Mania’s world of mirrors…

      There’s something truly special about a unique, handmade mirror. Mirror Mania believes that a mirror is much more than a simple reflective surface – it is a work of art that can truly enhance and transform its surroundings.

      Established for more than 20 years, the company is a family run business, based in Norfolk where we design and manufacture all our mirrors.

      Headed by one of the Britain’s leading Mirror Artists – Phillip Orr, the brand understands that it is sometimes difficult to find a company that offers unique and bespoke products which is why its wide range of handmade, exclusively designed products, include art deco, modern and traditional designs, as wells as framed, frameless and metal framed mirrors, ceiling domes and decorative glass panels.

      Whether designers are looking for a mirror to enhance their interior theme, or they need a mirror around which to design a room, Mirror Mania’s one-of-a-kind designs are sure to meet your requirements. Each mirror takes its inspiration from different works of art – including culture-inspired themes.

      Mirrors inspired by cultures of the world

      Different cultures often inspire interior decor trends – the last few years have seen major influences from Morocco, Japan and Scandinavia. If you’re going for a country theme in your home, it needs to run through all aspects of your decor. The company has rounded up some of its favourite hand-crafted mirrors from our collection to suit whatever style – or country – you’re creating in your home.

      Scandanavia

      Image credit: Mirror Mania

      Contrasting colours and a combination of smooth and sharp lines means this gorgeous circular mirror will complement any Scandinavian themed interior. With a choice of bronze, black or grey glass effects and various trimming colours, you can truly make this mirror your own.

      Greece

      Image credit: Mirror Mania

      With staggered vertical mirrors and an overhanging edge, this stunning mirror is reminiscent of the temples of ancient Greece. For a statement of grandeur and luxury, there really is no other choice – while the bronze colouring makes this mirror bang on trend, and perfect for combining with lush colourways.

      Africa

      Image credit: Mirror Mania

      African-inspired interiors can’t be complete without a safari theme, and this beautiful zebra striped glass wall art is the perfect way to add a modern safari feel to any room. Hand painted stripes and a strip of narrow mirror creates the perfect combination of elegance and authentic style.

      England

      Image credit: Mirror Mania

      This mirror could have been taken from any mill in England. Reminiscent of the industrial Victorian era with black metal edging and a tall, curved arch, this authentic mirror will look wonderful in any surroundings that nod to the bygone Industrial Revolution.

      Japan

      Image credit: Mirror Mania

      If you’re going for an Oriental theme, this mirror embodies the Far East style: minimalist symmetry. The metal frame – available in a selection of colours – adds a modern twist to this stunning Oriental style mirror.

      Handmade mirrors delivered internationally

      The company recently received an order from North Carolina, for two of our Babushka mirrors. The geometric style and sharp lines make this mirror stand out – and geography doesn’t need to stand in the way of you and your perfect mirror.

      With international delivery from Mirror Mania, you can place your order from anywhere in the world and the company will ensure it is delivered to you in perfect condition.

      Mirror Mania 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: Mirror Mania

      SPOTLIGHT ON: how Edmund bell grew as a textile brand

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      SPOTLIGHT ON: how Edmund bell grew as a textile brand

      To celebrate Soft Furnishings and Fabrics being placed under the editorial spotlight this month, Hotel Designs asks the team at Edmund Bell to explain its past, present and predict its future…

      Ever since Edmund Bell was founded in 1855, as a merchant converter in textiles, it has always been proud of its heritage – becoming a major supplier of blackout fabrics during World War II, which is how it inadvertently entered the soft furnishings market.

      Fast forward 165 years and the company now supplies for more than 8,000 customers across the globe in more than 50 different countries, directly from its headquarters in Rochdale, UK. One of its recent projects was Hard Rock Hotel London, which Hotel Designs exclusively reviewed shortly after opening.

      The team at Edmund Bell take pride in the fact that when a company chooses to work with them, they are:

      • Investing in skilled craftsmanship.
      • Investing in something of quality that will last.
      • Securing the future of manufacturing within Europe.
      • Buying a product that has passed our rigorous quality checks.
      • Buying a product that we are trying to ensure has significantly lower carbon footprint than others on the market

      Edmund Bell’s products are rigorously tested to ensure they meet all the relevant technical requirements necessary for each sector they could be going into; from Retail, Hospitality, Workplace and Education, to Healthcare and Cruise.

      For example:

      • The ranges meet multiple flame retardant standards from the UK and internationally.
      • The brand aims for longevity in our fabrics with relevant testing for colour fastness to light, washability and durability to wear.
      • Many ranges benefit from special properties such as Anti-Microbial, Stain Resistance or Crease Resistance finishes, plus many more.
      • The brand tries to use more natural raw materials with less environmental impacts.

      All the technical specification details for each range can be viewed online, where it is available to download as well as all available test certificates to ensure you have all the relevant information for your project.

      To make sure that designers, architects and specifiers have as much choice as possible when working on a new design concept, the brand offers the option to order free samples of all our fabric ranges directly from our website. Browse Edmund Bell’s wide selection of fabrics such as blackouts, dimouts, sheers, upholstery and more – and add them to your sample basket straight from the product page.

      As the brand looks forward to the future, and with many consumers becoming more socially conscious and changing their shopping behaviour; sustainability in its products, Edmund Bell’s manufacturing and within the business generally, remains increasingly important to its ongoing objectives and plans.

      As a business, the company is striving to be more sustainable and work with more renewable fibres that have less environmental impact whilst still offering the highest quality products available.

      Many of its products are Oeko-Tex Standard 100 approved; meaning they are completely free of toxic or allergic substances. And it is working towards complying with the Ethical Trade Initiative (ETI) base code within its supply chain; an internationally recognised code of good labour practice.

      Edmund Bell 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: Roberto Lara Photography

      Mandarin Oriental to arrive in Vienna in 2023

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Mandarin Oriental to arrive in Vienna in 2023

      Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has announced that it will manage a luxury hotel and branded residences in Vienna, Austria that is scheduled to open in late 2023…

      Mandarin Oriental, Vienna will be housed in a heritage building that originally served as the city’s commercial law court from 1912 to 2003.

      Mandarin Oriental, Vienna is located in a peaceful street in District One of Vienna within the Ringstrasse. It is in easy walking distance of the city’s major attractions, including St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the Imperial Palace, Vienna State Opera and a wide range of restaurants and bars.

      “On completion, the hotel will comprise 151 guestrooms and suites.”

      The conversion of the property is already underway, and the restoration will preserve many of the building’s original design elements. On completion, the hotel will comprise 151 guestrooms and suites surrounding a courtyard in the centre of the property, incorporating a restaurant, bar and outdoor garden. The property will also house a Spa at Mandarin Oriental featuring a series of treatment rooms, a swimming pool and a well-equipped fitness centre. A range of adaptable banqueting and meeting spaces will be available for events and social occasions.

      The 17 Residences at Mandarin Oriental will be located on the top two floors of the building and will have private access to the roof, with several of the apartments offering outdoor terraces and stunning citywide views. These will be some of the most exclusive apartments in the city, with owners enjoying Mandarin Oriental’s legendary service and direct access to the hotel’s facilities.

      “We look forward to extending the Group’s presence into one of Europe’s most popular destinations for art, music and culture and introducing the city to Mandarin Oriental’s exemplary quality of service,” said James Riley, Group Chief Executive of Mandarin Oriental. “This iconic redevelopment of a historic building in a prime location, will offer guests a truly memorable experience, and fits ideally within the Group’s increasing portfolio of central European hotels.”

      The project is owned by Brisen Group, headquartered in Geneva and operating in the European real estate investment and wealth management sectors. London based designers, Goddard Littlefair, which recently completed Villa Copenhagen, have been appointed to create the hotel and residences interiors.

      “We are delighted to partner with Mandarin Oriental, one of the world’s best luxury hotel brands, on this project. Mandarin Oriental’s reputation for providing an unparalleled level of luxury service and attention to detail, matches our own wish to create an exceptional luxury hotel and residences in the heart of Vienna,” said Mr Dimitry Vallen of Brisen Group.

      Main image credit: Mandarin Oriental

      Unveiled: the 2020 Indoor Collection by Minotti

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Unveiled: the 2020 Indoor Collection by Minotti

      It may not be the unveiling that the Italian furniture brand had in mind, but the 2020 collection of indoor furniture pieces by Minotti reaffirms its identity and reputation in the luxury interior design arena. Editor Hamish Kilburn learns more…

      Celebrating the arrival of a new collection by Minotti has become somewhat of an annual phenomenon at Hotel Designs.

      The grand unveiling has traditionally taken place during Milan Design Week. This year, however, while the industry has been forced to adapt to social distancing guidelines following the outbreak of Covid-19, the brand has instead launched the 2020 collection virtually. And while the manner of which the pieces have been unveiled has been disrupted, the same cannot be said for the new line of furniture, which are all (in true Minotti style) characterised by the purity of their shapes and volumes, defined by rigorous geometries with an architectural appeal.

      The 2020 Indoor Collection reflects a contemporary, modernist style and extends the identity of Minotti, connected to the same high-quality sartorial savoir-faire found in haute couture, used to craft a range of products that are increasingly exclusive. The new upholstered seating systems, seats and furnishing pieces are combined with a sophisticated tailoring thanks to the exquisite materials and the exclusive textile collection.

      Each item evokes a silent elegance – Minotti needs not shout – with a strong international vocation in terms of style and design, though entirely Italian in its imprinting. This is the common thread in all the projects, designed by a strong team coordinated by Rodolfo Dordoni with the Minotti Studio.

      With Rodolfo Dordoni, nendo, Marcio Kogan/studio mk27, Christophe Delcourt and GamFratesi, the 2020 Indoor Collection looks West, to the sophisticated Mid-Century atmospheres of California; East, to the formal minimalism of Japan; and North, to the striking rigour of Scandinavia, all filtered by Minotti’s own well-defined sensitivity and personality. The Collection develops a language that embraces the know-how of the tradition related to the world of upholstery, with a high level of sartorial craftsmanship. It features sculptural complements and seating elements with a strong personality that look back to the Fifties, Sixties and Seventies, reinterpreting their spirit, and was created for use in interiors located at different latitudes, in Europe, the Americas and Asia.

      Statement pieces of the 2020 Indoor Collection, coordinated by Rodolfo Dordoni with Minotti Studio, include:

      Connery – Rodolfo Dordoni design

      Image credit: Minotti

      Contemporary, with a strong architectural appeal and pure lines reminiscent of the Mid-Century American spirit, the Connery seating system sports an exquisite aesthetic and design that instantly catch the eye.

      The clever combination of fine materials and sophisticated details adds a hint of couture to its design. An extremely versatile seating system, in terms of both composition and combination of materials, Connery has a distinctive personality also expressed in the pairing of original square and round chaise-lounges.

      Torii– nendo design

      Luxury interiors with Minotti products

      Image credit: Minotti

      Airy, with constructive details linked to Japanese tradition, the Torii modular seats play with round edged volumes, thin profiles and the apparent formal simplicity of an extremely detailed design. The metal structure of the legs of the seats and tables is Nendo’s nod to the image of the “torii”, the entrance gate to Shinto shrines in Japan.

      With an interlocking game, the horizontal elements are laid on the vertical supports, ensuring a sophisticated visual lightness that accommodates the padded volume, characterised by couture craftsmanship.

      The Torii family includes sofas – with high or low backrest and a linear shape, rounded at the arms – inclined sofas with a combination of two different depths, armchairs and lounge and dining little armchairs, ottomans, coffee tables, and a slender, oval-shaped console table, ideal for placing anywhere in the living area.

      Blazer – Rodolfo Dordoni design

      Striking interior setting featuring Minotti seats

      Image credit: Minotti

      A virtuous combination of its design appeal, visible in the rigorous geometry of its volumes, and the haute couture approach exemplified by its precise, meticulous sartorial craftsmanship, Blazer is one of the creations that best expresses the most authentic artisanal attitude of Minotti.
      All the surfaces of the elements feature stitching, designing evenly-spaced bands on the covering of the base, cushions, armrests and backrest, and creating a quilting effect that identifies its look and instantly provides a sensation of comfort.

      The system includes seats with a depth of 108 cm and chaise-longue elements with a depth of 143 cm – with high and low backrests and armrests.
      The system is complemented by a series of cushions in different sizes and headrests, which can be freely positioned, decorating the seats and offering maximum comfort.

      The wide range, comprising sofas with strong character as well as modular elements, allows for the creation of original configurations, freely customisable thanks to the extensive choice of elements and exclusive coverings available.

      EDITOR’S PICK: Daiki – Marcio Kogan/studio mk27 design

      Inspired by the Brazilian architect’s many trips to Japan, the Daiki seats are born out of Marcio Kogan’s deep passion for Japanese culture and are conceived as a real tribute to Japanese design.

      The Daiki family includes armchairs with a deep seat, available both with and without armrests, and footstool. Created using sophisticated wood crafting techniques, the curved shell comprises two elements joined at a 45° angle, with a sloping backrest that guarantees maximum comfort. In palisander Santos or flamed ash veneer with Liquorice colour stain, the shell offers a snug fit for the cushions, and sits on a metal frame with legs in a Black-Nickel finish. In the version with leather upholstery, the cushions are quilted with stitching, while in the fabric version they only feature stitching.

      Daiki offers a design that also explores and reinterprets the American Mid-Century atmospheres in its bold, clean lines, precious materials and balanced proportions.

      Fynn Collection – GamFratesi design

      Image credit: Minotti

      Scandinavian values meet Italian tradition in Fynn, a project created by combining fine cabinet-making in the wooden elements and sophisticated upholstering with fabric or saddle-hide.

      The signature element of the Fynn seats is the armrest, elongated and slightly curved, rounded and smooth to the touch, 100 per cent handmade. Its precise, well-defined line identifies the whole family of seats, in the two Fynn and Fynn Saddle-Hide versions. Covered with the exclusive fabrics and saddle-hides in the collection, it fully expresses the high level of the elegant sartorial process which has always been Minotti’s distinguishing mark.

      The family comprises armchairs, lounge and dining little armchairs, benches, footstools and coffee tables.

      Mattia – Rodolfo Dordoni design

      Single Minotti armchair

      Image credit: Minotti

      Mattia is inspired by the reinterpretation of a creative sign from the early Seventies, offering a modern take on a design from the Minotti archive.
      The finely contoured shell accommodates the seat, opening up like a corolla to host the original roller feature of the backrest. Formal solutions reminiscent of sculptures and the balance between the rigid structure and the suspended volume give life to seats with a soft, enveloping look.

      The family comprises a three-seater sofa, an armchair and swivel lounge armchair, available with leather shell and fabric upholstered seat and backrest, or with total fabric or leather covering.

      Conceived as precious details to streamline and lighten the design, the steel feet jetting out from underneath sport a Black-Nickel finish. The swivel base of the lounge armchair is available in the same finish.

      Liam – Rodolfo Dordoni design

      Contemporary low table in front of Minotti sofa

      Image credit: Minotti

      With its clean lines, exquisite materials and sophisticated finishes, Liam adopts an architectural approach to design, expressed in its rational shapes.

      The family of Liam coffee tables is characterised by the airy 1 cm square steel structure, which designs a lightweight volume, defined by a polished Pewter colour finish. It hosts a top in Calacatta marble, Grigio Orobico marble, Black pâte de verre glass or brushed oak with Moka colour lacquer finish. In some elements, it also accommodates a lower, wooden surface for holding books, magazines and objects, also in brushed oak with Moka colour lacquer finish. Liam comes in a range of different sizes, with a square or rectangular shape, which can be used together to design original configurations, also matching them with tops of different materials.

      Flirt – Rodolfo Dordoni design

      Designed as a jewel-sculpture, with its metallic glints, the Flirt coffee table adds a bright touch to interiors. The structure, made entirely from a sheet of polished stainless-steel, is bent to form two “C”s facing one another, offering two semi-circular tops on different levels. Like an artist’s multiple, Flirt only comes in one size and is varnished in Black-Nickel or Gold. The screws that join the two C-shaped elements serve as decorative details, enhancing the metal sheet.

      In conclusion, the new Indoor Collection was designed imagining those living in them, their gestures and daily routines, tactile sensations, exclusive materials, the effect of the light as it illuminates a wooden or marble surface, and the gleam of a metal detail. Sophisticated furnishings, like a tailored suit, made to fit the user’s personality and taste, in line with Minotti’s design tradition. The different cultural backgrounds of the designers merge and contribute to give shape and voice to the “Minotti project”, which gathers the creative stimuli of the designers and is an exceptional example of contemporary style.

      Hotel Designs will be publishing its round-up of the Outdoor Collection 2020 by Minotti shortly. Minotti London, which is exclusive style partner at MEET UP London, 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: Minotti

      Parkside launches Matrix ceramic wall tile collection

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Parkside launches Matrix ceramic wall tile collection

      Designed in collaboration with a leading colour consultant, Matrix is the latest ceramic wall tile collection from specification company Parkside Architectural Tiles…

      Inspiring creativity, Matrix offers an unprecedented portfolio of 23 tile colours, available in matt or gloss finishes, accompanied by matching grouts and trims.

      With the Matrix collection, Parkside wanted to create a range of colours that would allow the design community to curate co-ordinated looks or mix and match colours to create striking design statements.

      The Matrix colours were developed in collaboration with colour consultant Vanessa Konig, who wanted to ensure that they would complement natural materials as well as work across a range of environments; from warm, cosy restaurants and bars to more pared-back, minimalist designs.

      Image credit: Parkside Architectural Tiles

      The colours range from neutrals and pastels through to brights and jewels with some colours, such as Victoria Purple or Heritage Blue, being particularly on trend. Vanessa comments, “The deep, almost ultramarine, Heritage Blue would team up well with crisp white architectural details, used as you would a paint colour. For example, completely tiling a bathroom space floor to ceiling in this rich, elegant colour.”

      Available in 148 x 148mm and 98 x 198mm, every Matrix colour is accompanied by matching straight edge and box trims, as well as grout, allowing the creation of a beautifully coordinated end result in solid colour, or to experiment with striking designs combining contrasting tiles, grouts and trims. Sample boxes are available that include all 23 tile colours, grouts and a selection of trims.

      Image credit: Parkside Architectural Tiles

      If Matrix doesn’t have the options to meet specific colour requirements for a project, then Parkside’s Design Lab can work to any RAL or Pantone reference for ceramic wall tiles in a variety of sizes. However, with 23 tile, grout and trim colours to choose from, Matrix is a wonderful place to start.

      Parkside Architectural Tiles 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: Parkside Architectural Tiles

      GOING LIVE: Discussing colour & wellbeing with Parkside

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      GOING LIVE: Discussing colour & wellbeing with Parkside

      Placing colour and wellbeing under the spotlight, editor Hamish Kilburn will join Parkside Architectural Tiles’ live at 16:00 (BST) today for the virtual panel discussion entitled: Curative Colour: the power to heal (click here to register)…

      Parkside Architectural Tiles is hosting a webinar to celebrate the upcoming launch of its new ceramic wall tile collection. Inspiring creativity, Matrix offers a range of 23 colours, accompanied by matching grouts and trims, that will allow the design community to curate co-ordinated looks or mix and match colours to create striking design statements.

      Click here to secure your virtual seats in the audience.

      Chaired by Joanna Watchman from workinmind.org, experts in wellbeing in the workplace, key designers and industry professionals will discuss how colour can improve wellbeing and be incorporated into thoughtful design. Joining Watchman on the virtual sofa will be Ben Channon, associate architect and head of wellbeing at Assael Architecture; Constantina Tsoutsikou, founder of Studio LOST who will bring a hospitality and public space perspective; Hamish Kilburn, editor, Hotel Designs; and Vanessa Konig, Konig Colours.

      The webinar will be recorded and sent out afterwards to all registered attendees. If you have a question in advance for our panel then please pop this in the ‘questions and comments’ box when registering or email the team here.

      Parkside Architectural Tiles 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: Parkside Architectural Tiles

      FEATURE: the making of a Moroccan dream

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      FEATURE: the making of a Moroccan dream

      Hotel Designs explores how design firm KAI Interiors converted an authentic Moroccan building into a timeless hotel… 

      The Dar Jasmine Boutique Hotel began as a dream in owner Yasmina Markouch’s mind when she began digging to make way for the building that now stands proudly in Chefchaouen, Morocco.

      After hunting for the ideal designer, she finally found KAI Interiors and we came on board to bring her dream into reality.

      Kai Interiors wanted to create an authentic, welcoming boutique hotel, led by traditional techniques, taking inspiration from Moroccan style and utilising local craftspeople to produce the majority of items and finishes. It needed to be authentic, but to have a contemporary twist, so it stands apart from the other hotels in the area.

      The build and fit-out itself took four years to complete. A vast amount of the elements are bespoke and handcrafted. The design is a perfect combination of Moroccan culture and traditional techniques, with a modern European edge. It is colourful and rich, yet calming and inviting. It feels elegant and luxurious, yet still feels rustic and sympathetic to the local area and surroundings. The aesthetic of the hotel sets the tone, but it was imperative that everything was practical too.

      Rich green planting and Jasmine flowers feature throughout the site, enhancing the natural light and the stunning view. We aimed to incorporate the view into the interior, and integrating the inside with natural surroundings was essential. One of the special elements about this hotel is the natural setting, featuring a wonderful roof terrace space perfect for yoga sessions and enjoying the view. One side overlooks the mountains, whilst the other looks down on the Chefchaouen city below, which is sprinkled with many variations of blue painted homes. The exterior of the hotel is painted in a very pale blue, in keeping with the theme of the city. Huge windows in the restaurant allow guests to view the city below and form a smooth transition into the natural setting outside.

      The restaurant and bar space is an impactful statement with dark blue tadelakt walls, contrasted with the bright exotic fabric. The lighting is a mix of hand-carved pineapple wall lights and perforated bronze pendants, designed to create delicate shadows against the walls in the evenings. Internal furniture and joinery were made by one joiner, which brought a cohesive character to the space. A stand out piece is the bar frontage, which features hand carved palm leaves.

      Image credit: KAI Interiors/The Dar Jasmine Hotel

      Image credit: KAI Interiors/The Dar Jasmine Hotel

      The communal spaces were designed to feel like a relaxing, home environment where guests feel comfortable to roam the grounds. It was requested that guests have the opportunity to enjoy peaceful moments within the space, so small nooks and hideaways were created throughout.

      The hotel rooms are all inspired by different areas of the world; this is a hotel designed both to accommodate, but also inspire, travel. All of the tiles used within the hotel were hand cut and glazed to bespoke colours, then set into bespoke patterns and shapes. Striking elements of the hotel are the marble parquet flooring, which makes a strong statement on arrival, and the many Moroccan tiles which are celebrated from room to room. Vases and pots with hand painted patterns were made by local tribes in the mountains and brought down to the city, then positioned within the hotel.

      KAI Interiors 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: KAI Interiors/The Dar Jasmine Hotel

      PRODUCT WATCH: Focus’ latest outdoor fireplaces

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Focus’ latest outdoor fireplaces

      Summer, according to Focus, should be spent outside surrounded by elegance and warmth. Hotel Designs gets cosy around the outdoor fire to understand the brand’s latest range of products…

      Gathering around a fire is the highlight of convivial summer evenings.

      But a Focus design gives the experience extra soul and style, making special moments of life, whether on vacation, on the terrace or by the pool, unforgettable.

      Luxurious terrace with outdoor fireplace

      Image credit: Focus

      Focus’s outdoor range, which includes seven models – Gyrofocus, Bathyscafocus, Domofocus, Emifocus, Ergofocus, Miofocus and Paxfocus available in two versions: rust or black paint with anti-corrosion treatment.  This range offers a warm welcome to guests in any location.

      New for Summer 2020: compact and moveable, the amazing Bubble takes over the terrace.

      Image credit: Focus

      The new Bubble brazier is designed as a wood-burning outdoor fire. Intended to be installed in a garden or on a terrace, for the city or country, it is a compact and chic heat source with flickering flames designed to be enjoyed on balmy summer evenings. Equipped with two castors (on the back) and measuring a compact 700 mm in diameter, this brazier can be easily moved on level ground. Its removable inner bowl makes for low maintenance while its anti-corrosion coating allows it to withstand the effects of environment,  protecting the quality of its finish and its design. Bubble is part of the brazier-barbecue range that includes the ever-popular Sigmafocus and Diagofocus.

      Specialist outdoor treatments and finishes

      With the rust version, the fireplaces are treated with acid in the factory to start the process which allows metal to age naturally. Whilst, on delivery, the rust-finished fires are orange, the outdoor installation will allow the rust to evolve over time. Rusty steel will darken and evolve a unique patina resembling old leather or patinated bronze. It is then, according to Focus its most authentic and resplendent.

      Image credit: Focus

      In the matt black version, the paint has a specific anti-corrosion treatment. To benefit from the Focus guarantee, all outdoor models must be installed under cover and at least 10 km from the seaside.

      Focus 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: Focus

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

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      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

      Hyatt to expand Alila Brand in Americas

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Hyatt to expand Alila Brand in Americas

      Expected to open in early 2021, Alila Marea Beach Resort Encinitas will become the brand’s debut new-build resort and will shelter innovative eco-design and authentic destination experiences…

      Hyatt has announced plans for the first new-build Alila resort in the Americas, which will be located in Encinitas, Calif., a quintessential beach town in San Diego’s North County Coastal region.

      Alila Marea Beach Resort Encinitas is being designed by San Diego-based Joseph Wong Design Associates with interior design by Mark Zeff Associates. Developed by JMI Realty and Fenway Capital Advisors, the hotel will add to Hyatt’s growing Alila brand portfolio, joining Ventana Big Sur, an Alila Resort, as the brand’s second hotel in California and the U.S., along with 14 other luxury properties worldwide.

      “We are thrilled to announce the development of the first new-build Alila resort in the Americas, marking a significant milestone for Hyatt,” said Susan Santiago, Global Head of Lifestyle and Miraval Operations at Hyatt. “The Alila brand has long been a leader in crafted luxury and responsible tourism, and Alila Marea Beach Resort Encinitas will embody that same ethos when it debuts in Southern California.”

      Situated along coastal bluffs and overlooking Grandview and South Ponto Beaches, Alila Marea Beach Resort Encinitas will be a luxury oceanfront hotel with 130 guestrooms, including 16 suites. The resort will offer an ocean-view restaurant with rooftop patio, a pool with pool bar and an infinity-edge hot tub, a luxury Spa Alila and spectacular wedding and events venues, all with panoramic Pacific Ocean and lagoon views.

      The hotel will seamlessly blend into the bluffs with natural building materials and native plants, delivering on the brand’s reputation of innovative eco-design. With the hotel’s namesake, “Marea,” meaning “tide” in Italian and Spanish, the resort will provide a distinctly Southern California feel, with bespoke experiences inspired by the area’s natural landscape, as well as its vibrant surf and beach culture.

      Main image credit: Hyatt/Alila

      Luxury outdoor area at Sopwell House

      MINIVIEW: Designing a ‘bare foot luxury spa’ at Sopwell House

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      MINIVIEW: Designing a ‘bare foot luxury spa’ at Sopwell House

      Design studio Sparcstudio created a relaxed, yet elegant design concept to the recently refurbished £14 million Cottonmill Club spa within Sopwell House in St Albans, Hertfordshire…

      Set in the beautiful Hertfordshire countryside, on the outskirts of historic St Albans in England, the Club at Cottonmill within Sopwell House was unveiled to the public in August last year.

      Luxury outdoor area at Sopwell House

      With an eye on the luxury guest market, the £14 million project covered an extensive development period of six years. Owned since 1986 by the family-run AB Hotels, Sopwell House retains its original Georgian grandeur with the main building sheltering the majority of the hotel’s accommodation, its restaurants and the spa, which now has a two-tiered membership that offers a new level of exclusivity in the shape of The Club at Cottonmill.

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio Design

      Sparcstudio developed the interiors and architectural design for the project which included a total refurbishment of the existing spa areas and the addition of a large, sleek glazed three-storey extension linking on to a new private spa garden (designed by Ann Marie Powell). Sparcstudio worked with Debi Green to develop the operational details and ISA Architects were appointed to assist with the delivery of the building itself.

      Tasked with creating a premium aesthetic throughout the spa, Sparcstudio employed a rich, natural palette of materials, including marble and carved limestone relief tiles in the reception’s column cladding, as well as end-grain timbers to create a tactile feel.

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Clever space planning with bespoke designed elements and experiences create moments of surprise for the guest as Beverley Bayes, Creative Director, Sparcstudio explains: “The unique feel of Cottonmill is largely down to space-planning and the inclusion of so many bespoke aspects and experiences.

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      “We hope there is an element of surprise in the guest journey, which begins in the spaces carved out of original rooms within the Georgian building, but ends in an amazing contemporary new build over three levels with full-height glazing and direct links to the glamorous spa garden.”

      The project features bespoke furniture design and fittings, from the small oval glass, brass and stone tables in the ‘sitting room’, the luxurious bespoke double loungers for the Garden Relaxation and Whisper rooms to bronze privacy screens, as well as the glazed critical screens between reception and the ‘sitting room’ with ‘cotton-reel’ installation.

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Bayes elaborates: “We are very lucky to have worked with a visionary client who has been involved in every detail. AB Hotels managed the implementation of this huge project themselves and we respect the extra mile they went to ensure the design was beautifully implemented, from the ‘sunray’ veneered doors with their Calacatta-lined architraves to the etched glass doors and bespoke cast metal handles of the heat cabins.”

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Barefoot luxury

      The overall feel of the interiors is über luxurious and is driven by the guest experience and the desire to create a beautiful spa journey that is stimulating as well as ‘Relaxed and Informal’, combining glamour and a sense of ‘Barefoot luxury’ that you might enjoy in a luxury resort outside of the UK. Bayes explains: “The swinging woven suspended seats around the bespoke fireplaces (clad with blocks of end grain willow) provide a playful touch and the social centre piece of each of the main relaxation spaces.

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      Image credit: Cottonmill Spa at Sopwell House, designed by Sparcstudio

      “We are particularly proud of the variety of bespoke designed heat cabins that we created which range from the organic sauna which is formed from Aspen, a white timber, and with the natural light flooding in, feels like you are sitting in the garden, to the glamorously lit Quartz lined salt stream room, and the first floor angular Panoramic that provides dramatic views on two sides of the grounds. ‘The jewel in the crown’ is the green slate lined outdoor Hydro-pool which is designed to provide an experience akin to ‘wild swimming’.

      Comfort was key in the design of aspects and elements throughout the spa which boasts deep bespoke sofas laden with cushions in grey green and aqua shades crafted from fabrics including washed cotton and linen. Interiors feature a rich and sumptuous, but natural palette of materials, which includes smerelda marble, carved limestone relief tiles (reception column cladding) and end grain timbers to create a tactile feel. Bayes concludes: “We think the overall outcome is luxurious, warm and welcoming, definitely relaxing and conducive to contemplation and wellbeing.”

      Sparcstudio 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: SparcStudio/Sopwell House

      Mirror, mirror on the wall, how do I meaningfully design reflective surfaces?

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Mirror, mirror on the wall, how do I meaningfully design reflective surfaces?

      Reflective surfaces mirror a fascination for us all. Whether viewed across a becalmed lake or through an ornate framed reflection over the mantel place they each are seemingly a portal to another world. Designer Peter Mance, the director of MAAPS Design and Architecture, explains…

      For interior design, mirrors and reflective surfaces are a material superpower and an integral component of how MAAPS reimagines and designs space.

      Once solely a mystical surface and religious metaphor for divine interpretation by Scryers and Soothsayers, mirrors are seemingly a portal to another world. As such, reflection continues to carry a residual sense of visual mystery, fascination and wonder, whether viewed across a becalmed lake or through an ornate framed mirror above the mantel.

      In the context of architecture and interiors, mirrors retain a magical ability to bend, extend, and morph our perception of and our relationship to inhabited space. Hovering between two and three dimensions, and in the fleeting moment of transparency, mimicry, and illusion, one’s imagination and perception of reality both instantly undergo four remarkable kinds of spatial transformation through a looking glass. This is what Plato refers to as a “visual spirit” which zips from the eye to a mirror, is reflected back to the observer’s face, thence to the mirror again, and finally back to the eye…

      Compressed History

      The first mirrored surfaces recorded are in found in polished artifacts dating back to 600BC. Hero(n) of Alexandria (15 to 75AD), a Greek mathematician and engineer who invented the steam engine, extols the many virtues and practical applications of refraction and reflection in his work of Catoptrica.

      His explorations and observations form the philosophical foundations of perception and understanding of visual reality.

      Later, and more menacingly, the power of reflected light was deployed in warfare by Anthemius (of Tralles) in ~500AD. Adopting a central hexagonal mirror and an encircling corona to guide the light of the sun to a single point of focus, Anthemius created the “burning” mirror – effectively the first analogue laser capable of incinerating approaching fleets or armies.

      Greek explorations seeking answers to the secret of light and perception, and later taken up by Arabic scholars, were lost; then rediscovered and translated into Latin to be studied anew throughout Europe during the Renaissance period. Murano in Italy became the epicentre of glass and subsequently mirror technology during the 15th & 16thC. It is no coincidence that Venetian artisans evolve the highly coveted skill of applying tin backing to glass sheets

      As Italy’s economic dominance wains during the 17thC, France’s unrelenting desire to acquire the secrets of mirrors finally succeeds when three Murano masters are bribed and transported into France. The Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles is the first dramatic spatial expression of this transfer of knowledge and breaks the Venetian monopoly of this magical surface. The captured technology of mirror making is here wielded by the Sun King as a regal platform, reflecting and multiplying the ornate splendour of this spectacular room and the expansive gardens beyond – representing a kingdom of infinite opulence.

      Public/private view

      Mirrors in a public place provide a collective shared view and simultaneous private view. We are constantly intrigued, anticipating what may happen consciously when these parallel views states and individual perceptions of realities collide. A tantalising, fractured kaleidoscope of splintered shards of illusionary reality are experienced as space and time are transformed by these glamourous and beguiling surfaces.

      Humankind are one of the few species that can intellectually comprehend reflection and identify ourselves in a reflection. It is interesting to note that we often describe our internal mental landscape and moods using outward spatial perceptions – to reflect, to gain a sense of perspective.

      The mirror is a unique facet of a noetic experience within the places in which we dwell and inhabit. Providing an internalised realm of calm meditation of what we see. Sometimes pleasurable, occasionally surprising or reassuring, often strangely disconcerting, the act of catching oneself in a reflective surface is so fundamental to our continual assessment of ourselves. The viewer, through their observation is necessary reflected, and the conscious moment of evaluation, place, and time, is instant.

      Use in space

      Designing with mirrors is to invite a space to transform and open. The use of a large statement mirror can make a small room appear much larger than it is, particularly if the mirror encompasses an entire wall, is placed in a central location, or even if it is shaped like a window to create the illusion of openness and space beyond.

      Image caption: Jewel Hotel Guestroom, New York | Image credit: MAAPS/RHA

      Depending on the size, shape, placement, and ornamentation of a mirror, it can serve a variety of different aesthetic and functional purposes in an architectural or interior setting. Mirrors can act as spatial camouflage, layering, collapsing, and disrupting the passage of light.  Within interiors mirrors can be considered as deliberate object, or as a mass surface, a portal, or as a focusing device.

      Glancing views providing anticipation of approaching spaces, providing visual intrigue and pull, a sense of discovery, and self-animated movement. Mirrors positioned close to the line of the ceiling visually appropriate illusionary volumes and breath into the implied space beyond.

      Image caption: Mirage installation for Hungary’s 2014 Sziget Music Festival | IMage credit: Studio Nomad

      Ultimately, mirrors possess a chameleon quality and can dramatically transform a built space, where an interior either expands or dissolves and our visual experience of perception is shifted. Whether mirrors serve to accentuate an existing interior, lead you visually through to another space, tease and stimulate our curiosity, keep the imagination engaged, or simply to characterise a newly built space, they are versatile devices and instruments of light.

      Mirrors in bathroom

      Image caption: The Infiniti Bathroom | Image credit: MAAPS

      Therefore, it is only natural as designers that we want to celebrate reflection within the interior as both a quality of physical and mental space. In a constrained bathroom, 900mm wide, we played the Infiniti game and applied mirrors to directly opposing surfaces. The smallest room transforms into a meditative space for expansive contemplation.

      Sir John Soane’s Museum

      Soane’s s use of light and mirrors is perhaps the most captivating aspect of the museum interior for us. Many of the principle rooms are delightfully augmented and subtly rendered with natural lighting effects and carefully positioned mirrors. Perhaps seen to greatest effect in the Library, Dining Room and Breakfast Room.

      Soane’s use of light is a distinctive and consistent trait of his architecture and interiors. He produced complex, multi-layered effects with light and shade by innovatively deploying forms and structure to marshal the play of light. Creatively implementing devices, still in use today, such as top-lighting, strategically aligned mirrored surfaces and vistas, along with coloured glass to transform the experience of the spaces he designed.

      Soane’s spatial techniques were instrumental and one of the contextual sources of inspiration for our use of mirrors with the guestrooms at Club Quarters Lincoln’s Inn Fields hotel.

      Mirrors in modern guestroom

      Image caption: Club Quarters, Lincoln’s Inn Fields Alumni Guestroom | Image credit: MAAPS

      Perception of light

      Lebbeus Woods’ notes on “Measuring Light” (April 30, 2012) are apposite when considering our relationship and engagement with the reflected self. As with Sir John Soane, it is the handling of light that is important. “Light is a natural phenomenon the complexity of which reveals the structure of human consciousness. Objects, including building, in their absorption and reflection of light stimulate a human’s neural networks, in effect activating the brain. The more complex and nuanced the stimulation the more the brain comes to life. Shape, edge, texture, colour, shadow, highlight – play with and against one another – effectively enable the brain to make the most subtle distinctions, thereby imbuing human experiences with a richness and complexity that defines it… the perception of light is central.”

      The mirror can therefore be viewed as an instrument that reveals the presence of light and therefore giving it a precise measure and place in our conception of interior space. As designers for Zoffini we have taken to heart Woods’ sensibilities of light and aligned it with Anthemius’ articulated mirror instrument to create our own variant of a “Shift Mirror”. Breaking the reflected surface, to redirect light, and to offer an altered sense of perspective.

      Image caption: Shift Mirror, Crown Mirror, and Sutton Fire Surround for Zoffini | Image credit: MAAPS

      In conclusion, it is not at all surprising that we have come to appreciate the mirrored surface as such a wonderful and adaptive material in the world of design. The mirror is an oddly passive, introspective, intrusive, and energetic surface. Not just because it reflects the environments and people around it, but because by the very nature of its reflective quality transforms the way we see the world that surrounds us.

      Though we may have rationally put away all mystical metaphors, mirrors will remain analogous with the stuff of magic and imagination – from mirrors on walls used by manipulative stepmothers to joining Alice with her Looking Glass portal to step through into a different world.

      Written and pondered while listening too: The Beat – ‘Mirror in the Bathroom’, Benjamin Britten – ‘Narcissus from Six Metamorphoses after Ovid’, Need For Mirrors – ‘Reverie’, Maurice Ravel – ‘Miroirs III’, Harold Budd – ‘The Serpent in Quicksilver’, Bomb The Base – ‘So Special (Toob’s Special Special Mix), John McCarthy & Ken Currie, BBC Something Understood (06/03/2016) – ‘On Reflection’; Reading Mark Pendergrast – Mirror Mirror, Lebbeus Woods blog notes from Slow Manifesto, Jonathan Miller – On Reflection, Stefan Buzas & Richard Bryant – Sir John Soane’s Museum, Team Yellowtrace – Mesmerising Mirrors in Art & Architecture, David Hockney – Secret Knowledge… at home.

      MAAPS Design and Architecture 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: David Hockney – Viewers Looking at a Ready-Made with Skull and Mirrors

      The Flame of mori.london by Studio Waldemeyer

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      The Flame of mori.london by Studio Waldemeyer

      Lighting expert Mortiz Waldemeyer’s innovative collection was born from the simple act of playing with fire. Hotel Designs learns more…

      As far back as the collective memory of mankind goes, the flame has been the first and only light source, guiding our ancestors through history from the moment we dared to differentiate ourselves from the animal kingdom. The fascination with the movement and warmth of this light source is hardwired into our brains thanks to millions of years of this most special of relationships. The advent of electric light has done nothing to diminish our love for candle light, if anything it has helped to emphasise, just how special it’s effect is to us.

      A few years back a playful experiment with a small LED matrix at Studio Waldemeyer produced a surprising result. Despite it’s very low resolution, the digital circuit managed to perfectly reproduce the complex motion of a flame. But the surprise was less in the technical ability but in people’s response to it. As if by magic we had captured the essence of everything a flame means, and added some intrigue. The tiny circuit had its own soul and captured peoples imagination unlike anything we had created up to this point or since.

      After an encouraging debut with Ingo Maurer, London based Studio Waldemeyer launched their own brand mori.london on Kickstarter in 2017 while simultaneously showing the new line during Milan Design Week.

      Studio Waldemeyer

      Image credit: Studio Waldemeyer

      mori.london sets out to define a completely new category of LED lighting: playful, emotional, atmospheric and elegant, always innovative and always low power and low impact on the environment. mori.london creates the perfect balance of beautifully crafted objects with a sprinkling of tech. We use inspiration from the past to re-invent the future.

      The response to the concept has been incredible: thumbs up from design heroes     such as Ingo Maurer, Philippe Starck and Tom Dixon and a place in MoMA’s permanent collection. The London Design Museum shows the history of light inventions starting with Edison’s light bulb and finishing with the mori.london LED candle.

      The versatility of the concept perfectly lends itself to beautiful bespoke installations. Bicester village trusted Studio Waldemeyer two years in a row with gigantic Christmas installations based on LED flames. Thousands of oil lamps and flying lanterns magically transformed their UK, French and German retail villages.

      Nobu Hotel’s minimalist Christmas tree made it onto every single list of London’s best Christmas trees in 2018 while mori.london chandeliers started appearing at Rossana Orlandi Gallery during Milan design week.

      Studio Waldemeyer

      Image Credit: Studio Waldemeyer

      The product range is growing further, currently, new wall lights and XL flames are in the works with higher resolution and more detailed animation, while the studio has taken on new commissions of the largest installations yet to be seen.

      Studio Waldemeyer 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: Studio Waldemeyer

      Lighting design: guests’ demands come first

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Lighting design: guests’ demands come first

      Following the industry emerging from the pandemic, lighting brand Franklite explains how guests are at the heart as the hospitality industry enters unchartered waters…

      It’s important to understand how the right light can be used in different environments. For instance, in a hotel, light can be used to create an ambience and welcoming feel when paired with the right decor and natural light.

      The right light can create a warm and friendly atmosphere; however, the wrong light can easily detract from a nicely decorated room.

      Lighting in hotels should be installed with guests at the heart. The entire guest experience starts as soon as you arrive at the front desk of a hotel. If you are arriving late at night, the lighting should be warm and welcoming, helping you to feel relaxed and comforted. This is in contrast to when arriving in the morning, where there should be plenty of daylight or if not possible, bright white lighting, to help you feel energised and awake.

      Image credit: Franklite

      It’s important to make the best use of light in each space, to create a relaxing atmosphere throughout the entire hotel. For example, the lighting in the restaurant will require different lighting at different times of the day. During the day, where natural light changes are more noticeable, different scenes make it easy to adapt and maintain the right light level. At night, the lighting may be needed to assist in creating a romantic setting.

      Understanding these nuances has been the key to Franklite’s success, having manufactured and distributed decorative lighting products from our purpose-built premises for more than 45 years. The brand is renowned, both in the U.K. and abroad, for the quality and versatility of its lighting, a reputation built on using only the finest components in the manufacturing process.

      The lighting brand has evolved into a company offering a diverse range of decorative LED lighting products for both interior and exterior, domestic and contract applications, including all areas of hospitality and especially in hotels.

      Franklite was one of the first manufacturers of energy saving chandeliers within the U.K. lighting industry. The brand understands the importance of keeping up to date with changes in regulation, the development of super-efficient light sources, and changing interior design trends.

      Along with its constantly updated catalogue range, Franklite is able to offer bespoke LED lighting solutions for special projects, ensuring your design is ahead of the game and adding that ‘WOW’ factor when required. The company has dedicated contract sales and technical teams with many years of experience in lighting to assist with all your requirements.

      If you would like any assistance or advice on using our products in your next project, please contact us on 01908 691818 or visit the website.

      Main image credit: Franklite

       

      UPDATE: Sleep & Eat goes virtual for 2020

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      UPDATE: Sleep & Eat goes virtual for 2020

      This year’s Sleep & Eat, which was due to physically take place at Olympia London in November, will now happen in a virtual format…

      The highly anticipated Sleep & Eat event, which year-on-year welcomes designers, architects and suppliers from across the UK and Europe, has announced that the 2020 event will go ahead, but in a slightly different format.

      Instead of being sheltered inside Olympia London, the event will now be rebranded as Sleep & Eat Virtual 2020, following the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak.

      In a statement, the organisers said: “For 15 years Sleep & Eat has been the place where the hospitality design community connects, and we understand the importance of this in the current climate. With Sleep & Eat Virtual we are excited to create an event which will enable the industry to continue to gain inspiration, source new products, expand their knowledge and network with contacts old and new.” 

      Uniquely, Sleep & Eat Virtual 2020 will also co-locate virtually with Decorex with the aim to bring the industry together on November 3 – 5. This co-location is said to offer new and exciting opportunities for both events, which will attract new audiences.

      “For the industry to bounce back quickly there is a real need for us to come together in 2020 and discuss our future,” said Sleep & Event Director, Mark Gordon. “There is still a huge desire for the industry to be united, to be inspired, share knowledge, and spark planned and ad-hoc conversations. Sleep & Eat Virtual will give all the opportunity to achieve this and we are very excited.”

      Main image credit: Sleep & Eat

      CASE STUDY: a bespoke lighting scheme for The St. Regis Venice

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      CASE STUDY: a bespoke lighting scheme for The St. Regis Venice

      Bespoke lighting solution provider Inspired by Design was approached by interior design firm Sagrada to assist in sourcing lighting for just under 200 guestrooms and suites inside The St Regis Venice…

      The St Regis Venice, designed by London-based design firm Sagrada, captures unmatched vistas that stretch over the building’s luxurious gardens, as well as the Grand Canal.

      When it came to lighting, here’s how the designers created the appropriate ambiance in both the public areas and guestrooms.

      “It was a difficult project to achieve as it required our extensive knowledge of manufacturers worldwide to produce a bespoke floor light reminiscent of the 1950s,” explains Simon Shuck from Inspired by Design. “As always, we rose to the challenge and found a factory that still had the molds available.” The factory then provided sample finishes with slightly colour variation to ensure we could match the clients exacting finishes. To finish the floorlight there was a shade manufactured to the interior designers choice of fabric and detailing.

      However, the involvement did not stop there.

      The next item was to produce a bespoke triptych mirror for the bathrooms. It had an exquisite sandblasted detailing to be produced on either side, backlit and to a very specific size and shape. The factory worked closely with the design team as numerous drawings and revisions were made until all the finer details of their designs were achieved before the triptych went into production.

      Image credit: St Regis Venice/Marriott Hotels

      Within the nearly 200 guestrooms and suites, the company’s expertise was tested again to produce both the bedside and vanity pendants . These required a facetted design to the glass, produced by Venetian master glass blowers to replicate the ceiling details. At the same time the faceting enabled the light to to cast a shadow onto the headboards to mimic the detailing on the ceiling and drapes.

      Many samples had to be produced to ensure that the overall design intent would be achieved and as always the Venetian artisans lived up to their reputation.

      The completed lighting creates a perfect ambience in the guestrooms, which compliments the history of the building. Shuck adds: “We are confident that when the guests arrive into their room they will be greeted by a beautifully and tastefully designed bedroom creating a luxurious stay in a very relaxed atmosphere.”

      Inspired By Design 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: St Regis Venice/Marriott Hotels

      Technology talk with Technological Innovations Group

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Technology talk with Technological Innovations Group

      Following lengthy debates regarding technology that took place at Hotel Designs LIVE, editor Hamish Kilburn caught up Technological Innovations Group’s Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail (EMEA) Christophe Malsot…  

      Technological Innovations Group (TIG) was the headline sponsor of Hotel Designs LIVE, the new one-day virtual conference that was born out of the idea to keep the industry connected and talking during the pandemic.

      Following my address to the audience of designers, architects, hoteliers and developers, I took five minutes ahead of going live to the first seminar of the day to speak to the brand’s Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail (EMEA), Christophe Malsot. In the quick-fire interview, I wanted to know more about the TIG ‘ecosystem of solutions’, understand how its meeting new demands of modern travellers and users as well as understanding Malsot’s view on where technology in hospitality is heading.

      Hamish Kilburn: Christophe, in a sentence, what does Technological Innovations Group (TIG) do?

      Christophe Malsot: We are an EMEA sales agency offering an ecosystem of brands at the forefront of leading-edge technology development – we provide a full range of AV, UC, IT and control solutions that work together to create superior smart spaces that transform your future!

      HK: Your vision is to create smart spaces that transform the future. Define a smart space?

      CM: Smart Spaces connect people and technology in new ways: they add real value and are created with the latest AV/UC solutions that work together seamlessly to provide a convenient, efficient and secure user experience. 

      The term refers to a space that uses Internet of Things to connect every device with a simple, intuitive and user-friendly control solution. This significantly enhances the customer experience, and increases their loyalty to you.

      For example, hosting a large group seminar or conference is easier than ever before. Guests will be impressed by the ease with which they can run their presentation and control the technologies in the room. Wireless presentation systems offer flexibility, enabling guests to stream uncompressed video from any laptop or mobile device, with just the touch of a button. Hosts can enjoy full control over the lighting, shades, temperature, and audio volume in the room through a simple touch screen. With cost-effective and energy-efficient technologies such as occupancy sensors and room scheduling software, the lighting and AV systems automatically shut down when the room is empty. And any system troubles can be remotely solved.

      HK: On your website, you mention that TIG is an eco-system of solutions for smart spaces, can you explain what you mean by this?

      CM: At TIG, we work hard to push the boundaries of technological integration for Smart Spaces. We offer a solutions-based approach to your current and future needs. There is no ‘one size fits all’, so our portfolio includes solutions that complement one another to create bespoke experiences. Our biggest technology provider is Crestron, and Crestron always sits at the heart of our ecosystem. But the other brands we represent work together to perfectly complete the desired user experience!

      To help people understand how our ecosystem works, we have actually just launched a new Virtual Experience Space on our website, where visitors can see smart space examples, which demonstrate how the technologies integrate.

      Our portfolio includes beautiful control hardware, AV and electricity remote management, applications and software, room booking, and furniture designed to fit in perfectly with specific technologies, making meeting rooms sleek and stylish.

      “Technology will be a game changer for the hotel industry in a post-pandemic world.” – Christophe Malsot, Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail (EMEA), TIG.

      HK: How has tech become more relevant since Covid-19?

      CM: Technology will be a game changer for the hotel industry in a post-pandemic world, as it helps to cater to new habits and a different user experience.

      “Customers will expect more technology to reduce the risk of contamination.” – Christophe Malsot, Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail (EMEA), TIG.

      The hospitality industry will need to offer more contactless, but still very personalised, experiences for guests. For instance, their own smartphones will be used to manage most things, such as check in and check out, to open their room, control their environment and entertainment (Audio/Video), and get in touch with the staff or the concierge… with or without app downloading! Crestron uses QR code flashing to provide a beautiful HTML 5 layout on the phone or tablet.

      Hotels need to review their existing service offerings so as to adapt to the changes in customer experience. Customers will expect more technology to reduce the risk of contamination. In order to maintain social distancing, virtual hotel tours will help to introduce the different spaces, and solutions will indicate the occupancy, availability and cleanliness status of the common areas such as gyms, restaurants, bars… For example, in meeting rooms and lobbies, expect to see fewer chairs and digital information about the last time they were used/cleaned.

      Restaurants in hotels may start using contactless delivery for in-room-dining and digital menus… Paper will disappear!

      HK: From a tech perspective, what will be the biggest change/evolution post-pandemic?

      CM: The move to contactless control. For example, upon entering the hotel, the doors may open automatically, before you enter the elevator, you might tell it where you’d like to go with your voice, rather than pressing the many buttons. When you reach your room, you can enter with your smartphone instead of a key and sensors will turn the lights on…

      Also, inside the guestrooms the learning curve must be close to zero… if you spend the whole evening understanding how the room works, you become frustrated. It needs to be quick and touchless for the guest to remain loyal.

      These are just the changes the guest will see. Less noticeable in the post-coronavirus hotel would be more frequent cleaning policies, antimicrobial properties woven into fabrics and materials, amped-up ventilation systems, or even the addition of UV lights for more thorough disinfecting of the common areas at night.

      Due to the reduction of travel and the increased usage of videoconferencing, the meeting rooms will have to provide an element of remote communication as well. TIG offers advanced remote collaboration tools from Hoylu.

      HK: In a sentence, what’s the biggest innovation in technology in hotel design right now?

      For a long period guests were able to find services they did not have in their home like international channels. Nowadays, hotel clients and international travellers have everything they need at home and they want to find the same experience in the guestroom. This means that BYOD connection is especially important. Hoteliers have to provide guests with the capacity to use their own devices to control the TV, to manage presentations in the meeting room, to connect to playlists for music, and communication apps such as Zoom, Teams… this is now a must have!

      The perfect user experience will come from ergonomics and, to provide a perfect integration, the technology systems need to be built into the hotel’s design from the very beginning. Having the right networks (Electricity and IP) in place is hugely important! This is the only way to guarantee the perfect guest and staff experience.

      Main image credit: Technological Innovations Group

      IN PICTURES: inside the new Villa Copenhagen

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      IN PICTURES: inside the new Villa Copenhagen

      The 390-key luxury hotel, Villa Copenhagen, has officially opened. Hotel Designs takes a peek inside…

      It has been one of the most anticipated openings of 2020, with architecture and design from award-winning studios such as Universal Design Studio and Goddard Littlefair, Villa Copenhagen has officially opened its doors.

      Housed in the century-old Danish Post and Telegraph office, adjacent to Tivoli Gardens, Villa Copenhagen is a Grande Dame hotel for the 21st century, offering approachable, conscious luxury through a commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and meaningful experiences that connect guests to the landscape, culture, and energy of the city.

      Exterior of the building in Copenhagen

      Image credit: Villa Copenhagen

      To ensure that the new interiors matched the grandeur of the 1912 Neo-Baroque architecture, and to keep the building at the forefront of Scandinavian design for another hundred years, the hotel appointed several design and architecture firms. The overall look and feel is credit to Universal Design Studio, which was appointed to create 381 guestrooms across the hotel’s five floors and Goddard Littlefair, which, following a number of recent award-winning projects, was responsible for the design of no less than five F&B areas sheltered within the hotel, as well as the wellness areas and meeting areas and conference rooms.

      light modern room inside Villa Copenhagen

      Image credit: Villa Copenhagen

      Evoking the ambiance of a sophisticated Danish residence, rooms feature high ceilings, herringbone floors, restored original windows, gold accents, and muted colour palettes that pay homage to paintings by 19th century Danish master Vilhelm Hammershøi. Thoughtful touches include keyless entry and remote check-in, virtual check-out, and an optional white glove service.

      The two-storey Universal Penthouse Suite features a grand walnut and steel spiral staircase leading up to lounge space and a master bedroom. Other contributors include Danish architect Eva Harlou, who designed the sought-after Earth Suite, a fully sustainable suite entirely comprised of recycled materials and textiles with eco-friendly furniture by Mater Design; and Shamballa Jewels, a Danish fine jewellery brand that designed the remaining seven suites, including The Shamballa Master Suite, which is the most expensive suite in Denmark at US$8,100 per night, as well as two other spaces within the hotel, specifically The Courtyard and Old Boardroom.

      Image caption: The Courtyard | Image credit: Villa Copenhagen/Stine Christiansen

      Image caption: The Courtyard | Image credit: Villa Copenhagen/Stine Christiansen

      Villa Copenhagen is also home to the city’s finest private art collection valued at more than US$2 million. With celebrated art curator Sune Nordgren at the helm, current artworks on display include pieces by local talent and celebrated international artists, including Jaume Plensa, Per Kirkeby, and Ian McKeever.

      The new luxury address features ample outdoor and interior green spaces, including a generous rooftop pool, to promote a sense of wellbeing and tranquillity across its public areas, going above and beyond current government health and sanitation regulations while maintaining its vision of delivering an inspiring and playful ambiance.

      Rooftop pool on top of Villa Copenhagen

      Image credit: Villa Copenhagen/Stine Christiansen

      Executive Chef Tore Gustafsson is responsible for Villa Copenhagen’s sustainable food profile, which focuses on ‘carbon-free’ dining and zero food waste. He worked with Epicurean, an F&B design studio from celebrated interior design house Goddard Littlefair, to develop all five of the hotel’s food and beverage outlets.

      Located on the ground floor in the former sorting room of the Post House, the Public and Rug Bakery outlets make up a spacious breakfast and flexible event space with an open kitchen, where guests are provided with personalised options for fresh bread, pastries, and coffee, including individually sealed to-go ‘FIKA’ bags, as well as à la carte options that can be served via in-room dining.

      The T37 Bar & Lounge offers a menu of tongue-in-cheek aesthetic, craft cocktails, and light dishes in a beautifully restored corner with original marble columns.

      Image caption: Kontrast | Image credit: Villa Copenhagen/Stine Christiansen

      Next door, the Playroom is stocked with table and board games, books, and plush furniture for laidback evenings. Kontrast brasserie has its own street entrance facing Central Station, and provides a cosy all-day restaurant open to city residents with contemporary takes on mid-century décor. Fresh, flavourful dishes made with organic ingredients from the hidden garden and local suppliers are served by Gustafsson and his team from a bustling open kitchen.

      Image caption: The Brasserie inside Villa Copenhagen

      Image caption: The Brasserie | Image credit: Villa Copenhagen

      Opening in the post-pandemic world, in this new era for hospitality, the 390-room hotel has developed its health and hygiene policies in tandem with operational procedures to ensure travellers and local visitors enjoy a seamless guest journey, finding comfort in every corner– from the private sanctuary of the guestrooms and suites, to social hubs and dining outlets.

      Main image credit: Villa Copenhagen/Stine Christiansen

      Lusso Stone: achieving luxury status in surface design

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Lusso Stone: achieving luxury status in surface design

      Renowned for designing and creating bespoke, luxury bathroom spaces, Lusso Stone’s talented designers can offer a truly unique service designed to your exact specifications…

      Whether clients are looking to develop their own ideas or undertake a modification to an existing bathroom product, the team at Lusso Stone will work with customers every step of the way, to bring dazzling designs to life.

      Lusso’s designers embrace the challenge of creating a unique design that is tailored to individual needs and specifications, ensuring clients get a real feel for what the business specialises in. With privately-owned Lusso factories, products are manufactured from raw materials and therefore the team can often work with clients to customise products to fit their specific requirements.

      Whether the unique bespoke service is needed for a project that requires something extra special, or a commercial project that involves a number of customised items, the Lusso team will work to a client’s needs to fully understand and deliver the project on budget and on time.

      For commercial projects, Lusso will design products from inception, taking them from concept to completion and guiding clients through all possibilities to ensure accurate costings and lead times.

      Image credit: Lusso Stone

      Lusso have worked on complete hotel refurbishments such as the Trocadero Hotel in London, Sugar Beach Resort in St Lucia and a multitude of other projects around the world.

      The business’s bespoke service has also been used to create specific items for the refurbishments of prestigious hotels including The Connaught and Claridge’s, part of the famous Maybourne Group.

      Lusso’s main aim is to set the standard for what living should be. When only bespoke will do, make sure you speak to the experts.

      Lusso materials

      By utilising a unique blend of pure white limestone infused with high-performance resin, Lusso’s products are all hand-finished by experienced, passionate craftsmen. The team strives to create the ultimate bathroom experience, combining modern luxury with elegant design in a selection of finishes. Quality lies at the heart of everything they do, with a lifetime guarantee on all Lusso products.

      The naturally formed, quarried limestone used is carefully selected and cleaned for purity before it is ground into a fine powder. Next, the powder is skillfully mixed with clear resin to create a radiant finish that looks naturally white without the synthetic, bleached look of acrylic.

      As a renewable material, almost any damage to the stone surface can be fixed easily to a like-new condition. It is also non-porous, preventing the build-up of any bacteria in areas where it matters most.

      Every Lusso product is hand-finished to offer a perfectly smooth surface that is elegant on the eye and a pleasure to touch. The natural stone gives each finished piece unique warmth and a beautiful, tactile feel. The addition of Lusso’s premium-grade resin creates a bond with unbeatable strength and discernible durability.

      Lusso’s signature formula and striking designs combine to create a luxurious feel with an aesthetically pleasing appearance. The natural appeal of the stone resin conveys an air of tranquility, exceptional comfort and enviable elegance, which is why the products have been carefully chosen by some of the UK’s leading four and five-star luxury hotels, as well as beautiful resorts across the world.

      A bathroom should be a place of effortless comfort and relaxation, creating an atmosphere that soothes the soul and invigorates the senses.

      Lusso Stone 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: Lusso Stone/Dorchester Collection

      Sleep & Eat launches three-day virtual event

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Sleep & Eat launches three-day virtual event

      The new virtual event, Designscape, will take place August 11 – 13…

      From the creative minds behind Sleep & Eat, Designscape aims to bring together those at the forefront of residential, hospitality and retail at a time when physical networking and deal-making is unfeasible.

      The three-day programme will look into the future of design, combining virtual discussions, educational and topical symposiums, global matchmaking, speed networking as well as a product directory. 

      Image credit: Designscape

      The exclusive content programme will focus beyond forecasts, instead digging deeper into how behavioural changes and outside influences are transforming the design landscape as we know it. The event promises to deliver a diverse line-up of discussions and symposiums from trailblazers in business and design to innovators in science and technology and we would love you to be a part of it.

      Crafted to stimulate every corner of the industry, ‘Day 1 [Retail]’ of our programme will examine physical spaces becoming experience driven, the intersection of retail and digital, the progression of the everyday kitchen and the shop window as the ultimate storyteller. ‘Day 2 [Residential]’ will focus on new criteria and considerations governing the design of the home, the evolving and uncomfortable notion of luxury, the emergence of modern primitive styles and the current state of the residential market. ‘Day 3 [Hospitality]’ will host a line-up of talks around the alignment of sustainability and safety, AI’s impact on customer experiences and future-proofing expansion and investment plans.

      For more information, and to secure your virtual seats in the audience, head over to the website.

      Main image credit: Designscape

      Wellness is boundless with Rainfinity by hansgrohe

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Wellness is boundless with Rainfinity by hansgrohe

      The bold innovative qualities of Rainfinity by Hansgrohe have taken wellness in the bathroom up a notch to not just meet but exceed the expectations of modern travellers, argues editor Hamish Kilburn… 

      Since 1901, leading luxury bathroom manufacturer hansgrohe, has continuously pushed the boundaries of bathroom design and manufacturing to create products that combine intelligent functionality, outstanding design and enduring quality.

      With its aim of helping people enjoy the beauty and simplicity of water, its latest range Rainfinity represents a new benchmark in modern shower design, marrying superior engineering with innovative technology and contemporary finishes. Offering the ultimate in showering indulgence, Rainfinity is truly unique.

      The bathroom is increasingly the place to unwind and relax. With functional, clinical aesthetics being replace by spaces that enhance wellbeing, bathroom design is having to adapt to meet the demand. Due to its large circular showerhead and adaptable wall connection, Rainfinity offers the flexibility to envelop the entire body in soft cocooning water. The innovative wall connection allows the shower head to be tilted between ten and 30 degrees, eliminating the need for a conventional shower arm, making for a more comfortable showering experience and enabling the user to keep the head and face dry if required. The shower experience is further enhanced by Rainfinity’s slightly concave surface and its diffused arrangement of jet disc holes. This combination ensures spray isn’t limited to the head and shoulders but softly showers the entire body with aerated droplets.

      Rainfinity’s shower head has three spray modes, designed to transform the daily shower routine into an extraordinary wellness experience at the simple click of a button. Inspired by the warm, misty droplets of the rainforest, PowderRain provides maximum relaxation. Thanks to six fine openings in every jet outlet, water is transformed into a fine spray that wrap the body in an ultra-quiet blanket of water for a velvety-soft sensation. Located in the centre of the jet disc, the Intense PowderRain mode uses a more concentrated jet of ultra-fine droplets to make light work of rinsing out shampoo. The invigorating RainStream mode delivers consistently high spray intensity through targeted jets, perfect for massaging the shoulders and back after a long day.

      “The Rainfinity collection also comprises a comprehensive range of hand showers, available in either the traditional or geometric rod shape.”

      The unique shower head design is available in the strikingly minimalist matt white and classic chrome finishes, with contrasting graphite spray discs. The Rainfinity collection also comprises a comprehensive range of hand showers, available in either the traditional or geometric rod shape. The range also boasts streamlined shoulder showers which enhance relaxation by sending powerful rain jets directly at the shoulers. Keeping the head and face completely dry, these shoulder showers come with integrasted shelving and concealed controls for a truly cohesive bathroom aesthetic. All parts come with the standard five-year manufacturer’s guarantee as an assurance of quality.

      International, industry-wide recognition for Rainfinity confirms its quality and function are unparalleled. Its success in being awarded the ‘Best of Best’ Red Dot Award in 2019, iF Design Award 2019 and ‘Best of Best’ Iconic Award 2020, heralds Rainfinity as the shower range for discerning wellness and design enthusiasts.

      Main image credit: hansgrohe

      Inside IHG’s debut Hotel Indigo property in Cyprus

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inside IHG’s debut Hotel Indigo property in Cyprus

      The 40-key Hotel Indigo Larnaca marks IHG Hotels & Resorts first Hotel Indigo and the second IHG property in Cyprus…

      Days after announcing its arrival in Verona, IHG Hotels & Resorts opens Hotel Indigo Larnaca, which is the first and only Hotel Indigo in Cyprus. 

      Each of the hotel’s 40 guestrooms are all uniquely designed and inspired by Cyprus’s craft heritage with balconies overlooking the picturesque city of Larnaca. Just a five-minute drive from the airport, the hotel is centrally located in one of Larnaca’s most historic areas, near the church of St. Lazarus and close to Finikoudes and Mackenzie beaches.

      Image credit: Hotel Indigo

      Within walking distance to the beach, the hotel combined two traditional Cypriot beach homes into a new hotel, marrying design elements from both old and new. The guestrooms have a modern yet contemporary feel by merging raw concrete with locally – made, brightly – coloured traditional textiles and light wooden furnishings. The en-suite bathrooms have spa-like rain showers, with brushed concrete flooring and original Cypriot tiling. All the balconies are fitted with traditional Mediterranean yellow shutters, reminiscent of old Cyprus, and mimicking the sunset amongst the surrounding mountains.

      Hotel Indigo Larnaca also offers a stunning rooftop pool and Kampana Pool Bar with breathtaking views of the sea. The regionally inspired onsite restaurant, Avli, and the Oinotelia wine bar, are conveniently situated on the ground floor and are a destination for locals, tourists, and guests.

      Image credit: Hotel Indigo

      Mr. Savvas Kakos, President and CEO of Quality Group, said: “At Quality Group we are extremely happy and proud to welcome one of the most renowned hotel groups to the city of Larnaca. Unique and intriguing by definition, and one of the world’s largest boutique brands, Hotel Indigo is now part of the wider area of Saint Lazarus and a perfect addition to the heart of the city. On behalf of Quality Group, I convey my strong faith and certainty that this brand-new and organic collaboration with IHG and Hotel Indigo will leave its mark on the hotel industry in Cyprus.”

      Inspired by the neighbourhood around each property, just as no places are alike, no two Hotel Indigo properties are the same. Each Hotel Indigo property features thoughtful design touches and vibrant restaurants and bars connected to the spirit of the local neighbourhood. Hotel Indigo Larnaca takes in the rich history of the Agios Lazaros area and is ideal for romantic getaways and caters to the most seasoned traveller. 

      Hotel Indigo Larnaca will operate under the international agreement between IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group), one of the largest hotel groups in the world, Sunnyseeker Hospitality which is the fastest growing hotel management company and Quality Group, one of the largest companies of land development and investment on the island.

      There are currently 119 Hotel Indigo properties open globally including the recently opened Hotel Indigo Verona – Grand Hotel Des Arts, with another 104 in the pipeline to open in the next three to five years. 

      Main image credit: Hotel Indigo/IHG

      PRODUCT WATCH: Aqualisa zones into the smart bathroom

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Aqualisa zones into the smart bathroom

      The use of technology as part of the hotel bathroom experience has taken a giant leap forward with Aqualisa, the showering innovation brand…

      Personalisation is the mantra and while bespoke services surely must lie at the heart of the modern hotel offering, the bathroom has lagged behind in terms of an enhanced personal experience, which is surprising when showering and bathing have always been such significant differentiators when it comes to  guest evaluation of hotel quality.

      Of course, coronavirus too has accelerated the need for technology solutions that will give guests greater peace of mind in terms of personal safety and control, especially when it comes to zero touch facilities.

      With the introduction of the first truly smart shower, Aqualisa has developed a genuinely contactless shower and bath fill solution that will completely change the hotel bathroom experience. Full wifi connectivity that allows activation from anywhere and a smart app menu to control flow, temperature and duration at last aligns the hotel bathroom experience to what consumers are increasingly demanding in their daily lives. “Turn on my shower” will be heard more and more in a hotel environment that will have to focus on private rather than communal areas to provide the premium customer experience.

      Aqualisa’s leadership in digital showering, based on groundbreaking touch technology, dates back to 2001 and now takes showering forward into the smart revolution based on mobile and the IoT. Two smart ranges, the Quartz and Q Collections, both offer a full menu of shower settings which can be individually selected and managed from a smart device. A variety of modern and compact product design options, all connected and voice activated via Google Home and Amazon Alexa, will look good in all types of room style.

      Image credit: Aqualisa

      As well as the sheer convenience and indulgence, there are some clear commercial advantages of smart showering in terms of both installation and running costs. The intelligent Aqualisa SmartValve, which is the brains of the system, is sited away from the showering area for easy access but also freeing up more space in the showering area itself. It makes retrospective upgrades easy and straightforward as well as improving the design aesthetic. Perhaps even more compelling in the post Covid economy is the ability of hotel management to centrally monitor water usage and costs, if necessary, adjusting the water flow through hotel bathrooms

      If millennials expect smart technology, future generations won’t know anything different and the hotel bathroom, always the litmus test for comfort and well-being, is where the opportunity lies to create an experience zone which plays to the increasingly personal needs of paying guests.

      If you would like to talk more about smart showers contact Colin Sinclair on 07801 579958. For further information on Aqualisa’s smart shower collections visit the website or email projects@aqualisa.co.uk.

      Main image credit: Aqualisa

      PRODUCT WATCH: Boost Pro, the new collection from Atlas Concorde

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      PRODUCT WATCH: Boost Pro, the new collection from Atlas Concorde

      The new Boost Pro collection from Atlas Concorde is designed with urban chic spaces in mind…

      In line with the latest trends in contemporary living with an urban chic style, Atlas Concorde presents Boost Pro, a collection of porcelain floors tiles and white body wall tiles designed to decorate indoor and outdoor spaces with a metropolitan appeal.

      Boost Pro complements the range of the Boost collection, based on the “cool” tones of the concrete effect, adding five warm colours. Produced using the same surface structure, they offer a unique colour palette in terms of breadth and variety, allowing architects, interior designers, and planners to create new, personalised combinations.

      Image credit: Atlas Concorde

      Ideal for the renovation of former industrial buildings transformed into residential lofts, workspaces, art galleries or places for hospitality and entertainment, Boost Pro underscores the structure’s industrial character with its strong personality and soft colours developed from earthy and powdery tones, from ivory to brown, giving rooms a lived-in charm.

      For the floor, the slight “spatula” effect evokes the authenticity of craftsmanship, increasingly popular in contemporary design projects where the imperfection of a “handmade” look is an expression of value and attention to detail. For walls, the accents of Mustard and Powder Blue allow for strong creative discontinuities accentuated by the availability of material and graphic decorations with a strong visual impact.

      In fact, the walls can also be transformed into spectacular three-dimensional frescoes thanks to the use of large porcelain slabs covered with tropical forests, Nordic forests and metropolitan views. Of the numerous formats available, the new 37.5×75 cm takes the classic 30×60 cm to a larger size. The availability of the 20 mm thickness also allows for outdoor use, for coordinated total-look projects.

      Colours

      On the floor: Ivory, Cream, Clay (light tones), Taupe and Tobacco (dark tones).

      On walls: Ivory, Cream, Clay (light tones), Mustard and Powder Blue.

      Formats

      The exceptionally wide range includes different large formats, from 120×278 cm to 160×320 cm (in the colors of the collection and in the decorative version). The different thicknesses – 6, 9 and 20 mm – allow for their application in different design settings, both indoors and out. The white-body wall tiles are available in the classic 40×80 cm format in two different versions, natural and 3D Urban relief.

      Decorations

      The extensive range of Boost Pro decorations makes it possible to respond to different design requirements, even in combination with numerous other Atlas Concorde collections.

      • GROVE 120×278, thickness 6 mm

      A forest of beech trees designed in graphite in Clay and Taupe tones.

      • PAINT 120×278, thickness 6 mm

      Spatula-effect surfaces, marked by time, with strong material contrasts.

      • LEAVES 120×278, thickness 6 mm

      The watercolor technique recreates the intensity of a tropical forest for spectacular walls with a green effect.

      • HEX MOSAIC

      Colored Murano glass and classic hexagonal tiles add style and depth to Boost Pro walls.

      • SHAPES MOSAIC

      Tiles with different shapes and irregular shades create a surprising, original overall effect.

      • 30×30 MOSAIC

      The minimalist simplicity of the classic mosaic and the warm tones are ideal for covering floors and walls of bathtubs and showers.

      • MINIBRICK 5×30.5

      The rigour of the small rectangular tile for universal interior walls embellished with reflective inserts can be used in any room with all the colors of the collection.

      If you want to get more information regarding our products please visit our website www.atlasconcorde.com  or contact us at projects@atlasconcorde.it .

      Main image credit: Atlas Concorde

      Rosewood brand to arrive in Spain in 2021 as part of European expansion

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Rosewood brand to arrive in Spain in 2021 as part of European expansion

      The iconic Hotel Villa Magna in Madrid is, in 2021, to become the first hotel in Spain to operate under Rosewood Hotels & Resorts…

      Following the group’s recent announcement to take over Le Guanahani in St. Barth, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has been selected by RLH Properties to manage the iconic Hotel Villa Magna in Madrid, Spain.

      The hotel, which is situated in the heart of Madrid, on the revered Paseo de la Castellana, will  become Rosewood Hotels & Resorts’ first property in Spain and the fourth operation in Europe, where the group is sensitively expanding into other prime locations.

      The beloved property will debut as Rosewood Villa Magna following a refurbishment, during which the property will remain open, that will incorporate a contemporary design, displaying an inspired interpretation of Spain’s capital city.

      Exterior of Hotel Villa Magns

      Image credit: Hotel Villa Magns

      The hotel is centrally located, immediately neighbouring the prestigious Serrano shopping district, and other well-known nearby landmarks such as the Golden Triangle of Art, home to the Prado, Thyssen-Bornemisza and Reina Sofía Museums. Villa Magna is currently closed as a precautionary measure due to COVID-19 and will reopen on September 1, 2020 operating independently until Rosewood assumes management once the refurbishment works have come to an end towards late 2021.

      “As one of the world’s most alluring cultural capitals, Madrid is an ideal destination in which to raise the Rosewood flag, and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to join together with our valued partners at RLH to breathe new life into one of the city’s most prolific properties, Villa Magna,” said Sonia Cheng, chief executive officer of Rosewood Hotel Group.  “A mecca for arts, culture and cuisine that perfectly balances the old with the new, Madrid offers the perfect canvas for our guiding A Sense of Place philosophy. We look forward to bringing our differentiated approach to ultra-luxury hospitality to Spain with this special hotel.”

      With a refreshed contemporary sense of style and service that speaks to today’s travellers, Rosewood Villa Magna will feature 150 thoughtfully appointed guestrooms and suites, distinct dining experiences and an inspired Sense, A Rosewood Spa.

      “The iconic Villa Magna plays an important part in Madrid’s history, and as such we are proud to embark on this new journey with our exceptional team at the Villa Magna and together with Rosewood Hotel Group towards enhancing this unique asset that enjoys an irreplaceable location and taking it to the next level of luxury. We are excited to add our third Rosewood property to the RLH portfolio, alongside sister resorts Rosewood Mayakoba in Riviera Maya, Mexico and the upcoming Rosewood Mandarina in Riviera Nayarit, Mexico,” said Borja Escalada, CEO of RLH Properties.

      Rosewood Villa Magna will add to Rosewood’s network of distinctive European properties, which currently includes Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco in Tuscany, Rosewood London and Hôtel de Crillon, A Rosewood Hotel in Paris.  Additional properties set to open within the next three years include Rosewood Vienna (2022), Rosewood Munich (2023), Rosewood Venice (2023) and Rosewood Hotel, Grosvenor Square, London (TBD).

      Main image credit: Hotel Villa Magna

      Inspired by Japanese design: ION by Woven Image

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      Inspired by Japanese design: ION by Woven Image

      Inspired by the intricate beauty of Japanese design, Woven Image’s ION is the latest edition to a series of tactile wall panel that Hotel Designs has got its hands on… 

      Woven Image continues to innovate with the introduction of ION a beautiful embossed wall panel which is part of the Exquiste Evolution June 2020 product release.

      Acoustic panels for the workplace environment, which modern travellers are now demanding in tomorrow’s lifestyle hotel, aren’t normally renowned for their originality, but Woven Image’s version interweave cutting-edge design with sustainability, reinventing interior acoustic panelling for the modern workplace.

      A Japanese inspired tactile wall behind modern desk setup

      Image credit: Woven Image

      Evolving from the well-known hero product EchoPanel, ION is the second design in a growing collection of tactile wall panels designed for commercial interiors which follows on from the recent launch of  Zen a vertical, rib-style textured wall panel. An innovation in non-woven wall panelling, Zen & Ion are specially designed to provide floor to ceiling acoustic solutions for commercial office interiors. Inspired by Modern Japonisme, the tactile wall panels reference the clean-lined, minimal, aesthetic long associated with Japan.

      A black Japanese inspired tactile wall behind modern wooden desk setup

      Image credit: Woven Image

      ION has a sophisticated textured design evoking an asymmetrical crystalline effect which is inspired by the geometric shapes of origami and folded paper. A theme which encompasses the simplicity of a Japanese design as referenced with Zen’s corrugated design from a Zen garden.

      ION is comprised of 100 per cent PET which is 60 per cent recycled with a recycled non-woven backing and a coloured surface Mura (non-woven wallcovering) which is embellished with a compressed face. Dimensions of 2800mm high by 1130mm wide, allows the back of the panel to remain flat for ease of install for floor to ceiling applications. ION has been trimmed with a straight edge on all four sides to allow for an almost seamless finish and pattern match for continuous wall and double-height application. This allows ION to have the ability to be installed top to bottom as well as side by side.

      ION is available in seven colourways from a deep onyx hue to mid-tone duck egg blue, peach blush, vineyard green as well as the classic neutrals of pebble, frost and cream.

      Performing to commercial Industry standards for interior wall linings, ION achieves excellent environmental credentials, including Global GreenTag (GreenRate Level A), with the use of post-industrial waste streams and low VOC emissions.

      Woven Image 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: Woven Image

      IN PICTURES: Sneak peek of Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      IN PICTURES: Sneak peek of Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      Opening this September, after being on the drawing boards for nearly a decade, Four Seasons Hotel Madrid has been designed in collaboration between designers from BAMO, BG Architecture, Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, AvroKO and Luis Bustamante…

      After a seven-year reconceptualisation and meticulous restoration of a collection of seven historic buildings, the new Four Seasons Hotel Madrid will open September 15, 2020.

      With a soaring grand lobby welcoming guests at its heart, the hotel is located within Madrid’s Centro Canalejas, also home to 22 Four Seasons Private Residences and the Galería Canalejas luxury shopping centre. Architects Estudio Lamela led the restoration, preserving more than 3,700 artefacts throughout. Inside, interiors are by an international team of designers including BAMO, BG Architecture, Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, AvroKO and Luis Bustamante.

      Exterior of the hotel

      Image credit: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      “It’s truly been a labour of passion and love as these beautiful buildings transform into a fantastic setting for a new chapter in their histories,” says Christoph Schmidinger, Four Seasons Regional Vice President and the Hotel’s General Manager. “Our owner partners OHL Desarrollos and Mohari Hospitality, and our all-star team of artisans, culinarians and hoteliers, share our vision for offering a very personalised Four Seasons experience in a truly extraordinary setting.”

      In a city that is ever changing but always welcoming, visitors will discover something new with every return visit. Four Seasons is just steps from Kilómetro Cerothe central point from which all distances in Spain are measured. In this truly pedestrian-friendly city, most of the main points of interest are within a 20-minute walk, including the 125 hectare (300 acre) Retiro Park with its incredible Glass Palace and endless pathways amid trees, fountains and ponds. Three of the world’s best museums – the Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemisza and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía – form a Golden Triangle in the neighbourhood around Four Seasons.

      Luxe, eclectic interiors to reference Madrid's vibrancy in public area

      Image credit: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      Spanish celebrity Chef Dani Garcia will unveil Dani, a new dining concept from the three Michelin-starred chef, with an unmatched rooftop setting envisioned by acclaimed London and New York-based designer Martin Brudnizki. Expect a bright and vivid brasserie with a sophisticated touch, where guests will savour Andalusian cuisine and panoramic views throughout the day and evening, both in the spacious indoors and out in the sunshine on the terrace.

      Image credit: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      Isa, a gastrobar located on the first floor, will continue to move forward the tapas trend that began in Spain, adding modern Asian flavours paired with cutting-edge cocktails in a space created by global design studio AvroKO.  Adjacent to the Hotel’s lobby, El Patio also invites relaxed drinks and dining.

      Image credit: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      The hotel will shelter 200 guestrooms and suites – among them an exceptional triangular Royal Suite with double-height ceilings and numerous historic details.

      Staircase in Four Seasons Madrid

      Image credit: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      Elsewhere, the luxury property will also boast the largest spa in the city, offering eight treatment rooms plus a salon and 24/7 fitness centre. It will also offer more than 1,400 square metres (15,400 square feet) of flexible function spaces – including the glamorous oval-shaped Sol Ballroom – can accommodate both business meetings and social events.

      Main image credit: Four Seasons Hotel Madrid

      USM introduces its first online shop to the UK

      730 565 Hamish Kilburn
      USM introduces its first online shop to the UK

      For the first time, customers in the UK will be able to order furniture directly from the USM website…

      A carefully curated selection of beautiful pieces from USM, such as credenzas and bedside tables, can now be ordered in the UK and delivered directly in just three weeks.