COMO Hotels and Resorts has recently unveiled a detailed design concept for Point Yamu by COMO, a new resort in Thailand with interiors by Italian architect and designer, Paola Navone.Opening Summer 2013, Point Yamu on Phuket will be the Italian-born Navone’s first ever hotel project, her powerful vision bringing a fresh aesthetic to Thailand while reflecting the group’s ongoing commitment to the very best in contemporary design.
The beachside development – COMO’s first in Thailand outside Bangkok – will comprise a full-scale, 79-room resort with 30 villas, a spa and two restaurants. This is in addition to a clutch of private residences available to purchase; when they open in July 2013, these residences will occupy the same peaceful peninsula on the east side of the island with views out to the limestone karsts of Phang Nga Bay and the Andaman Sea.
Navone is creating at Point Yamu an environment that encapsulates the easygoing, sophisticated spirit of the company’s ‘by COMO’ island resorts – Parrot Cay in the Turks and Caicos and Cocoa Island in the Maldives. Point Yamu, inspired directly by the sea, will also be distinct in character by way of its contemporary look blended with elements of Thai culture.
Says Navone: “It’s about building a resort where you feel relaxed, you feel soft and not stressed by anything that surrounds you. To my mind the best hotels are contemporary places but at the same time they root you in a locale, so you know where you are. This balance is vital.”
At Point Yamu, Navone is employing a dazzling palette of bright aquamarines, inspired by the sea views, and blazing-hot oranges, reminiscent of Buddhist robes. Her clever use of Thai artisanal techniques put to new effect includes the traditional wood tiling in the restaurant – in this instance, used as the scales of a huge fish – and outsized, balloon-like lampshades fashioned from local woven rattan inspired by local crab and lobster traps.
Navone’s interior detailing also plays with proportions – a whimsical, magical approach that juxtaposes the outsized with something delicate, like the installation of stacked Thai tables supporting a single Thai ceramic vase.
Paola Navone has been at the forefront of worldclass interiors for over 30 years, as well as designing products for numerous leading brands, including Driade, Gervasoni, Guzzini, Poliform and Emu. Most recently her ‘Secret Garden’ at the Milano Salone del Mobile 2012 received high praise: big blue nests, interwoven with 13,000 hazelnut branches, hiding some of the most beautiful chandeliers of the Murano glassmaking tradition by Barovier&Toso. Based in Milan, she has lived in Hong Kong and worked extensively in South East Asia including Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
Gabriela Henrichwark, Global Marketing Director for COMO Hotels and Resorts, said: “From the outset COMO wanted to work with Paola on Point Yamu. She is a true original in contemporary design, and as a westerner who has lived in and experienced eastern culture, her work embodies COMO’s global spirit.”
Point Yamu by COMO is just 20 minutes by car from Phuket International Airport and will be an attractive proposition for Asia-based guests looking for a short break to rejuvenate as well as long-haul guests seeking a comprehensive escape. Point Yamu will also offer a 100m swimming pool, a COMO Shambhala Retreat featuring eight treatments rooms as well as a yoga studio, an Italian and Thai restaurant, ‘glow’ featuring COMO Shambhala’s healthy cuisine, and a private beach. On opening, it will become the tenth property by COMO Hotels and Resorts.