NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2018
NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2018 W W W. SLEEPERMAGAZI N E.COM
Hotel Herman K
Brøchner Hotels unveils its conversion of a transformer station in the heart of Copenhagen
The unconventional hotelier on his journey from mountain to paddy field to savannah
The country’s leading designers usher a British institution into a new era
Because good design demands simplicity. â„˘
20-21 November Stand D90 British lighting design since 1997 astrolighting.com
Inside Sleeper NOVEMBER | DECEMBER 2018
050 Hotel Herman K Copenhagen
042 Meeting… Arnaud Zannier With a growing portfolio of hotels spanning three continents, the founder of Zannier Hotels talks of his route to success and search for authenticity.
050 Hotel Herman K Copenhagen The latest project from Brøchner Hotels sees the conversion of a transformer station in the heart of Copenhagen; its bronze façade creates a striking presence, while a 12-metrehigh lobby serves as the backdrop for a unique 3D printed artwork suspended above a central bar.
058 Olea All Suite Hotel Zakynthos 068 Shipwreck Lodge Skeleton Coast 076 Kimpton Fitzroy London 089 Awasi Iguazú Misiones 097 Andronis Concept Santorini 103 Hôtel du Rond-Point Paris 111
AC Hotel Times Square New York
119 Mojo Nomad Central Hong Kong
147 Special Report… Lodges & Tented Camps Following a host of new openings in Namibia, Rwanda, Zimbabwe and Botswana, Sleeper takes a closer look at the growth of thelodges and tented camps sector in Africa.
126 7Pines Resort Ibiza 135 The Summit Cincinnati 141 Ayana Komodo Resort Waecicu Beach
Departments 026 Check In 028 Drawing Board 157 Business Centre Hotel Analyst 162 Business Centre STR 165 Events AHEAD 186 Events Radical Innovation Award 190 Events Sleep + Eat 197 Product Profile
Fabrics, Wallcoverings & Surfaces
214 Product Profile
Beds, Mattresses & Linens
219 Specifier 242 Check Out
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M O M E N T U M B Y H A R L E Q U I N S T Y L E L I B R A R Y C O N T R A C T. C O M
THE PROJECT FOR THE MINOTTI BUILDING CONCEIVED FOR THE 2018 COLLECTION. FROM LEFT TO RIGHT, THE GARDEN BAR WITH THE LIBRARY; THE SIX FLOOR BUILDING WITH THE SUITES AND THE GLASS HOUSE WITH THE LOUNGE, THE RESTAURANT, THE BAR AND THE POOL AREAS.
A NEW PERSPECTIVE ON HOSPITALITY. Minottiâ€™s attitude to think about living solutions, rather than focusing only on single products, finds its distinctive expression in Hospitality. Minotti brings its contemporary spirit and multidisciplinary approach to convey its international lifestyle to top-of-the-range hotels and residential projects. The company vision finds its way in a realistic architectural project that emphasizes the quality of good design furnishings and their flexibility in customization, in order to meet the highest functional, technical and safety requirements of the Hospitality industry. Thought as a rationalist framework, defined by the contrasts between black and white and between volumes and transparencies, the building recalls the Japanese and Scandinavian design philosophies thanks to its rarefied and minimalist atmosphere. Arranged with lobby areas, lounges, bars, restaurants and a penthouse, the project accommodates an unusual winter garden, framed by a transparent glass box, as well as an oasis to relax outdoor and by the pool. Offering suggestions and visual cues for meaningful settings, the aim of the concept is to showcase the variegated ensemble of the new products while creating a connection between the 2018 Collection and an architecture immersed in greenery.
THE OLIVER LOUNGE TABLE BY RODOLFO DORDONI AND THE TAPE ARMCHAIRS BY NENDO IN THE LOUNGE-BAR OPEN ON THE POOL CREATE A SENSE OF LIGHTNESS AND INFORMAL ELEGANCE.
THE LOUNGE AREA SURROUNDING THE WINTER GARDEN IN THE GLASS HOUSE. THE AREA IS ORGANISED INTO ISLANDS TO CREATE COSY CORNERS FOR CONVERSATIONS OR INFORMAL MEETINGS. FROM LEFT TO RIGHT, TAPE ARMCHAIRS BY NENDO, SHIELDS COFFEE TABLES BY RODOLFO DORDONI, GRANVILLE SEATING SYSTEM BY CHRISTOPHE DELCOURT.
THE BAR OPEN TO THE GARDEN IS CONCEIVED FOR THE GUESTSâ€™ LEISURE. THE RUSSELL SEATING COLLECTION BY RODOLFO DORDONI WITH ITS ENVELOPING LINES AND THE MIX OF COFFEE TABLES CONVEY A CASUAL ATMOSPHERE.
A Liquorice-tinted wooden flooring alternates with medium-grey concrete slabs, while the natural light enters through the full-wall windows, which are outlined by minimal framings. For an unexpected and contemporary mood, far from decorative excesses. The interiors and exteriors are inhabited by design pieces, carrying a firm personality, which are taken from the 2018 Indoor and Outdoor collections, then customized with specificities to meet the needs of the Hospitality sector. Even though the individual furniture pieces reflect the signatures of the various international designers from Rodolfo Dordoni to Christophe Delcourt, from Nendo to Marcio Kogan, the collection is strongly coordinated to harmonise together the multiple languages and express the codes that define the Minotti identity.
VIEW OF THE POOL AREA FACING THE GLASS HOUSE.
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The Quadrado modules can be combined to design organic compositions. The suspended square platforms follow the scheme of the traditional teak duckboard used in the yachting world to facilitate the outflow of water.
TO EXPERIENCE NATURE AND RELAX BY THE POOL, THE QUADRADO MODULAR SYSTEM BY MARCIO KOGAN / STUDIO MK27 DESIGNED FOR OUTDOOR LIVING.
Jinx Design by Allermuir Design Team
Visit our Creative Laboratory at Fox & Knot Street, London, EC1M 6HP
f you’ve ever been unfortunate enough to share your hotel room with bed bugs or chow down on a sub-standard steak, the likelihood is you’ll have joined 600 million others in posting a bad review online. Online travel agents and the slew of review platforms that have followed – which allow travellers to post uncensored critiques of their experience – have had a tumultuous relationship with hospitality groups over the years. Once welcomed as a way of attracting potential guests through the opinions of real people, the likes of Trip Advisor, Google and Facebook are increasingly falling foul of hoteliers and restaurateurs owing to the lack of policing. While the list of ludicrous complaints – from ‘no-one told us there would be fish in the sea’ to ‘the beach was too sandy’ – gets more and more absurd, there’s a growing number of damaging reviews that are taking their toll on businesses. Hotel owners have the right to reply of course, but defamatory statements online are very difficult to undo. Scathing reviews and witty responses go viral on a daily basis and there’s no way of knowing who the Twittersphere will side with. Earlier this year, keyboard warriors flooded a Dublin hotelier’s page with bad reviews after he refused to give a ‘social media influencer’ a free stay. Others are reportedly threatening to write bad reviews unless they get a discount. This is happening all too often; the problem being that reviews don’t require a verified booking. That’s right, you don’t have to have actually stayed in a particular hotel or eaten in a restaurant to publish a review on it. This has given rise to a fake reviews scandal that has turned the online community upside down. One chef has spoken out recently, having been approached by a firm that offered to post hundreds of positive reviews on his Trip Advisor page for £10-a-time. And let’s not forget the man who fooled the nation into believing his garden shed was the top-rated restaurant in London, despite no-one ever having visited. What was remarkable, was that the ease at which he was able to almost single-handedly top the list through bogus profiles. Trip Advisor is fighting back however, revealing earlier this year that it had invested in new technology and a team of expert investigators to counteract the threat. And the firm’s investigations have even led to a man being jailed in a landmark ruling in Italy, having been convicted for selling fake reviews to hundreds of hospitality businesses. It’s difficult to know who’s at fault; the online platforms for failing to effectively police their sites; the operators so desperate to be a social media hit; or the consumers taking advantage. Either way, if the OTAs don’t take action soon, they’ll no doubt be facing their own bad reviews.
Catherine Martin | Editor
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DAVID PAUL HELPERN
“It is an iconic building with such a great past, and our role was very much one of custodian,” says Tara Bernerd, founder of Tara Bernerd & Partners, on the renovation of the public spaces and guestrooms at Kimpton Fitzroy in London’s Bloomsbury. “We sought to breathe new life back into this Grande Dame by respecting its history whilst also embracing its new chapter for the modern traveller.”
A New York native, David Paul Helpern founded his architectural practice in 1971 after almost a decade with IM Pei & Partners. His latest project is AC Hotel New York Times Square, where he took charge of the architectural scheme of the new building, as well as interior design of the public spaces and guestrooms, creating a calming haven with a focus on style, materiality and the spirit of the AC brand.
With a background in highprofile openings and asset management, Troy Hickox oversees hotels, hospitality and lifestyle development for Hong Kong-based Galaxy Entertainment Group, whose footprint spans Macau to Monaco and into Las Vegas. Hickox has recently been announced as a judge for AHEAD Asia, the results of which will be announced in Singapore on 7th March.
On the back of completing the design for QO Amsterdam, as well as Rüya restaurants in Dubai and London, interior designer and architect Tina Norden will provide her take on designing for millennials during the Sleep + Eat conference in November. As Partner at Conran + Partners, Norden will also reveal details of new Park Hyatt projects in Jakarta and Auckland for MNC Land and Fu Wah Group respectively.
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Jun Aizaki CRÈME | JUN AIZAKI ARCHITECTURE & DESIGN
Ahead of unveiling his design for The Sleeper Bar at Sleep + Eat, Jun Aizaki takes a fantasy break at a Japanese-inspired oasis in Brooklyn.
Where are you? Right here in Brooklyn, where I live and work. New York is a melting pot and I would love to further the introduction of the Japanese culture through design.
Is there anything you would like waiting for you in your room? A ready-prepared hot bath accompanied by green tea served in one of my HyO-Cups and hot towels – the Japanese call these oshibori.
How did you get there? This imaginary Japanese urban oasis is accessible by foot, Citibike and public transportation and the hotel is walkable from my studio and apartment in Williamsburg.
Describe the hotel, your room and the view... It’s an urban oasis; a Japanese onsen (hot spring) in the middle of Brooklyn. The hotel is the perfect blend of eastern and western design, bringing the outside in and features many of the organic, natural, wood elements found in a traditional onsen – such as hinoki, cedar and maybe even walnut. The exterior is covered with greenery and moss, making city life completely disappear; each window looks out into a garden instead of the skyline. The same greenery is brought inside, across public spaces and guestrooms. All of the interior materials are organic, including the linens and robes. The bathroom is the focal point, enhancing the user experience and relaxed nature. Each guestroom also has its own mini spa with bath, shower, sauna and steam room.
Who is there to greet you on arrival? Neil Jacobs, CEO of Six Senses Hotels, Resorts & Spas. The exuberant visionary is creating the most luxurious, exclusive experiences at properties around the globe. These exotic resorts are known for their beauty, serenity, health and wellness – exactly what I want to bring to an urban city. And who’s at the concierge desk? To welcome guests, I’d love to see Doraemon, a well-known and beloved character in Japanese culture. He’s a kindhearted and friendly robotic cat from the future and is always ready to help others – as a good concierge would. Who are you sharing your room with? My happiness lies with my family and I would not want to be anywhere without them. I’ve brought my wife and two-year-old son along for laughs, inspiration and to create everlasting memories.
no connection to other dining guests. The bar is made from reclaimed wood and smells of cedar and lemongrass, with top of the line barware and refined bartenders making whimsical cocktails. Who are you dining with this evening? Architects Peter Zumthor, George Nakashima, Frank Lloyd Wright and Louis Kahn; industrial designer Jonathan Ive; artists Louise Bourgeois and Christo and Jeanne Claude; my wife Fanny Allie; author Mishima Yukio; and filmmaker Richard Linklater. Who’s manning the stoves? Anthony Bourdain. And what’s on the menu? Japanese-French inspired cuisine; uncomplicated dishes with an emphasis on seafood and oysters. Would you like something to drink with that? A glass of Sancerre.
Who designed it? American-Japanese artist Isamu Noguchi.
What’s in the mini-bar for a night cap? A single malt Japanese whisky to mix with lemon oil and Koume, making a simple Japanese cocktail.
What’s the restaurant and bar like? The design details from the guestrooms carry through into the restaurant, creating a comfortable, peaceful organic setting. It’s a quaint space with private seating. Each table is in its own pod, with
What’s on your nightstand at bedtime? I have my smartphone on the nightstand for necessity and because nowadays, I cannot live without it nearby, but I also have my sketchbook to jot down inspirations and drawings.
Name: Jun Aizaki | Position: Principal, Crème / Jun Aizaki Architecture & Design | www.cremedesign.com Notable hotel projects: The Maven, Denver (public spaces); Kimpton Eventi, New York (public spaces)
Avani Central Busan Hotel BUSAN, SOUTH KOREA
Avani Hotels & Resorts has announced the signing of a second property in South Korea, set to open in Q1 of 2019 within Busan’s tallest commercial building. Currently in the final stages of development, Avani Central Busan Hotel forms part of a 37-storey mixed-use, twin tower complex that includes offices, residences, retail space and the largest theatre in the city. Located within the wider Munhyeon Finance Complex, the 289-key hotel comprises signature Avani living spaces, the Sky Restaurant & Bar, and the brand’s own Pantry concept, as well as spa and gym facilities and 800m2 of events spaces. “To have a second hotel in this major South Korean city is a thrill for us,” says Dillip Rajakarier, CEO Minor Hotels, owning company of Avani Hotels & Resorts. “Avani Central Busan Hotel is located in a key area that continues to grow, drawing both business and leisure travellers into visiting Busan.” For business travellers, Avani Central Busan Hotel is in close proximity to the regional headquarters of several government and financial bodies, whilst leisure guests will have easy access to one of Korea’s most popular beaches and other cultural landmarks. Avani currently operates 24 hotels and resorts in 15 countries. The brand recently debuted in Australia, New Zealand, and Laos, and has plans for 15 new hotels in the pipeline, including recent signings in Melbourne, Dubai, and a third property in Bangkok. Avani Central Busan Hotel will be joined in 2021 by the Avani Busan Hotel, signed last year.
Harding Boutique Hotel AHANGAMA, SRI-LANKA
The first Harding Boutique Hotel – a new hospitality venture by Sri Lankan-Australian entrepreneur Paul Harding – has broken ground in the coastal town of Ahangama.
“My great uncle was one of the first hoteliers and great pioneers in the country, opening The Blue Lagoon, the country’s first hotel designed by Geoffrey Bawa – the father of Sri-Lankan modernism,” Harding explains. “There must have been something in the family as my love for boutique hotels and hospitality has been with me from a very young age.” With architectural features including hidden seating nooks and mid-landings as well as a roof terrace and staircase wrapped in foliage, the hotel offers a combination of contemporary design and contextualism, with the project responding to local, traditional and modern hospitality trends. With its palette of ribbed hardwood, polished concrete and intricately detailed granite stone, Harding Boutique Hotel Ahangama will seek to bring a new level of luxury to the region.
Designed by British architect Jonathan Ashmore, founder of design and architecture practice Anarchitect, Harding Boutique Hotel Ahangama seeks to channel the vernacular aesthetics of the country’s modernist movement, and is set to open in Q3 2019. Comprising six intimate suites, the hotel features well-ventilated open spaces, private balconies with views over the Indian Ocean, as well as sea-facing baths and king beds wrapped in Egyptian cotton linens. Suites are elevated amongst natural palm groves to connect the property to its tropical surroundings, with the hotel in close proximity to several renowned surf breaks.
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YotelPad Mammoth CALIFORNIA
Yotel has announced that its third North American YotelPad will open in California in 2021.
will give guests easy access to one of the country’s most popular ski resorts. When completed, the project will mark the third of its kind in the US following openings in Miami and Park City, slated for 2020. The group will also launch four more YotelPads in the coming years, with locations including Dubai Business Bay and three around the Geneva Lake district, bringing its Pad key count to over 1,100. Hubert Viriot, CEO of Yotel, comments: “With their expertise in the resort development industry we saw an opportunity to partner with Replay again to bring innovation and affordable luxury living to another sought-after mountain resort in North America. We’re seeing an increased demand for a new way of living that offers technology experiences coupled with social interaction and design. We’re confident YotelPad will offer an intuitive and flexible experience for guests, regardless of whether they’re staying for business or leisure.”
Located within Southern California’s Mammoth mountain resort, the 177 key count will include 21 town-homes, with the design building on the principles of Yotel and YotelAir cabins to create a series of compact luxury serviced apartments. Featuring fire pits, hot tubs, and a pool deck connecting indoor and outdoor spaces, Yotelpad Mammoth will also offer distinct public areas for socialising, co-working and informal gatherings, enhanced by a lobby fireplace, games room, restaurant and bar. Each Pad is being designed with signature features including adjustable furniture and multifunctional spaces enhanced with technology. Developed in partnership with Replay Destinations, the project
Four Seasons at the Surf Club, Florida â€“ bespoke loungers by Joseph Dirand
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M Collection HANGZHOU
Minor Hotels has signed two new management contracts in China under the M Collection brand of hotels and travel experiences.
Elsewhere, the second resort to be signed under the agreement is a 54-key all villa resort in Hangzhou Yuhang, set to be completed in 2022. The as yet unnamed project will be part of the 433-hectare Lvjingtang Eco-Park in Yuhang district. Featuring 18 suites and 36 villas, facilities here will include Pan-Asian and continental-themed restaurants, a VIP club, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a wellness centre and a mountaintop spa. Rich in natural resources, the surrounding area is made up largely of tea plantations, with the resort partnering with Hangzhou Lichuan Environmental Agricultural Development to promote ecological conservation and the plantation of eco-agriculture products. Minor Hotels currently operates three properties in China under the Anantara brand in Xishuangbanna, Sanya and Guiyang, and has a further strong pipeline in the region across all brands.
In partnership with developer Zhuhai Da Heng Qin Company, Hengqin Zhuhai is scheduled to open in 2020, and marks the debut M Collection property in China. Located at the heart of the Pearl Delta along a mountain reservoir in the southern corner of Zhuhai, the 100-key hotel will comprise suites and pool villas, two speciality restaurants, a teahouse, lobby lounge and bar. The island of Hengqin is located off the coast of China, and has been selected as a new area with which to enhance economic ties. A bridge connecting Hengqin with Macau and Hong Kong is scheduled to open in late 2018; once complete, it will take 5 minutes to drive to Macau and 40 minutes to Hong Kong.
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Zip by Premier Inn CARDIFF
Whitbread has unveiled Zip by Premier Inn, a new hotel concept that subverts traditional expectations in favour of lower prices.
“In developing the concept, we have undertaken considerable research, including having had six Zip rooms on sale to customers for many months,” comments Simon Jones, Managing Director, Premier Inn. “It’s clear through the research that people want the basics done brilliantly, such as a comfy bed and a power shower, but they are happy to compromise on location or some extras if they are paying a fantastic price for their room. We will continue to learn from our customers as they experience the product and will evolve and innovate the concept as we open more Zip hotels.” Featuring lightboxes, flexible bed formats and en-suite shower cubicles inspired by the first-class cabin experience, Zip’s smaller rooms will give Whitbread access to a wider range of buildings in towns and cities across the UK, with a second site set to open in Southampton with 140 keys.
Billed as ‘basics done brilliantly’ the format has been designed by British studio PriestmanGoode, whose work in the aviation sector – for airlines including Air France, Lufthansa and Swiss – has informed the layout, contents and use of space. The result of extensive research that revealed guests are willing to forego central locations and large rooms if the price is right, the first Zip by Premier Inn Hotel will open with a 138-key property in the Roath district of Cardiff in early 2019, with each 8.5m2 room starting at just £19. Whilst guestrooms may be on the compact side, large communal and public areas anchoring each property – doubling as bars at night – will offer space to socialise and stretch out.
Amara, a 207-key hotel featuring restaurants by Nobu Matsuhisa and Giorgio Locatelli, has set a Spring 2019 opening date.
Of Amara’s five restaurants, three will be led by star chefs, with the goal of positioning the property as a top international gourmet destination in Cyprus. Nobu Matsuhisa Limassol, the latest outpost from chef Nobu Matsuhisa, will be joined by Ristorante Locatelli by the London-based, Michelin-starred Giorgio Locatelli, as well as Armyra by Papaioannou, a seafood restaurant celebrating the joys of island living through the use of local ingredients and traditional recipes with a contemporary twist. Concluding, Demosthenous adds:“We feel incredibly privileged to be working with two world-renowned Michelin-starred chefs in Nobu Matsuhisa and Giorgio Locatelli, who will both bring their unique style to the hotel and further elevate the Amara experience for our culture-seeking guests, without compromising on Amara’s distinct Cypriot heritage.”
Billed as an ultra luxury property, Amara is positioned on a beachfront in close proximity to the coastal town of Limassol. Comprising an onsite spa, gym, indoor and outdoor swimming pools and five distinct fine-dining restaurants, the project is being developed by Stademos Hotels whilst SB Architects, Rockwell Group and WA Interiors oversee design duties. Demos Demosthenous, Managing Director of Stademos Hotels, comments: “We are delighted to be opening the new five-star Amara in Limassol in early 2019. We are confident this design-led development will bring movement to both Amathus and neighbouring areas, with every element meticulously tailored for the most selective travellers.”
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Luxury starts at ground level
Darwin – A Fusion Original HO CHI MINH CITY
Fusion Hotel Group has announced the debut property of its new Fusion Originals brand with an 88-key hotel in Ho Chi Minh City.
“World-changing ideas are what Fusion is all about,” says Remco de Hoog, Fusion’s Chief Architect. “Charles Darwin is the perfect person to launch this exciting, slightly rebellious all-new brand.” Comprising the Beagle Bar – set to host live music and spoken word events – along with the Origins Restaurant and its T.O.A.S.T (The Original Answer to Snooze Time) concept, the F&B programme will serve up dishes inspired by Darwin’s travels, with spaces designed to reflect 19th century adventure and discovery. Guests, meanwhile, will have easy access to nearby cultural landmarks including the city’s opera house and several tourist hotspots. “With Darwin and every Fusion Original that comes after it, you’ll never quite know what to expect,” de Hoog adds. “We love shaking things up, and we think our guests will really enjoy the feeling of entering the unknown each time – in a good way, of course!”
Set to open in Summer 2019, and situated in the heart of Saigon’s District 1, the project will introduce a new concept from the Vietnamese hotel group in which each project takes the name of a pioneering artist, inventor, scientist or social leader. Darwin – A Fusion Original will channel the life and times of British scientist and author Charles Darwin, with the brand’s inhouse designers combining botanical motifs, large-scale manuscript extracts and a palette of all-natural tones and textures throughout. Meanwhile, a copy of Darwin’s evolution tome ‘On the Origin of Species’ will be present within every bedside unit, ensuring the theme carries into details and accents.
PROJECT: THE PHOENICIAN SPA DESIGNER: PARKER TORRES DESIGN PURCHASER: BENJAMIN WEST
Arnaud Zannier With a growing portfolio of hotels spanning three continents, the founder of Zannier Hotels talks of his route to success and ongoing search for authenticity. Words: Catherine Martin | Photography: Courtesy of Zannier Hotels (unless otherwise stated)
“I didn’t want to come back and work in the family’s fashion group because I felt there was nothing I could do better than what they were already doing,” he explains. “I already had some ideas for hospitality and identified a niche in which the future of luxury is more about moments and experiences than gold taps and marble.” With the backing of his father, Zannier invested in a threeMichelin-star restaurant in the French village of Megève, purchasing adjacent land to build an extension and create Le Chalet. “The project was kind of a lab for me to start this hospitality idea,” he continues. “It was small, but as it was our first one, we said let’s start small and see how it goes.” The venture was risky. The positioning was way above anything else in the village at that time; each suite was designed as an authentic Alpine chalet – the largest featuring two bedrooms, a lounge with open fireplace and a balcony with views of the mountains – and the staff-to-room ratio particularly high with 40 employees for 12 keys. But it paid off. “The product worked very well from day one. It’s been seven years since the opening of our first hotel, and in that time our idea has grown,” he continues. The group’s second hotel opened in Cambodia in 2015, and was the one to really put Zannier Hotels on the map. Built amongst rice paddies on the outskirts of Siem Reap, Phum Baitang is designed as an authentic Cambodian village, with 45 stilted villas dotted across eight hectares of land, along with an outdoor infinity pool, two restaurants, and a cocktail bar housed within a 100-year-old Khmer farmhouse. Rustic materials such as wood and stone combine with local building traditions and
or most new hoteliers, early success lies in focusing on a specific market; building a portfolio in a select location – be it city, country or continent – before expanding horizons and looking to opportunities further afield. Not for Arnaud Zannier. The founder of Zannier Hotels, which only launched its first property in 2011, has taken a somewhat unorthodox approach, flitting between mountain, city, paddy field and savannah to open what is now a four-strong portfolio spanning four countries and three vastly different continents. “The way we open hotels is unusual to a lot of people,” admits Zannier, as we meet in London on one of his regular visits to the city. “We started in the Alps, then went to Southeast Asia; from there we came back to a secondary city in Belgium, and now we’re opening in Africa. But that’s what we like to do; we like to create new things.” With an entrepreneurial spirit, Zannier has spent much of his working life creating new concepts. The son of French fashion industrialist Roger Zannier, he studied in Switzerland and Paris, before making his mark on the family business, developing the Kickers shoes brand at an international level. In 2001, the then 28-year-old went solo, launching his own footwear company built on the principles of simplicity, quality, originality and constructional know-how – values that have gone on to serve him well in the hospitality world. Zannier’s true calling came in 2010, when his father requested he return to the family fold, fast approaching its 50th anniversary and gaining a reputation for childrenswear, having created ranges for the likes of Kenzo Kids, Junior Gaultier and Paul Smith Junior.
“I have a specific idea of what I like, and what I want as a customer, or what I would like to experience as a guest.”
Above: Phum Baitang stays true to Cambodia’s culture with guestrooms and public spaces housed in stilted villas around the paddy fields Opposite: Rich colours, natural textures and materials that better with age take centrestage at 1898 The Post in Ghent
indigenous vegetation for a truly authentic experience; and then there’s the resident water buffalo that roam freely on the site. “It’s a true experience of being in the countryside in Cambodia, that’s what we love at Zannier Hotels,” he notes. So why Cambodia? “As a family we have a foundation in Cambodia and have been financing an orphanage there for a number of years,” he explains. “We were also investing in land, so when I decided to go into the hospitality industry, my father suggested I have a look at the portfolio. Siem Reap is the number one destination in Cambodia and a lot of the hotels are within colonial buildings in town. When I saw this beautiful piece of land I knew it would be perfect to create something very different.” Phum Baitang came to the attention of the world’s media when Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie spent three months at the resort while filming in the country. It has also won Zannier a cabinet full of awards, with the property scooping the top accolade at the 2016 Asia Hotel Design Awards. The design of Phum Baitang, and all of the group’s hotels, is very much a personal vision. While Zannier has no formal qualifications in design, he’s a man with taste. “I have a specific idea of what I like, and what I want as a customer, or what I would like to experience as a guest,” he explains. “I’m lucky enough to have a family who can
finance my ideas and projects, so I create hotels to my taste and and have found that there’s people who apparently like the same thing.” However this isn’t a vanity project. “Our hotels are profitable,” Zannier counters. “It’s not something I mention too often, but this is business and our hotels are successful. Every property that we’ve opened has been profitable within year one, which in the luxury market is rare.” It’s not a numbers game either. Zannier has a palpable passion for hospitality and has built a small and trusted team, the longest serving of which have been with him since day one. Executive chef Julien Burlat is a childhood friend and has developed the F&B concept for each property, his responsibilities spanning from the sourcing of local suppliers to designing menus and training kitchen crews. Interior designer Geraldine Dohogne meanwhile has been instrumental in creating the unique look and feel of the brand. Having started out as Zannier’s assistant in 2008, she now oversees the projects from concept to completion, taking in architecture, interiors and procurement. “I recruited Geraldine when I bought the first hotel in Megève,” Zannier explains. “I was busy with my fashion business and needed someone to help manage the refurbishment. We worked together on the project and gradually she has developed an eye that is very similar to mine.”
© Alex Stephen Teuscher
© Alex Stephen Teuscher
© Alex Stephen Teuscher
Above: Omaanda, a luxurious lodge overlooking the savannah, takes inspiration from the traditional architecture of the Owambo people
Like Zannier, Dohogne doesn’t have a background in hotel design, but the pair work closely to ensure each property follows the brand mantra of ‘simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’. “It’s all about creating an atmosphere for guests to remember individual moments,” explains Zannier. “Of course there’s a DNA, but we want each hotel to be unique; that’s very important to us. It would be a shame for guests to travel the world and always feel the same.” All feature the use of local materials, and there’s a combination of modern and traditional construction techniques, always keeping in mind environmentally-friendly approaches and knowledge of the vernacular. “Zannier Hotels is about trying to recreate an atmosphere from a period or culture, and we’re always inspired by what we find on site,” he continues. “The idea is to be true to the culture, to the country, to the environment and to the building. At Phum Baitang we decided to recreate the villages living around the paddy fields, and at 1898 The Post we worked around the origin of the building, a post office, bringing the ambiance of that period.” 1898 The Post is the group’s second property in Europe, making
its debut in 2017 in the city of Ghent. As with other hotels in the portfolio, the team immersed themselves in local culture and history of the building, creating stories and enhancing architectural details of the Neo-Gothic landmark. Rich colours, natural textures and materials that better with age take centrestage and continue a commitment to purity and authenticity. Zannier’s latest venture has taken him to Namibia, where a luxurious lodge overlooking a private reserve opened its doors just a few of months ago. Located close to Windhoek, it’s yet another unconventional addition to the portfolio, and one that came about through an unlikely connection. “Nothing was planned, we’ve been lucky,” quips Zannier, explaining that it was Angelina Jolie who told him about her friends’ reserve, and the help needed to continue their mission of protecting wildlife in the area. “She told me to go and visit this couple because there was land for sale close by,” he continues. “So I flew to Namibia to meet them and we became friends. They’re good people, so that’s when I decided to buy and continue the Zannier Hotels adventure in Africa.” Since this first meeting, Zannier has become immersed in the
“It’s all about creating an atmosphere for guests to remember individual moments. Of course there’s a DNA, but we want each hotel to be unique.”
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Above: Located in the desert, Sonop will be the second property of a multi-site development in Namibia
country, and consequently the project has snowballed into a multisite development. “When I discovered the country I realised that it’s so diverse and we’d need at least three to four lodges for people to discover the culture and landscape,” he continues. Inspired by the traditional architecture of the Owambo people, Omaanda is the first in a series of lodges to open across the country, and once again takes the brand into new territory. It will offer safaris in the newly formed Zannier Reserve, and support the Shiloh Wildlife Sanctuary, a clinic for injured rhinos and elephants. Further properties are planned for Sossusvlei in the desert, Etosha to the north, and in the Caprivi region, close to Okavanga Delta. A mobile camp is also in the works, journeying between the sites for a cross-country adventure. Elsewhere there’s talk of an extension at Phum Baitang, a new venture in Vietnam, and aspirations to head west to the Americas. The Vietnam project is under construction and is set to feature 71 beach huts lining a private bay in Phu Yen province. Slated to open in 2020, it marks the group’s largest project in terms of investment and will also test its real estate potential, with 45 villas available for purchase. As for the US, Zannier believes that, despite the overcrowded luxury sector, the group can bring something new. “We know that 30% of our guests at Phum Baitang for example are coming from the USA; I’m sure that our DNA is different enough and will create something really fresh for the US market.
“After Vietnam we have another potential project in Southeast Asia and we’ve just had a request from Central America, which is interesting because it’s another continent and could be a door to the US market,” Zannier continues, before revealing that the site is in fact in Mexico, and he’s headed there in a matter of weeks. While expansion is clearly on the cards – the group is slated to double its room count over the next three years – Zannier is mindful of taking on too many projects. “We’re a small team and we enjoy what we do,” he notes. “I don’t want to expand too quickly otherwise we risk losing the spirit of the brand.” He isn’t interested in copy-and-paste concepts either, and with each project so deeply rooted in its locale, growth will likely be slow and steady. To emerge from hotel industry novice to established global brand is an achievement in itself, but the hotelier doesn’t make it easy, selecting vastly different locations and having to learn the complexities of development, ownership and operations in each market before construction even begins. But for Zannier, that’s part of the appeal. His sites are selected for their untamed beauty and rich heritage rather than ease of doing business. “The adventure is not the end product, but the process of finding a new destination, creating a concept and finding solutions to the challenges and difficulties,” he concludes. “I learn a lot with every project and that’s what makes it exciting.”
THE MIRROR REMAINS
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Hotel Herman K COPENHAGEN
Brøchner Hotels has converted a transformer station in the heart of Copenhagen to its fourth hotel in the Danish capital, with interiors by Morten Hedegaard and Mette Fredskild. Words: Matt Turner | Photography: Courtesy of Brøchner Hotels
iven Copenhagen’s reputation as world leader in gastronomy, design, urban planning and sustainability – not to mention the location of arguably the world’s first ‘design hotel’ in the Arne Jacobsen-designed Radisson SAS Royal – it has long seemed an anomaly that the Danish capital’s hotel scene has lagged behind that of other European cities. In recent years that has begun to change, with the advent of new properties such as Sanders and Nobis, and the extension and refurbishment of earlier boutique hotels Skt Petri and Nimb. The newest addition has been created from the conversion of a transformer station built in 1963 in the heart of Copenhagen. Herman K is the latest project from Brøchner Hotels, owners and operators of SP34, Hotel Danmark, the Astoria and Avenue Hotels. This is its first leasehold property, operated on a management contract for owners and co-developers Dansk Ejendoms Management. Its bronze slatted façade is a striking presence in the city’s main shopping district. Towering glass doors open onto a 12-metre-high lobby, its raw concrete architecture serving as a backdrop to a unique 3D printed artwork suspended above the central bar.
Above: The cosy bar area features custom furniture by designers Morten Hedgaard and Mette Fredskild
housing the latest technology and integrated lighting. Elsewhere furnishings by Carl Hansen & Son, Ox Denmarq, Bent Hansen, Frei Frau and Nielaus feature. Lighting is by Archii and Rubn. Other notable features include in-room fitness training kits, complimentary room service drinks, a fully organic breakfast, and through a collaboration with technology supplier AeroGuest, the option to use your mobile phone as your roomkey. The design of the hotel was a collaboration between Brøchner Hotels, Morten Hedegaard of Asite, and Mette Fredskild. According to hotel manager Lise Egenius: “Today luxury is individual. It is about originality, creating unique experiences and something unexpected. Therefore, at Hotel Herman K, we have redefined luxury, which includes the surroundings, the atmosphere and the service, focusing on the guest, providing a conceptual and unique hotel experience.” Next on Brøchner Hotels’ agenda is a new boutique property at the iconic Carlsberg Brewery site – an area of central Copenhagen near to the Kødbyen Meatpacking District which is being extensively redeveloped by developer Carslberg Byen P/S. Named Hotel Ottilia, in reference to the wife of the famous Carlsberg founder Carl Jacobsen, this will be the new district’s first hotel with its 156 rooms, conference facilities, two bars, ground floor café and a rooftop restaurant and terrace overlooking Copenhagen. Karim Nielsen, Managing Director at Brøchner Hotels, sees the
Guests are welcomed not by a reception desk, but the angled form of the bar jutting out towards the entrance, flanked by a restaurant on one side and a cosy, comfortable lounge area to the right. The Roxie restaurant, spread over three floors, is a collaboration with the owners of Copenhagen’s Michelin-starred Kadeau, accessed via the building’s vertiginous original folded iron gates. The decor is simple and understated, with materials such as leather, wood, steel and textiles mixed with beautiful glass and flowers in ceramic vases on tables lit with small, portable table lamps. The basement houses a wine cellar, where the original raw concrete pillars form an integral part of the design. The bar meanwhile is particularly popular for the hotel’s nightly after-work ‘Wine Hour’ – a signature feature in all Brøchner Hotels – and later in the evening for ‘Nightcap Hour’ – a new introduction for Herman K during which all spirits, displayed in a presentation cabinet occupying the end wall of the lounge, are on the house. From the lobby, the original concrete stairs of the power station lead up to the 31 guestrooms and suites. Deep luxurious carpets by Ege, contemporary furnishings and artworks by Pio Diaz soften the sharp lines of the architecture, particularly in the duplex apartments and the penthouse suite with its 40m2 private roof terrace. Bathrooms are housed in white marble with fittings by Unidrain. The beds are a custom design by Morten Hedegaard, with white leather surrounds
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Left: The imposing slatted façade of Herman K, located in the heart of Copenhagen’s shopping district
historic surroundings as a great advantage for the hotel. “We are very aware that we will become part of a piece of Danish industrial history when we move into Carlsberg City District,” heexplains. “As an authentic boutique hotel commands, we will bring the history of the buildings into the design of the hotel. The grain silos, malt houses and machines will be incorporated into the interior and become part of the hotel’s story. “We are creating unique hotels and experiences that reinvent the hotel stay, and in our opinion Carlsberg City is one of the most unique areas in central Copenhagen,” concludes Nielsen. “With Hotel Ottilia, it will become an urban district that will attract both visitors and residents, and we look forward to being part of this development.”
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 31 guestrooms | 1 restaurant | 1 bar | In-room fitness | www.brochner-hotels.com Owner / Operator: Brøchner Hotels | Developer: Brøchner Hotels; Dansk Ejendoms Management | Architecture: Morten Kristensen; Dansk Ejendoms Management Interior Design: Brøchner Hotels; Mette Fredskild; Morten Hedegaard | Lighting Design: Rubn Lighting | Art Consultant: Martin Asbæk Gallery
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Olea All Suite Hotel ZAKYNTHOS
Block722 Architects teams up with local operator Xenos Hotels Group to create a hilltop resort in sync with nature. Words: Catherine Martin | Photography: Courtesy of Design Hotels
p on a hilltop above the village of Tsilivi, a new resort designed as an ode to Mother Nature has emerged from the rocky landscape. Set around a ‘lake’ amongst indigenous olive trees, Olea All Suite Hotel pays homage to the Earth’s naturally occurring elements, aiming to connect guests with the world around them. It’s the perfect spot for Xenos Hotels Group to grow the luxury arm of its portfolio, having opened Zante Maris Suites on an adjacent site in 2016. Prior to that, the local outfit – the largest on the island with a 3,000-bed count – operated mainly value and premium resorts, before guest demand prompted the development of smaller, more luxurious accommodation types. The venture comes a decade after Greece fell victim to the global financial crisis, resulting in sharp declines in GDP, which eventually hit the travel and tourism sector. But with tourists now flocking back to both the islands and mainland, new supply – particularly at the luxury end of the market – is coming on-line at regular intervals. Design Hotels for example – of which Olea All Suite Hotel is a member – has welcomed a number of new properties in recent months, on the islands of Mykonos and Santorini as well as in the capital, Athens. Olea however is the collection’s first outpost in Zakynthos – the third largest of the Ionian Islands – having made the grade for its interior design, architecture and local integration. Responsible for
creating the concept is Athens- and Stockholm-based Block722 Architects – founded by Sotiris Tsergas, Katja Margaritoglou and Konstantinos Korfiatis – the multi-disciplinary firm behind a similar scheme at Zante Maris Suites. The success of the sister property has paid dividends, with the team this time granted complete creative freedom, their brief only to ensure they met the vision and expectations of Xenos Hotels Group. With panoramic views of coast and countryside, the resort occupies a secluded spot on the hillside, accessed via a winding lane from the heart of the village. The climb to the top is a steep one, but those who make it are rewarded with the island’s finest example of tropical modernist architecture. High ceilings, open-air public spaces and a focus on local building materials make for an incredibly photogenic resort, but there’s substance to the good looks too. In line with its signature of simple geometric volumes, clean lines and quality materials, Block722 Architects has created an arrival experience that sees guests enter via an over-water walkway into the double-height lobby. The main hotel building is constructed from plaster and wood, with cavity walls, air gaps and overhangs for increased ventilation. A façade of bamboo reaching all the way up to the thatched roof extends around the building to the bar and main restaurant, giving way to openings that look out to the rest of the resort. The bamboo really comes into its own at dusk, when
This Page: Natural materials such as bamboo, oak and rattan characterise the furnishings in the lobby, bar and restaurants
the setting sun filters through the canes for a memorable interplay of light and shadow. Bamboo finds its way inside too, used both vertically and horizontally as a way to break down the volume of the space, and in Flow Dine & Wine, an a la carte restaurant on the opposite side of the resort. Here, it can be seen behind the bar, and providing shade over the terrace – a great place to enjoy creative Mediterranean cuisine and a glass of one of the many local wines on offer. Other natural materials such as oak and rattan characterise the furnishings, while open-plan layouts create a connection with the verdant surroundings. “The design aims to bring guests in sync with nature and its elements, connecting the indoors with the outdoors in a seamless way,” explains Vasiliki Moustafatzi, Architect Engineer at Block722 Architects. “We were inspired by the natural environment of the island and selected materials and a colour palette to reflect this.” The 93 suites dotted across the resort follow
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This Page: The 93 suites feature cooling surfaces such as plaster walls and stone tiling underfoot, with warmth coming from the beauty of the materials and textures
Above: A la carte restaurant Flow Dine & Wine features an outdoor terrace overlooking the verdant countryside
its perimeter following the course of a natural waterway. “The big challenge for us was to design the man-made lake with suites and hotel facilities positioned around it; to have the water flow in a natural way through such a large-scale plot, without the sense of superficial interference,” says Moustafatzi. The water flows between elevations, meandering around ageold olive trees and island-like clusters of buildings, creating a connection with the natural world that is far removed from the typical, overcrowded resort pool. Many guests opt to laze on the daybeds that appear to float over the lake, but those seeking respite from the midday sun can maroon themselves at Cocoon Rest & Bar, a sunken sanctuary surrounded by water, with a thatched roof and sand underfoot. With three distinct restaurants and bars as well as a spa and the pool, the design team has done well to create a resort experience that can keep a guest captive for days at a time. The village may only be a 10-minute walk away, and of course the concierge team can arrange olive oil tasting, horse riding and excursions to the famous Navagio Beach, but it’s easy to see why many who come here, don’t leave.
the same philosophy. “The approach of the design was to create a relaxing, cosy space that combines architectural clean lines with natural materials, textures and custom-made elements,” Moustafatzi continues, highlighting the chiseled stone basins as a defining feature of the bathrooms, their imperfections adding character. The team opted for cooling surfaces such as plaster walls and stone tiling underfoot, both in light earthy tones, with warmth coming from the beauty of the materials and textures. A solid oak daybed topped with linen cushions sits alongside tree trunk tables; wainscoting is fashioned from coarse yarns, which also front wardrobes and cupboards; and chairs are neatly woven from jute. “The use of natural materials and techniques defines the physical environment of each suite, with the result resembling more of a luxurious, tropical island settlement,” notes Moustafatzi. Suites differ mainly in view and access to water, though all are generous in size and feature outdoor living space, with some benefitting from a private pool and over-water double daybed. Others offer swim-up access from a pool that is one of the team’s greatest feats. Measuring 4,000m2, the swimming pool is more like a lake,
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 93 guestrooms | 3 restaurants | 3 bars | Spa, swimming pool | www.oleaallsuitehotel.com Operator: Xenos Group Hotels | Architecture and Interior Design: Block722 Architects | Structural Engineer: Malo Development
Shipwreck Lodge SK E LE TO N COA S T, N A M I B I A
A trio of African travel experts join forces with homegrown talent to create ten nautical-inspired cabins in the remote Namibian desert. Words: Ianthe Butt | Photography: ÂŠ Martin Harvey (unless otherwise stated)
ÂŠ Mark Swandale
areering over dizzying dunes, swirling sands clear to reveal a fleet of shipwrecks beached in the Namibian desert. The scene looks like an art installation; ten ship-style cabins surrounded by white-gold dunes that stretch to the Atlantic Ocean, tendrils of fog hanging in the air like wisps from an ancient mariner’s beard. Situated on the Skeleton Coast, a 300-mile-long nearuninhabited wilderness that runs along Namibia’s western shore, Shipwreck Lodge is the latest in a raft of new openings cementing the African nation’s reputation as a hotspot for small, design-led properties. Rumours that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle would honeymoon here has seen interest in high-end trips, organised by the likes of the Luxury Safari Company, spike. A collaboration between Namibian travel agent Trip Travel and two local owner-operator outfits, Journeys Namibia and Natural Selection, Shipwreck Lodge realises the dream of the late Piet du Plooy, Trip Travel’s former Managing Director who aspired to create a one-of-a-kind lodge in the remote Skeleton Coast National Park. Given that Shipwreck Lodge’s nearest neighbours – hardy scientific researchers and a one-million-strong seal colony – are found 45km south at Mowe Bay, where guests arrive by light aircraft before a two-hour jeep transfer, it certainly ticks the remote box. The quirky shipwreck-inspired architecture is the brainchild of Namibian-based Nina Maritz Architects. A nod to the many
vessels that have fallen victim to the coastline’s treacherous ocean currents, and whose remains litter its beaches, each building resembles a broken hull flipped on its side, melded with a ship’s bow. “It’s abstract,” says Maritz of the ten accommodation cabins that appear half-buried along a sandy ridge, either side of a larger ‘mothership’ that houses a restaurant and lounge. Each ‘hull’ contains a bedroom and study, and each ‘bow’ a bathroom with shower and toilet. “Much like a boat’s prow splitting wave force, the pointed bathroom section was angled into the wind to minimise impact,” she adds. A sea and sunset-facing façade is dominated by windows, with curved spars of wood protruding upwards to add to the shipwreck feel. Unusually, the façade is sloped, as are the cabin’s structural surfaces, the effect being that the eye is drawn to the desert view. The pristine location meant that minimal impact leave-no-trace structures were central to the brief. Maritz’s studio specialises in environmentally-sensitive projects, and is influenced by the Navajo concept of ‘hozho’ – happiness experienced by being in harmony with nature. To this end, sustainably-sourced spruce timber cabin panels were pre-fabricated by Holzbau Hess carpenters in Windhoek, then transported by truck for assembly. Back-of-house facilities occupy repurposed shipping containers, while the resort is powered by solar and wind, backed up by a bio-diesel generator.
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Maritz likens construction to ‘building a house of cards.’ First, deep poles were driven 1.5m deep into the soil, then a spruce pine deck provided the base for the wall panels, before a sloping roof finished it off. Walls are clad in South African pine and insulated using recycled plastic bottles and membrane vapour barriers to counter harsh weather conditions. To combat the salty air, pioneering LignoLoc beech wood nails, with a similar tensile strength to aluminium, were used. Wood-based construction is a rarity in Namibia, but Maritz relished the challenge: “It was lovely to have the freedom to create something unorthodox, and start with our imagination,’’ she says. The interiors, overseen by Melanie van der Merwe and Windhoek-based Women Unleashed, are just as imaginative. Sense of place is established immediately in the entrance to the open-plan lounge where a bold shipwreck artwork by artist Heidi Louw looms large. “Art isn’t something just hung on a wall,” says van der Merwe, whose background spans both fine arts and lodge management. “I build the decor around
Above: The restaurant and lounge are housed in a ‘mothership’ and feature recycled wood furniture and tactile cushions
it.” Colour palettes throughout are nature-inspired; dark mauves mimic desert lichen blooms while varying blues mirror the waters of the Atlantic. The lounge space centres around a wood-burning stove and a mish-mash of bespoke recycled-wood furniture made by Wild Wood in Swakopmund. Soft seating by the windows, piled with velvet-textured throws and tactile cushions festooned with felt pompoms, makes a comfy spot to relax in after wildlife-spotting adventures. Rustic cuisine is served in the adjacent restaurant, where guests can pull up antique or custom-made wingback chairs to dine at tables crafted in old Oregon and German pine. “Unemployment levels here are high, so working with homegrown creative talent was a priority” says van der Merwe. Consequently, interiors are a love letter to Namibian artistry: whorl-patterned placemats are made from plastic shopping bags by low-income mothers in Windhoek; glass from old bottles has been recycled into cascading chandeliers by Kabo Craft; and a swirling marine-toned wool carpet took Karakulia Weavers’ studio five weeks to complete. Shelves are packed with locally sourced curio such as battered tomes
from Namibia’s oldest bookshop, an antique magnifying glass and vintage silverware. The overall aesthetic is that of a stylish seafarer’s trunk, contents artfully scattered across the space. Bedroom interiors are more pared-back, but just as considered. “The unusual slanted shape of rooms meant pretty much everything had to be bespoke – from mattresses to storage space,” continues van der Merwe. It’s a cosy space; beds are dressed in grey linens and faux-fur rugs, hot water bottles are tucked in low-level round side tables and there’s a wood-burning stove that becomes the focal point on cold nights. The nautical theme is embraced in weighty curtains threaded with copper piping that resemble sails, compass-patterned thrift-shop hooks, and a calligraphy covered door telling tales of the area’s shipwrecks. Useful items such as a Le Creuset kettle and classic Stanley Thermos Flask dress the study, while details including a curtain fashioned from knotted rope and porthole covers adorned with laser-cut maps add charm. Thanks to the talent and enterprise of homegrown creatives, despite sitting in one of the world’s most inhospitable landscapes, Shipwreck Lodge delivers a whole-heartedly hospitable environment.
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 10 cabins | 1 restaurant | www.shipwrecklodge.com.na / www.naturalselection.travel Owner / Developer: Trip Travel; Journeys Namibia; Natural Selection | Architecture: Nina Maritz Architects | Interior Design: Women Unleashed
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Kimpton Fitzroy LONDON
Ushering a British institution into the modern era, a team of the country’s leading designers and architects update the past with a series of refined contemporary touches. Words: Kristofer Thomas | Photography:© Tom Mannion (unless otherwise stated)
hroughout Britain’s Imperial Century – that is, the era between 1815 and 1914 that saw the largest empire ever to grace the world operating at the peak of its powers – London’s Bloomsbury established itself as something of a flagship development. In the hundred years that saw 10-million-square-feet of territory and 400 million people brought into the empire’s fold, lone monuments would have been of little use to a state in the midst of both rapid urbanisation and potentially straining population growth. Instead, the powers that be opted for a more culturally concerned approach spread across several institutions, establishing within the West London district’s borders the University of London to educate the brightest and best; The British Museum, to preserve a vast collection of colonial artefacts; and the Church of Christ the King to nourish the soul. In short, Bloomsbury then was to many Britain’s shining beacon of arts, enlightenment and prestige; host to some of the empire’s most prized possessions. At its core is the leafy Russell Square – a deliberately open garden to offset the capital’s quickly disappearing public space, named for John Russell, the Duke of Bedford who oversaw much of the project
– whilst at its corner sat Hotel Russell, an opulent, terracotta-clad structure designed by architect Charles Fitzroy Doll and opened in 1898, intended as a luxurious gathering place for the intelligentsia, literary-types and affluent power brokers that frequented the area. As with many of the district’s mainstay buildings, the property itself is woven through with history. The hotel’s original restaurant scheme was said to be near identical to that of the Titanic’s dining room – another of Doll’s spaces – whilst a coat of arms integrated within the distinctive thé-au-lait façade depicts the world’s nations as they were in the 19th century. Elsewhere, a series of life-size statues depicting four British queens – Elizabeth I, Mary I, Mary II and Anne – by Henry Charles Fehr, an original member of the Royal British Society of Sculptors, sit above the door, guarding the entrance and charting the monarchy through time. Meanwhile, having avoided significant damage and commandeering by the government’s war office through two great wars, a few lucky bombs struck the sizable dome that once sat atop the building, resulting in the flat-topped silhouette we see today. And even beyond the outskirts of London, the hotel remains culturally significant; the
Above: The gallery, clad in dark wood with original mosaic tiling underfoot, complements the lobby whilst hinting at the darker elements of the scheme
distinguished Russell Group of British universities having adopted its name from the venue that held early meetings there. Though the Bloomsbury of today may not stand as the beacon it once was – London’s monuments are glass now, and speak of commerce and capital – Doll’s landmark hotel has survived regardless, but failed to reach the heady heights of its Empire days. However, after a period of relative dormancy, the hotel has now been given a new lease of life that could see it reclaim its cultural fortune. Beginning a new chapter following two years of extensive renovations and £200 million in investment, Doll’s creation has been given a sequel of sorts, one that resembles its predecessor in tone and spirit, but has been meticulously adapted for a new audience. Initially purchased and lifted out of stagnancy by Starwood Capital as Principal London, then sold – along with most of the group’s portfolio – to French investor Convivio to be operated under the InterContinental Hotels Group umbrella, specifically the brand’s luxurious Kimpton subsidiary, it takes the name Kimpton Fitzroy London in a nod to its storied past, an idea translated into a recurring visual motif throughout. On the process of rebranding, David Taylor, Vice President, Operations UK, IHG, comments: “On completion of the sale of the hotel by Starwood Capital, we worked with the Kimpton Home Office and the IHG team to see how we could rebrand The Principal
London to the Kimpton Fitzroy in just three months. The design team from Kimpton loved the aesthetic created by Tara Bernerd and Russell Sage, so it was really a case of looking at some touchstones familiar to Kimpton guests, and overlaying these into this amazing hotel. Service-wise, the team were already on point and our employee value proposition quite similar, so all of these things made the job a lot easier. All of our food and drink outlets remain the same and anything new will be an uplift to what we set out to create.” With the renovation process bringing together multiple British design heavyweights in Tara Bernerd & Partners, EPR Architects, Russell Sage Studio and Gorgeous Group, the reimagining of the Bloomsbury institution is as much of an English affair it was at the turn of the 20th century. Featuring 334 guestrooms ranging from casual city singles to 39 apartment-style suites, along with the darkly seductive Fitz’s Bar, the brightly appointed Neptune seafood restaurant, casual coffeehouse Burr & Co and the leafy, transitional Palm Court, the project presents a refined selection of modern London character, staff included, with the hotel bringing in Sean Fennelly from Soho institution Milk & Honey to oversee the bar and add a touch of local expertise. Elsewhere, the original ballroom has been updated to meet modern standards, whilst a series of meeting rooms, decked out with their original teak flooring, complete the offer. However, where
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KIMPTON FITZROY LONDON ENGLAND
Tara Bernerd & Partners and Russell Sage Studio
Hospitality – Leisure – Gaming – Marine – Residential
Sleeper - Oct 2018.indd 1
This Page: Guestrooms feature cooler palettes of beige, wood and pops of gold, whilst larger suites include four poster beds and dedicated living rooms for a residential vibe
© Tim Winter
the expansive project may comprise multiple tones and schemes across these spaces, the reimagining sticks tight to a central theme of updated legacy throughout. “It is an iconic building with such a great past, and our role was very much one of a custodian,” says Tara Bernerd. “We sought to breathe new life back into this Grande Dame by respecting its history whilst also embracing its new chapter for the modern traveller.” Working with Gorgeous Group’s conceptual underpinning, a key foundation for the refurbishment that lends historic and social substance to each design choice, Bernerd’s studio has sought to channel a modern interpretation of the hotel’s glamorous past. An open lobby, stretching from Burr & Co on one side of the property to Fitz’s on the other, brings together past and present,
The Principal London, Bloomsbury (Kimpton Fitzroy) in collaboration with Principal Hotels, Tara Bernerd & Partners andÂ Russell Sage Studio
Left: With consultaion from Utopia Projects, bathrooms take the form of white marble sanctuaries, and feature Victoria & Albert freestanding baths and fittings by Marflow
© Philip Vile
matching a series of bespoke, modernist lighting pendants with original chandeliers – restored by Dernier & Hamlyn – and columns clad in veined, tortoiseshell marble to balance the scale. Likewise, an imposing Art Decostyle fireplace, designed bespoke by Bernerd with linear ironwork and circular reliefs, is pitted against classically styled lounge chairs in golden velvet for a similar effect. The welcome experience, meanwhile, is defined by the aesthetic statements of the restored staircase – complete with Lucky George, an identical replication of a bronze dragon bust that appeared aboard the Titanic and has been a staple of the hotel since opening – and the Grade-II listed mosaic floor upon which rests a retained zodiac design, vivid with layers of new colour and sheen. Guests would also do well to look up where
PHOTOGRAPHY: PEER LINDGREEN
© Tim Winter
Above: Fitz’s bar is the hotel’s darkly seductive bar, created with decadence, indulgence and seduction in mind, featuring plush banquettes and a disco ball
possible, with details abound across the Palm Court’s original ceiling moulds, the ballroom’s decorative arches and a vortex of swirling fabric above the banquettes of Fitz’s Bar. “The hotel merges notions of the old Bloomsbury set with the new revival of the area,” Bernerd adds. “It is a homage to the past with authentic materials, fabrics, dark wood-panelled walls and stone floors; but combined with a modern aesthetic in the striking bronze Crittall doors, statement lighting and mosaic floors.” The corridors above, lined with a custom carpet design by Brintons in royal blue and black, see guestrooms occupy both the hotel’s former suites as well as the space left by a series of removed ancillary, back-of-house and service spaces on upper floors. Within, the lobby’s warm palette of beige marble, subdued honey and off-white is refined by hues of welcoming cream, vanilla and splashes of vibrant gold. Four poster beds and airy drapes add to the residential vibe, whilst eggshell-toned fabrics catch the summer breeze through tall windows; the more expansive suites showcase Bernerd’s keen eye for texture and accent through bespoke furnishings and lights. White marble bathrooms feature black iron fixture frames for a stark juxtaposition, whilst the rounded profile of a freestanding Victoria & Albert bath at the heart of each suite option creates a smooth cohesion with the gentle bedroom schemes. “The project involved 13 planning and listed building applications
and a large investment in the fabric of the building,” explains Tiffany Neller, Director, EPR Architects. “A number of refurbishments over the years, along with a certain degree of neglect and the need for asbestos removal, meant that bringing the building back to a structurally sound, safe and watertight condition was necessary before any of the fit-out works could even commence.” From major tasks such as the reintroduction of the historic Palm Court within a disused conference space and the repositioning of the previously inward-facing nature of the building, to smaller, more subtle changes like closing redundant entrances and opening up the ground floor to afford more visibility from the street, the approach functions at once to streamline the building, to create transitional spaces between the varying schemes, and to bring the structure in line with today’s guest desires. “As well as restoring much of the hotel’s history and enabling guests to appreciate more fully this rare example of late Renaissance architecture, the flamboyant nature of the original features has inspired an interior design reflective of the mood of the era,” Neller adds. “The design throughout draws inspiration from the building’s history and is sensitive to the historic grandeur, whilst still being contemporary and bringing a sense of modern luxury suited to the needs of a high end hotel.” The firm’s efforts created space for the 39 suites, and unique
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© Carol Sachs
Above: Seafood restaurant Neptune, with its palette of peach and apricot, is a far cry from the spaces adjacent, yet integrated seamlessly.
variations within them for returning guests, as well as a more defined F&B programme and the emphasised notes of historical character that carry the project’s historical leanings. Thanks to close consideration of layout, there are few rooms with unlucky or obstructed views, most looking out over Bloomsbury Square or, for guests in the Superior or Corner suites on the upper floors, sections of the city’s skyline over the trees. Key throughout the project is the consistency of balance. Bernerd’s design walks the line between masculine and feminine, rarely tipping the scale too far in favour of either, whilst EPR’s alterations and restorations are historically sensitive yet not a simple act of tribute. Likewise, Russell Sage’s F&B spaces are distinct characters in their own right – the peach and apricot scheme of Neptune a far cry from the indulgent shade of Fitz’s – but integrate coherently within a wider scheme each could initially seem at odds with. Working with Gorgeous Group, Russell Sage Studio has designed these spaces as sanctuaries, bursts of colour and materials not present in the wider scheme, emphasising their differences as opposed to
blending everything together. The deep purple velvet of Fitz’s bar is juxtaposed sharply against pastels of Neptune with its stately columns and hanging plants, despite just a few doors of space between them, whilst Burr & Co could easily be mistaken for a standalone project with its bright teak panelling, forest green tiling and chalkboards. That these spaces remain connected is in itself an achievement, and a testament to the collaborative process that defines this reimagining. “For me, the project was all about the invisible alchemy,” Bernerd explains. “Layers and layers of decisions have come together to create an intangible, unique atmosphere that I hope both guests and locals will enjoy.” Like its predecessor, Kimpton Fitzroy London is a reflection of both the time and city it occupies. Where once stood a hotel decadent with the sensibilities of an Empirical class now stands one eager to welcome a broader stratum of guests, and though the preservation of the façade may suggest that little has changed since the Empire’s collapse, the transformation of the interiors, and the updating of its tired spirit in favour of a more relevant identity, says otherwise.
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 334 guestrooms | 1 restaurant | 1 bar | Ballroom, 8 meeting rooms | Gym | www.kimptonfitzroylondon.co.uk Owner: Convivio | Investor: Starwood Capital Group | Operator: IHG | Architecture: EPR Architects | Interior Design: Tara Bernerd & Partners; Russell Sage Studio | F&B Consultant: Georgeous Group | Art Consultant: Visto | Logistics: Kuehne + Nagel
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10/16/18 10:57 AM
Awasi Iguazú MISIONES
Taking design inspiration from its rainforest setting and the culture of the indigenous Guaraní people, Awasi makes its debut in Argentina. Words: Sarah Gilbert | Photography: © Susette Kok (unless otherwise stated)
wasi is known for its game-changing boutique lodges that pair eco-sensitive design and off-the-beaten-track adventures with stellar service. But in contrast to their Chilean properties – one in the arid Atacama Desert, the other on the edge of the mountainous Torres del Paine National Park – their first lodge in Argentina is immersed in jungle greenery. Just a 20-minute drive from the awe-inspiring Iguazú Falls in the rugged Misiones Province, Awasi Iguazú is almost completely hidden from sight within the Atlantic Rainforest. The design of the property was a collaboration between Awasi’s owner Ana Sainz de Vicuña and
Director General Matías de Cristobal, together with Buenos Airesbased interior designers Eugenia Choren and Patricia Diedrichs, and Santiago-based architect Rodrigo Dominguez, founder of Plannea, acting as project coordinator. Their goal was to create a harmonious and peaceful ambience, and unity between the lodge and its surroundings; not only the rainforest, but the culture and traditions of the indigenous Guaraní people who still inhabit the region. Reached via winding, split-stone pathways typical of the Misiones region, the 14 standalone villas-on-stilts are built from sustainably sourced pine and seamlessly blend into the landscape. “The intention
© Federico Garcia
© Luciano Bacchi
ÂŠ Federico Garcia
ÂŠ Federico Garcia
© Evan Austen
Above: Gently whirring ceiling fans hang from lofty beamed-ceilings and bespoke furniture has been crafted from warm-hued wood
was to give it a hint of a treehouse feel,” says de Cristobal. “The fact that the lodge is built on stilts makes it more environmentally friendly, while the design allows guests to get in touch with their childhood memories.” The split-level villas are spacious – 13 standard at 100m2, plus a two-bedroom master at 153m2 – and take their inspiration from the colours, textures and materials of the forest, with whitewashed walls to reflect as much natural light as possible. Gently whirring ceiling fans hang from lofty beamed-ceilings, bespoke furniture has been crafted from warm-hued wood including huge slabs of a fallen tree turned into tables, shelves are decorated with local handicrafts and walls are adorned with delicate botanical watercolours of native flora and fauna. “We wanted to remind guests of the naturalists that once explored the area and highlight the beauty of the natural surroundings from a different angle, giving it a playful yet educational twist,” explains Choren. Every villa has a secluded wraparound wooden deck with its own plunge pool and lounging space, surrounded by towering trees festooned with trailing vines, bird song and a chorus of cicadas, while floor-to-ceiling windows lined with gauzy linen curtains mean that there’s no barrier between the villas and the rainforest, whatever the
weather. “The windows are designed to frame the rainforest canopy, so guests can be in touch with nature, even if they’re reading a book from the comfort of their sofa,” says de Cristobal. “And of course, more windows means more natural light, which can be hard to come by in such lush surroundings.” Bathrooms come with large bathtubs, walk-in rainshowers lined with pale grey porcelain tiles, deliciously scented organic toiletries from Fueguia 1883 and jungle views, with a handwoven Guaraní basket to hold the pool towels. “Basket weaving is one of the most widespread art forms in Guaraní culture and each zigzag, diagonal line and square of the intricate design is symbolic, often with references to the animal kingdom,” explains de Cristobal. The open-plan main lodge is the focal point of the property, designed to feel like an ultra-stylish home rather than a hotel, with distinct seating areas perfect for pouring over a glossy coffee-table book or playing a board game. It makes the most of native woods – such as humidity resistant laurel negro and guayubirá – and natural materials, with woven seagrass chairs, cowhide rugs and tactile cushions in a palette that take their cue from the landscape. “The colours of table linens and rugs are predominantly red or earth tones, with some greens,” says Choren. “We were inspired by
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Above: An expansive terrace becomes part of the jungle thanks to natural materials such as a bar hewn from petiribí and lampshades crafted from lianas
the particularly intense red tones of the soil in Misiones and the greens of the rainforest.” The striking bar is hewn from petiribí, and the perfect place for a chilled glass of Argentine Torrontés or a bespoke cocktail, perhaps with Apostoles, a craft gin from the wine-growing region of Mendoza that’s infused with the herb yerba mate – an Argentine obsession – from Misiones. Guests can eat inside or alfresco on the expansive terrace enveloped in the rustle and hum of the jungle, where lampshades are crafted from lianas. The breakfast buffet – featuring fresh juices such as papaya and watermelon, homemade granola and just-baked pastries – also sits under a showstopping seven-piece light installation that illuminates the dining area at night. “It was handmade from fishing line by La Feliz, the project of Buenos Aires-based Patricio Lix Klett and Celeste Bernardini,” says Choren. “The design was inspired by fishing baskets but also by the nets used in local agriculture – they’re hung above the trees to protect the fruit from predatory birds. The
texture was achieved by a special weaving technique that overlaps up to 40 times.” The dining offer is equally inspired. Venezuelan chef Aarón Castillo Telleria, formerly at Awasi Patagonia, has developed dishes around seasonal, local ingredients. Guaraní wood carvings – animals such as jaguar, toucans and coatis – grace the tables and menus include vegetables plucked from the organic garden, local surubí fish and the succulent steaks for which Argentina is renowned, as well as a gourmet take on traditional dishes such as puchara, a pared-down version of a stew that’s perfectly paired with a Pinot Noir. Unique to Awasi, each villa get its very own knowledgeable and passionate guide and 4WD, so guests can discover the region at their own pace. Iguazú Falls are the big draw of course but Awasi encourages guests to go deeper, perhaps on a hike through their private reserve Yacu-i, kayaking along a serene jungle river or visiting the ruins of a 17th century Jesuit Mission. All rounded off with an epicurean feast, perfect for high-end explorers.
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 14 villas | 1 restaurant | 1 bar | www.awasiguazu.com Owner: Ana Sainz de Vicuña | Operator: Awasi | Architecture: Plannea | Interior Design: Eugenia Choren and Patricia Diedrichs
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Andronis Concept SANTORINI
Hotelier Andronis Miltiadis adds to his portfolio with a wellness resort on the balcony to the Aegean. Words: Catherine Martin | Photography: © Tryfon Georgopoulos
antorini in high season and the winding streets of Fira and Oia are packed with throngs of tourists, jostling for the best spot from which to marvel at the island’s famed sunset. Somewhere between the two, the village of Imerovigli keeps a more relaxed pace. Despite its clifftop setting and orientation towards the caldera – this is prime sunset viewing territory – Imerovigli doesn’t seem to have the same pull as the more developed towns nearby. While some may be deterred by the off-the-beaten-track location, a handful of hoteliers are snapping up secluded sites to cater to those seeking respite from the crowds.
Andronis Miltiadis is one those who has recognised the beauty of space and tranquility – both a rarity in Santorini – selecting a sprawling site on the outskirts of Imerovigli to open his sixth hotel. Fully operational for the 2018 season, Andronis Concept Wellness Resort joins a growing portfolio of boutique hotels across the island, as well as an outpost in Athens. Each is individually designed yet shares a philosophy that aims to connect the guest to the locale at every touchpoint. The new addition occupies a sloping site above the village, the lay of the land providing natural tiers from the entrance at the foot of
Above: The hotel takes Santorini’s traditional cave houses as inspiration and features surfaces of exposed stone
into the shape of the room. The minimalist approach enhances the sense of space while traditional Santorinian styling can be seen in the loose furniture, materials and accessories, sourced from the likes of Kare Design and Athens-based Mia Collections. All suites have their own terrace and infinity pool but there’s also a main swimming pool, which at 50 metres long is one of the largest in Santorini and perfect for those wanting to keep up their fitness regime. Naturally, wellness is core to the hotel’s offer, whether that be through relaxation or more energetic physical activity. The Kallos Spa offers a wide variety of services including hair styling, manicures and facials, and brings together massage techniques from around the world. The approach follows the ancient paths of holistic therapy, inspired by both Eastern and Western traditions, and also takes into account mental health, spiritual guidance and nutrition. The signature Kallos Bliss experience for example, begins with 30 minutes of breathing exercises to reach a state of relaxation, before a Thai massage to release stress and fatigue, and a series of yoga postures to heal the body and connect with the inner self. The treatment concludes with a detoxifying meal prepared by the hotel’s chefs. There’s also a large subterranean gym, meditation and yoga classes, and uniquely, a heated cave pool with a refreshing waterfall feature. A helicopter pad, tennis court and a cave cinema showing movies
the hill, to the guestrooms at the summit. Designed by Kapsimalis Architects – a local firm that specialises in integrating buildings with the landscape – the hotel takes the island’s traditional cave houses as inspiration. The lobby, a standalone building housing check-in and a boutique concept store selling crafts from Greek designers, appears to emerge from the land like a giant boulder. Partially open to the elements, its cavernous interior offers a cooling break from the elements, with light flooding in through an opening in the ceiling. An installation of healing crystals hangs from above and is almost the only decoration in a space that lets the architecture do the talking. A pathway framed by towering ochre walls winds up the hill to a second structure, where 28 guestrooms range from the 35m2 Cozy Suite to a four-bedroom villa with a spacious living room and two private pools. There’s also the Fabulous Suite with 90m2 of indoor and outdoor living space, and the Wet Allure Suite, a two-storey retreat in which the lower level is dedicated to a spa-like bathroom with a spacious walk-in shower carved into the rock. Interiors were designed in close collaboration with Miltiadis himself, the scheme reflecting his personal vision of how a luxury resort should look and feel. Surfaces are of exposed stone in keeping with the Cycladic dwellings of times gone by, with dressing tables and seating – the latter topped with chunky cushions – also carved
Above: Throubi’s dining terrace offers front-row seats to the island’s famed sunset
produced in Greece add to the offer, demonstrating an ability to cater to a range of guest desires. Miltiadis has made use of every square foot of land, driving additional revenue through the creation of multi-use spaces. The yoga deck for example – a prime spot on a balcony overlooking the ocean – is also used for al fresco spa treatments throughout the day and private dinners at night. The grounds, landscaped by Zacharias Papadogianakis, are planted with herbs and vegetables that are used in the kitchen, and there’s an alluring pergola where guests can partake in Greek cooking classes. Completing the offer is the hotel’s restaurant, Throubi, which continues the standard set by the group’s other dining destinations. At Andronis Boutique Hotel, Lauda serves up ‘Greek Nouvelle Cuisine’, while at nearby Andronis Luxury Suites, Lycabettus is not only renowned for its spectacular setting – on a natural ridge that juts out over the ocean – but for chef Pavlos Kiriakis’ artistic plating and unique flavour combinations. Back at Andronis Concept, the menu is equally creative and a celebration of Santorinian gastronomy. Named after an aromatic
herb with therapeutic properties that can be found growing in the dry rocky landscape of the island, Throubi is in keeping with the resort’s overarching philosophy. Dishes are nutritionally balanced and prepared using the freshest raw ingredients from the garden, served alongside tender cuts of meat or the catch of the day. Interiors are again pared back, with solid wood tables and simple place settings. Those dining on the terrace have front-row seats to the spectacle of the setting sun – Imerovigli isn’t called the balcony to the Aegean for nothing – and it’s at this time of day when the ochre walls really come into their own, their yellow-orange hues matching with the sky. The wellness resort will no doubt be a popular choice for travellers who want the typical Santorinian experience but with the added luxury of space, and Miltiadis has been savvy in bringing something new to this part of the island. Next up for the hotelier is a venture on the outskirts of Oia, where a 58-key resort – known as Andronis Arcadia – will boast two restaurants, a generous spa and the biggest pool on Santorini.
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 28 guestrooms | 1 restaurant | 2 bars | Spa, swimming pool | www.andronisconcept.com Owner: Andronis Miltiadis | Operator: Andronis Exclusive Group | Architecture and Interior Design: Kapsimalis Architects Art Consultant: Apostolos Vasiliadis | Lighting Design: Charalampos Kanelopoulos | Landscaping: Zacharias Papadogianakis
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Hôtel du Rond-Point des Champs Èlysées PARIS
Esprit de France takes on another of Paris’ historic buildings to create a boutique hotel with character. Words: Guy Dittrich | Photography: © Gilles Trillard
he delicate tinkle of a bell announces the arrival of the lift at Hôtel du Rond Point des Champs Èlysées. It is just one of many charming moments that fit perfectly with the Parisian elegance of this small townhouse hotel. Managed by Esprit de France Hôtels & Demeures, a small collection of 50 residences across the country, Hôtel du Rond-Point is petite at just 36 rooms, and typical of several recent Parisian hotel openings. Like Les Bains and Le Roch Hotel & Spa, it has a basement pool and commands rates to match such an amenity, with occupancies around 80% since opening in summer 2018.
There’s a bustle and energy in the air on Rue de Ponthieu, where small cafés and restaurants accompany exclusive art galleries in the Golden Triangle of Paris. The street runs parallel to the Champs Èlysées only a block away, and the hotel is named after a major roundabout along the famed boulevard. Across the mish-mash of zinc-clad rooftops are views of the Eiffel Tower and Montmartre from rooms on the higher floors. But behind the bright and newly cleaned stone façade, last modified in the 1920s with the melange of Art Nouveau and Art Deco elements typical of the era, all is calm. Within, Arnaud Behzadi of Artefak Architecture, co-founded with
Above: Lighting plays a central role in the project; most striking are the rose-coloured globe lamps arrayed above the beds
project. Casting a beautiful ambiance are the intriguing bedside wall lights fixed to a vertical rod that extends to a circular shelf. Most striking (and photographed) are the rose-coloured globe lamps arrayed above beds in the suites. The theme is taken up by others too, including the Gae Aulenti and Piero Castiglioni-designed Parola desk lamp by Fontana Arte. Guestrooms see cylindrical seating poufs, also by Artefak. Upholstered with Prisme, a jacquard fabric by Créations Métaphores, its tight repeat crystalline pattern enhances the Deco feel at a minute level. There are other broad swathes of such thoughtful patterning – the highly varnished, dark cherry wood herringbone parquet, the block pattern of different coloured carpets and the bold vertical stripes of the Salto wallpaper from Vescom. The Italian supply connection is strong, while the mid-late 20th century aesthetic comes by way of the designers – the wired-framed chairs by Warren Platner for Knoll, or the Dioscuri lamps by Michele De Lucchi. De Lucchi was part of the Memphis Group and the hotel features more refined elements of the group’s boldness. Memphis Group advocated the use of new materials particularly laminates, which Artefak has used extensively. The broad colour spectrum of high-sheen laminates from another Italian manufacturer, Abet Laminati, are seen in bespoke pieces, notably the gently asymmetric guestroom consoles.
Vincent Bastie, has overseen the complete renovation of the hotel, originally built in the 1850s and owned by Madame Veronique Villette-Vuitton of fashion house fame. The result is a gem of a hotel that speaks of Art Deco roots, mid-20th century and Italian styling. Guestrooms are mostly of generous volumes (for Paris) arranged around an internal patio. On first visiting the site, Behzadi saw that “it had been arranged as a home, without the logic of an architect but with the heart of a hostess”. A soul that he sought to release. “The structure had been built in a number of phases and was the biggest challenge,” he continues. “The first four levels were in wood, supporting a very heavy concrete structure up to the eighth level. We had to re-build the lower structure to support that above. The second challenge was to find 100m2 of space in the basement for the spa and pool, which we resolved by creating a steel framework.” The steps into the 13m-long pool that stretches the width of the plot are lined with a curvaceous metal balustrade that dips delicately into the water. Spherical brass wall lamps illuminate the cloudy-effect tiling and a long, deep banquette fills an alcove between the entrance and hamam. The bold use of geometric themes is at the heart of the hotel along with circular motifs. Take the oculus of the domed ceilings of the restaurant and library either side of the patio for example, and the portholes here and there – some lined with brass. Artefak designed a variety of globe-based light fittings for the
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The hotel appeals with its mix of classy but humble wins. Colours that are bold and rich but never basic. Glossy enamel paints by Sikkens come in rose and buttery caramel, matched by silks and velvets in dark blues, purples and greens. The delicacy of the lotus flower pattern of the Neptune wallpaper by Jim Thompson in the suites. The slim strip of single yellow gold mosaic from the Aureo Collection by Trend brings a touch of glamour to bathrooms. Another fun win are the translucent orange cones of the Teti bulb holders in the hallways by Vico Magistretti for Artemide. Thought has gone into the storytelling within the property. For example, Bar Daphné celebrates the life and works of Daphné du Maurier, who stayed in the hotel whilst studying in Paris. Her best-known work, Rebecca, gives its name to a cocktail of strawberry, basil and lemon, whilst the Manderley’s Spritz is named after the fictional estate in the same book. The punchier whiskybased Hitchcock remembers the film director who used her books as the basis for The Birds
SPY MOSCOW RESTAURANT, MOSCOW, RUSSIA
Left & Previous Pages: Vibrant wallcoverings add to the character and come courtesy of Jim Thompson, Vescom and Braquenié
and Jamaica Inn. The bar is implausibly tiny and located on a thoroughfare between the entrance and the restaurant. On the other side of the building the mirroring throughway leads to the lifts and the deep-green enclave of the library with adjacent meeting space, home to an oval malachite table. And what of the charm? The porthole window from the staircase behind the reception allows a sneaky peak into the backof-house taking place behind the beautiful Art Deco desk. The leopard skin patterned carpet on that same stairway. The chainmail art piece of mirrored discs that ‘chatters’ if you pass too close. The his ’n’ hers imagery of the slipper bags hanging next to thick bathrobes. Divans covered in fabric woven with erotic scenes from the 1920s. Little touches that all add up to a novel experience that reads of thoughtful scripting but one that is not taking itself too seriously.
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 36 guestrooms | 1 restaurant | 1 bar | Meeting room | Spa, swimming pool | www.esprit-de-france.com Owner / Operator: Esprit de France Hôtels & Demeures | Architecture and Interior Design: Artefak | Lighting Contractor: Gau Lighting; Lisar
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Matki Boutique Walk-In T h e e p i t o m e o f l u x u r y, b e a u t i f u l l y e n g i n e e r e d i n t h e U K
F O R A B R O C H U R E A N D N E A R E S T B AT H R O O M S P E C I A L I S T C A L L 01 4 5 4 3 2 8 811 | W W W. M AT K I . C O. U K | M AT K I P L C , B R I S TO L B S 3 7 5 P L
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AC Hotel NEW YORK TIMES SQUARE
Antonio Catalán and Marriott International continue the expansion of AC Hotels Stateside, with a tranquil bolthole just steps from Times Square. Words: Catherine Martin | Photography: © Dragonfly Image Partners (unless otherwise stated)
ith many of the world’s largest hotel groups headquartered in the USA, it’s commonplace for new brands to launch on home turf before being exported across the pond. There’s a handful however that have made the reverse journey, their success in Europe paving the way for a move Stateside. For Antonio Catalán, seeing his name in lights on Times Square wasn’t necessarily part of the plan when he founded AC Hoteles in Spain back in 1998, but thanks to a joint venture with Marriott International, the brand has gone on to build a presence in key cities across the United States, most recently landing in New York.
“The building of AC Hotels has been my sole passion and purpose for the past 15 years,” explained Catalán at the grand opening earlier this year. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be coming here to see an AC hotel up-and-running.” Continuing his role as President following the 2011 partnership to launch the renamed AC Hotels by Marriott globally, Catalán is proud of the brand’s Spanish heritage, and has been prudent in joining forces with a big player. “Our philosophy from the start has been merging the best of AC with the best of Marriott,” he continued, adding that each property builds on its European roots and is fine-tuned for the
local market. Openings in Atlanta, Chicago and Miami followed the brand’s US debut in New Orleans in 2014, and the New York addition is clearly a big deal for all involved. Developed and operated by OTO Development, AC Marriott Times Square brings together the talents of Helpern Architects, BHDM Design, Studio Razavi Architecture and Lenart Architecture, overseen by OTO’s Design Manager Stephen Riley. The parties came together in July along with the Catalán family and senior members of the Marriott team, in an opportunity to hear first-hand how the project came together. “At AC Hotels, everything is done with intention while creating harmony,” explained Benoit Racle, Senior Global Brand Director of AC Hotels. “We are so pleased to welcome AC Hotel New York Times Square to the AC Hotels family as our first New York City property, and to be able to offer visitors and locals in Manhattan a tranquil space in the heart of the city to relax, reflect and reset.” Taking charge of the architectural scheme of the new building as well as interior design
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Above & Opposte: Boqueria and Castell Rooftop continue the use of terrazzo, walnut and bronze, albeit in different ways to the lobby and guestrooms
of space, plenty of natural daylight and a wealth of quality finishes. “As you look around the lobby you’ll notice materials that reflect the AC flag’s heritage,” continues Helpern. “You have the Venetian terrazzo, honed Italian marble with grey and white veining, quartersawn dark walnut millwork and statuary bronze, and just as in Barcelona we created a variety of settings for art installations.” In fact, art plays a key role in defining the hotel’s identity, with sculpture, photography and paintings gracing public spaces and guestrooms in a programme curated by Indiewalls. “The artwork experience starts as soon you walk into the hotel,” explained the studio’s President Ari Grazi at the hotel’s launch. “There’s a calming nature to the works as well as a sense of power, almost like a calm but ever pulsing energy, which is a nice interplay with the hotel itself.” Works from internationally renowned artists sit alongside pieces from emerging names, with one of the most striking being a series of industrial-style sculptures by Steve Zolin towering over the lobby lounge. Another highlight, suspended beneath the skylight, pays homage to the hotel’s proximity to the Garment District. Designed by Sarah West, who typically works with jewellery, the mobile installation is comparable to offcuts of fabric cascading from above. The art programme continues to the guestroom, where photographic prints of New York City’s iconic architecture complement Helpern’s clean lines and calming tones, creating ‘elegant and purposeful’
of the lobby, public spaces and guestrooms, Helpern Architects set about translating Catalán’s vision of AC in a Times Square way. While the New York-based firm – headed up by David Paul Helpern – had worked with both OTO and Marriott before, this was to be its first AC. As luck would have it, Helpern was holidaying in Spain when the call to came through to design the property, and so the seasoned architect visited AC Hotel Barcelona Forum for inspiration, ultimately seeking to bring the style, materiality and spirit of the “modern classic” to The Big Apple. There are certainly similarities between the two, not least in the double-height lobby and glazed façade. “The building is intentionally set back to create a v-shaped granite-base plaza,” Helpern explains. “The glass and aluminium façade, which angles back at the top floors, has a pleated base with a light refracting top that dips and folds dramatically. There’s also a canopy that cantilevers out to the edge of the sidewalk; we wanted the hotel to be visible from the street.” Located opposite Renzo Piano’s New York Times headquarters, Helpern has designed a building that is in harmony with its surroundings: “We had a great building across the street and wanted have the two talk to one another,” he explains. “They are very much in the same spirit when it comes to designing a modern building.” Stepping into the hotel off 40th Street, the lobby has a calming ambiance in vast contrast to its frenetic surroundings. There’s a sense
Above: At Castell Rooftop Lounge, backlit mirrors surrounded by ivy reflect the Times Square views while planting brings a garden feel
spaces. Walnut once again makes an appearance in the casegoods, alongside leather upholstery and marble. Helpern was also responsible for planning the F&B spaces before handing over to collaborators for the design and fit-out. The hotel’s restaurant, Boqueria, is the latest outpost for a beloved New York eatery and honours the brand’s Spanish roots through a menu of Barcelona-style tapas. Studio Razavi Architecture and Lenart Architecture have created a lively bar and dining area, accented by canopy of wooden beams overhead. A 20-cover outdoor patio draws in passing trade, and inside, there’s a range of seating options as well as a private dining room stocked with shelves of market produce. Up on the top floor, Castell Rooftop Lounge has been created by BHDM Design, marking the firm’s first major project with Marriott. “Our role as interior designer was to look at the rooftop as a destination within a destination,” explains Dan Mazzarini, the studio’s co-founder. “We examined the materiality and definition of the AC brand, taking the terrazzo, walnut and bronze and putting it through a sexy nighttime lens.”
As a result, the palette is richer, with a double-sided fireplace – cosy in winter months – and extensive use of a terrazzo affectionately dubbed ‘Dalmatian puppy’ by the team. There’s Spanish influences too, with a repeating arch motif pulled from traditional Catalonian architecture, used here in a more contemporary way over alcoves and forming the backbar. Outside, a tranquil terrace offers a rare space to breathe. Backlit mirrors surrounded by ivy reflect the Times Square views yet the planting brings a garden feel to the urban metropolis. A 100ft-long custom teak and marble banquette creates intimate booths and is backed by planters holding boxwoods, elegantly landscaped by Manscapers. In spite of the multiple design firms involved in bringing the hotel to life, there’s a cohesive scheme experienced through the finer details. “The AC sets a very high standard on design,” concludes Helpern. “Guests may not look at the details the same way an architect does, but they will feel them. The goal is to engage all the senses; the look, feel, sound, smell and even the taste of the brand. This is the kind of place that the guest will remember and want to return to.”
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 290 guestrooms | 1 restaurant | 1 bar | 1,025m2 events spaces | Gym | www.achoteltimessquare.com Developer: OTO Development | Operator: AC Hotels by Marriott | Architecture: Helpern Architects | Interior Design: Helpern Architects; BHDM Design; Studio Razavi Architecture; Lenart Architecture | Art Consultant: Indiewalls | Main Contractor: ZDG Construction | Landscaping: Manscapers
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Mojo Nomad Central HONG KONG
Bringing together elements of the micro hotel, boutique and co-working movements, Hong Kong’s new hub creates a vibrant sanctuary for millennials. Words: Kristofer Thomas | Photography: © Kevin Mak (unless otherwise stated)
017 was the year that saw Hong Kong overtake New York as the city with the highest concentration of super wealthy individuals – ‘super wealthy’ being those with at least US$30 million liquid assets to their name. Official reports and news stories alike tell of a city where at least one in seven people is a millionaire, where the sale of a single parking space bags its owner US$760,000; where two units in a luxury housing development sell for a combined US$149 million; and where – despite a looming housing crisis, and the squeezing out of any discernible form of middle class – less than a tenth of total land area is zoned for housing. As such, space is
currently at something of an all-time premium across the special administrative region. Built upwards as opposed to out – the territory also boasts the largest number of skyscrapers in the world – the condensing of Hong Kong into these stackable forms has seen architects and designers tackling spatial issues from Tai Po to Kowloon to the four island districts, working to ensure that travellers on a budget without six zeroes are not denied the experience of one of the developed world’s most developed cities, nor are they required to take up residence in uncomfortably small quarters for outrageous prices.
© Josh Tam
Above: Combining multiple facilities in one clean welcome, the salvaged brick and wood lobby is an achievement in space planning and division
An offshoot result of this situation is that the emerging co-working model has become something of a necessity in Hong Kong. Young entrepreneurs without the backing of parents or deep-pocketed investors can rarely muster up the baffling rent for office space, and have increasingly found sanctuary within the city’s hotels, wherein the concept has found a complementary, financially feasible home. One such hotel, Mojo Nomad Central, addresses and incorporates both of the aforementioned facets of the Hong Kong market in tandem; intelligently designed to provide guests with aesthetics, space and efficiency in equal measure, and locals with an accessible, live-in platform to meet, work and, schedule permitting, play. Marking the second Mojo Nomad property in the city following the similarly formatted Mojo Nomad Aberdeen Harbour to the north, Central occupies a tower previously home to an Ovolo branded hotel, of which Mojo Nomad is a subsidiary. Situated along the Queen’s Road thoroughfare linking several traditional and contemporary areas of Hong Kong Island, it channels the coming together of cultures through a distinctly contemporary, and in places, digital lens. As such, although the city may now be the playground of billionaires, it remains nonetheless tentatively open to those without endless streams of resource. Designed by Hong Kong-based studio ALT254 , the hotel boasts a notable origin story as an early example of a project designed
with the use of virtual reality. Lifted from the gaming industry, the technology allowed designer and operator alike to occupy the space with accuracy, perhaps resulting in the project’s precise nature. “The design process was two months and the construction process three; an extremely rapid turnaround schedule for a project of this size,” explains Vincent McIlduff, founder, ALT254. “By creating a virtual version of the property, we were able to give Ovolo Hotels Group founder a walk-through of his yet-to-be-built hotel from the comfort of his own office. He was able to view the space and even select and save material choices very quickly.” The smart use and division of space begins before guests even enter. A compact ground floor is split into three distinct sections: a street entrance, the desk area and a smattering of seats that double as both casual waiting spots and extra cover for the hotel’s Mexican restaurant, Te Quiero Mucho, the rest of which is set upstairs. However, a line of seats for a wooden bar in the entrance alcove allows guests to choose a more social setting, whilst the entire fronting window has been designed to open and roll back completely, affording those that opted for indoor seating a spot connected directly to the street if they wish. Flexibility and dynamism are the key words here; the approach ensuring what could have been a claustrophobic welcome instead offers alternative modes for every preference. Clad in salvaged English Victorian-era red bricks and wood
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Above: A co-working space designed to facilitate collaboration and independence juxtaposes industrial tones with a graphic cubic wallcovering
reclaimed from dockyards across China and Southeast Asia, there is an allegory for Hong Kong culture – a tug of war between western and eastern interests – to be found, whilst a series of minimalist neon shapes scattered across the industrial-style gridiron ceiling create similar parallels. The brick wall reaches up through a stairway partition – which also creates a nook for extra seating beneath – to the levels above, at once creating a sense of extra space and visually linking the schemes. “The client had a tight budget for this size of project, but wanted to include sustainable materials and reclaimed or recycled elements as much as possible, McIlduff explains. “Sourcing these materials cost-effectively under such tight time constraints was a challenge.” On this level unfolds the remainder of the restaurant, as well as a bar, amidst more salvaged wood, three plush sofas in dark rosewood leather – doubling as a social space with a wide oaken table between them – and large canvases adorned by vibrant blow ups of classic album covers including Prince’s Purple Rain and The Ramones’ selftitled debut. By splitting the F&B element between the first two floors, the design facilitates a range of experiences for returning guests, with the street level bustle or the more subdued upper storey catering for both social and personal dining. The window again rolls apart to reveal a wooden terrace, with diners overlooking the street. The co-working element is a further floor up, where the bright
neon glow below is translated into pastel equivalents for studded sofas and barstools, and industrial-style lighting pendants hang overhead. Offsetting the rustic brick is an adjacent wall covered in a repeated cubic graphic, with the scheme again bringing together juxtaposing ideas to highlight the variety of the hotel’s offer. Designed to facilitate independence, the space features a self-service pantry and kitchen complemented by tables large enough for collaborative work and alternatives for independent freelancers. “We approached this hotel with the end-user in mind at all times, and the co-working was an extension of that,” notes Saul Smeding, Partner and Head of Design, ALT254. “We imagined what these nomad travellers were looking for and incorporated it into a flexible, casual, yet entrepreneurial space.” Guestrooms upstairs follow a uniform layout on each floor: one small, one medium and one large. Extra-large options are also available, with these spaces featuring wooden partitions, although the negative space between the slats ensures the plan isn’t boxed off too tightly, whilst bespoke storage options combining shelves and hanging rails see the bulk of a wardrobe substituted for the roominess of open features. The vibrant graphics hinted at below are translated into wall-filling murals, with depictions including intricately sketched profiles and abstract radio-wave style pulse prints hiding a playful hidden image. Smaller rooms, although compact, resist the box
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Above: A deluxe room offers extra space, with the intricate murals creating a dedicated Instagram moment for the millennial target audience
or cabin feel of similarly billed micro-hotels with floor-to-ceiling windows that flood the space with light. As such, with the curtains open, the city beyond takes on the appearance of an extension to the room itself. Medium guestrooms follow suit, with the design acting not only to create comfort and style, but the optics of added space, whilst the industrial leanings of the lower floors are shed in favour of textured shades of turquoise blue, leafy green and white. With the aforementioned murals wrapping around the walls, the layout takes on a sense of expanse. As with most elements within Mojo Nomad Central, these double as both stylistic and strategic choices; the designs are placed at easily photographed angles, and see the target audience of tech-savvy millennials populating Instagram with tagged snaps, providing free advertising and cultural currency. “The client gave the us free reign to help develop the new brand identity for them based around their brief; a hotel to capture the attention of a new generation of modern travellers,” McIlduff adds. “Our idea was to create a vibrant, young and energetic concept that would try to hone in the attention of an Instagram generation. The brand identity developed by our team was presented as a series of art,
mood boards and music, which was then translated into a concept design for the space.” In line with its co-working ethos is also an element of co-living. Two shared rooms, sleeping up to 12 people, allow for both a budget option and an extension of the social approach the hotel champions. Far from the cramped conditions of hostel living, each bunk is partially hidden from view in nooks set back in another graphic wall, adding a touch of privacy. Bringing together elements of the micro-room, boutique leanings and a socially conscious style that has arisen as the co-working model proliferates, Mojo Nomad Central captures the vibrancy of the city around it whilst channelling an intimacy that facilitates better collaboration and communication. With a new haunt to occupy, the city’s laptop contingent can rest easy, and work and play easy too. “The hotel, in the heart of the city, is a base from which to explore, work and party,” McIlduff concludes. “Our aim was to create an environment in which to have fun and take in Hong Kong’s fantastic energy. We want guests to leave feeling accomplished; as if they have gotten the most out of their stay in this amazing city.”
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 56 guestrooms | 1 restaurant | 1 bar | Co-working space | Gym | www.mojonomad.com Owner / Operator: Ovolo Hotels | Interior Design: ALT254
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7Pines Resort IBIZA
Developer 12:18 Investment Management has launched a luxury all-suite resort with a stunning clifftop location overlooking Ibizaâ€™s fabled Es Vedra. Words: Matt Turner | Photography: Courtesy of 7Pines Resort
s Vedra, a rocky outcrop off the southwest coast of Ibiza, is steeped in myth. Said to be home to sirens and sea-nymphs, its magnetic properties are reputed to play havoc with the navigation instruments of those who sail too close. Legion stories have linked this uninhabited island with pagan sacrifice, Homeric Greek legend, UFO sightings and the lost city of Atlantis. So the developers of 7Pines, 12:18 Investment Management, could be forgiven for thinking some supernatural forces were at play when it embarked on its mission to create a new clifftop resort on the edge of a pine forest overlooking the rock. Originally scheduled to launch in 2017 the opening was delayed a year when the notoriously stringent local authorities deemed the development to be straying too close to the island’s heavily protected coastline. And when Sleeper arrived for its scheduled opening in late May, construction was still underway. Nevertheless Managing Director Markus Lueck and his team persevered and, seemingly against all odds, managed to get the resort up and running in time for a glamorous ribboncutting ceremony on 2 June, the scissors delivered to 12:18 founders Jorg Lindner and Kai Richter by a jetpack-propelled James Bond lookalike. At the opening party that followed, guests were greeted by 10-metre-high Dundu dolls and stilt-walking flower girls, before being entertained by over 90 artists – the Benirras Drummers and original Cafe del Mar resident DJ Jose Padilla among them.
So it was quite a contrast to return to 7Pines in late summer, the construction vehicles, dancers and musicians long since departed, and find an air of tranquility pervading the 56,000m2 resort. With the development largely complete, one could appreciate the stunning setting between Cala Conta and Cala Codolar, with its 186 suites set in 81 whitewashed houses, influenced by the typical farmhouses of Ibicenco fincas, nestled into the sprawling gardens. The existing structures (this was a conversion of an unfinished resort complex acquired in 2014) have been transformed by Kitzig Interior Design to create accommodations offering luxury and privacy. “We’ve brought the surroundings right into each individual building – starting with the name, 7Pines,” says Olaf Kitzig, describing his approach to the scheme. “Both the element of water and local materials and colours in their original form inspired the essential design principles. Natural stone and old wooden planks with their rather rough look are, for example, combined with modern high-gloss lacquer surfaces. The resulting tension creates moments of surprise.” In addition to the bungalow and suite buildings, some with private pools, the resort has two restaurants, four bars, a multi-functional event area, a spa, and two outdoor pools. All buildings were renovated as part of a collaboration between a Spanish structural architect and Kitzig Interior Design. Stainless steel, brass, stone, oak, bronzed glass and high-gloss
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Above: Suites occupy whitewashed houses, influenced by the typical farmhouses of Ibicenco fincas and nestled into the sprawling gardens
surfaces are the predominant materials, complemented by furniture from the likes of B&B Italia, Walter Knoll and Gandia Blasco. In the lobby, the roughly-hewn stone floor underfoot contrasts with the shiny metallic signage mounted on a scale-like structure of brass plates alongside abstracted corals of high-gloss stainless steel. Three seating vignettes offer pockets of interest, with the architecture framing the expansive sea views over Es Vedra. Light natural tones with coloured accents are combined with stone, fur, leather, wickerwork, wood and translucent fabrics. The reception area follows the curve of the building, leading out to the Pershing Yacht Terrace. Created by the Pershing design team in cooperation with Kitzig Interior Design and the client, the cocktail bar is as sleek and polished as the resortâ€™s luxury yacht, which guests who wish to arrive in style can take advantage of. On the first floor, a flexible event space
Above: Suites feature a scheme of neutral colours and natural textures accented with aquamarine hues
gold accents, adorns all three floors. Treatments run from medical to meditative, with the resort’s own private doctor offering therapeutic and nutritional guidance, and regular yoga classes on offer. The adjacent infinity pool is sunk into the landscape, with a glazed wall at one end, inscribed with the 7Pines logo, offering an Instagrammable underwater view. A second pool in the heart of the resort is surrounded by family rooms and has its own dedicated bar serving light dishes and poolside drinks. 7Pines Ibiza is the first property in a planned rollout from 12:18 Investment Management. It is soon to be joined by a sister resort on Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda, set to launch in spring 2020. The 15-hectare site will accommodate 77 suites, along with restaurants, bars, wellness and a wide range of leisure activities. In addition, guests will have access to five private beaches, a beach club with a bar and lounge area and spacious gardens. Accessible from the water via its own jetty, 7Pines Sardinia is hoping to attract Costa Smeralda’s yachting crowd and, as with 7Pines Resort Ibiza, will offer yachting services for charter and boat owners on site.
features floor-to-ceiling windows facing the sea on three sides. A colour scheme of aquamarine shades with subtle accents enhances the view. The two restaurants – The View and The Cone Club – are housed in a two-storey structure perched on the cliff edge. The View, on the upper floor, has an open-plan design, its own traditional bread oven, and a restrained colour palette of beige, light grey and blue with copper accents. The Cone Club combines an open-air lounge with large communal tables, cosy seating areas and lounge groups. Seating areas are divided by brightly coloured glass beaded curtains beneath a reeded ceiling with handcrafted fabrics hinting at Ibiza’s ‘hippie-chic’ aesthetic. In the 1500m2 Pure7 spa there are six treatment rooms including a spa suite for couples, complete with a private balcony, a thermal circuit (including steam bath, sauna, cold mists and water beds), and a beauty space with salon services including manicures and pedicures, hair and make-up. A blend of materials with natural stone, lively wood patterns, soft surfaces and splashes of colour, coupled with
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 186 suites | 2 restaurants | 4 bars | Multi-purpose event space | Spa, swimming pool | www.7pines.com Owner: 12:18 Investment Management | Interior Design: Kitzig Interior Design | Visual Identity: Boros; Ina Rall | Main Contractor: Arditecnica FF&E: Purchasing Services | Landscaping: Space Co-op
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The Summit, A Dolce Hotel CINCINNATI
Hirsch Bedner Associates transform a former doorbell factory into an eclectic hotel that caters to corporate confabs. Words: Matthew Hall | Photography: Courtesy of The Summit
incinnati is one of the United States’ hottest secondary hotel markets. Bolstered by a strong convention sector as well as a number of major events, the city is experiencing record occupancy and ADR. In recent years, its downtown has been the site of several newbuild hotel openings, along with a spate of inventive adaptive-reuse projects including 21c Museum Hotel in a converted apartment building, a combined Hampton Inn & Suites and Homewood Suites in a skyscraper that once housed the city’s daily newspaper, and just across the Ohio River in Northern Kentucky, Hotel Covington in a onetime department store.
A newcomer to that reuse roster is The Summit, A Dolce Hotel by Wyndham, based in a hunkering building that first housed a doorbell factory when it opened in 1950, followed in more recent years by a two-level parking garage that became something of a local landmark owing to its brightly painted, exposed columns. Yet unlike Cincinnati’s other conversion projects, this 239-key hotel is located well outside the city’s core, in Madisonville, a once down-and-out neighbourhood that has been enjoying a rebirth. The €69 million Summit – which takes its name from its site on the bluff of a hill overlooking one of the district’s major intersections – is
Above & Opposite: Public spaces are fitted out with key pieces from Stellar Works, RH and Janus et Cie
the linchpin of a major mixed-use complex by RBM Development, owned by the founder of Medpace, a fast-growing clinical research organisation whose headquarters is located a short walk from the new hotel. Once complete, the sprawling development will be home to a seven-storey office building, street level retail outlets and a pedestrianised plaza. Wyndham believes the Dolce flag is well-suited for the Madisonville site, given its focus on the MICE market and objective to create inspiring environments that bring people together. Richard Maxfield, the brand’s Vice President of Operations, says to lure its target market: “Dolce Hotels seek to inspire guests through design that transforms every element of the hotel experience into an extraordinary moment.” At the Cincinnati property, that translated into interweaving elements of the building’s past with a state-of-the-art present. Brought in to orchestrate that process in the hotel’s interiors was a design team from the Atlanta office of Hirsch Bedner Associates (HBA), headed by Associate Nicole Smith. Serving as the project’s design architect was Samach + Seo of New York, while locally based CR Architecture was the architect of record. “The owner wanted a boutique, art-centric hotel with an emphasis on attracting meeting groups, especially medical-related conferences,” Smith says. “Partnering with an art consultant, we filled the hotel
with some creative and inspiring works. The aim was to enhance and complement those pieces through our design, which incorporates bold colours and patterns with industrial undertones.” Guests get an eyeful of that approach immediately upon entering, where they encounter such striking elements as six-metre-high ceilings showcasing the building’s original, exposed sandblasted columns; a metal screen reception desk with a built-in display case of factory parts; a central floating staircase clad in bronzed metal with rivet details; glass-box elevators; and a large abstract mural along one wall. Smith notes that the latter installation was not part of the designers’ original plan. “We had a delay with the fractal-mirror 3D panels we had designed for that wall, which didn’t arrive in the correct quantity,” she explains. “Rather than wait for a new shipment, the hotel’s art curator found a local artist to paint a large mural for the niche wall where the panels were meant to be. It’s a perfect addition to the design and nicely complements the multicoloured vent panels in the adjoining guest tower atrium that were inspired by the former parking garage’s rainbow columns.” Working around the building’s existing columns created a space-planning challenge akin to putting together a jigsaw puzzle, particularly in the guestrooms. “We decided early on to maintain many of the existing columns and sandblast them to keep an
Above: Guestrooms feature custom casegoods by Fairmont Designs and area rugs by Shaw Contract
there’s a rooftop terrace and garden, as well as a gallery. “We put a major emphasis on creating a lifestyle vibe in those spaces, with breakout activity rooms, nourishment hubs with self-service food and drink, and lounging and entertainment zones,” confirms Smith. In its F&B offer, The Summit has a trio of distinct dining options that also cater to the corporate crowd: The Overlook Kitchen + Bar is situated on the building’s terrace and features firepits and conversation-inducing seating; The Market sports an open-kitchen layout that encourages chef-and-guest interaction; and Brew & Barrel offers a wide variety of dining options, ranging from gourmet coffee and breakfast sandwiches in the morning to small-plate meals and local craft beers at night. As is the case with virtually all adaptive-reuse projects, not all elements born in brainstorming sessions become a reality. At The Summit, for example: “We suggested a feature wall of doorbells in the lobby for guests to interact with, but for a variety of reasons, it didn’t make the final cut,” Smith notes. Sometimes, apparently, the bells don’t toll for anyone.
industrial warehouse look,” Smith continues. “This forced a complex arrangement of many atypical room types. We ended up with 54 room configurations, more than we would usually create for the number of keys involved. Working around the columns [whose placement was replicated within a six-storey guestroom tower that was built atop the building’s eastern half] was a challenge, but resulted in interesting yet comfortable layouts in every room.” Within the guestrooms, designers sought to create soothing, modern retreats, with HBA-designed casegoods, wallcoverings, murals and area rugs. Many of those elements, in turn, reflect the hotel’s desire to serve as a home-away-from-home for those attending on-site business meetings. “We designed two different wallcoverings for headboard walls that are inspired by Medpace’s medical research business: the king rooms bear a DNA strand pattern, while the queen rooms have a mural of overlapping medical slides,” notes Smith. As for the meeting facilities, the hotel is home to 19 different spaces spread across 3,200m2, adjacent to the lobby and on two lower levels of the main building. Along with a ballroom and meeting rooms,
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 239 guestrooms | 2 restaurants | 1 bar | 3,200m2 events spaces | www.thesummithotel.com Owner / Developer: RBM Development | Operator: Dolce Hotels & Resorts | Architecture: Samach + Seo (design architect); CR Architects (architect of record) | Interior Design: Hirsch Bedner Associates | Lighting Design: Paul Helms Lighting | FF&E: Benjamin West | Art Consultant: Mama Gallery
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Ayana Komodo Resort WAECICU BEACH
The first five-star resort on Indonesia’s Flores Island is a theatre that places the sea and the surrounding archipelago centrestage. Words: Elly Earls | Photography: © Courtesy of Ayana
he moment you set foot in Ayana Komodo’s dramatic 11th floor lobby, it becomes clear that the sprawling archipelago that surrounds the property is as much a part of the experience as the WATG-designed hotel itself. How could it not be? Layers of blue – the two-level infinity pool, the turquoise sea and the cerulean sky – are dotted with layers and layers of burnt brown and green islands stretching as far as the eye can see, the curved form of Ayana’s Naga – or ‘dragon’ – Pier snaking out to meet them. Even the wooden panels that make up the open-air lobby’s
origami-esque ceiling, an angular counterpoint to the snug grey and white armchairs and rustic wood coffee tables, aren’t enough to tear the eyes away from the view. And fortunately you don’t have to. All 205 guestrooms and suites face the sea, as do the five restaurants and bars, the meeting and events area, a glass-walled gym that is only steps from the beach, and the yoga platform that rises from the ocean on its wooden stilts. The spot that many guests keep coming back to though, is the enormous rectangular opening between the guest wing and the pool area, which frames it all to perfection. As WATG’s Vice President of
Above: All 205 guestrooms face the sea with larger suites offering panoramic ocean views
Architecture Bill Reed explains: “Our focus is on the sea, and the resort a theatre, which places the sea and offshore islands centrestage.” It’s a show that is best enjoyed through audience participation, whether by renting one of the hotel’s stand-up paddleboards or kayaks, or joining a daily glass-bottomed boat trip to UNESCOprotected Rinca Island, where, with the guidance of experienced rangers, you can get within metres of the world’s largest lizard – the Komodo dragon – in its natural habitat. “Even as we maximised use of available areas on site, the property itself is of secondary interest to the activities that take place offshore,” Reed says. Ayana Komodo also offers full day island-hopping speed boat trips and multi-day liveaboard adventures on its luxury ninebedroom Phinisi yacht, which has already proven popular for hosting private events and weddings. Only once you’ve experienced the Sunda Islands’ breathtaking landscapes, met their prehistoric inhabitants and snorkelled with the marine life under the surface can you truly appreciate how big an influence each of them has had on WATG’s design for the resort. For example, the inspiration for the tessellated exteriors of the guest wing, which can be seen in all their glory on the return trip to the hotel, came from Indonesian batik patterns, the rough skin of Komodo
dragons and coral polyp structures, while the guestrooms feature coral-inspired cupboard door handles and ornaments, shell-shaped fruit bowls and white wooden fish positioned in diagonal trios on the walls. Scattered around the hotel, too – everywhere from the lobby to the poolside to the resort’s private stretch of Waecicu beach – are playful statues of turtles, monkeys and, of course, the mighty Komodo dragon. “The design ensures visitors feel immersed in luxury on the edge of civilisation,” Reed says. Elsewhere, the white and turquoise spa, which offers locallyinspired treatments including a Flores coffee ritual and an Island Heritage Balinese massage, evokes the feeling of wandering into an enchanted forest, while each of the resort’s five F&B outlets has its own unique vantage point. All-day dining restaurant Rinca opens out into the two-level pool area, which is linked by a swim-up, green-roof bar; Kisik Grill is simply made up of a handful of torch-lit tables on the beach serving up the freshest lobster, deep-sea fish and artisanal wood-fired pizza; and ninth-floor Japanese teppanyaki and sushi joint HonZen is situated on the side of the resort, allowing guests to take in the nowfamiliar view from a slightly different angle.
Above: Up on the roof, Unique Bar with its comfy day beds and subtle lighting is an ideal spot to watch the sunset
Up on the roof next to the lobby, Unique Bar with its comfy day beds and oh-so-subtle lighting is an ideal spot to watch the sunset, and at the end of the pier – right on the edge of civilisation – Naga Bar is perfect for a post-paddleboard cocktail. For Reed, what really stood out about Ayana Komodo compared to other projects he’s worked on is the fact that, as the first fivestar resort on Flores Island, it’s on the frontier of tourism. “My first impression was of a beautiful archipelago which was largely unspoiled,” he recalls. “This presents a great opportunity for government and developers to grow this region’s economy and access with restraint and with a view towards a balance with nature.” He also relished the challenge of making the most of absolutely every square metre of space on what was a comparatively small, steep, hillside site. The results included the unconventional top down arrival experience and the proliferation of rooftops and gardens that can be found on many different levels of the hotel. “As we were designing, we realised that there was an opportunity to create revenue-producing spaces such as wedding venues and dining vignettes, so we took advantage of that,” Reed says, adding
that much of this was still happening during the hotel’s 14-month construction period. “If we didn’t stay ahead of the design enough in terms of the construction then some of what we were trying to do wouldn’t get incorporated because it would have been too little too late in terms of the detail and the design refinements,” he explains. “That was a real challenge and maintaining robust communication between the design disciplines, the developer and the contractor was critical to achieving the best possible outcome.” It’s only when you head out to the water that you can appreciate just how effectively WATG has blended the gently curved 11-storey resort into its hillside surroundings. “I think you’ll see if you go out to the pier and look back on it that it doesn’t seem so out of place,” Reed confirms. “We designed the Ayana Komodo Resort to reflect the relaxed aesthetic of the Komodo Islands, with a feeling of spontaneity and subtle sophistication. This is the first world-class destination in the area and it will serve as a benchmark for future development.” It’s only hoped that the luxury developers that will no doubt follow Ayana to Flores take an equally sensitive approach.
EXPRESS CHECK-OUT: 205 guestrooms | 3 restaurants | 2 bars | Ballroom, 3 meeting rooms | Swimming pool, gym | www.ayana.com Owner / Developer: PT Karang Mas Sejahetera | Operator: Ayana | Architecture and Interior Design: WATG
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Lodges & Tented Camps As guests increasingly seek philanthropic travel experiences, Africaâ€™s hotel industry looks set to prosper, with luxury safari camps appearing across the continent. Words: Emma Love
© Michael Turek
rom Namibia to Rwanda, Zimbabwe to Botswana, a host of new lodge openings signify growth in the luxury African safari camp sector. Take Namibia, where until now, exclusive properties have been thin on the ground. “I think the current investment into Namibia is demand driven, and this demand is specifically for highend quality product – something which Namibia lacks in any form of quantity,” says Tristan Cowley, co-founder of tour operator Ultimate Safaris. “The type of camps opening are also very much in line with the country’s desire to be a low impact destination that takes sustainability seriously.” One such camp is Omaanda, a new 9,000 hectare private reserve near Windhoek owned by Zannier Hotels, designed by Geraldine Dohogne to leave no footprint (a second Zannier lodge is scheduled to open near Sossusvlei next spring). Ten round mud huts with thatched roofs, built in the traditional style of the Owambo tribe, each have earthy tones and natural textures, with a sunken bath and private balcony that face the plains below. In the social living spaces there are linen sofas and rugs made from hessian sacks, baskets handmade in South Africa and a wooden dugout canoe propped against the fireplace. “I always handpick every object so I can get to know its story, whether it’s the bowls hung on the walls of the restaurant with different drawings from African tribes, or the old pots in the living area that were once used to store
grain,” says Dohogne. Further northwest are two new properties from Natural Selection: Hoanib Valley Camp, which comprises six understated canvas tents designed by Cate Simpson (best known for her work on North Island in the Seychelles) and Shipwreck Lodge on the Skeleton Coast. It’s a similar demand-driven story in Rwanda where Wilderness Safaris, One & Only and Singita are all tapping into the developing luxury sector. “Rwanda’s tourism strategy is based on a niche market of low volumes and high yields, and that is attracting the appropriate brands,” says Manzi Kayihura, co-founder of Thousand Hills Africa, a tour company that specialises in arranging bespoke trips through Rwanda and Uganda. Wilderness Safaris was first off the ground with last year’s opening of Bisate Lodge, just outside Volcanoes National Park in the north, where the six round villas and open-plan main building by architect Nick Plewman take their design cues from the former Royal Palace in Nyanza. A second Wilderness Safaris property, Magashi, is set to open in the Akagera National Park mid-2019. The lead interior designer on the project was Caline WilliamsWynn, founder of Artichoke, but Wilderness Safaris also brought onboard Rwandan entrepreneur Teta Isibo, whose company Inzuki Designs collaborated with artisans on crafted homeware and accessories, and the staff uniforms made using traditional ‘kitenge’ fabrics. Of the decision to branch out into Rwanda, Grant Woodrow,
This Page (Clockwise From Right): Belmond Eagle Island Lodge, Chikwenya, Little Mombo, Bisate Lodge and Asilia The Highlands have all made their mark on Africa’s lodges and tented camp market Opposite: Hoanib Valley Camp comprises six understated canvas tents designed by Cate Simpson Previous Page: Omaanda, a new camp from Zannier Hotels, features ten mud huts built in the style of the Owambo tribe
© Mark Williams
© Crookes & Jackson
© Crookes & Jackson
Above: Singita’s Lebombo Lodge in the Kruger National Park will soon be joined by a new addition to the portfolio in Rwanda
Wilderness Safaris Chief Operations livelihood of the people who live alongside Officer explains: “Our interest in Rwanda the protected areas.” Fels is also seeing a began as long ago as 2009, when we started strong guest desire for philanthropic travel contemplating how our ecotourism model experiences. “Travellers have become more could contribute to the conservation of the engaged, seeking conservation experiences Virunga Massif ecosystem and an iconic that effect real change and we are looking endangered species like the mountain to curate specific experiences with this in gorilla. When we made the decision mind at Singita Kwitonda.” to invest in Rwanda, the last thing we In other African regions too, the intended to do was just to build a boutique confidence in the market is reflected in new Manzi Kayihura, Thousand Hills Africa lodge and sell gorilla treks. We wanted investment and contemporary design. Two to ensure that our brand of responsible years ago Singita’s Lebombo Lodge in the ecotourism made a real difference to both rural Rwandan people Kruger National Park unveiled a complete redesign, with 13 openand biodiversity conservation.” plan suites suspended over the N’Wanetsi River, each with minimalist Responsible ecotourism will also be at the heart of Singita Kwitonda interiors in an unfussy palette of calming greys, smudged inky toned Lodge when it opens next August, just outside the Volcanoes National artworks, glazed earthenware and stonewashed linens. There is also Park. “Singita has always been intent on working to support the a new partnership with Cape Town chef Liam Tomlin and a new preservation and protection of at-risk species and wilderness areas so 25-metre lap pool proving that fitness is high on the agenda. there is huge conservation appeal of being in Rwanda. The country Around the same time, Asilia opened The Highlands in the remote has one of the fastest growing tourism sectors in Africa today and a Ngorongoro conservation area of Tanzania: eight dome-shaped government that is dedicated to sustainable development but private canvas and teak tents with striking black and white portraits of sector involvement remains essential to the economic growth,” says Maasai women above a huge bed layered with cosy blankets and Tom Fels, CEO of Singita. “Our contribution is strongly tied to the tartan cushions, cow hide rugs on the floor and a wood-burning stove
“Rwanda’s tourism strategy is based on a niche market of low volumes and high yields, and that is attracting the appropriate brands.”
Above: Omaanda – along with many of Africa’s lodges and tented camps – taps into a guest desire for conservation experiences
which is lit at night. Days are spent with Qorokwe Concession, bordering the Maasai guides who will take guests hiking Moremi Game Reserve, also in the down into the nearby Embaki crater to see Okavango Delta, which operates entirely flamingos resting on one leg in the salt lake, on solar power and this year re-opened organise a game drive in the Ngorongoro its newly re-built flagship camps Mombo crater to spot four of the big five, and pay and Little Mombo. Here, Caline Williamsa visit to a Maasai village to see how the Wynn has included plenty of new elements tribe live. – bed bases made from crackled leather, In Botswana, Belmond Eagle Island wood and brass chandeliers, Belgian linens Lodge in the Okavango Delta re-opened – while still giving a nod to its design past three years ago following an almost total with copper-clad fireplaces, wooden floors Grant Woodrow, Wilderness Safaris re-build with new look interiors by designer that have been salvaged and re-used as Inge Moore. Twelve tented rooms each the breakfast bar in the dining room and feature an oversized bed facing the delta with a handmade copper original doors as a feature in the tents. finish headboard that references the country’s mining tradition, a “In Botswana the market has remained very strong and Kenya mini-bar crafted in the style of an explorer’s toolbox and a customis enjoying a great revival,” says Frances Geoghegan, Managing designed table with canvas and leather pockets. “For the colour Director of Africa Travel, who is also positive about Zimbabwe palette, I was fascinated by the grey tones on an elephant’s body as an upcoming market, especially with October’s re-opening of when they are half wet, half dry from walking through the water so Wilderness Safaris Chikwenya Camp in Mana Pools National Park. I put this together with the golden chest of the fish eagle after which “Zimbabwe is a growing market from a very low base; people are the lodge was named,” recalls Moore. “We developed a special plaster taking baby steps back. In terms of luxury, it’s all about having the colour we named wet elephant.” best concessions and how good your ranger is – and critically, in In 2017, Wilderness Safaris launched Qorokwe Camp in the Zimbabwe they have the best guides.” Watch this space.
“We wanted to ensure that our brand of responsible ecotourism made a real difference to both rural Rwandan people and biodiversity conservation.”
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THE INTELLIGENCE SOURCE FOR THE HOTEL INVESTMENT COMMUNITY
NH board objects to Minor bid The board of NH has protested that Minor’s EUR6.3 per share offer for the 53.75% of the capital it does not control was “insufficient”. The Spanish stock market regulator has authorised the bid, which expired on 22 October, with Minor continuing to target a holding of 51% to 55%. Should the Thai-based company acquire more than 55%, it will consider different alternatives, including offering NH shares to strategic partners or maintaining a higher percentage with the issuance of perpetual bonds. A bank guarantee of EUR1.4bn has been provided by Bangkok Bank Public Company, which would secure a total of 73.5% of NH. In a filing on the Spanish bourse, the NH board said: “The consideration offered by the bidder was insufficient and the bid did not seem to be a better option for the shareholders than the one resulting from the company’s stand-alone strategic plan.” The filing drew attention to the approach from Hyatt over the summer, which could have been of higher value. The board expressed an “unfavourable opinion regarding the bid” but added “the shareholders are those who must ultimately decide”. The filing confirmed that, after having opposed the move, 8.13% shareholder Hesperia had decided to accept the bid. Hesperia described the offer as “without a doubt, a very good
combined platform would be 42% leased, 24% owned, 23% managed, 8% management letting rights and 3% in joint venture. Minor said that it would work with NH to support its “long-term vision” to “execute its plan and take advantage of value creation opportunities”. It added that it would work with the board “to enable management to continue executing day-to-day functions as well as creating the next long-term strategic plan”. Minor identified a number of value-creation opportunities, primarily the creation of “leading Asian-European hospitality platforms, with an asset-right portfolio of brands that are strong in their respective geographical footprint, and established presence across Asia, Europe, Australia, Middle East, Africa and the Americas”. The group said it would also look to economies of scale, allowing more aggressive competition with the technology disruptors and sales and distribution partnerships, with opportunities on loyalty programmes, sales and distribution expertise, improved account coverage and the leverage on overall database. Linked to this was the leveraging of the existing consumer base of each company. In terms of branding, the company said that it could see opportunities across geographies, whether from NH Hotel Group brands to Minor Hotels or vice versa. The group added that Minor’s luxury vacation club and high-end residential development projects would serve
business opportunity for Minor, but not for the shareholders of NH”. It added: “Everyone is aware of the heavy financial leverage of Minor. This situation of indebtedness is likely to worsen given that it is the intention of the bidder to entirely finance the takeover bid by means of bank financing.” Hesperia said that, in contrast to Minor’s claims that it had no plans for any asset disposals outside the current strategy, NH could be forced to do so in order to meet Minor’s debt requirements. Board member José Antonio Castro added: “With everyone’s effort, we have achieved NH becoming an independent, solvent, and successful project. I have been expectant and impatient at the possibility of the bidder presenting us with a project for the future of the company in which all the shareholders would have a place and all of us would benefit, but this has not happened. “Given the circumstances, I cannot believe in the future of a company that is guided by the interest of a single shareholder.” Castro said that he too would sell his 9.3% stake, owned through Eurofondo. In a presentation, Minor said that that, working with NH, the pair would become the world’s 19th largest hotel platform by number of rooms, with 80,067. The combined platform would be 63% located in Europe, 15% Americas, 9% Asia, 8% Oceania and 5% Africa. NH was currently 80% based in Europe, with the remainder in the Americas. In terms of ownership, the
as part of the hospitality platform which was “highly complementary” to the hotel business. Minor said that the first potential alignment of interests was in Portugal and Brazil, where NH could manage the 14 Portuguese and Brazilian assets which Minor acquired as a result of its 2016 acquisition of Tivoli Hotels & Resorts. Minor said that it agreed with management that long-term, stabilised leverage ratio for NH Hotel Group should be c.2.5 times debt to Ebitda. The current estimate for this year sees debt to Ebitda at 1.2 times. NH responded that: “Given the intention of the bidder to reach a shareholding of between 51% and 55% of the company’s share capital and given that it does not intend to pursue a merger between both companies, the company envisages limited amount of potential synergies, mainly focused on revenue expansion.” HA Perspective (by Katherine Doggrell): Well yah boo sucks to that. It seems likely that the board of NH will never be a happy place to be, although it may well be a place without Mr Castro, which draws a line under the past few years of agitation. In the meantime, Hyatt is busy buying brands elsewhere – for less – and Barceló just plain doesn’t have the money. Given that this deal is likely to go ahead, what lies ahead for NH? Being the 19th-largest platform in the world (which will require some agreements between the two parties
over and above Minor’s position as shareholder) is hardly what you put on your business cards in these days of extraordinary scale. More companies will need to be bolted on and, with Minor maxed out, the question is where the money for M&A will come from. And, should Minor’s offer run past 55%, who the other shareholder is. NH has objected to calls to sell more assets, despite advances from the world’s brokers looking at its EUR2.1bn portfolio, so no dice there. Instead it must lean on leveraging loyalty programmes, much like everyone else. What is likely is that Minor will be like the proverbial bump on the log. Not doing a great deal, but acting as a deterrent to the Hyatts of the world which wanted a clean acquisition. Bumping along may be the theme for NH.
Easy looks for balance EasyHotel described a “transformational year” in which it had seen a 42% increase in its portfolio and said that it would look to create a more even balance between the UK and continental Europe. The results came as InterContinental Hotels Group signed an agreement with GS Star to launch its Avid brand in Europe, with 15 sites in Germany. EasyHotel said that it would initially focus on Spain, France and Germany, where it believed there was potential to target 10
to 15 cities in each country. A dedicated team has been appointed to lead the expansion under group development director and CFO Marc Vieilledent, with the group anticipating that the additional hotels should be earnings enhancing from 2021. Vieilledent was with AccorHotels for almost 17 years and joined EasyHotel in 2015. He told Hotel Analyst: “Finding sites in Europe is the same as in the UK. You need to be on the ground. There is a lot going on in France, the market is very busy, with the Olympic Games in 2014 and the Grand Paris project [improving the infrastructure of the metropolitan area]. Spain is a little less mature, but needs more economy products. And in Germany you have the strategic move of Premier Inn looking at the potential of the economy model – I found during my time at AccorHotels that it can be very profitable. “We have the strategy of owning or franchising and we will continue with this mix in Europe. We are keen to invest in these three countries as well as franchising – we find that the more we own hotels the more franchised hotels we sign. We will keep investing in the UK, but if we find the right opportunities to invest in Europe then we will. “We are looking at all opportunities; conversions, new builds, converting office spaces. We have demonstrated our ability in all of these. Provided the location is right and the price is right to give us the correct returns, we will look at all opportunities.” For the year to 30 September,
the group has added a further 686 rooms to its development pipeline, including new hotels in Milton Keynes, Cardiff, Chester, Cambridge, Dublin and Blackpool. The group’s owned hotel development pipeline reached 955 rooms, with the total franchised hotel development pipeline reaching 1,975 rooms after signing franchise agreements to develop a further seven hotels, in Switzerland, Spain and the Netherlands. The company reported total system sales up 25% to GBP37.2m and owned hotels’ revpar up 11%. CEO Guy Parsons said: “Whilst we are mindful of the current economic uncertainty facing the UK, our simple, stylish and highly affordable customer proposition resonates well with today’s costconscious traveller and has underpinned strong revpar growth over the period. “We are focused on expanding our developments as well as balancing our strong UK pipeline with a growing number of exciting European opportunities, creating value for our shareholders and underpinning the long-term growth of the brand.” At IHG, the company said that the new hotels would be signed within three years and opened within five. The first newbuild Avid hotel was planned to open by 2020. GS Star has an existing relationship with IHG, with hotels under Holiday Inn Express. Kenneth Macpherson, CEO, Europe, Middle East, Asia and Africa, said: “Avid hotels has seen strong signings in the US, Canada
and Mexico making it IHG’s most successful new brand launch since Holiday Inn Express back in 1990. We are now excited to bring Avid hotels to Germany where our proactive development approach has delivered exceptional growth in recent years. “GS Star is the ideal launch partner, with a strong track record in mainstream growth opportunities they are well placed to introduce this new, exciting brand to our guests in Germany.” HA Perspective (by Katherine Doggrell): As we’ve reported elsewhere, everyone is continuing to pile into Germany but, unlike some economy brands mentioned above, which have specific location and ownership targets, EasyHotel is everyone’s flexible friend. As Vieilledent noted, the company is far from alone and Avid is now using Germany as its first move into Europe, a decision which would have been viewed with confusion not too many year ago. Avid is at a higher price point than EasyHotel, but the deal speaks to the growth of branding in the country. For those who would compete in economy – and Premier Inn is not strictly it – the issue of amenity creep remains, as the attraction of the sector sees more and more look to come and compete. Oyo’s launch into the UK is likely to add to competition, but the temptation to chuck a spa and rooftop cocktail bar must be resisted. As has been noted by EasyHotel before, you don’t own an economy hotel for bragging rights, but to make money.
Extended stay for more M&A The aparthotels and serviced apartment sector was expected to see further M&A activity as operators extended further into Europe. A study from Savills pointed to secondary markets growing in popularity as competition grew. The company forecast that stock levels of the largest operators are set to increase 39.4% before the end of 2022 amounting to over 13,000 units. AccorHotels, Staycity and Saco were the main drivers, accounting for 60% of the pipeline, leaning on their new lifestyle focused brands including Staycity’s Wilde and Saco’s Locke. The UK market continued to prove attractive, accounting for a third of the European pipeline; however, a number of the larger operators are moving into new, less established markets, such as Vienna and Warsaw. Savills identified a number of potential growth markets including Oslo, Stockholm, Madrid, Edinburgh and Dublin, with good growth in tourist arrivals while also having a strong GDP outlook; offering operators the opportunity to tap into both growing leisure and corporate markets. Dublin has already been receiving significant interest due to its comparatively low stock levels and growing number of overseas visitor numbers. The study came as Staycity illustrated the growth in importance of the leisure market to the sector,
with the opening of its latest aparthotel, in Liverpool’s Corn Exchange. The building lies in the heart of the city’s commercial area close to James Street Merseyrail Station and the retail and leisure development Liverpool One. It is also within walking distance of many of Liverpool’s popular tourist spots including the Cavern Club, Royal Liver building, Albert Dock, the Water Front, Tate Liverpool and the Ropewalks area. Staycity Group CEO Tom Walsh said: “I’m particularly pleased to be opening in such a vibrant, busy area of this exciting city, which will be perfect for both our leisure and business visitors. Corn Exchange very much fits with our strategy of being in central locations in key UK and European cities.” The sector is expanding more deeply into Europe, with James Bradley, associate director in the hotels team at Savills, adding: “The extended stay market continues at the buoyant pace set over the last year as operators look to consolidate their presence in established European markets. Improving operational prospects for emerging European markets, plus pricing and availability constraints in more developed markets in the UK, France and Germany, is facilitating expansion into currently under-served European cities.” Corporate mergers and acquisitions are becoming an increasingly legitimate way to enter the sector with Savills highlighting the Brookfield acquisition of the Saco portfolio for GBP430m this year and Hua Kee taking a reported
one third stake in Cycas Hospitality in 2017. Marie Hickey, research director at Savills, said: “It is currently difficult to gain exposure to the extended stay sector through single asset and real estate only portfolio acquisitions due to the lack of purpose built stock. As such we expect momentum in the corporate M&A sphere to continue as operators seek to bolster their European coverage. The market continues to be disparate, meaning there is still everything to play for.” While the difference between serviced apartments and aparthotels was blurring, so too was the line between the two and Airbnb. Bristol’s development control committee were expected to approve the building of a block of apartments on the city’s Harbourside at the end of the month, which will include 13 apartments to be let on a shortterm basis. The scheme received 150 objections. Paintworks Apartments said: “Using our experience from our own similar and successful business, we will ensure the successful management of the Harbourside serviced apartments. The proposed scheme will complement the existing accommodation options available whilst filling a gap in the market and attracting both business and leisure visitors. “In this way the proposed scheme will be contributing towards creating a lively and dynamic city. This will enrich the local area, help support local business and the local community.” The company said it was likely to
use Airbnb to market the properties. HA Perspective (by Katherine Doggrell): Serviced apartments were traditionally the reserve of the road warrior, sent off to Tacoma to install a new IT system or ensure that the locals weren’t revolting, then returning to their apartment and their ready meal of an evening. The sector has sought to shake off this image and has moved into branding, social lives and properties which you might aspire to live in, as opposed to tolerate. And the natural by-product of that has been increased interest from the leisure sector. Even Campbell Gray Hotels has now launched an extended-stay product. Improved distribution has helped to attract the leisure market, but coverage is still not at the profile level of the hotel sector, having relied for so long on corporate contracts. This is where Airbnb is swooping in. With developers like those in Bristol building with the platform in mind, others are no doubt thinking similar. Extended stay operators must watch not to lose control of their inventory.
25hours trials concierge service 25hours Hotels is trialling a service which sees hotel staff offering service to local residents, not only guests. The offering had echoes of AccorLocal, the service being tested by the 25hours Hotels shareholder
and part of efforts to pursue the ‘third vertical’, which sees revenue driving through incremental services. 25hours’ trial was taking place at its hotel in Hamburg, with services including laundry, bread delivery, yoga classes and the standard concierge services such as booking restaurants and giving recommendations. Christoph Hoffmann, 25hours Hotels’ co-founder, told Hotel Analyst: “We are becoming a bit more analogue when everything has become a bit too digital. Our hotel group is not five-star but we think that people appreciate good advice. We want to offer services to our friends, to our neighbours – we offer our neighbours rolls and baguettes before they get up, it’s easy for us – we already have the rolls.” There was no additional charge for the services, with Hoffmann commenting: “It’s not a something that pays off directly. We have to have interesting people, we have to pay for the technology, it all costs and we are asked how does it pay off, when do we get our money back? We know people appreciate it, but we don’t want to ask for fees. But I think we can add value for the guest. When you check in it’s about passports, credit cards, not interesting things. If you have someone who takes away that pain, it’s a much better experience.” Hoffmann did not advocate all hotels replicating the product, adding: “It depends on the locations
and the property itself. It’s easier to do that in a hotel which is rooted in the neighbourhood, but there are issues if you have a managed property versus a leased property, you have additional complexities. You need to have patience.” Hoffmann’s comments were made as James Bland, director, BDRC Continental, told attendees at this year’s Hotel Distribution Event, hosted by Hotel Analyst, that, for hotels to remain relevant, they “will need to be part of a community, the local market will have to be engaged with it. It doesn’t just apply to geography, but to their online presence”. The strategy of integrating hotels into the local community was also being pushed at AccorHotels, which bought 30% stake in 25hours Hotels for EUR35m in 2016. Last year saw AccorHotels launch AccorLocal, an application allowing residents who live near an Accor property to access “the services of local artisans and companies”. Other services are provided through larger partnerships and include: bouquets delivered to the hotel’s reception with AccorLocal’s special bouquets in collaboration with Pampa, Bergamotte and others; yoga, pilates and relaxation classes provided by Oly Be in a room let by the hotel; quality bread delivered by Poilâne, Nespresso capsules pick-up and deposit points accessible 24/7, a pay-by-the-hour car rental service with AccorLocal offered by Hertz.
Launching the project, Sébastien Bazin, chairman & CEO, AccorHotels, said: “For the past 50 years, millions of customers around the world have trusted AccorHotels’ hospitality expertise. When they go through the door of one of our hotels, they can be certain of finding, at any time of day, a customised service offered by more than 250,000 people who are passionate about our unique savoir-faire in the field of hospitality and service. We have now chosen to make this unparalleled wealth available to benefit community life by developing an unprecedented model, creating social connections and value for small businesses, local communities and staff members at our hotels.” Summer this year saw AccorHotels sign a deal with luggage storage firm Stasher to bolster its AccorLocal offering in Paris. The company said: “Most hotels already offer a similar luggage storage service to guests; so for AccorLocal, the partnership with Stasher is a minimal effort ancillary service that will enable them to attract additional footfall and monetise their extra space. This is a key goal for AccorLocal, who were launched by Accor last year to generate new revenue streams for the group and to promote hospitality services in the Accor hotels to non-guests.” HA
Doggrell): Hoffmann told us that the inspiration for Conciergie came from the film The Grand Budapest Hotel, specifically the scene where Harvey Keitel helps Ralph Feinnes “in a difficult situation” and fans of the film will be able to envisage how helpful it would be to have motivated staff in that instance. The sector is pleased that Hoffmann wasn’t watching The Shining when the muse struck. The complexity is now in the implementation. As Hoffmann said, these schemes cost and so, if you want to make them part of your brand’s differentiator, you have to factor that cost in. Having viewed the trial of AccorLocal at the Ibis Cambronne in Paris, this hack can confirm that staff buy-in is a tricky beast and possibly a budget hotel may not be the most obvious place to undertake a trial. Or maybe it is. But for a sector which is seeing its vision of what ‘service’ is under attack, products like Conciergie and AccorLocal, which are looking to be less products and more a shift in how a hotel operates, may become as necessary as good wifi. Not a moment goes by that the sector doesn’t moan on about the difficulties of finding good staff. Invest in your people and give them something interesting to do where their knowledge is valued and those issues may fall aside.
Hotel Analyst is the news analysis service for those involved with financing hotel property or hotel operating companies. For more information and to subscribe visit: www.hotelanalyst.co.uk or call +44 (0)20 8870 6388
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British loudspeaker designer, Monitor Audio, has a range of speakers for every situation. Their ultra-discreet in-wall and in-ceiling speakers deliver a stunning audio performance whilst protecting the room’s décor. For more extreme environments, such as outdoor terraces or pool rooms, they offer a choice of speaker ranges, all of which deliver Monitor Audio’s award-winning sound.
MA Sleeper NovDec18.indd 1
Dubai 100k + rooms and counting Over the years, Dubai has positioned itself as the Middle East’s main transport and business hub, and the market is continuously working on curating a complete, mature hospitality offering. Dubai has ambitious plans to become the world’s most popular destination by 2025, with demand rising as the market develops. According to STR’s AM:PM platform, there are currently 108,325 rooms across 567 hotels in Dubai. The market continues to expand and evolve, with hotel supply ramping up in preparation for the 2020 Expo and beyond. Incoming supply is nothing new to Dubai, with the Emirate growing from 50,000 rooms in 2007 to over 107,000 at present. Previously overlooked market segments – Upper Midscale, Midscale and Economy – also managed to double their room count in the same period, from 18,260 rooms to just over 36,000. Dramatic changes in ADR may have been caused by increased competition and hotel supply expanding over a short period. Pricing strategies have likely been changed to drive demand growth, but the shift towards more mid-tier properties coming online should be considered. By charging less, Dubai’s hotels have lowered overall market rates and driven demand by offering more affordable options.
Performance September 2018 Year-to-Date Occupancy 73.3% -2.3%
Existing room inventory by 2020
Investment interest doesn’t appear to be waning either. STR projects further performance declines for the foreseeable future as supply continues to grow. While this expansion puts pressure on the market in the short-term, the investment is expected to be of benefit long-term. STR is the source for premium global data benchmarking, analytics and marketplace insights, tracking 8 million rooms worldwide. www.str.com
Rooms in September 2018 108,325 Rooms in 2020 162,262
Hotels +33 Hotels in September 2018 567 Hotels in 2020 749
CAYONO DUO /CAYONOPLAN /PURO WASHBASIN
A ‘PERFECT MATCH’ IN BATHROOM DESIGN
Visit Kaldewei at Stand B40
2018 OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION ANNOUNCED
The Outstanding Contribution recipient for AHEAD Europe 2018 has been announced as Petter Stordalen, founder and CEO of Strawberry Group. Founded in 2016, Strawberry Group comprises ten companies operating in real estate, finance, art and hospitality including Nordic Choice Hotels. Its name, Strawberry Group, holds sentimental value for Stordalen, relating to his childhood and namely being voted Norway’s top strawberry seller at the age of 12. Stordalen states: “When I was 12, I loved selling strawberries in my hometown. But I often envied the other sellers who had larger and fresher berries than mine. ‘Sell the berries you have, because they are the only berries you can sell’, my father told me. The quote became the ‘Strawberry Philosophy’. Today the berry symbolises more than the legacy of my father. It represents the people and companies that, with their bold ideas and badass determination, have created my business universe – Strawberry.”
Following his early business success, Stordalen went on to grow two hotels into Scandinavia’s largest hotel company in just 15 years. Today, Nordic Choice Hotels boasts 14,000 employees, six hotel chains, 190 hotels and a yearly turnover of US$1.6 billion. Two of the group’s most notable properties to date opened in 2017 in Stockholm – At Six and Hobo – and have received numerous accolades including Guestrooms and Urban Hotel Conversion awards at AHEAD Europe 2017. A forward-thinking, guest-centric concept, At Six successfully combines art and design in a cohesive manner. The result is a collection of curated and commissioned art pieces from some of today’s most prominent up-and-coming international artists in a luxury hotel setting. Stordalen will collect the Outstanding Contribution award in front of over 900 industry peers at AHEAD Europe on Monday 19 November at Park Plaza Westminster Bridge, London.
JUDGING PANEL ANNOUNCED As a new cycle of AHEAD kicks off, the first judges for Asia have been announced. Representatives from the region’s leading hotel companies, interior design studios and architectural firms join industry commentators and respected consultants to ensure that all aspects of hotel design and experience are considered throughout the process.
COO Two Roads Hospitality
Principal Studio HBA
ASVP Galaxy Entertainment Group
Director of Design & Construction The Langham Hotels & Resorts
Creative Director Asylum
Managing Editor Sleeper
Co-founder and Principal AB Concept
Vice President APAC Design Hotels
SU SEAM TEO
Principal Design Assembly
Partner LTW Designworks
Senior Director, Technical Services, Southeast Asia Pacific & India – Hilton Worldwide
DHARMALI KUSUMADI Senior Vice President & Business Development – Banyan Tree Group
7 MARCH 2019
18 JUNE 2019
14 NOVEMBER 2018
19 NOVEMBER 2018
THE MEYDAN HOTEL DUBAI
PARK PLAZA WESTMINSTER BRIDGE LONDON
InterContinental Marseille HĂ´tel Dieu | Tangram Architectes | We Are Content(s) Ulster Carpets, Unit 1 Compton Courtyard, 40 Compton Street, London, EC1V 0BD Tel: 020 7017 0040 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Technology Specialists to • THE MANDRAKE • Mulple nominee AHEAD Awards 2018 Designed and installed Audio Visual, Wifi, Television and Guest Streaming Soluons
• CORPORATE • MDU • RETAIL •
• LEISURE • HOSPITALITY • BESPOKE •
HIDING TECHNOLOGY WITHOUT COMPROMISE
Events T H E M E E T I N G P L AC E F O R T H E H O S P I TA L I T Y I N D U S T R Y
Deloitte EHIC London www.deloitte.co.uk
HI Design Asia Bali www.hidesign-asia.com
BDNY New York www.bdny.com Dubai Design Week Dubai www.dubaidesignweek.ae
AHEAD MEA Dubai www.aheadawards.com AHEAD Europe London www.aheadawards.com Sleep + Eat London www.sleepandeatevent.com WAF / Inside Amsterdam www.worldarchitecturefestival.com
Heimtextil Frankfurt www.messefrankfurt.com Domotex Hannover www.domotex.de IMM Cologne www.imm-cologne.com Maison & Objet Paris www.maison-objet.com
Redefined by Design
DUBAI DESIGN WEEK
Staged in partnership with Dubai Design District (d3), Dubai Design Week is set to attract over 60,000 visitors in November, with architects, designers, thought-leaders and influencers coming together for a series of more than 230 events across the city, encompassing exhibitions, installations, awards, talks, workshops and tours. “Dubai Design Week 2018 will build on the success of the previous editions of the event, with an outstanding array of installations, exhibitions and activations, and the diversity of talent represented is the strongest yet,” says William Knight, Director of Dubai Design Week. “Dubai’s design community will take centrestage, alongside regional collaborations and preeminent international profiles.” As part of the event’s talks programme, designers, creatives and critics will address diverse subjects across sustainability, safeguarding culture and what the future looks like, with keynotes from Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde and Italian designer Paola Navone, as well as insight from Design Hotels in a discussion hosted at Form Hotel Dubai. Meanwhile, commissioned installations include HousEmotion, an illuminated pavilion by Istanbul-based Tabanlioglu Architects, and Parametric Surfaces, an interactive three-dimensional box by Superfuture Design to create an engaging virtual reality experience. As part of Downtown Design, the newly-curated showcase Downtown Editions will be dedicated to bespoke design, while under the theme of Livable Cities, the fair will feature an indoor garden space by landscapers Desert Ink, creative pop-up installations and talks with designers such as Ini Archibong, Marc Ange, Matthew McCormick and Martyn Lawrence Bullard at The Forum. www.dubaidesignweek.ae
A World of Ideas AMBIENTE
On its return in February, Ambiente will provide insight into future style direction with a series of new thematic trends. Taking inspiration from developments in design, architecture, art, fashion and lifestyle, design studio Stilbüro bora.herke.palmisano has identified three key themes for 2019: Tasteful Residence, Quiet Surroundings and Joy-Filled Ambience. “Every trend is based on a social development,” says Nicolette Naumann, Vice President of Ambiente. “It’s an attitude to life that expresses itself in new, rediscovered and modified shapes, as well as patterns and functions. It forms valuable stimuli for buyers and manufacturers who can prepare for the year ahead at Ambiente.” Championing timeless elegance and craftsmanship, ‘Tasteful Residence’ supports the idea of creating a comfortable yet sophisticated atmosphere through specially selected showpieces and unique items. The trend sees materials such as hardwood, leather and bouclé paired with velvets, velour and porcelain, as well as coloured glass and polished surfaces. Meanwhile, ‘Quiet Surroundings’ uses soft colours and a channels a respect for original materials to create organic environments. Resources such as wool, silk, wood, stone, clay and ceramics are combined, with traditional craft and upcycling techniques. The third scheme predicted for the year ahead, ‘Joy-Filled Ambience’ sees diverse materials, an eccentric mix of patterns and bold colour combinations create a refreshingly unexpected style dominated by botanical themes, vintage prints, geometric designs and oversized décor. The trade fair will also feature guided tours and talks by the design studio, offering in-depth glimpses into Ambiente trends, while elsewhere across the show, 4,500 exhibitors will present their latest innovations. www.ambiente.messefrankfurt.com
sensational exceptional original 8. – 12. 2. 2019 The outstanding diversity of the international consumer goods market. The experience of innovations and new concepts for the HoReCa sector. The trade fair that leads your industry into the future. Information and tickets: ambiente.messefrankfurt.com Tel. +44 (0) 14 83 48 39 83 email@example.com
67617-031_AM_HoReCa_Sleeper_242x284 • FOGRA 39 • CMYK • js: 04.10.2018
The Annual Hotel Conference 10-11 OCTOBER
With a theme of ‘Innovate to Elevate’ The Annual Hotel Conference returns to Manchester to explore major developments whilst addressing an air of uncertainty. Words: Kristofer Thomas
elcoming a record 950 attendees to Hilton Manchester Deansgate from 10-11 October, the 2018 edition of Questex’s Annual Hotel Conference marked the industry event’s 15th year, and presented delegates including hoteliers, owners, operators, designers and investors with a dynamic mix of conference, networking, workshop and discussion elements, as well as a parallel strand of breakout panels investigating niche subjects. With the year’s melting pot of economic, political and social uncertainty offering plenty of talking points, the uniting theme of ‘Innovate to Elevate’ saw speakers explore emerging trends and new strategies for success whilst addressing potential pitfalls and areas for improvement in a rapidly changing hospitality landscape. “The industry continues to experience record performance in terms of occupancy and RevPAR,” began Alexi Khajavi, Chair of Questex Hospitality Group. “Albeit with some potential headwinds whipping up in terms of forthcoming supply and increasing costs, but all of these influences only serve to make this year’s theme more persuasive and timely.” Jonathan Langston, co-founder, The AHC, concurred, stating: “To say we live in uncertain times is an understatement, but we hope to serve
up some take-aways that take your business to the next level.” Introducing a few innovations of its own, Langston outlined the programme’s latest additions including a Tech Hub for the gadgets, disruptors, systems and software driving the industry, as well as a series of focused huddles following each breakout session to enhance the event’s networking dimension. As much about connecting key decision-makers across the sector as it is investigating their decisions, the conference once again sought to illuminate the year ahead and facilitate a smooth transition between the record breaking 12 months previous and potentially choppy waters on the horizon. TECH SCARE Kicking the programme off with a wide-ranging forecast encompassing technology, disruption and game-changers within and beyond the hotel sector, Leo Johnson, co-presenter of Radio 4’s flagship FutureProofing series, probed the ramifications of autonomous transport, big data, quantum computing and chipped workforces. Beginning with the old Marilyn Monroe adage that ‘sometimes good things fall apart so that better things can take their place,’ Johnson identified automation as perhaps the most
pressing matter to hotels, explaining that, whilst a mechanised workforce could offer cost and overhead benefits, the automation revolution would also affect the jobs of up to 80% of middle class consumers – a worrying prediction for the fortunes of a group that make up the majority of hotel guests worldwide. Likewise, the advent of driverless cars could potentially mean a loss of up to 20% revenue for airport hotels once parking becomes a thing of the past, and, that if Artificial Intelligence is deployed to its full capabilities, it has the dual potential to enhance the personalisation of service but remove the human element so vital in hospitality. As such, Johnson noted: “The future of this industry is not about tech. Tech is not the answer, but the amplifier of intent.” Stressing the role of technology as a facilitator for better practice, not the antidote, as well as the responsibility of humans in the technologically driven future, Johnson cited Crowne Plaza’s work in Denmark, where the brand has installed solar power for a 90% reduction in consumption whilst simultaneously crowdsourcing energy from guests through pedal bikes in the lobby, incentivising production rates with discounts and rewards. Highlighting the key relationships between hotels and people, and the need for hotels to act as
social networks to create positive social feedback loops between asset, place and guest, Johnson concluded: “It’s all about getting a low cost supply chain to be really delivering for you. Its tempting to think of luxury as the digital, but luxury now is simply the place where you want to be.” NUMBER CRUNCHING Offsetting the speculative nature of the tech talk with cold, hard numbers, Dr Rebecca Harding, CEO, Coriolis Technologies, took to the stage to deliver the UK economic overview, and some reasons to be cautious. “British GDP and real wages are both flat, but perhaps the biggest issue in our market at the moment is the perception of risk,” she began, setting up a tentative thread that would continue throughout the conference. “Economists are fine with risk, but when that turns into uncertainty then investment decisions are held back, and that affects our consumers more than anything at the moment. The biggest risk is that uncertainty stays as uncertainty.” Citing weak sterling and increasing numbers of tourists coming into the country as drivers for growth, Harding warned that this could result in over investment and become a catalyst for the concerning trend of lower occupancy that has begun to creep in. “There’s a lot of volatility in the market at the moment, and this is what the sector is worried about,” she explained. “The climate is uncertain and people aren’t completely sure what’s going to happen.” Adding to this atmosphere was the unknown nature of an impending Brexit; perceptions of security issues borne from ongoing threats of terrorism, and various short term obstacles impeding analysis on a longer timescale. Harding explained that although some are predicting the British economy will slow this year, others are forecasting a rise this year before a slowdown in 2019, emphasising the fickleness of current projections and the vagueness of the landscape
ahead. “We just don’t know,” she offered. “And in the middle of this is the consumer, who is very uncertain about how to spend their money.” Elsewhere, 8.3% growth in unsecured borrowing could have knock-on effects to the current 2.7% inflation rate as well as real wages, which have grown by 2.2%. “In other words, we are borrowing far more than we can afford to pay back relative to the amount at which our wages are growing,” Harding noted. “Eventually our spending is going to get squeezed.” Following this, Joe Stather, Associate Director of Investment Advisory & Hotel Real Estate, CBRE, zeroed in on hotel performance specifically, which
“There’s a lot of volatility in the market at the moment, and this is what the sector is worried about. The climate is uncertain and people aren’t completely sure what’s going to happen.” Dr Rebecca Harding, Coriolis Technologies
has been strong and looks to be optimistic going forwards despite the aforementioned uncertainty. “The UK is far from a homogeneous hotel market,” he began. “Where performance is down is due to new supply entering the market, but it’s worth mentioning that, in the markets we think RevPAR decline is starting to rear its head, this is really coming from a very high grade, so it’s not the end of the world by any means.” Regional UK markets including Milton Keynes, Luton, Hull and Bradford all declined, with Aberdeen reaching a particularly low point, whilst Newcastle and university cities such
as Cambridge, Oxford and Birmingham also experienced downturns. Meanwhile, growth in Belfast and Leeds was down to new supply, whilst York and Edinburgh appear to be entering another strong year for returns. LEADING THE WAY True to form, The AHC welcomed a host of leaders and high-profile figures to the conference to share their perspectives in regards to the year’s outlook. From the value of F&B and design to the importance of brands in today’s fractured market, a series of niche panels gave delegates a chance to hear direct from the people behind the product. During a one-to-one interview, Julie Fawcett, Managing Director of Qbic Hotels, discussed her place as a woman in the industry, the importance of innovative assets such as Qbic’s modular, spacesaving Q3 concept rooms, and the responsibilities of so-called visionaries within the sector. “The rate of change is greater than it’s ever been, and the challenge for hotels is how we respond to that,” she offered. “It’s what has driven the Qbic model; it’s less about building quickly and cheaply and more about the ability to keep changing.” She ended with the advice for today’s budding and established hoteliers to “keep it simple, keep it replaceable and keep it updateable”. A panel centred on design trends and insights moderated by Sleeper’s Managing Editor Catherine Martin saw panellists explore their roles and responsibilities in a quickly changing industry landscape. Noting the major changes observed in the decade previous, Angela Dapper, Partner, Denton Corker Marshall, cited the proliferation of social media as a gamechanger. “Seeing the way social media has impacted hotels and how they’re designed has been interesting,” she began. “What we’re finding as designers is that platforms like Instagram are creating a level playing field, levelling out established hotel creators and emerging studios – in the reverse this means your
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USP has to be on-point, and you have to be very clear about who you are and what you’re trying to achieve.” Gary Tidmarsh, Chairman, Levitt Bernstein, asserted that the design of hotels as a whole has experienced a period of upheaval, noting that “we’ve increasingly been asked to look at hotels not as hotels, and in a way lose the hotel feel entirely,” whilst Mark Bruce, Director of Hotels, EPR Architects offered F&B spaces as new centres of power, commenting that “most of us working in hotels have seen a distinct shift in that F&B is now the major differentiator.” Bruce also revealed that, for the first time in his hospitality career, he was being asked to sacrifice room count to make way for additional F&B venues. The subject of F&B took centrestage during Food Envy, where strategy, consistency and the importance of locality emerged as key points. David Taylor, Vice President Operations, IHG, began, with lessons learned developing The Refuge within Principal Manchester: “It was very clear to us that just saying the hotel would be the reason you came in wasn’t enough, so we took the view that, whilst the property has its own identity, the restaurants and bars within must each have their own definitive characters too.” Tom Chalmers, Design Director of Saco Property Group agreed, emphasising the need for a deep understanding of F&B venues in their own rights from both designer and operator. “This is based on a lot of deep diving and boots on the ground early on,” he stressed, with the result being a restaurant or bar in tune with its surrounding neighbourhood and the client’s expectations, as well as something that contributes positively to the local community. NEW FORMS New to this year’s edition were a pair of formats designed to bring something different to The AHC table. ‘Brand on the Run’ – a discussion centred on how valuable branded properties are in today’s market – took the form of a mock political debate,
with representatives from both heavyweight chains and independent projects making their case. “Consumers are lazy, and use brands as mental shortcuts because they are a symbol of what lies within, therefore you must be intentional with what you want your brand to do,” noted Cris Tarrant, CEO of consumer insight consultancy BVA BDRC. “If you don’t, then the market will do it for you. The brand must be regarded as a living entity, and evolve continually to remain relevant.” Karan Khanna, Managing Director, UK & Ireland, IHG, agreed, referencing the rolling five-year renovations within the brand’s UK properties, whilst Graham Craggs, Managing Director, JLL
“We’ve increasingly been asked to look at hotels not as hotels, and in a way lose that hotel feel entirely.” Gary Tidmarsh, Levitt Bernstein
Hotels & Hospitality Group, ended the session by commenting on the importance of balance, offering: “Investors clearly want to see creativity in hotels, especially if they see the value added to the hotel as well as added to the wider community. At the same time, they’re focused on profitability and maximising returns. Likewise, the anticipated CEO panel was given a re-fresh with a format that saw guests posing questions they’d always wanted to ask hoteliers via video, with queries ranging from loyalty programmes to small guestrooms. “I think there’s definitely space in the market for both of us,” Tim Walton, Vice President, International Hotel Development, Marriott International, stated in reference to the rise of Expedia and similar models. “It can access guests our channels can’t reach, but this is where loyalty programmes will become vital.
The requirements of the market have changed, and I think we’ll see much more flexibility in terms of how points can be redeemed in the future.” Moving on to the dilemma of branding, Rob Paterson, CEO, Best Western Hotels & Resorts GB, noted that the softer approach worked best for his hotels, because guests “experience a local, independent offer with the safety net of a brand’s capabilities.” In response to a question regarding whether the top executives had ever stayed in their hotel’s worst room, Serena von der Heyde, Partner, Georgian House, noted that this was “the perfect way to find faults and improve,” whilst closing remarks from Walton advised hoteliers to “focus more on the authentic than the transactional.” Returning to the stage to wrap things up, Langston gave a reminder of the uncertainty earlier speakers had touched on, but ultimately left attendees on an optimistic note, with a message of thanks to the audience. Ending with an animated keynote from author and entrepreneur Shed Simove, whose greatest hits include becoming an international bestseller for a book full of blank pages – ‘What Every Man Thinks About Apart From Sex’ (Summersdale, 2011) – changing his name to God and launching his own currency, the session shone a light on the lofty heights and wide publicity that can be reached through unconventional measures. In a time when ‘thinking outside of the box’ has become all but a meaningless buzz-phrase, Simove offered a simple approach to both the hospitality world and marketing in general; an alternative that subverts expectations and drives success whilst promoting organic fun and trust for gut instincts over corporate distillation and focus groups – vital advice for an industry that, despite the rise of often impersonal technology, must work to retain its core of human interaction. www.theahc.co.uk
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Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific 17-19 OCTOBER
Following a year of strong growth, slow-burn politics and shifts in tourism habits, HICAP moved to a new venue with a slate of new developments to explore in tow. Words: Kristofer Thomas
arking the first Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific (HICAP) since its move from long term residence at InterContinental Hong Kong to Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts’ The Kerry, the 2018 edition saw prominent hoteliers, investors, operators, developers and designers descend on the city from 17-19 October to explore and discuss the wider region’s hospitality landscape. Comprising in-depth keynotes and intimate breakout conversations alike, the programme expamined topics from the joys and dangers of artificial intelligence and its application in the hotel sphere, to the common psychological traits found in the industry’s leading figures. Elsewhere, the conference’s networking element provided a platform for new collaborations, whilst the annual HICAP awards recognised achievements in dealmaking and sustainability, as well as individual accomplishments by both lifelong and quickly rising industry figures. In a year that saw the sharpest tip in the scale of global power balance for some decades, as well as developments in technology, climate science and regional government policy – parallel to micro factors such as the rise of hotel F&B and emerging design trends – there was much to cover, but through a mixture of long-form presentations
and quick-fire spotlight interviews HICAP hit all the main notes, as well as some unexpected veins of conversation. Thanking Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts for their vibrant opening reception the night previous, Robert Stiles, Principal and Managing Director, RobertDouglas, kicked things off with a rundown of the schedule, before introducing James Whittaker, Distinguished Engineer, Microsoft, to the stage for the opening keynote. SYSTEM SHOCK With much of the year’s global discussion centred on technology, the use and misuse of data and the wider implications of society’s push towards automation, the HICAP 2018 programme was punctuated with delves into the possibilities and pitfalls of a digital future. Whittaker’s keynote on the impending dawn of a new, datadriven era spoke with optimism from a personal convenience standpoint, though was underscored with warnings. “Congratulations, you’re part of the first generation to build computers more intelligent than humans,” he began. “But also the first stupid enough, because make no mistake, this will change the rules of the game.” Citing the evolution of artificial intelligence and machine learning to a point algorithms can
in certain fields know more about a user than they do themselves, Whittaker emphasised the vital role that data is playing, and will play, in both wider society and the hotel business specifically. “The old ways in which we interacted with data don’t work any more; the transition from an analogue to our digital world means that formerly useful tools have become obsolete,” he explained. “It will affect you in such a fundamental way, that if you don’t change the way you do business you will be left behind.” In the wide-ranging keynote that followed, covering the origins and inner workings of the new tools driving humanity including cloud computing, driverless cars and decision-making networks, Whittaker stressed the importance of early adoption, and questioned the under-use of these instruments in the hotel sphere. “With the right decisions, hotels could replace Google,” he claimed. “Search engines are terrible at recommending things. With all your data, who better than a hotel to do that? Every restaurant, bar, pub and music venue covets hotel guests, it represents a massive part of their business, and that’s all data. Every human that comes into your hotel is data. All you do is data, and you need to start thinking more creatively about this.” Warning that, despite the arguments against, all
hotel staff will eventually be replaced by machines, but in terms of business this would herald a new era. Offering strategies to get ahead in times like these, such as tracking guests around a city with electronic keys to form accurate profiles and subsequent recommendations, or allowing hyperefficient systems to oversee restaurant reservation and service processes, Whittaker outlined a future in which hotels could find a new function as hubs for massive amounts of valuable data. The end of the session covered the rise of virtual and augmented reality, and its potential use from a consumer perspective, which would allow guests to visit before they book. However, the following day saw a different purpose explored. Taking the stage to discuss the possibilities from a designer’s standpoint, Vincent McIlduff, Founding Partner and CEO of ALT-254, explained the process of creating an entire hotel in virtual reality, having done so with the recently completed Mojo Nomad Central on Hong Kong Island. “What virtual reality allows us to do is have a client walk directly into a building and change materials as they see fit,” McIlduff explained. “It also allows them to be closely involved in the design process. They can lean through windows, look under beds, turn on a tap or open a door – it’s very interactive, and creates a real sense of space.” Highlighting the benefits in terms of working relationships and communication as well as the vast possibilities in a creative context, McIlduff explained that “traditional design asks clients to suspend disbelief and imagine the scheme, whereas this technology allows us both to accurately inhabit it”. At what appears to be perhaps a turning point for the industry’s use of technology, both sessions outlined a future in which the design, operation and core purpose of hotels is radically different to that of today. THE ASSESMENTS “I’m positive we’re in a healthy industry, and we’ve now seen another good year, but what about the next couple of years ahead?” began Jesper Palmqvist, Area Director Asia Pacific, STR, in his exploration of the region’s performance and
outlook. “In Asia, tourism and travel is growing, which is good, but presents us with challenges.” Kicking things off with a look at the adjacent American market, Palmqvist noted that the country is now at 102 straight positive months, operating at the highest occupancy for 30 years, and, even with a large amount of new supply in the works, has experienced 2.5% growth. In contrast, with 100,000 keys in the pipeline across Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Qatar, the Middle East could see issues ahead, and a potential stall to the massive rate of growth that began with the modernisation of these countries. Saudi Arabia, however – something of an outlier in the region – has slowed its pipeline in anticipation, giving it
“It is an unprecedented situation for Japan to be dealing with all that new supply, so some businesses will take a hit.” Jesper Pamqvist
better footing in a slowdown scenario. Moving into Asia Pacific, Palmqvist cited the expansion of Chinese property groups beyond their borders as a catalyst for the market’s growth, which in turn saw the rest of the region tentatively follow suit. “It’s not about buying that one big trophy asset in New York anymore,” he explained in the context of the strategies being adopted by these groups. “They’re expanding beyond China and growing faster than we’ve ever seen before.” With 3% growth, demand growing well in its central portion and western bloc, and a government encouraging inter-country tourism, China has fared well. Newly established highspeed rail networks are “safely, quickly and reliably connecting people throughout the country, which is helping equalise the massive market”, whilst the Toilet Revolution – one of Xi JinPing’s persuasive campaigns that has helped to improve
sanitary conditions in mainland China – has seen previously dormant cities become active. Likewise, Hong Kong’s ever-closer relationship to mainland rule has resulted in 14% growth. The special administrative region’s colonial past had seen hesitation from the Communist Party in encouraging its citizens to visit, and though politically and socially contested, the hotel market has certainly benefited. Elsewhere in the region, Singapore has absorbed the majority of its supply, and has around just 3,000 keys left to open as the government plans for its next phase of steady growth, whilst Thailand, though stable and regularly breaking records – every single month in 2018 has been better than the last 10 years – this growth is largely focused on Phuket and Bangkok. Vietnam, now 33% reliant on Chinese tourism, is starting to see flat occupancy, and though Ho Chi Minh City is waiting on a large boost of supply, the market has begun to see the challenges of fragmentation. Australia and Japan performed particularly well, peaking at 200% growth. Japan, gearing up for the 2020 Summer Olympics, has seen Tokyo’s pipeline overtake that of Shanghai, although Palmqvist was cautious about the rapid rise. “Everyone wants a hotel there now, but what about 2025 and 2030? With all those new arrivals we could see some trouble. It is an unprecedented situation for Japan to be dealing with all that new supply, so some businesses will take a hit.” Australia, without the burden of a widely attended global competition to host, has seen a steadier increase. “If you have a market with so many rooms, running at 75% occupancy, that’s a good thing and that’s why so many people are heading to Oz,” Palmqvist offered. However, new supply hasn’t yet been absorbed and is tightening, even as the pipeline continues to grow, but with early warnings of a flag in major cities such as Melbourne and Sydney, Palmqvist predicts a “breaking point” in the next few years. The poor performers in the region were those experiencing intense political problems – the genocide in Myanmar has been a catalyst for steep declines – or uncertainty; Indonesia is typically unpredictable in election years as social patterns
change. The Maldives sat somewhere in the middle, with underwhelming performance growth but host to a new administration that may look to alter how investors enter the market. “I think the stable markets will continue to grow,” Palmqvist concluded. “2019 isn’t going to be a big drop, and nothing will fall off the cliff, so it’s not the end of days just yet. Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong will grow stable, but others will likely slow.” A subsequent panel discussion, bringing together investment professionals from across the market for a conversation regarding both opportunities and outlook, provided further insight. “From my perspective there are some troubling signs in the real economy that could have impact on us, from interest rates in the United States to the trade war and the drumbeat of nationalism,” offered Peter Meyer, CEO, Lodgis Hospitality. “Perhaps we’re heading towards a recession, but from our perspective, there are deals to be done, and if there is to be a significant impact on the market, now would be the time to buy.” Following a drop in hotel transactions across China, Fei Ye, Vice President of Strategic Investment, Huazhu Group, commented: “This is because the government is cracking down on financial assets, and trying to squeeze out the bubble from the real estate market. For investors like us, we’re waiting until the right time to jump in. In this tough market, in order to succeed it often requires real patience and discipline.” She predicted steady growth across the region by the end of 2019, faster consolidation across the market, and a continued rise in the country’s purchasing power, despite of, and perhaps boosted by, its expansive, fragmented market. BREAKING OUT Running parallel to the ballroom’s main event were a series of breakout sessions, with panels focused on more specialised subjects including how best to capitalise on an F&B asset and how the Chinese government’s Belt and Road Initiative will impact the hotel market. With topics ranging from the importance of locality to each panellist’s preferred method of
developing a project, the F&B session hosted by Michael Goodman, Partner and Managing Director, EDG, saw a lively exploration of the new differentiator. “We see restaurants and bars as the heart and soul of our hotels,” stated Philipp Blaser, Vice President Food & Beverage, Asia Pacific, Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts. “But it’s a whole holistic picture; you need to look at sound, materials and details, and partner with the right people. Its really the gateway experience to Four Seasons.” Michael Callahan, Managing Director, The Compound Collective, spoke of the importance of engaging both consultants and designers early on in a project, commenting: “Having that vision early on is important, often we’re brought in far too late. It is vital that you have the systems, resources and talent available to be successful, before, during and after launch.” Dave Baswal, COO and CFO, Ovolo Hotels, agreed, noting that it is key to “embrace diversity and local culture from the start, but don’t use it as a problem solving technique – use it because that’s what makes for a great experience.” Elsewhere, during the markets and opportunities track regarding Belt and Road – the infrastructure project set to link much of Asia, Europe and Africa in a China-centred trading network – the panel discussed the best ways for hoteliers to take advantage of a more connected set of continents. “We’ll be going in with eyes wide open in regards to where we bet, but to do this we’ll need the stomach to face the uncertainty,” mused Anthony Wong, Executive Vice President, Brands, Shangri-La International. “It’s not about building hotels, its about building economies. The key isn’t the hardware, but rather the commerce chain it will create.” With the project unprecedented in scope and scale, and encompassing policy coordination, infrastructure, trade, financial integration and personal connectivity, the hotel market could be a major benefactor; the scheme allowing guests to travel to more of the world, where new hotels will likely be waiting. Touting Africa as the region that stands to gain perhaps the most attention, Wong concluded:
“All of the established brands should be looking. There’s so much room to grow. The new markets are opening up.” Back in the main hall, a lightning interview with Choe Peng Sum revealed the Frasers Hospitality CEO’s thoughts on branding, leadership and strategy, amongst other topics. “If there is a need then we’re going to meet that need. It’s all about identifying space to grow within and then occupying it,” he explained. Also discussing leadership was Chris Mumford, Managing Director, Aethos Consulting Group, who worked to identify the leading personality traits amongst successful hospitality leaders. Through hundreds of hours of interviews, Mumford gained personal insight into those who have risen to the top of their industry, identifying through psychometric assessment the recurring presence of figures experts in not one field but above average in many; those highly opinionated and following gut instinct; and men and women who value ambiguity, yet have the ability to make major decisions in an instant. Quoting Bill Marriott, Mumford told the audience: “Success seems to be connected to action; successful people keep moving. They make mistakes but never quit.” Rounding out the conference, the annual HICAP awards highlighted the successes of both group and individual. Yotel Singapore Orchard Road was named the Reggie Shiu Development of the Year for its demonstration that micro guestrooms aren’t necessarily limited to budget projects, whilst IHG’s acquisition of a majority stake in Regent Hotels & Resorts was named M&A Deal of the Year. Elsewhere, Kieran Bestall, Senior Director of Development, Asia, Hilton, took home the Rising Star award, whilst Anil Thadani, Chairman of Symphony Asia, was presented with the HICAP Lifetime Achievement Award. With a strong year across the region leaving guests with a sense of optimism ahead of another period of predicted growth, HICAP closed its 29th edition and looked ahead to a milestone year; one that will culminate in the conference’s 30th anniversary and a return to Kerry Hotel in 2019. www.hicapconference.com
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Radical Innovation Award 3 OCTOBER 2018
Technology-oriented autonomous travel concept powers ahead to scoop first place at Radical Innovation Award 2018. Words: Molly Dolan
eturning for its 12th edition, the annual Radical Innovation the Autonomous Hotel Chain. Once reserved, a customised unit is Award took place at New York’s New Museum in October, delivered to the traveller’s door and transports them to the docking attracting influential names in hospitality, finance, design, facility located at the end destination, where it extends into a larger branding and development. travel suite. Following more than 50 international entries, three professional John Hardy, CEO and President of The John Hardy Group and finalists presented to a 200-strong audience, outlining their concept’s founder of Radical Innovation, comments: “The goal of our Radical creative strength and feasibility. Along with the three professional Innovation community is to create entirely new segments of the finalists – Aquaponic Experience Hotel by Varinot & Varinot, travel and hospitality industries. The Autonomous Travel Suite is the Autonomous Travel Suite by Aprilli Design perfect example of this, utilising sustainable Studio, and Le Colline Incantate by noa* technology as a travel solution that best serves – the 2018 student winner also showcased the consumer of tomorrow.” Room Extension Solution. Scooping second place and US$5,000 Winning first place and a grand prize of was Varinot & Varinot’s Aquaponic US$10,000 was Autonomous Travel Suite by Experience Hotel, championing a concept Aprilli Design Studio. Integrating transport that combines breeding fish and cultivating and hospitality through a driverless mobile plants in water. The closed loop system suite, the concept offers door-to-door operates by extracting used fish tank water transportation between a traveller’s home and feeding it to the plant system, which in John Hardy, The John Hardy Group and destination. All needs have been thought turn transforms the bacteria into nutrients of, emulating a static hotel room complete resulting in purified water that can return to with basic sleeping, working and bathroom functions, allowing a the fish. The French duo aspire to apply this by re-using rainwater, productive and optimised journey. The units are powered by solar allowing the circulation system to provide water to aquariums, energy, thus acknowledging the need for a sustainable future. flowers and vertical produce farms within the hotel. Furthermore, the winning project operates relatively simply from The student winner, Room Extension Solution (RES) by Daniel a user perspective. Guests schedule the autonomous suite either Czyszczon and Michal Witalis of Cracow University of Technology, online or via mobile app, which is operated and maintained by Poland, also utilises autonomous vehicle technology. After arriving
“The goal of our community is to create entirely new segments of the travel and hospitality sectors.”
Above: The winning design – Autonomous Travel Suite by Aprilli Design Studio – integrates transport and hospitality through a driverless mobile suite offering door-to-door transportation between a traveller’s home and destination
at a destination airport, guests of RES will be greeted with a quick check-in service and access to a private vehicle. With the goal of optimising travel time, navigation, comfort, safety and efficiency, each mobile hotel room is equipped with a full-size bed, storage space and a fully operational bathroom. Upon arrival at the hotel structure and docking station, the vessel becomes part of the guestroom. Speaking about RES, Hardy says: “As students of industrial design, we were impressed with Daniel and Michal’s ability to take their knowledge in technology and apply it to a hotel concept.” Since its inception, Radical Innovation has witnessed a plethora of innovative projects pass through its ranks, including award-winning Zoku, pod hotel pioneer Pixel, and Snoozebox. Jena Thornton, Managing Director, Eagle Rock Ventures, and juror comments on the importance of Radical Innovation and its progress year on year: “Radical Innovation has played a vital role in surfacing innovative ideas for the hospitality industry and has been, in some cases, a leading innovation indicator of ideas that become reality. Not all winning ideas have come to fruition, but several have. “Radical Innovation provides a platform for dreamers and technicians,” she continues. “The confluence of those perspectives can unleash innovative disruption within our industry. Each year’s submissions often reflect a trend; with the last few years including
varying takes on mobility and transportation. We are about to see huge change in this aspect of travel with the emergence of autonomous vehicles, and more advanced technology with high-speed trains, aircrafts and boats. Again acting as a leading innovation indicator, Radical Innovation is a glimpse into the future of travel and mobility.” The Radical Innovation jury comprised: Claude Amar, President, The John Hardy Group International; Wing Chao, Founding Principal, Wing T. Chao Architect; John Hardy, CEO, The John Hardy Group; Michael Medzigian, CEO & Director, Carey Watermark Investors Inc; Jena Thornton, Managing Director, Eagle Rock Ventures; Simon Turner, Managing Member, Alpha Lodging Partners; and James Woods, Head of WeLive, WeWork. Honourory jurors were: Maki Bara, President and co-founder, The Chartes Lodging Group; and Tinchuck Ng, Managing Director, Co-Head of Investments, Cottonwood Group. Radical Innovation was produced by The John Hardy Group with support from founding sponsor Global Allies and official partner Sleeper. The evening was moderated by Tara Mastrelli and the Radical Innovation trophy was designed by Chris Hardy. www.radicalinnovationaward.com
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Sleep + Eat CONFERENCE PROGRAMME REVEALED
Sleep + Eat has revealed the line up for its thought-provoking annual conference programme, along with its inaugural F&B counterpart.
urope’s leading event for hospitality innovation and design has announced the line-up of keynote speakers and panellists set to take part in its free-to-attend Sleep + Eat conferences. Faithful to this year’s theme of the ‘recognisable and new’, both will continue a tradition of providing a platform to those driving the sector whilst exploring topics seldom aired in other forums. The conference will open with Andrew Zobler, founder and CEO of Sydell Group, and recipient of the AHEAD Americas 2018 Award for Outstanding Contribution. With stellar achievements including London’s The Ned and The NoMad Hotel New York to his name, Zobler will share insights on how travel is evolving and where the hospitality industry is heading. Meanwhile, day two will see the keynote delivered by Priya Paul, Chairperson of The Park Hotels – a collection of hotels at the forefront of the design-led revolution in the Indian sub-continent – who will tell her story of creativity and innovation, and explain how she strives to deliver unique guest experiences across a portfolio of luxury properties. Elsewhere, panel discussions will range from subjects including global perspectives and the London hotel phenomenon, to the art and science of turning around failing hotels and the processes of sensory design. Therese Virserius, co-founder of Virserius Studio; Geraldine Dohogne, designer of Zannier Hotels; and the Sundukovy Sisters – the studio behind last year’s Sleeper Bar – will discuss their experiences of working around the globe, whilst Bruce Robertson, Managing Director, The Standard London, and Mark Bruce, Director of Hotels, EPR, will consider the buzz around the UK capital. Likewise, Tom Hupe, Director of Hospitality, Perkins & Will; Sally Storey, Design Director, LDI; and Tom Middleton, Sound Architect at Sonux, will share their research and expertise when it comes to influencing a guest’s experience, be that overt or subliminal. The Design Duos conversation returns with Muza Lab co-founders Inge Moore and Nathan Hutchins, who will discuss their perceptions of what luxury means today, whilst the four Sleep Set design teams – AB Concept, Yasmine Mahmoudieh, Denton Corker Marshall and
HBA London – will reveal the thinking behind their concept rooms. Day one will conclude with the Development Roundtables, giving delegates the chance to talk with industry influencers such as Florian Kollenz, Chief Development Officer, 25hours Hotels; Mark Owen, Head of Development, Resolution Properties; Harry Harris, Managing Director, SUSD; Samantha Sugarman, Director of Development, Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts; and Felicity Black-Roberts, Vice President at Hyatt. Day two will round out with Planes, Trains & Autonomy, an exploration of the rapid rate of change in the travel and transport industries with Sleeper’s Assistant Editor Kristofer Thomas, as each industry gears up to serve a new generation. Sleep + Eat will also see the debut of the Eat Conference, arriving fully-fledged with a wide array of leading restaurant and bar personalities. Guillaume Marly, Managing Director of Hotel Café Royal, will be joined by Tel Aviv based studio B+K Architecture, as well as Alon Baranowitz and Irene Kronenberg, founders of Baranowitz+Kronenberg; Matt Utber, founder of The Plant; Tina Norden, Project Director, Conran + Partners; Ido Garini, owner, Studio Appétit; and Melita Skamnaki, Co-Director, Double Decker, amongst others. Discussing topics such as strategies for success in a trend-driven sector, the art of collaboration, the F&B inspiration of Eastern Europe and designing for millennials, panellists including Juan Carlos Rodriguez Artiga, Director of Wilson Associates’ London studio will join Robbie Bargh, founder, Gorgeous Group and Rob Polacek, Chief Creative Officer, Puccini Group, to explore the many layers of great restaurants, whilst the design teams responsible for the inaugural Eat Sets will reveal what lies behind their interactive concept installations. Sleep + Eat will be open from 10:00-20.30 on Tuesday 20 November, and from 10:00-18:00 on Wednesday 21 November. For more information and to register for a complimentary pass, please visit the website. Grohe is the show’s founding partner. www.sleepandeatevent.com
This Page: Speakers set to appear across the two-day Sleep + Eat conference include (clockwise from top left) Ido Garini; Andrew Zobler; Inge Moore; Irene Kronenberg; and Alon Baranowitz
Sleep + Eat THE SLEEPER BAR
Jun Aizaki brings his distinct design approach to London for the first time by way of The Sleeper Bar.
rooklyn-based creative studio, Crème – headed up by Jun Aizaki – is translating its expertise to London in November, with the studio selected to design The Sleeper Bar social hub. Occupying a central spot at Sleep + Eat, the space follows in the wake of previous pop-up bars by international design practices, and will be open throughout the course of the event. Embracing this year’s theme of ‘recognisable and new’, Crème will reflect its distinct experiential design approach whilst furthering explorations into plant-based dyeing processes and celebrating the colour indigo. The bar will also host the launch of the biodegradable HyO-Cup, for which Crème has developed a process to grow gourds in moulds as a sustainable alternative to disposable cups. “Nowhere provides a better platform than Sleep + Eat to connect with thought leaders in the European hospitality design industry,” says Jun Aizaki, owner and Principal of Crème. “At a time that we see boutique brands building up a presence on both sides of the
pond, our design for The Sleeper Bar emphasises the growing trend for connecting the recognisable and the new, the traditional and the progressive, the native and the international. “The Sleeper Bar furthers Crème’s celebration of the colour indigo and our exploration into traditional dyeing processes. The ancient, natural, plant-based material has inspired us for years, exemplified by our design of the Indigo Chair in 2017, manufactured by Stellar Works. The bar design will showcase this collaboration, featuring Stellar Works’ indigo bar stools. Our design uses the traditional wood stain in unconventional ways, providing the intensity and beauty of the indigo finish, as well as offering a space for visitors to mingle.” Crème is well-versed in the world of hospitality design, with recent projects including public spaces at Kimpton Eventi in New York, the lobby and restaurants within The Maven in Denver, and rooftop bar Mr. Purple in downtown Manhattan. www.sleepandeatevent.com
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Toward Utopia FABRIC S, WALLCOVERINGS & SURFACES
Ahead of the 2019/2020 season, leading exhibitions and design houses predict the interior trends set to shape the industry.
of high-gloss and matte textures join curves and rounded forms to add a sense of tactility that challenges the imagination. ‘Seek Sanctuary’ meanwhile, focuses on the notion of moving away from hyper-connected life and creating utopian havens of peace amidst the noise. With an appreciation for design pieces and concepts that are simple and functional, the trend sees designers combine a minimal colour palette with carefully considered textural details that retain comfort and warmth. The third trend predicted for the coming season celebrates a closeness to nature with hardwearing textiles, sturdy twill weaves and rubberised finishes such as leather and suede that lend a sense of endurance and longevity. ‘Go Off-Grid’ sees primary tones of deep blue and khaki mixed with vibrant orange that adds vigour to base hues of concrete grey, cream and beige, while earthy colours and patterns inspired by the environment honour its natural imperfections. The fourth notion, ‘Escape Reality’, responds to desires for deeper and more lasting experiences in daily life. Dizzying pinks and blues blur the boundaries between fantasy and reality, while shimmering and iridescent surfaces meld with high gloss effects to create fluidity and dynamism. The palette predominantly uses ethereal combinations of light pastel shades to create a surrealistic, hyper-real mood. Till’s final observation blends a modernist style with solid craftsmanship to form a utopian vision of the future of luxury. ‘Embrace Indulgence’ sees deep-pile textiles, opulent silks and velvets radiate sensual warmth, with a rich palette referencing traditional approaches to indulgent luxury using sumptuous burgundy, deep ochre and fresh lilac that lifts and contemporises interior schemes. Set to be unveiled in January at Heimtextil’s new Trend Space, designed by Atelier Markgraph to highlight how the various scenarios can be lived out, the themes represent a combination of inspiration and interaction with trailblazing projects and design initiatives.
iven the time lag between designing a hotel and its opening, trends in hospitality are often difficult to define. While many interior design firms prefer to remain non trend-driven, the popularity of specific colours and materials is inevitable. In its bi-annual trend report, London’s Design Centre Chelsea Harbour has identified a number of design and colour themes for the year ahead. ‘Colour Crush’ supports energy and optimism with vibrant tones from the likes of Dedar, Phillip Jeffries and Casamance; ‘Ravishing Gardens’ looks to lush botanicals by Cole & Son, Romo and Style Library; and ‘Freedom of Creativity’ takes cues from a free-spirited approach to colour and pattern, as seen in designs from Topfloor by Etsi, Arte and Flexform. Meanwhile, Heimtextil – the trade show for home and contract textiles – has set the course for the coming season with its trend report. Entitled Toward Utopia, it champions the idea of escaping our complex lives with a desire for deeper connections and a greater sense of meaning, yet is conscious that the search for new lifestyles in which mindfulness and sustainability play an important role will be a challenge in coming decades. During an exclusive briefing in London, Caroline Till, co-founder of research, design and forecasting studio FranklinTill, provided insight into future style worlds with the presentation of key themes for 2019. “We live in an era of uncertainty and mistrust in the established order,” Till explains. “As a reaction, we try to live a meaningful, conscious life based on positive relationships. We take responsibility for our lives and look for ways of life that fulfil our value system in search of a new utopia – a society that aims at promoting the wellbeing of all its citizens.” The first of five fundamental ideologies, ‘Pursue Play’ supports the notion that in turbulent times, we satisfy our need for optimism and creativity with play. The theme sees the use of rich primary colours that are daring, cheeky and bring a touch of humour, while combinations
Pursue Play sees the use of rich primary colours that are daring, cheeky and bring a touch of humour.
STYLE LIBRARY CONTRACT Momentum Taking cues from urban geometrics, x-ray floral patterns, pixelated forms and yarn wrap structures, Harlequin’s Momentum range comprises eight wallpaper designs, 11 drapes, seven upholstery fabrics and nine sheers. Designs include Maseki, which creates a statement using a multi-coloured pixel zigzag pattern, and Zecca, a double-dye semi-plain velvet with a subtle ribbed texture that adds depth and drama. Alternatively, large-scale geometric jacquard Axal combines highlight colours and contrasting textures for a distinctly different feel, while Spectro Stripe contemporises interior schemes with a spectrum of bold shades. www.stylelibrarycontract.com
CLAYBROOK Kintsugi Handcrafted in Britain, Claybrook’s Kintsugi series translates the traditional Japanese art, in which broken ceramics are repaired and turned into stone using lacquer dusted with powdered gold. The collection is made up of twelve distinctive colourways including Rinia, Tsundora, Mini Kyubu and Nero Marquina Kintsugi, with each tile featuring uniquely sporadic patterns and break lines that celebrate the flaws and imperfections of marble. www.claybrookinteriors.com
BLUEPRINT CERAMICS Cathedral The Cathedral collection by BluePrint Ceramics features a decorative glass mosaic that represents the look of stained-glass windows typical of grand churches and cathedrals. Created in a format of 365x210mm, the mosaic’s diamond formations combine with eight opulent colours and various grouts that allow it to be used as a standalone feature or amongst other artworks, while the use of light and coloured grouts also help to offer an alternative perspective. www.blueprintceramics.com
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TIGER LEATHER Grunge Taking cues from the famed era of music that created a counter-culture in art, film and fashion, Tiger Leather’s Grunge collection spans over 40 colours in assorted textures ranging from soft, oily and smooth to fully antiqued. Offered in matte and lightly sheened finishes such as Mojave and Sawtooth, the distressed leathers make use of neutral shades including Montana Stone and Yukon Trail, while vibrant pops of colour are added in the form of Highlands Plateau and Gracier. www.tigerleather.com
ARTE Insolence Inspired by the roaring Twenties and palazzo style architecture, Arte’s Insolence series is characterised by geometric shapes, bright mosaics, opulent details and flamboyant fringes. Its most notable designs include Shiver & Swing, a non-woven wallcovering with the choice of a realistic textile effect or authentic fil-à-fil with soft velvet touch, and Grow, a colourful and contemporary pattern based on an artistic drawing from the beginning of the 20 th century. www.arte-international.com
KIRKBY DESIGN Arco
The Botanical range from British manufacturer Cole & Son comprises 15 handcrafted wallpapers that study the transformation of nature throughout the seasons. Celebrating the ever-changing landscape of the garden, the collection captures the blooms of perennials such as Lilac, Wisteria, Bluebell and Rose, as well as the delicate greenery and foliage of Fern and Maidenhair.
Kirkby Design has introduced Arco, one of four new collections suitable for the contract sector. The series combines elements of retro and luxury glamour with architectural influences, offering a multitude of geometric designs and textured weaves across two coordinating styles. To create an immersive mix of colour and pattern throughout, Arco’s palette blends rich and sophisticated tones with metallic highlights.
COLE & SON Botanical
Photography by Andrea Ferrari
VERO Veritas The Veritas collection by Vero Fabrics comprises textured plains, colourful geometric and archive patterns, all of which can be produced in FR yarns for use in a wide variety of hotel spaces. The series can also be tailored to specific projects using seamless borders, which allow the design motif or colour change to be woven into the base or middle of the fabric, eliminating the need to add a trim or second layer to the drape. www.verofabrics.com
ARTNOVION Flow Made from a selection of solid woods with a plethora of colour options, Artnovion’s Flow range combines acoustic panels with a carefully calibrated diffuser, creating a solution to excessive reverberation and uneven sound fields. The panels’ acoustic cores are formed by interwoven acoustic foam with Helmholtz resonators over a sealed air cavity, while the parallel slats are designed to break up incoming waves using a uniform reflection pattern that homogenises sound fields. www.artnovion.com
PORCELANOSA XLight Premium Porcelanosa’s XLight Premium series has been developed by porcelain expert Urbatek and is made of high quality quarried marble, with no resins or harmful substances used in the manufacturing process. Available in six formats starting at a minimal thickness of 3.5mm, the tiles eliminate the need to remove or treat the ceramic being replaced, meaning they can be installed as over-tiles to create fully integrated bathroom and kitchen spaces with seamless doors and cupboards. www.porcelanosa.com
NANIMARQUINA Blur Designed by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Nanimarquina’s Blur rug offers two different readings. When viewing the rug from afar, an unfocused surface is apparent, while on approaching, lines and rhythmic rhombuses are revealed. The blurred effect has been achieved by inverting how the kilims are traditionally woven, mixing two colours unevenly to create an aged piece reminiscent of the past. Handmade in Pakistan, the collection comprises four colours: blur, black, green and red. www.nanimarquina.com
CASAMANCE Visconti The Visconti range by Casamance recreates the atmosphere of Paris’ Saint-Germain-des–Prés quarter with sumptuous materials, and reinterprets the maze of its streets with a series of geometric designs. Combining modern and elegant textures with graphic motifs that appear animated with movement, Visconti is available in bespoke colourways of Verneuil jaune or, Conti champagne and Montalembert jaune or, as well as Buci anglais, Montalembert caraibe and Jacob vert de gris. www.casamance.com
LINCRUSTA Tropical Leaf
Glamora has introduced a new prefinished wallpaper that eliminates the need for waterproof treatment by the installer. GlamFusion is lightweight and ultra-thin, meaning it can be applied on top of existing materials, while its flexibility allows for in-position trimming. Soft and silky to the touch, the range also details botanical motifs through macro graphics and vanishing shadows.
A nod to traditional bohemian schemes, the Tropical Leaf collection by Lincrusta features a deep texture that works harmoniously with both bright block colours and soft earthy hues. Drawing inspiration from the natural world as well as British design icons, the wallcovering series combines current trends with themes from Lincrusta’s 140-year history using contemporary floral details and timeless repeats.
Feelwood: Create the right impression. Egger Decorative Collection 2017 – 2019
Your customers want design that looks and feels just right – and they want it on budget! Feelwood looks and feels like wood but is much more cost effective than real wood or veneer. It’s available in a carefully selected range of durable, on trend finishes with matching boards, laminates and edging. Feelwood works harder so you can impress. Featured decor: H1180 ST37 Natural Halifax Oak.
» Find out more at www.egger.com/info-feelwood
BERNHARDT DESIGN Taher Asad-Bakhtiari Collection Inspired by the rich tribal heritage of his family and Iranian culture, Tehran-born artist Taher Asad-Bakhtiari has turned his creative attention to designing a series of fabrics for Berhardt Textiles. Encompassing six unique patterns that are offered in 52 colourways, his eponymous collection is the alchemy of old and modern worlds, blending primal craft and respect for time-honoured weaving techniques with elements of contemporary aesthetics. www.bernhardtdesign.com
KALISHER Le Méridien Houston Designed and manufactured by Kalisher’s Studio Artists – who provide art creation, curation and manufacturing services – the locally-inspired wallcovering installed at Le Méridien Houston features high contrast grayscale gradations and serene imagery including a detailed shot of liquid oil that plays on the city’s industrial past. An artistic juxtaposition of vibrancy and peace, the wallcovering embodies the twin energies of the hotel as a place for both relaxation and recreation. www.kalisher.com
SICIS Electric Marble The Electric Marble series by Sicis combines daring synthesis shades with a natural range of marble, and uses a unique neon effect to create a sense of dynamism. The collection comes in standard sizes and submultiples as well as larger formats, and comprises thin glass slabs that take cues from noble Calacatta, while the veins of the marble are brought to life when infused with metallic glows and energetic hues that add natural texture and richness. www.sicis.com
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PHILLIP JEFFRIES Kensington The Kensington collection by Phillip Jeffries features a statement houndstooth paperweave, which is dyed by artisans, sliced into strips and woven into a houndstooth pattern before being laminated to achieve a seamless finish. With the choice of nine classic colours, including serpentine grey, heiress pink and palace blue, as well as neutral Nottingham, Cornish cream and Cambridge charcoal, the wallcovering range adheres to the brand’s autumnal theme of ‘passages’. www.phillipjeffries.com
CAESARSTONE Metropolitan Caesarstone has launched Metropolitan, a rough and unpolished collection of surfaces that draws inspiration from factories, lofts and other forms of industrial architecture. Creating weathered patinas in quartz for the first time, Caesarstone designed each surface to reflect the authentic textures of raw manufacturing, with colourways such as Excava, Cloudburst Concrete and Frozen Terra referencing oxidised steel, poured plaster and raw concrete. www.caesarstone.co.uk
MANDARIN STONE Glacier
Egger’s Feelwood range comprises six unique structures shared among 27 different synchronised woodgrain decors. Available as a melamine or laminate with matching edging, the realistic surface provides a lightweight, durable and cost-effective alternative to solid wood and veneer, is easy to maintain and can be used across a variety of commercial interiors.
Made up of five base tile shades and numerous mosaic formats such as herringbone, hexagons and scallops, Glacier is the latest addition to Mandarin Stone’s range of coloured glass wall tiles. The collection is offered in a soft opaque finish, with its silky-satin feel adding texture to interior wall applications. With calming tones of blue, green and grey, the Glacier Blue Base colourway pairs well with the brand’s Alps Large Lattice Marble flooring and Alsace marble skirting.
Innovations and textile solutions for interior designers, architects and hospitality experts. Find out more at: heimtextil.messefrankfurt.com
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LINWOOD Mismi Linwood’s M ism i range combines a traditional, sustainable weaving process with a contemporary colour palette and bold South American-inspired patterns. Suitable for upholstery, curtains and accessories, the wool collection is naturally fire retardant and comprises nine designs including Peru, a woven stripe that takes cues from authentic Peruvian blanket designs, and Amazon, which features a large-scale geometric pattern with a soft handle. Palmette, meanwhile, encompasses a motif that originated in ancient Egypt and has been adapted by many different cultures. www.linwoodfabric.com
LAWCRIS Feelwood Replicating the intricate knots and cracks of natural wood and veneer, the Feelwood collection by Lawcris uses synchronised pore technology to align rich decors with deep textures and create a surface that is virtually indistinguishable from real wood. The series is available in 22 décor options with both rustic and contemporary wood grains, as well as in six different textures, as a laminate or melamine-faced board, and as worktops, each with matching edging to suit varying schemes. www.lawcris.co.uk
CAMIRA Era Characterised by a baby herringbone weave, Era is a two-tone fabric that offers an understated contemporary texture. Its colouring technique is balanced through in-between shades that work in pairings to create fresh combinations at the brighter end of the palette, with delicate tones and gentle options as alternatives. Highlighting different layers and depths of colour as well as the detail beneath each individual shade, the 24 new shades bring Camira’s total colour offering to 44. www.camirafabrics.com
W W W.V I N C E N T S H E P PA R D.C O M
SKOPOS Bonita Skopos has introduced Bonita, a new upholstery range that provides a sophisticated luxury finish using soft, matte cotton-look velvet as well as a palette of bright jewel colours and neutral tones. Released alongside Cuba – the brand’s latest textured plain with a natural linen-look feel in contemporary shades – the collection comes complete with a waterproof layer as standard, and achieves a rub count of 40,000 Martindale to meet the demands of the contract market. www.skoposfabrics.com
DEDAR Supernatural The Supernatural series comprises one plain and twelve patterns from Dedar’s classic fabrics, which are transposed using digital printing onto a linen, cotton and viscose canvas. A coating of polyurethane is then applied to maintain colour stability, stain resistance and water repellence, as well as to provide a natural embossed effect and contemporary texture. The series is also fire-retardant certified for seating in public spaces, and can be used as a wallcovering with non-woven backing. www.dedar.com
AGUA FABRICS Aztec Designed by London-based Studio Teresa Collins, the Aztec collection from Agua Fabrics is a soft tweed-style upholstery fabric offered in seven contemporary colourways. Combining an elegant design with practicality and durability, the textured fabrics are fire retardant to crib 5 and boast a rub count of 60,000 Martindale, while its waterproof, stain resistant and anti-microbial qualities mean it is suitable for a range of interior environments. www.aguafabrics.com
PROU D SPONSOR S
Visual Identity of the Year Award
Designed for Sleep Hypnos works in partnership with Hoteliers to deliver tailored hospitality sleep solutions... Campbell Gray Crowne Plaza Marriott Corinthia Premier Inn Soho House Holiday Inn The Rocco Forte Collection InterContinental InterContinental Robertson Quay, Singapore Soho House, Chicago Marriott Champs ElysĂŠes, Paris Kimpton de Witt, Amsterdam InterContinental, Ljubljana Holiday Inn, Algiers JW Marriott, Mumbai Holiday Inn Express St Julianâ€™s, Malta Jumeirah Al Naseem, Dubai The Serras, Barcelona Fingal, Scotland Courtyard by Marriott, Kathamandu Le Quartier Francais, Franschoek, Cape Town The Golden Age, Athens
T: +44 (0) 1332 497111 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org | www.hypnoscontractbeds.com Hypnos is proud to be Carbon Neutral, complying with PAS 2060.
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TRADELINENS | Savoy Feather
VISPRING | M-Pure
Balancing lightness and softness with a reassuring touch of weight, the Savoy Feather and Down Duvet from Tradelinens create a generous fuller look using 70% duck feather and 30% duck down filling. Featuring in the guestrooms of luxury retreats such as Lime Wood and The Pig Hotels, the series is crafted from 100% Cambric cotton down with a dustproof outer fabric, and features piped edges for added comfort. Available in sizes ranging from single to super king, it can be used year-round thanks to tog weight options of 4.5 and 10.5.
Vispring has launched a natural and sustainable flame-retardant treatment solution for its entire mattress range. The M-Pure formula uses a bio-based material with zero chemicals, meaning it does not affect the feel, look or smell of the product.
Sleep Easy B E D S , M AT T R E S S E S & L I N E N S
Quality rest is crucial in todayâ€™s fast-paced society, but with the latest innovations in the bedding world, guests will sleep easy.
BELLINO FINE LINENS | Manhattan
NATURALMAT | The Torrington
Comprising a series of flat sheets, duvet covers, pillow shams and cases, the Manhattan range by Bellino Fine Linens is made from 100% long-staple cotton. Woven into 250-thread count white percale and embellished with two rows of satin stich, the series features embroidery colour options of ivory, navy, taupe and sage.
The wood-framed Torrington headboard from Naturalmat is now available in oak, and features an untreated finish for a fresh natural feel. The range is crafted from sustainably produced FSC-certified timber, before being joined with organic glues and screw-fastened using traditional joinery techniques. The Torrington is also offered in a lacquered finish or stained colour as well as solid oak, while its strutfitted design ensures that it drops onto most common bed bases with ease.
LETTI & CO | Dot
HYPNOS | Luxury Wool
Designed by Paola Navone, the Dot collection from Letti & Co reinterprets the raised bed and makes use of a stylistic lightness. Available in a range of soft fabrics with feet in natural walnut or lacquered black, white and grey, the knock-down bed continues the brand’s versatile approach with a series of removable quilted liners.
British manufacturer Hypnos has unveiled a new bedding collection designed specifically for the hospitality sector. The Luxury Wool Bedding Bundle comprises three bundles, each encompassing pillows and pillow protectors, a mattress protector and duvet. In keeping with Hypnos’ sustainable credentials, which ensure that materials are sourced from managed forests and remain 100% recyclable, the range is encased in natural cotton with hypoallergenic and temperature regulating properties.
HÄSTENS | Satin Pure
MINOTTI | Curtis
Hästens has extended its Satin Pure collection with three new colours: Night Shadow Blue, Light Pink and Misty Rose, taking the total of shades available in the linen series to nine. Launched as part of a collaboration with design duo Bernadotte & Kylberg, the colours were developed to enhance Hästens’ signature blue-check design as well as the new Appaloosa and Marwari beds. Light Pink and Misty Rose combine harmoniously with the brand’s classic check pattern as well as the Marwari bed with its brown hues, while darker tone Night Shadow Blue is best suited to Appaloosas’ navy aesthetic.
The Curtis bed from Minotti is the result of a collaboration with Rodolfo Dordoni, and nods to Italian craftsmanship through its tall, slimline headboard finished with a geomtric pattern. Created in one length with the choice of five widths, the bed features an exposed zipper along the sides, while the reversible Curtis bedspread is covered on one half by white Paco fabric and the other in mink-coloured Kabuki. The Lawrence plaid, meanwhile, is crafted from 100% cashmere wool and offered in two versions: titanium with a border in natural-shaded Nabuk leather, or platinum with a border in iron-coloured Nabuk leather.
THE NEXT GENERATION OF DISPENSERS HAS ARRIVED A highly customisable system with a sophisticated modern design, tamper and theft proof coupled with a smart and quickly interchangeable inner cartridge bottle. Available as a table top or wall mount version, optionally with an invisible air fragrance application.
ENHANCE YOUR IMAGE. SIMPLY DONE.
Specifier P R O D U C T S & S E R V I C E S F O R H O S P I TA L I T Y D E S I G N
ALTERNATIVE FLOORING Boutique Celebrating craft and colour across five designs and 16 colourways, Alternative Flooringâ€™s Boutique collection has been created in collaboration with luxury fabric house Zoffany and comprises distinctive patterns including the geometric Dunand, the natural Serpentine and the linear Seizo, with each seeking to channel a sense of elegance and prestige. www.alternativeflooring.com
PERRIN & ROWE Instant Hot Perrin & Rowe’s Instant Hot collection features elements such as an intelligent anti-scold mechanism and a nano-technology cartridge to filter the water and prevent limescale build up. Available in the contemporary Phoenix model, the traditional Polaris and the country-style Celeste, each comes with a 2.4-litre tank and open-vented system, and is finished in chrome, pewter or nickel, as well as gold and English bronze. www.perrinandrowe.co.uk
HAMILTON LITESTAT Paintable Range
FERREIRA DE SÁ Rocktail Rug
MONITOR AUDIO Soundframe
Hamilton Litestat’s Paintable Range allows designers to match the shade of plug plates directly to the colour used across a scheme, whilst also offering a series of pre-painted tones and patterns. Available with a choice of insert finishes from bright chrome to antique brass, as well as black or white surrounds, the range can be customised to contrast, complement or match any scheme’s palette.
Part of a degrade and 3D collection designed in-house, Ferreira De Sá’s Rocktail Rug is produced in botanical silk or mohair, with colours chosen individually to create perfect pattern systems. Comprising three different styles – mirror effect, pattern gradients and simple patterns – the series can be deployed to complement existing schemes or provide a vibrant visual anchor.
Offering an in-wall or ceiling audio solution, Monitor Audio’s Soundframe features customisable grille cloths, allowing designers to stylistically integrate the product within a scheme, whilst an easy installation ensures the space’s design goes undisturbed. Joining a portfolio of existing and bespoke solutions, the architectural speaker provides sonically matched audio as well as pleasing aesthetics.
Channel your inner designer with our new augmented reality rug builder app. Choose from colossal choice of material, vast nuances of colour, border and piping style to create a beautiful rug to your exact requirements.
Download the app today and watch your bespoke creation take shape under your feet. crucial-trading.com Where Inspiration Begins
FLEXFORM Taylor Part of Flexform’s Carlo Colombo-designed 2018 collection – comprising armchair, sofa, table and storage models – Taylor is a cabinet range comprising storage for living areas with light aluminium structures and large sliding doors covered in cowhide. Available with marble or wood tops, the collection brings together a TV case and a hinge door cabinet. www.flexform.it
JANUS ET CIE Gina
Blending influences drawn from traditional Scandinavian minimalism with more classicallyinspired leanings, Frost’s Nova2 is a complete selection of accessories for kitchen, bathroom and wardrobe environments. The Nova2 Brush – combining a roll and brush holder in one functional product – avoids the need for drilling into walls during installation, and provides a statement bathroom decoration.
Inspired by the curving, irregular shapes of futuristic design aesthetics drawn from science fiction, as well as the infamous white, rounded uniforms of Star Wars’ Storm Troopers, Baal’s Troop is a series of OS&E items with slick, clean and industrial profiles. Double colour combinations and offset breaks within the bodies offer a distinctive presence within guestrooms and public spaces alike.
Designed by Piero Lissoni, Janus et Cie’s Gina collection combines tactile materials and plush seating with modern silhouettes and practical durability. Created for outdoor use, but suitable for interiors too, the modular range is constructed with a solid aluminium frame and woven rope seat. Rooted in Lissoni’s minimalist style, each piece offers a chic, contemporary vibe.
WE listen. we create. we deliver. Since the year 2000
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ANDREU WORLD Dado Comfortable, modular and precise, Andreu World’s Dado Sofa features details including a series of small bands defining the shape of the seat, matching or contrasting frames, and detailed welting. With elements including corner, central, chaise lounge and footrest modules, the pieces can be arranged to suit a variety of layouts. Upholstery shades include vibrant yellow, pastel orange and lime green. www.andreuworld.com
UNIDRAIN Highline Colour
CRUCIAL TRADING Rug Builder
Created in collaboration with Singapore-based design studio Woha, Apaiser’s Sampan collection comprises three baths and two basins, with the range aesthetically influenced by local tradition and South-East Asian Sampan boats. Simple, architectural and dynamic, the series seeks to channel a sense of the theatrical, and is finished in the brand’s own Apaiser Marble for a natural, organic feel and sculptural dexterity.
Introducing five new finishes including brass, copper, black, hand-polished stainless steel and brushed stainless steel, Unidrain looks to provide designers with more flexibility in its collection of linear drains. Highline Colour is set upon brushed, PVD-treated steel for a durable finish, with the shades selected to complement modern interior trends.
Affording designers and users alike a platform to customise a floorcovering’s style and material options, as well as providing accurate price pricing calculations, Crucial Trading’s Rug Builder has been developed to help in the creation of truly unique rugs. An augmented reality feature allows users to place the design, as well as see the available borders of cotton, linen leather or suede in the intended setting.
STELLAR WORKS Arc Sofa Characterised by its soft silhouette, an embracing of curves and a series of intricate upholstery details, the Arc Sofa by Stellar Works has been designed by Hallgeir Homstvedt and pays homage to Nordic simplicity. A thick seam sweeps the edge, creating a barrier between the straight outside shape and softer, sculpted inside, whilst a shade combining cool grey and notes of icy blue generates an air of sophistication. www.stellarworks.com
TARKETT ID Supernature
VERY WOOD Isola
GODDARD LONDON Goddard Gallery
Tarkettâ€™s ID Supernature is a vinyl floorcovering solution carrying the fine textures of wood and stone with a tattoo twist, bringing a layer of customisation to the range with a selection of 10 non-repeating patterns of up to 12m 2 that can be laid over the base. Drawing inspiration from organic materials, the base vinyl is available in 16 shades, whilst the modular format allows for combinations of colours and styles.
Comprising upholstered poufs, seats and modular sofas in ashwood, and available with or without side tables, shelves and USB outlets, Very Woodâ€™s This Weberdesigned Isola collection channels elements of contemporary living and co-working function, with modules pre-drilled for accessories and available in shades of yellow, maroon, blue, red and beige.
The newly launched Goddard Gallery is designed to deliver high quality photographic prints to interior designers, art curator and private buyers. Until recently a private collection, the body of work features images dating back to the mid90s and includes pictures taken in the 35mm slide format, now digitised. Available on paper, canvas, wood and thin wraps, the collection can also be floated on mounted metal prints.
Curate an icon.
Art by ARTIQ www.artiq.co email@example.com +44 (0)20 3137 2101
McCue Crafted Fit
Corinthia Hotel London
The Royal Atlantis Resort, Dubai
McCue Crafted Fit has completed a significant programme of conversion work at Corinthia Hotel London, transforming 22 of the five-star property’s guestrooms into 11 luxury suites over six floors. Part of an overall redesign for the former Metropole Hotel, and taking place within a live working environment, McCue carried out light refurbishments to a number of adjacent spaces whilst combining the rooms into a series of expansive, lavishly appointed suites. Elsewhere, the firm undertook work to alter entrance doors within the winding corridors – a detail reflecting the hotel’s combining of aesthetics drawn from both grand English homes and more contemporary movements. McCue Crafted Fit was selected to oversee the work following successful fit out programmes across several London institutions including The Berkeley Hotel, The Beaumont, The Savoy, The Connaught and Claridge’s. Working to create The Grand Pavilion Suite within The Berkeley, the firm refurbished the expansive roof terrace and created a glass pavilion overlooking Belgravia in collaboration with interior architect André Fu, whilst a project within Four Seasons Hotel Ten Trinity Square saw the fit-out of the Rotunda Lounge and the property’s acclaimed spa.
AHK Worldwide, a global development and construction firm, has been commissioned to complete the fit-out for the forthcoming Royal Atlantis Resort in Dubai, set to open in late 2019. With the firm’s work encompassing fit-out and joinery services for areas within the hotel and residence portion of the property, the work will require a number of different engineering specialties. Comprising 791 standard rooms and 231 suites, the project marks one of the city’s largest hotels, and further features 36 different restaurants and 65 open swimming pools, with the property overlooking 1.7km of private beach. AHK Worldwide has worked extensively within the hotel sector, completing projects including Grand Hyatt Hotel in Abu Dhabi, Bulgari Hotel Dubai, W Hotel Dubai, Westin Hotel Dubai, Sheraton Sharjah Resort, St. Regis Polo Dubai, Raffles Hotel & Residences in Istanbul, Nirvana Resort in Antalya, and Hilton Al Houara Coastal Resort in Morocco. With brands including AHK Construction, AHK FF&E and GW Furnishings, AHK Worldwide’s services offer a wide range of solutions within the hotel space. www.ahk.com
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RH NEW YORK RH has unveiled its 90,000ft², six-level flagship retail experience and gallery in New York’s historic Meatpacking District, featuring a rooftop restaurant by Brendan Sodikoff, a barista bar and wine terrace, an in-house interior design firm and full floors of RH Interiors, Modern and Outdoor products. Marking the latest project in Chairman and CEO Gary Friedman’s ongoing collaboration with design architect James Gillam of Backen, Gillam & Kroeger, the building was originally owned by John Jacob Astor in the late 19 th century, and has been reimagined as a steel and glass structure rising five floors through the preserved original brick façade, with cast-iron I-beams visually evoking the neighbourhood’s industrial past. The gallery incorporates all of RH’s businesses, with entire floors dedicated to each of its brands. The project also marking the first time RH has embedded an interior design firm – RH Interior – within its retail experience, along with eight client presentation spaces. “The Meatpacking District exhibits a spirit of innovation and irreverence, pointing New York City towards the future while respecting the integrity and authenticity of its past,” comments Gary Friedman, Chairman and CEO, RH on the opening. “We were inspired by that spirit to create a retail experience worthy of such an iconic corner in what is arguably the most important city in the world.”
Viso Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya
Lighting design and manufacturing studio Viso has supplied a collection of custom lighting solutions for Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya, working in collaboration with designers Yabu Pushelberg to bring a sense of grandeur to complement the modernist architecture. Found throughout the restaurants, business lounge, ballrooms and most of the hotel’s common areas, fixtures include a large architectural chandelier hanging over the lobby lounge and a custom starburst fixture that measures over 3m in diameter. Though largely comprising bespoke pieces created especially for the project and in response to the setting and interior scheme, a series of lights from Viso’s own collections have also been deployed in functional areas where suitable. “One of our biggest challenges was to manufacture fixtures that met the scale and the needs of the hotel, and we had a lot of fun coming up with solutions,” comments Tzetzy Naydenova, Managing Director of Viso. Marking one of the largest and most prominent luxury developments in the region, Viso’s work complements the high level of detail within the project, with materials including brass, glass, carbon fiber and resin used throughout. www.visoinc.com
OUT OF THE ORDINARY
Image Credits: Broste Copenhagen | Guzzini | Stelton
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012, 013, 014 & 015
Match of the Day CO U R T YA R D BY M A R R I OT T, A LLI A NZ A R E N A
Near the end of every football match comes the fan’s dilemma: leave early and beat the traffic, or hang on until the final whistle in hope of catching a late goal? For many, this has meant missing out on some of the most dramatic moments in sporting history, and for others an hour sat in gridlocked stadium parking. For Marriott Rewards members, however, this dilemma is now a thing of the past. Partnering with European titans Bayern Munich, the brand has installed a Courtyard by Marriott guestroom within one of the club’s Allianz Arena executive boxes, offering lucky fans a match day experience like few others. Featuring a bed, bar and dining amenities
in line with the Courtyard aesthetic, as well as some of the best seats in the house, the initiative will give the 100 million members of Marriott’s loyalty programme the opportunity to stay in the room, and access to packages including the chance to travel and dine with the team. Following the final whistle, guests can settle in for the night, safe in the knowledge that no priceless moments have been missed. “With Marriott International being the world’s largest hotel chain and FC Bayern one of the world’s most successful football clubs, I am convinced that this is a perfect match and a very authentic partnership,” says Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Chairman of FC Bayern.
Breath of Light BY PR E CI OSA
Breath of Light is an interactive and playful experience that unites people with a surprise and a smile.
Bringing this eye-catching exhibit to life involves sharing a breath. Guests interact with the installation, and each other, via special sensors that use the breaths to create a light and sound spectacle. Luxury is differentiated by what you can experience. Breath of Light makes positive connections and creates emotions.
The thoughtful design, cutting edge interactivity and emotional aspects of Breath of Light have been recognized by an international design jury and awarded a Red Dot: Best of the Best for outstanding design quality in the Communication Design category. Discover glittering crystal radiance in a whole new light.
â€œAn interactive experience, a delightful surprise.â€? Michael Vasku, Creative Director.
Visit us at Sleep + Eat | 20 - 21 November | Olympia, London Stand No: J10 | www.laufen.co.uk www.kartellbylaufen.com