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When staying at a hotel, sometimes it's the little things that count. Let's take a look at some worldly examples of great hotel design that doesn't overlook the details.
Ever since it's opening, I've been drawn to the windows in the public spaces of the Mandarin Oriental in Barcelona (above). There's a playful voyeuristic quality to these ultra chic peep-spots.
The fun facade at the Inntel Hotel in Amsterdam (above) is postmodern meets traditional Dutch meets Rubik's cube.
The pencils at the Andaz Hotel in London are made from recycled CD jewel cases (above). I'm guessing they now offer iPod docks in the rooms. The key to great hotel design is not just in the architectural details, but also the accessories that would normally seem unimportant, like a pencil.
The Waterhouse along Shanghai's Sound Bund (above) keeps the crumbling concrete walls of this former Japanese military bunker intact. It's a very real respite from the otherwise hyperreal development in the city that surrounds it. Raw materials and designer desk lamps can give an organic feel to any space.
Artcraft Baby Swan White Chandelier
The Treehouse Hotel (below) sits just 35 miles south of the Arctic Circle in Sweden. Suspended from trees and featuring mirrored sides, it's virtually invisible from the ground.
Not all the rooms feature a mirror facade though, and inside there's a feast of minimalist decor (below). Loungy, white seating is a fun way to keep a place minimal and modern.
Sonneman Tetra Gloss White Floor Lamp
Designers and graphic designers have to love the Pantone Hotel in Brussels (below), an homage to the color specialists in seven distinct hues.
And sometimes it's the smallest thing that counts: a drink on the top floor at the end of the day. For fans of the Sofia Coppola film Lost in Translation, the New York Bar at the Park Hyatt Tokyo (below) is the perfect place to re-create your own Bill Murray Suntory whiskey moment.
With a view looking across Tokyo and some of the best cocktails in the world, it's worth every yen. And trust me, you'll spend quite a few.
With so many options, hopefully you're booking a trip and heading to see one of these extremely cool hotel designs.
Images: Contemporist, Design You Trust, Concierge, Open Buildings, CN Traveler, That's Like Whoa!, Ozon3, Nansiepants
+Our thoughts go out to all those affected by Superstorm Sandy. We were struck by this image of the subway system on Gothamist with the entire lower part of the island as well as parts of Queens and Brooklyn non-functional (This image was published Wednesday and may no longer be accurate) . L.A. Times Photography has a roundup of images and updates about this natural disaster.
+Are you going to be in London next week?... Holly Becker from Decor8 will be hosting a launch party for her fabulous new book Decorate Workshop.
+For some VERY cool photography of an underwater cave, head over to the Orda Cave website.
+If you're considering painting your walls and trying to achieve the industrial-chic look, Will from Bright Bazaar has some great color tips.
+For the Latin culture, November 2nd is Day of the Dead, a tradition that celebrates the life and the death of loved ones. Fox News Latino announed that a Los Angeles gallery opened yesterday in honor of this yearly tradition.
Day of the Dead Image: EBSQ
This house in Japan, designed by Kazuhiko Kishimoto literally catches light. The home is built around a beautiful courtyard that provides natural light for the entire house, inside and out.
Simple dining table and chairs keep the decor minimal and modern.
The bar style of the kitchen seating allows for a beautiful view of the courtyard.
We're not sure about you, but we're wanting to add windows and natural wood to our home decor...
Images: Design Milk
For design lovers, presentation is nearly everything. So when looking at Restaurant magazine's 2012 list of the world's best restaurant design, it only makes sense to compare the plates with the restaurant in which they're served.
For three years in a row, Copenhagen's Noma tops the list (above). Who would expect anything other than restaurant design perfection from this Danish icon? Noma's cuisine (below) is a colorfully chic take on Nordic cuisine utilizing foraged flowers, fungi and sea vegetables, but the design is fundamentally Scandinavian in it's functionalism. In a fun nod to the past, faux pelts drape over the modern chairs of the dining room (above).
At the number two spot for the best restaurant design is El Celler de Can Roca, Barcelona, where the wine list reigns supreme as evidenced by the modern cellar design (below).
At El Celler de Can Roca, landscape design and plate design have a funny way of mimicking one another (below).
Ranked third in the world is another Spanish restaurant, Mugaritz. Housed in a rustic farmhouse. It flaunts some adventurous cuisine and design details, such as this towel station outside the restrooms (below).
With a dark wooded ceiling, contemporary wall lamps cantilevered from the beams, and modern sculptures on the table, the dining room (below) is elegant yet restrained. Try one of these contemporary wall lamps to ge the look.
Dishes at Mugaritz show similar sculptural restraint, as with this plate of violet ice cream (below).
Put the world's top three restaurants together and you've got some unforgettable flavors set amid some great design.
Set of 2 Laine Wood and Faux Leather Dining Chairs, Sonneman Contra Perno Satin Nickel Boom Arm Floor Lamp, Silver Ribbon Twist Sculpture On Stand
Now we might not all be Michelin star chefs, but at least it's possible with the help of a few simple modern designs to re-create the look of the world's best restaurants at home.
Images: Unravel Travel, Fine Dining Lovers, Fifth Floor Cooking, Travel Takeaway, Barcelona.com, Pursuitist, el Pais, Wallpaper*
We're going extra modern today, guys. We're talking robots. This movie demonstrates how a printer updates a copy of the Open Source Architecture Manifesto Wikipedia entry. It's written on a wall in the entrance to the Adhocracy exhibition at the Istanbul Design Biennial.
Italian studio Carlo Ratti Associatti wrote the manifesto for open source architecture and decided to start a Wikipedia page so it could be continually updated by the online community.
The robot (vertical plotter) writes, erases and rewrites sections of the manifesto onto a whiteboard as it receives changing information from the Wikipedia page.
Pretty cool, right?
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