The Future of Hotel Design

The Equip’ Hôtel ran from 5-9 November at the Paris Expo Porte de Versaille and provided a platform for hotel and restaurant designers to share their designs and be inspired by other exhibiting countries in an interactive display of hospitality designs.

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By  Charlotte Butterfield Published  December 18, 2006

The Equip’ Hôtel ran from 5-9 November at the Paris Expo Porte de Versaille and provided a platform for hotel and restaurant designers to share their designs and be inspired by other exhibiting countries in an interactive display of hospitality designs. 1,292 exhibitors showcased a variety of products and services, and for the first time, a section of the 100,000m² exhibition centre was dedicated to the Renove Hôtel. This sector focused on all elements of hotel renovation and refurbishment. It included tips and advice for experts in the building and decoration sectors, aimed at hotel operators and designers. The principal area of interest for interior designers was the Studio Equip’ Hôtel, which aimed to offer ‘concrete and innovative’ answers in terms of design and decoration, through sets created by four architecture firms with the aim of unveiling trends and mirroring innovations. After the pre-selection of about 15 interior design firms, the judging panel (presided over by Andrée Putman) chose four prize-winners who would fit out the four Studio Equip Hôtel areas, based on the theme of the ‘French Touch’. According to the show’s organisers, the definition of the ‘French Touch’ is a design that is ‘contemporary, diverse and tinged with humour.’ The designer of the restaurant set, Miguel Cancio Martins sums up the ‘French Touch’ spirit as being: “A perception of the world evoked by France; from culinary sophistication to the elegance of fashion, it is that little something that makes all the difference. Even if it cannot be seen, it can be guessed.” The structure and interior of the ‘French Touch’ bar and terrace was created by Atome Associés, while the dynamic ‘Do As You Wish’ bedroom was by designer Oliver Gibault. The ‘Like A Fish in Water’ Spa by Hilton McConnico was covered in molten glass mosaics and its atmospheric darkness showed a deliberate move away from the bright Oriental-inspired spas. Prizes were awarded to companies who have launched innovative products for restaurants, hotels, cafés, bars and brasseries. The two prize-winners in the bathroom category were Valentin SA for its range ‘Silent System, Balnoeotherapy Tubs.’ These are ideal for hotel bathrooms due to their highly effective noise and vibration reduction feature. Villeroy and Boch won the other prize for its ‘Pure Air’ product, which is a bathroom toilet equipped with an integrated deodorant system. In the Spa category, two prizes were awarded. One to Sensorial Spa (Yves Pertosa Group) for its ‘Infinea’ overflow spa with five seated places and one place lying down. It can be built in or standing above ground. Peripheral illuminated overflow gutters give a light-filled cascade. Clair Azur won the other prize for the ‘Wellness Swimming Spa,’ which includes a programmable and personalised chromotherapy system. The decoration prize was awarded to Muraspec for its Digital product – which is a PVC wall covering on a polyester backing that displays any digital image, perfect for designers to customise any surface with unique photos or artwork.

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