I started the decade in practice working on new four and five star hotels, an involvement I’d had for over twenty years. Strangely I think as an observer I have understood the development and branding issues that have dogged hotels and hotel designers rather better from a distance than I might have done had I still been at the ‘coalface’.
I have seen design and hospitality standards continuing to rise over the ten years, and with the benefit of hindsight I hope to show where the battlefields have been and perhaps point to where they will be in the future.
My start and finishing point will both be significant new resort hotels that set standards in their market place. In 2000, Celtic Manor Resort won two European Design Awards and became Hotel of the Year in its home country. The following year it was commended for the design of its spa by the International Spa Association. Fitting then, as a starting point for my journey. I will use the connectivity of the web to link to an album of 15 images I have elsewhere rather than add pictures here – so click on Celtic Manor to see ten or so images of the interiors as they were in 2000.