While the facade is the work of the French architect Jean Nouvel, each of the Hotel Puerta América’s 12 floors – from the elevator lobbies down to the blankets and bathrobes – has been conceived by powerhouse architects and design studios, among them Arata Isozaki, Norman Foster, Marc Newson, Ron Arad, Richard Gluckman, Javier Mariscal, Victorio & Lucchino and Zaha Hadid. With public spaces like the Black Tears restaurant designed by Christian Liaigre and the underground garage by Teresa Sapey, the Puerta América can bill itself as “12 floors with 19 stars.”
Hotel Puerta América, Madrid, Spain, $250 to between $1,500 and $3,900 for the suites, designed by Starchitects.
A quirky gallery space in Japan with very thin walls.
Gallery Sakuranoki, Nagano, Japan, by Designer, for Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP
The MUFG brand combines a sense of logic and functionality with an unusual sense of design style, something that gives MUFG an identity different than any other bank in all of Japan. Like fine Japanese laquered bowls, the exterior of the bank is a stark contrast to the colors and material found inside.
Design is a fusion of form and use. As this is a new type of banking office, the ambition is to give a new feeling to the experience of private banking. Here, the environment is accessible and friendly, yet have a special sense of contemporary design. The two most important features to the design are first, the smooth surfaces that shape the ceiling and walls into a continuous, flowing world, and second, the contrasting materials of white plaster and two types of wood veneers. The subtle curvatures and angles of the surfaces are specially designed to help the space become embracing, while the colors and materials combine to give a fresh, warm overall feeling to the space.
MUFG, bank interior branding, Japan by NMDA
Head chef, Izi Ani simply describes his food as ‘different’. Indeed, not your usual British dining experience.
Vanilla, London, UK, Link: Vanilla
Quant is a new luxury apartment project in Stuttgart. It is a conversion of an old 1960’s laboratory building. In order to give potential buyers a feeling for the numerous design possibilities inherent in a Quant apartment, the developer LBBW Immobilien GmbH has created an exceptional model apartment.
Quant, Stuttgart, Germany by Ippolito Fleitz Group
A ridge of tall, thickly wooded dunes separates this house from the ocean, some 200 yards away. Responding to the limited allowable buildable area of the site, the house is conceived as a dense grouping of volumes, stacked in such a way to allow for enclosed outdoor spaces, both expansive and intimate, and loft-like interior spaces which look out over the tops of the trees to the shore.
Beach House, Long Beach Island, NJ, USA, by Christoff Finio
In an effort to tap in to the lucrative Japanese luxury market, Swarovski has opened a two-story flagship store in the upscale central Ginza district. The shop features a facade covered in layers of mirrored stainless steel. its sparkling appearance is intended to resemble a ‘crystal forest’
Les Bains des Docks Aquatic Centre designed by Jean Nouvel has been opened in the historical Port of Le Havre. We marvel at the way the light plays over the surfaces, and of course the splash of colour. Inspired by Roman baths, these baths are part of a revitalized dock area of the port city.