In the hospitality industry attracting repeat business is good business. Creating a wow factor for a new hotel may have an initial impact, but after the excitement of the opening months, the hotel still needs to be a comfortable place to stay that encourages guests to pay a return visit.
When architect Arthur Casas was asked to design the boutique Emiliano Hotel in San Paulo, Brazil, he approached the interior imagining how he would like to be greeted as a hotel guest himself.
"When travelling, I look for a hotel with spacious communal areas, few rooms, and a place where the hotel staff remember my name," says Casas. "For the Emiliano, I created an environment without excessive flourishes one that celebrates design but at the same time offers a homely atmosphere that guests will be keen to return to."
From a tropical garden within the hotel restaurant, to the extensive use of local wood, and clean lines throughout, the design has a distinctly Brazilian flavour.
Casas designed the hotel within the constraints of an already existing buildingskeleton. The building was initially intended for another purpose but was sold before it was fitted out. Within the narrow structure, he created 57 guest rooms, a restaurant, conference room and a rooftop gym and spa area. The spa offers panoramic city views through glass walls that angle out high above the hotel's front steps.
Climbing the white limestone steps, guests' first impression of the Emiliano is its cantilevered entrance cover and soaring 9m-high lobby. The drama of the space is offset by the use of natural materials such as limestone, wood and leather in a quiet palette of white and soft browns.
"Light colours found in the lobby are also used throughout the Emiliano," says Casas. "They provide guests with an ambience of serenity and calm."