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Earlier this week, the weather in our hometown of London seemed to take an unfortunate turn from sunny July to rainy October. Desperate for something to distract us with thoughts of warm summer days, we stumbled upon these photos of the new Hotel de Tourrel in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, the perfect solution. Opened in May, it combines a 17th century stone manor with sleekly contemporary interiors.
We love the light airiness of the above guestroom, which is one of only seven – simply labelled Numéro Un à Numéro Sept. Crisp white walls, wooden floors, high ceilings, the stone wall with the B&O flat screen TV. It’s like a palate cleanser compared to, say, this (shudder).
Hotel Suites / Marcel Wanders / Design Hotels / Switzerland Hotels / Zurich Hotels / Autograph Collection Hotels / → All Tags
We are not bashful when it comes to our enthusiasm for interior designer Marcel Wanders. It's only been a few months since the opening of Kameha Grand Zurich, an Autograph Collection Hotel, a design hotel that had us smiling right out of the gate, with its bold Swiss red-on-white palette, chocolate bar walls, and “Puregold” bar.
Now there's more to love - and more rooms coming to choose from - as Dutch born Wanders signs his “autograph” on 11 individually-themed suites.
The design of the suites covers a range of styles, passions and personality traits. Somewhere in the design mix, guests can ideally find their "lieblingsplatz" (favorite place,) the Kameha mantra.
Three of the suites are now available for booking, with the remaining eight to be completed over the following months. In the mean time, here are six of the eleven suites to "wander" though.
Mykonos Hotels / Boho Hotels / Wellness Hotels / Hotel Bars / Design Hotels / Greece Hotels / → All Tags
Detox. Yoga. Mindfulness. It feels like it’s only a few layabout hotels who don’t offer wellness options these days, but even by 2015’s modern monastery standards, this is something rather special: the San Giorgio Mykonos has opened an entirely separate “beach, restaurant and cultural offshoot” dedicated to al things boho.
Boho is the name of the game for the San Giorgio in the first place. It’s a member of Design Hotels, but a rustic member, with shabby chic rooms, a simple pool and restaurant overlooking the shoreline, and even a wooden platform to dive straight into the sea.
So far, so Greek island idyll. Here’s where it gets different: San Giorgio has just opened Scorpios, which they’re calling a “modern day agora” (where everyone used to hang out in Ancient Greece) specializing in “holistic beach culture”. It’s an interesting move for Mykonos, which is as well known for its sophisticated party scene as it is for its coastline. This sounds like it’s come straight to Greece from Goa – and, in fact, that’s one of the inspirations, along with Bali, Burning Man, the posh side of Ibiza and… Glastonbury.
And it’s one of the main things dominating the landscape as you fly down the Croatian coastline.
The other week, we gave you the gossip on the G-Rough, Rome’s newest design hotel (and Design Hotel), which opened on March 23 – or rather, on its intriguing location in Piazza di Pasquino. But enough gossip; today it’s time to go inside.
Like many other Rome hotels, G-Rough started out as a house – a 16th-century palazzo, to be precise, that was a family home for generations before being converted into apartments.
Unlike many other Rome hotels, though, it has cleaved to its original function. The 10 rooms take up the space of the 10 apartments (the bathroom’s where the kitchen used to be in each apartment, for example, and the doors on each floor are intact). And instead of either tarting up the premises to “hotel standard” or meticulously degrading it to “shabby chic”, the G-Rough has stripped it back to its origins. “Rough luxe”, they like to call it, but we don’t think that quite explains it. Totally original and historically fascinating is more to the point. But no, that doesn’t sound as good.
See, this is how they designed it: G-Rough held a “demolition party” one night, and invited local designers, artists and trendy locals (the owner is a seventh-generation Roman, he knows them) to do what they wanted with the hotel. Wallpapers and paints were stripped, leaving behind only pallid traces of original color from the 1940s on the walls (each room has a different color scheme, and some mix it).
Tiled floors were left untouched (the palazzo’s protected status demands this), but ceilings had faces painted on the beams, other walls had pencil drawings done, and one even has its hallway decorated with hundreds of adhesive nail files (which probably seemed like a good idea at the demolition party, a couple of proseccos down).
As we told you before, the building originally opened as a bath house – Marcel Proust’s favorite, no less. In the 1970s, a newbie designer called Philippe Starck turned it into a nightclub, and it swiftly became the place to party in Paris. Then, it fell into disrepair, occasionally hosting artist residences. And now, it’s a hotel. Or, rather, hotel, restaurant and club, according to Paris Match. (Starck’s famous black-and-white checkered club flooring is now part of the restaurant.)
G Rough behind Pasquino
When in Rome… well, you know what to do.
But contrary to what tourist tradition might have you believe, Romans don’t toss coins in the Trevi Fountain, or idle away hours squatting on the Spanish Steps. They don’t really do Piazza Navona, either. Instead, they head for a little square just behind Piazza Navona: Piazza di Pasquino.
When the G-Rough opened in Rome on 23 March, much was made of its modern style – a completely new departure for the city, neither traditional nor modern. Nobody mentioned its location, other than the fact that it’s central. But it turns out that the G-Rough has one of the most fascinating locations in the Eternal City.
Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Madrid Hotels / Spain Hotels / Hotel Rooftops / Design Hotels / Unico Hotels / Rooftop Pools / → All Tags
It’s also the latest addition to the Design Hotels portfolio, and part of the Spanish Unico hotel group, which has two other hotels – one in Barcelona, one in Madrid – so you know it already has cred. Add to that that it’s the first five star hotel on the Gran Via (for reals) in an equally grand building from 1917, and it’s an appealing prospect.
Remember when a stranger stopped you on the street and asked you the time, and you looked at your wristwatch? Now, we are more likely to look at our smartphones or tablets but at least we can revisit the watch as art at a new boutique hotel in Italy. Hotel L'Orologio Venice, aka Hotel L’O, celebrates the art of fine watchmaking.
Hotel Openings / Mindful Hotels / Design Hotels / Umbria Hotels / Country House Hotels / Hippy Hotels / Eco Hotels / Meditation Hotels / Yoga Hotels / Detox Hotels / → All Tags
Mindfulness – or mindful meditation – is all the rage right now and it looks set to stay that way. What better way to cash in on the trend than by opening a ‘mindful hotel’?
An eco-resort owned by fashion designed Marco Murzilli, it’s a simple place – “eremito” means “hermitage” in Italian, and the place has the ascetic feel of a monastery (it was built from scratch, but using 13th-century masonry techniques). There are just 14, pared back rooms based on monk cells – whitewashed walls, arches, no extraneous décor, sheets made of hemp, definitely no minibars. There’s no connectivity – no internet, no phone, no TV, no business center. There’s even no coupling – rooms are strictly for single occupancy. (If you're wanting to come as part of a couple, they suggest you book adjoining cells.)
A rapidly growing yet totally bespoke trend in boutique hotel design--rough lux--(it's ok to roll your eyes) will have another unique offering this March, with the opening of the all-suite G-Rough in Rome.
G-Rough, a member of Design Hotels and now by association, a Starwood property, is the sister hotel to the glam-packed PalazzinaG in Venice and the second hotel from partners Gabriele Salini and Emanuele Garosci. PalazzinaG was the Italian debut for Philippe Starck back in 2009. Had to throw that in.
Hotel Openings / Hotel Opening Rates / Kameha Hotels / Autograph Collection Hotels / Marriott Hotels / Zurich Hotels / Switzerland Hotels / Marcel Wanders / Design Hotels / → All Tags
Switzerland has been concentrating so hard on their budget offerings recently that we were beginning to worry they’d forgotten all about what they do best – insanely expensive luxury properties.
The Kameha is already styling itself as your new “lieblingsplatz”, or regular haunt, in Zurich. Not sure where they reckon we hang out already, but this is a bit of an upgrade.