Searching for an experience, rather than just a room somewhere? You’re sure to find something in Culture Trip’s selection of the best art and design hotels on the planet – whether you’re after a hand-painted mural above your bed in Tokyo or a converted tram cart in Amsterdam.
With the July opening of its King’s Cross hangout, this American hotel chain has tapped into the global design zeitgeist by, somewhat counterintuitively, staying in keeping with its London roots. This meant transforming the 1970s Brutalist block that was Camden Council’s offices into one of the capital’s hippest places to stay. Inside, the mise en scène of earnest clerical endeavour – suspended ceilings, task chairs and filing cabinets – has been replaced by an eclectic meld of Memphis furniture set against a mid-century colour palette. The bar and restaurant serve delectable cocktails and small plates, skilfully navigating the surprising and the familiar.
Founded in 2006 by married art collectors Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, this chain of boutique hotels is North America’s only multi-venue museum specialising in 21st- century art. In January 2020, they will be adding a hotel in downtown Chicago to their empire. If you fancy seeing some art with a few more years under its belt, stroll south across the river towards Millennium Park and the masterpieces of the Art Institute of Chicago.
This East River hotel satisfies the two core requirements of modern architecture: 1) It’s sustainable and 2) It looks great on Instagram. In pursuit of the worthier of these #goals, Marvel Architects constructed a large building using 54 percent regional and recycled materials – including original wooden beams from the Domino Sugar Factory in Williamsburg – that runs entirely on wind power. The custom cotton mattresses sport 100 percent organic cotton sheets and there is a zero-tolerance policy towards bottled water. The living walls in the public spaces and houseplants in every room add to the eco-friendly ethos.
Between the Champs-Élysées and the rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, design studio NOCC has created a boutique hotel inspired by the pieds-à-terre of many a chic young Parisian. Judging by the menagerie of lacquered, delicate objets scattered throughout its plush hallways, this is not a place to stumble down the stairs after one too many Suze and sodas. However, should you choose to indulge, the Amastan’s garden bar is a study in sleekness, its straight, sharp forms only disturbed by sprawling jasmine in the courtyard. The hotel also invites creatives and brands to use or “interpret” the pop-up space next door in whatever way they see fit.
The NEW-est addition to the YES! Hotels group owned by mega-wealthy industrialist and mega-prolific art collector Dakis Joannou is the first hotel project by design duo Fernando and Humberto Campana. These Brazilian brothers made a name for themselves with a style rooted in the street culture of São Paulo’s favelas that uses everyday objects and scrap materials. At the rooftop bar, you’ll find the latest iteration of their signature armchairs – low, heavy on the fabric, monstrous, but in a good way – a library with more than 2,000 art books and views of the Acropolis, Lycabettus Hill and Syntagma Square.