Posts Tagged ‘hotels’

The Psychology of Colour in hospitality spaces

May 17, 2012

Karen Haller is one of the UK’s leading authorities in applied colour psychology, specialising in business branding and business interiors.

In this Q&A, she provides an overview of her work, and some tips on how colour, and the psychological effect it has on people, can affect a business and ultimately, sales or profits.


Firstly, a quick introduction to the psychology of colour – to what extent does the colour of a space affect the way we feel?

Colour has an effect on our mind, body and emotions. It affects our moods and can influence our behaviours and our physical and mental well-being. This will usually be happening on an unconscious level.

Why would this be important in hospitality environments such as hotels, restaurants or bars?

One of the main factors in deciding on where to go for a meal, a drink or somewhere to stay will be on how we want to feel, for example uplifted, relaxing, peace and quiet or playful.  Colour triggers emotional responses.

The last thing a business would want to be doing unconsciously is using colour and combinations of colour that result in giving their customers an experience that ends up driving them away.

A successful business will have a clearly defined brand personality. There will be colours, and more importantly tones of colours, along with a design style, that projects the brand personality and in turn will attract the right type of clientele. They will know exactly how they will feel and the level of service they will receive. You wouldn’t expect to walk into an elegant, refined, high end establishment such as The Ritz to see it designed using hip funky colours and wacky furniture with waiters on roller skates.

London, England | Claridge's Lobby

– the refined lobby of Claridge’s

I’m sure that has a large bearing on how a customer feels (and spends!) in a hospitality industry environment?

This could make or break them. Not being clear on who they are (the brand personality), on the level of service they offer and being able to clearly and consistently show this whether it be their interiors, standard of service, their website through to their marketing literature.

Confuse the customer as to what service is on offer, or trying to be everything to everyone, and  they’ll just stay away.

Is there a typical colour scheme for a restaurant, or does it vary according to what the space is trying to achieve?

This is down to the personality of the restaurant. For example, are they aimed at children, a traditional ‘gentleman’s club’, elegant fine dining or maybe minimalist, cutting edge. Each has a clear personality aimed at a different clientele and the colours and design would reflect this.

–the blue ceiling in this American diner would not be recommended to stimulate hungry customers


Guest post: hygiene in hotel bathroom design

March 13, 2012

Sanitaryware manufacturer Laufen provides insight into how new technology can help hotels with cleaning efficiency and whole-life costs.

The specification of sanitaryware and furniture for the hotel bathroom is an important element of the overall design of the space, not only in terms of its design and aesthetics to please the eye of the guest, but also on a practical level to ensure that it works in terms of housekeeping too.

By investing in a quality, trusted brand of sanitaryware hotels are not only investing in products that will meet the high expectations of their guests but also ensuring they are getting a durable product that will last the test of time.

One of the main considerations in hotel bathrooms is ease of cleaning, something that is provided by Laufen’s award-winning surface finish LCC (Laufen Clean Coat). This innovative finish seals the tiniest pores of the ceramic glaze, making it hygienic and extremely easy to clean.

Laufen also offers a simple ceramic shelf to co-ordinate with many of its sanitaryware ranges, including its news Palace and Living Square washbasins which have been designed specifically with the hotel bathroom in mind. The ceramic shelf sits below the basin, providing handy open storage for towels and toiletries while being easy to wipe clean.

Above- Laufen’s Living Square washbasin, which can be specified with the manufacturer’s hygienic Laufen Clean Coat.

Intimate high back chairs

December 21, 2011

High-back armchairs provide a private, intimate space in which to relax, enjoy a quiet moment, and block out the distractions and hustle and bustle of modern life.

They are often designed and specified for public areas, receptions, atria or break-out spaces, such as the Norah by JDD, while others, like the Remind chair by Nube Italia are suited to cosy residential interiors.

Click on the images to go through to manufacturer websites.
Which is your favourite?
Check out the poll at the bottom of this post.

Alcove High Back Love Seat
The Alcove High Back Love Seat is designed by Bouroullec Brothers for Vitra. It is the high-back version of the Alcove, which is also available as a two-seater and a three-seater.
Vitra are holding a Christmas market until 22 December at their Clerkenwell Road showroom where you can check out the Alcove and shop for christmas items.

Available direct from Vitra or from suppliers such as
Connections Interiors.
Photographer: Marc Eggimann | © Vitra (

Gallery: hotel room design

February 16, 2010

Hotel rooms tend to follow a similar muted pattern. However, they can also be glitzy, kitsch, beautiful, banal, artistic or bizarre. These may horrify you, or they might inspire you.

Pavilion Hotel

Honky Tonky Afro - a tribute to the 1970s at The Pavilion in London


The Egyptian Suite


Cold accommodation


The Disco Room


206. Ecstasy


Edwardian Express


Drain pipes


Mammel’s Dream



1. Honky Tonk Afro, The Pavilion
The Pavilion is a groovy 30 room hotel in central London targeted at a discerning, artistically minded clientele. Rooms are themed to project a funky and glamorous image. “Honky Tonky Afro” is a tribute to the 1970s while “Casablanca Nights” is a deco-inspired Moorish fantasy.

2. The Egyptian Suite, Aphrodites
Offering an ornate, king-sized bed, surrounded by Egyptian columns, a Roman chariot settee and an open plan aqua spa massage bath for two people plus power shower, the Egyptian suite brings a little bit of ancient Egypt to the Lake District, with all mod cons.

3. Cold accommodation, ICEHOTEL
The temperature inside ICEHOTEL is always between -5 to -8 degrees Celsius. The bed you sleep on is built from a block of ice with a thick matress that rests on a wooden base. The bed is covered with reindeer hides and you sleep in a comfortable sleeping bag.

4. The Disco Room, Ron Decar’s Las Vegas Hotel
You’ll boogie all night long in our one-of-a-kind Disco Theme Hotel Room, featuring the fabulous Saturday Night Fever Disco Bed! And you and your baby, you’ll be surrounded by whirling colored lights, mirror ball reflections, fog and an outrageous disco beat. The place will get your heart madly pumping. Can a bedroom really have too many mirrors?

5. 206. Ecstasy, Hotel Fox
The French-born artist WK interact has lived in NYC for the last 15 years and has decorated whole tracts of the city’s SoHo district with his dynamic and energetic imagery. But his black and white speeding figures simply do not allow themselves to be tied down to one place: they are permanently on the move; pushing, stumbling and running through the sprawling metropolis. This dynamic energy is also reflected in WK interact’s commissioned work for the likes of Adidas, BMW, Yamaha and Burton.

6. Edwardian Express, Fallen Angel
Remember the days when trains had real romance and travelling First Class was for the privileged few? Enter the Edwardian Express themed bedroom and live like an aristocrat as your first class railway carriage awaits your departure. Smell the vintage leather luggage, caress the walnut furniture and sit at the station master’s desk in this little haven of luxury.

7. Drain pipes, dasparkhotel
The external simplicity surrounds an unexpectedly comfortable interior – full headroom, double bed, storage, light, power, woolly blanket and light cotton sleeping bag. All other hotelery devices (toilets, showers, minibar, cafe, etc) are supplied by the surrounding public space.

8. Mammel’s Dream, Arte Luise Kunsthotel
Never has the artist felt as comfortable and secure as when he stayed with his grandparents in the country as a child – in their, to his three-year old’s eyes, ‘gigantic’ oak bed. In Mammel’s Dream he recreates this experience with an oversized bed.

9. Symbol, Propeller Island City Hotel
Created entirely from square wooden plates, this black and white room incites and excites the imagination to ponder the meaning of the one symbol or other. There are 300 altogether, which guarantees more than enough food for thought. The very intense room is part of the artist’s private area and it is available as foto/video location.

Hotel interior – Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona

January 15, 2010
Patricia Urquiola - Mandarin Oriental - Barcelona

Patricia Urquiola - Mandarin Oriental - Barcelona

Contemporist posts a great photoset of the newly opened Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Barcelona with its highly stylised contemporary interior by Spanish-born designer Patricia Urquiola.

Nearly all the furniture was specifically designed by Urquiola or adapted for the hotel in conjunction with companies such as B&B Italia, DePadova, Flos and Moroso.

The bathrooms were finished with fittings from Hansgrohe’s Axor Urquiola range, again designed by Patricia Urquiola.

You can see a whole series of interior products designed by Urquiola on Architonic, including armchairs, sofas, rugs, baths, showers and taps. A selection of her seating is also available on

ESI references:

Hotel industry outlook for 2010: buyer spend

October 15, 2009

ICD research have published a report that gives a detailed insight into the state of the hotel industry against the backdrop of the global recession.

From a survey of 125 respondents, 67% of hotels expect to reduce their purchasing of products and services over the next 12 months, providing cause for conern for industry suppliers.

However with many hotels seeking to re-evaluate their supplier contracts, the amount of the market open to competition is expected to increase.

ESI references