In partnership with
Amanda Dyjecinski, CMO, Chic Retreats says: “We are always on the look out for beautiful charming independent boutique hotels to add to our growing marketplace. The Perfect Hotel Bedroom survey results will highlight the features and little details that our ever evolving, modern discerning guests love, so we ensure we partner with hotels that deliver on this.”
Harriet, a director of the British Institute of Interior Design, will use her vision to build a real-life version of a hotel bedroom on the show floor. Guided by consumer preferences in areas such as lighting, soft furnishings, technology preferences and storage requirements, she will also use furnishings and equipment from the show’s exhibitors to help create it.
An interview with Harriet Forde...
What current trends are developing in the design world currently?
The line between residential and hotel interior design has become increasingly blurred as hotel guests seek a more ‘at home’ environment with aspirational elements. Hotel bedrooms have become less formal and as people become more design literate, guests enjoy bedrooms that are furnished with design classics that they might recognize. Mid-20th century design is making a comeback in the residential sector which can also be seen in the more unique hotels in East London.
What is key to creating ambience in room?
Lighting has become an integral part of hotel bedroom design as it hugely influences the room. Natural materials such as wood, marble and coloured glass are also increasingly being used in hotel design, partly for their sustainability and partly because they create a connection with the outside world.
Is there any aspect of a hotel bedroom that is going out of fashion?
Some of the traditional service aspects we associate with a hotel stay, such as room service and the mini-bar are waning in popularity. Today's hotel guest is becoming more health conscious and requires healthy meals not normally available on room service menus, and are less likely to pay for a chocolate bar from the mini bar
What do you look for/like in a hotel bedroom?
In the first place it has to be well thought out, maintained and clean. I look for somewhere that reflects the place it is in without compromising on comfort. I also look for thoughtful touches that add to the quality of the stay – like good bathroom products, great linen and bedding.
How do you go about planning the interior design of a hotel room, are there standard stages/approaches that apply to any design project?
We first look at what the room has to offer in terms of a guests experience, what the budget is and what the hotel owner is trying to achieve. There are standard design stages – concepting, design development, design detailing and documentation, execution and installation.
Are you applying similar approaches to the design of PHB?
We are using a similar approach using the survey as our ‘client’. We would normally have more interaction with a client so to aid the process of getting into the space mentally we have created a profile of the guests to bring it alive.
How does hotel design in Europe and the Middles East differ from the UK? Any cultural differences that designers have to be mindful of?
As with all interior design, people from different parts of the world have different ways of seeing environment – we have to be careful to be aware of that and the fact that we see things to some extent through British eyes however global the world feels these days. Elements like heat/cold, levels of natural lighting, location and hotel usage (business/leisure) all play a part along with the cultural differences. We are mindful of imagery in artwork, providing the right religious text in the bedside and installing hand douches or bidet toilets in the Middle East.
I’m assuming you’ve exhibited a few times at IHS? In which case, do you have any top tips for interior designers exhibiting for the first time? If it’s still fairly new to you, what are you hoping to get from the show?
This is the first time we have worked on a stand like this. We are very excited about the process it’s been great fun so far! We loved the idea of being able to create something in this way which we haven’t done before and so there was a great opportunity to gain a new experience, meet likeminded people and showcase our work.