Blog : hotel

Innit Lombok: A Hotel Built into Nature, the Roar of the Surf and Sparkling White Sands

Innit Lombok: A Hotel Built into Nature, the Roar of the Surf and Sparkling White Sands

/ Lombok, Indonesia /

/ Story: Kor Lordkam / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Courtesy of Design Hotels Virtual Press Office /

Innit Lombok is a luxury oceanfront hotel overlooking sparkling white sands on Ekas Bay, Lombok, Indonesia, a Tropical paradise island east of Bali known for being a great surfing destination. From here, the roar of the surf can be heard loud and clear. The quiet and secluded retreat offers seven modern villas with a private beach and well-thought-out design that syncs with its natural surroundings.

Innit Lombok

By and large, Lombok is more than just warm-water great waves. It’s also home to some of the most beautiful hiking routes with the Lombok volcano offering the best place for trekking and adventures.

In terms of design, each villa on the property has two hotel rooms located upstairs, while the lower floor holds an open sitting room with ocean views for relaxation. Total areas come to about 170 square meters apiece. To provide the best hotel customer service, there’s a beachfront restaurant nearby, separated from the residential zone by a swimming pool covered in black tiles and spacious terraces positioned to catch the sun.

Innit Lombok

The beachfront villas boast the beauty of box-shaped architecture that’s simple yet attractive, thanks to natural building materials being used that blend seamlessly with surrounding landscapes. They include concrete, glass, stones and timber. Worthy of note is the building envelope built of hardwood that’s organic, renewable and climate smart.

Innit Lombok

For strength and durability, the platform next to each building is built of hardwood, while the perforate façade is covered with wood panels consisting of Raju wood strips put together with spaces in between for good air circulation. Together they go to work creating a beautiful shaded retreat and doubling as a privacy screen.

The building facade consisting of Raju wood strips with spaces in between allows just enough natural light into the room while doubling as a privacy screen.

Raju timber used to build the external envelope is sourced locally from Lombok and nearby islands, while interior construction and furniture is made of teakwood native to the Region.

Inside and out, it’s a design that puts harmony with nature high on the list of priorities. This results in visual continuity that effectively blurs the boundaries between indoors and outdoors.

Innit Lombok
The open lower floor space boasts the simplicity of a living room, dining room and kitchen set on soft beach sand floors that effectively blur the dividing line between indoors and outdoors.

Innit Lombok

The same treatment applies to the open lower floor without a wall. There is just enough furniture in the room with a view of sparkling white sands and the ocean beyond, plus a kitchen island for food preparation and dining area set on soft beach sand floors designed to bring the outdoors

Innit Lombok

As the architect intended, it’s a design embracing the belief that nature has a profound positive impact on human lives. Like so, it makes perfect sense to integrate natural elements in the building plan. And this gorgeous hotel in Lombok, Indonesia has shown that to be the case. Innit?

Innit Lombok


Architects: Andra Matin, and D-associates (by Gregorius Supie Yolodi, and Maria Rosantina)


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The Ben Tre Hotel: A Brick Hotel amid Lush Orchards, Fresh Air and Sunshine

The Ben Tre Hotel: A Brick Hotel amid Lush Orchards, Fresh Air and Sunshine

/ Ben Tre, Vietnam /

/ Story: Kor Lordkam / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Hiroyuki Oki /

A brick hotel in warm, earthy orange hues rises above the lush orchards and bountiful farms of Ben Tre, a charming coastal city on the Mekong Delta two hours’ drive from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Once a sleepy little town surrounded by rice fields and coconut groves, Ben Tre is emerging as a destination for eco-tourism. New hotel openings tell the story of travel trends in the region where fresh water and shorelines merge with the ocean, astonishingly beautiful by any standards.

brick hotel Ben Tre Hotel

The Ben Tre Hotel is located on an oblong piece of ground measuring 28 by 128 meters, with the narrow frontage abutting on a major thoroughfare. As might be expected, the unusually long hotel building extends almost entirely over the rectangle-shaped land and still leaves plenty of room for lush lawns, side gardens, ample parking garages and service areas.

brick hotel Ben Tre Hotel
The restaurant also has semi-outdoor room for guests who prefer dining al fresco.

The hotel lobby lies upfront on the ground floor, while a restaurant is located at the midpoint of the elongated floor plan. To avoid a monotonous regularity in the design, the team of architects came up with zigzag design, featuring abrupt alternate left and right turns all the way to the end.

brick hotel Ben Tre Hotel
Semi-outdoor stairs afford an expansive panorama of lush landscapes, making every day a breath of fresh air.

There’s a refreshing change every step of the way. For relaxation, an array of cozy nooks adds visual interest to the corridor designed to soak up the view of dense green orchard landscapes.

brick hotel Ben Tre Hotel

A square opening in the perforate shell affords a vista of lush landscapes clearly visible from within the room.

The long passage along the outside of the building, aka the “single-load corridor”, means that hotel guests can enjoy the utmost privacy since there’s no unit situated directly across. It’s a thoughtfully devised building access arrangement, whereby all the rooms are placed only on one side. The same applies to the stairs that are semi-outdoors for better ventilation and lighting.

brick hotel Ben Tre Hotel

To add a rustic appeal, the hotel’s external envelope is built of handmade bricks sourced from within the locality. Bricklaying with openings in the walls, aka the perforate façades, offers many benefits. It allows for the expansion and contraction of the bricks when temperature changes.

A conceptual illustration portrays the layout of the building arranged in a zig-zag pattern across the site, harmonizing with the natural landscape by aligning itself with pre-existing trees and gardens. / Courtesy of Sanuki Daisuke Architects
The ground floor plan presents the usable public area of the building. / Courtesy of Saniki Daisuke Architects
The upper floor plans present the typology of guestrooms. / Courtesy of Sanuki Daisuke Architects

Plus, the perforate shell adds an aesthetic appeal to exterior walls and reduces the impact of outside noise, resulting in a more pleasant indoor environment.

brick hotel Ben Tre Hotel
An aerial view shows the hotel location amidst nature’s pristine environment on the Mekong Delta.

Architect: Sanuki Daisuke Architects (www.sanukiar.com)


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Uthai Heritage Hotel: From Old Schoolhouse to Boutique Hotel off the Beaten Path

Uthai Heritage Hotel: From Old Schoolhouse to Boutique Hotel off the Beaten Path

/ Uthai Thani, Thailand /

/ Story: Kor Lordkam / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Courtesy of Supergreen Studio /

Like going back in time, a new boutique hotel has opened in beautiful small town Uthai Thani, one of the last few unspoiled places in the countryside. Named “Uthai Heritage”, it’s an off-the-beaten-track place of accommodation nestled in a peaceful neighborhood untouched by urban development.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Formerly the home of “Uthai Withayalai School”, the property was tastefully renovated as a boutique hotel in a class of its own. It was meant to be an alternative travel destination for those wishing to escape the popular tourist traps. An amazing hidden place people often miss, Uthai Thani lies to the north of Kanchanaburi and west of Nakhon Sawan, a major city 250 km north of Bangkok.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

By way of introduction, the school was fully operational from 1957 until 1995. The difficulties that ensued from a decline in economic activity and environmental neglect resulted in it gradually falling into disrepair. But the owner was determined to keep the two-story buildings on the property in working order by checking and repairing regularly.

The owner felt a sentimental attachment to the wooden schoolhouse. After everything has changed, he thought it wise to give it a complete makeover, transforming it into a boutique hotel. In a way, it contributed significantly to the preservation of the historic identity of his neighborhood and, at the same time, attracted new tourists to the area by providing affordable hotel accommodations.

It was a metamorphosis of purpose that saw most of the classrooms transform into hotel rooms while others were remade as reception halls and venues for social activity, including a café and nearby cozy swimming pool.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Architecturally speaking, the renovation project was thoughtfully devised to ensure the old wooden structure remained intact. At the same time, a solid framework of steel was added for long-term strength and durability performance.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

To showcase the small town’s history and cultural identity, old building parts were kept in perfect conditions, including door and window shutters as well as the old school flagpole and the signboard at the front. At the same time, they were meticulous about making the strengthening structure and materials fit right in with the original wooden buildings.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Uthai Heritage Hotel

The overall effect is impressive. For increased privacy and soundproof qualities in the rooms, the walls are built of brickwork and plastered to form a neat, smooth surface. The new boutique hotel boasts the simplicity of a U-shaped floor plan with lush green lawns at the center hemmed in by native plants and well-designed corridors and connecting spaces.

Time has left its imprint. A friendly message on the stairway wall calls to the mind fond memories of old school days.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Because heritage matters, the old flagstaff remains where it has always been as storytelling artifact. Where necessary, new units of construction are added to the existing building plan to support and facilitate new business operations. They include new hotel rooms and hallways providing access to places on the premises.

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Uthai Heritage Hotel

Uthai Heritage Hotel
Parts of the original framework are preserved for their power of historic and cultural storytelling.

It’s a comfortable place, allowing people to feel relaxed and at home. Air conditioning is there, although it’s used very little by guests who prefer reconnections with nature and the sound effect produced by rain and leaves rustling in the breeze. If a journey in time is your cup of tea, you’ve come to the right place.

Uthai Heritage Hotel
Like a journey through time, the U-shaped schoolhouse transforms in to an attractive boutique hotel with lush green lawns hemmed in by native plants.

Uthai Heritage Hotel


Architect: Supergreen Studio


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The Flying Block: A Midtown Hotel with the Relaxing Ambience of Sky Gardens

The Flying Block: A Midtown Hotel with the Relaxing Ambience of Sky Gardens

/ Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Vietnam /

/ Story: Kor Lordkam / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Hoang Le /

The Flying Block is a hotel project in a class of itself. The low-rise, six-story tower in a beach-inspired sandy brown is located in the heart of Phu My, a town in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province bordering on Ho Chi Minh City. Only recently the coastal province has grown to become one of Vietnam’s economic powerhouses with busy sea ports, factories and industrial estates. Also known as the Cay Vang Hotel, it’s festooned with lush green foliage on balconies that provides effective window treatments and reduces summer heat gain, keeping the interior cool and comfortable.

The Flying Block

But why Phu My? The answer lies in location, location, location. Ba Ria-Vung Tau is also renowned for its rich ecosystems with lots of sunshine and great views plus tourist destinations attracting travelers from across the globe. So it’s all about being in the right place at the right time.

Children’s drawings illustrate the multiple-use concept of box-shaped balcony design. / Courtesy of TAA Design
A diagrammatic representation shows the welcome lobby and hotel rooms on Floor 1 [above], and more hotel rooms in relation to greenery-filled balconies on Floors 2 to 4 [below]. / Courtesy of TAA Design
A diagram of hotel rooms on Floors 3 to 5 [above], and the penthouse on the top floor [below] / Courtesy of TAA Design
An axonometric projection illustrates the three stages of design development, from a bare building outline, to the addition of rooms with balconies, to the final image of tree-filled facades. / Courtesy of TAA Design

The main idea is that, with an increase in industrial activity, more housing demand and land becoming pricy, the only way to build now is upwards. At the same time, the natural environment must be preserved so as to enhance the quality of life, housing and lodging accommodations for locals as well as visitors.

The Flying Block

The result is a tree-covered vertical living model aptly called the “Flying Greenery Blocks”. In essence, it’s the coming together of box-shaped balconies with trees secured firmly in ultra-deep planters. The rectangular platforms on the outside of the building vary in size from 2 to 3.5 meters wide.

The Flying Block

The Flying Block

The extra-large balconies among them even have a trough for growing decorative plants at the edges. Together they serve multiple purposes, as a charming garden space for green thumbs, a place for physical fitness exercises and a landmark clearly visible from a distance.

The Flying Block
A spacious balcony serves multiple purposes, as a quiet reading nook with a view and room for gardening as a pastime.

The Flying Block

The Flying Block

Take a look inside, and you find a spacious hallway that’s a breath of fresh air. Uncluttered and arranged in an orderly way, it leaves a very good first impression.

Plus, the entryway feels light and airy, thanks to the stack ventilation effect that allows hot air to rise while low pressure draws fresh outdoor air into the interior. In a few words, there’s no lack of air circulation and hence no need for air conditioning.

The Flying Block

On the whole, it’s about integrating urban green spaces in modern design to create indoor thermal comfort all year round. Psychologically, it provides an escape from the hustle and bustle of the city undergoing fast economic development. The bottom line. Every greenery-filled space matters when it comes to improving the quality of life in an urban area.

The Flying Block
The Flying Block in a lovely light sand tone stands silhouetted against the emergence of new industries in Phu My town, Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province, Vietnam

Architect: TAA Design (taadesign.com)

Lead Architect: Nguyen Van Thien

Design Team: Nguyen Van Thien, Tran Anh Huy, Ngo Thi Bao Nhi

Constrution: Doricons


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The Pusayapuri Hotel: Redefining U-Thong Architecture from a Modern Perspective

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The Pusayapuri Hotel: Redefining U-Thong Architecture from a Modern Perspective

The Pusayapuri Hotel: Redefining U-Thong Architecture from a Modern Perspective

/ Suphan Buri, Thailand /

/ Story: Phattaraphon / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Anupong Chaisukkasem /

It was a journey back in time as we visited U-Thong, home of the Pusayapuri Hotel that has become a new landmark in the western part of Suphan Buri Province. The town in itself is rich in history, having been the origin of the Ayutthaya Kingdom dating back more than 2,000 years. It became a district of Suphan Buri during the reign of King Rama V in 2448 B.E. (1905), formerly known as Chorekhe Sam Phan and later renamed U-Thong in 1939.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

The Pusayapuri is the brainchild of EKAR Architects, a Bangkok-based architectural practice led by Ekaphap Duangkaew. The design thinking process took Ekaphap and his team to U-Thong countless times, during which useful data were collected culminating in a piece of contemporary architecture that’s worth remembering and unique in its own special way.

Sharing his work experience with us, Ekaphap said: “The thinking process that went into designing this hotel came as the result of systematic investigations into the town’s history.

“U-Thong was an ancient state that flourished in this part of peninsular Southeast Asia a very long time ago. Most people seem to have overlooked important facts about it. So, we reached out to connect with the locals and got to know a lot about its history through seeing, hearing and visiting places.”

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

“There are museums containing relics that provide an insight into the history of U-Thong, among them a stone Buddha image carved into cliff face that has become a tourist attraction. It’s the work of local artisans,” Ekaphap continued.

“Other places of interest include ruins of dome-shaped brickwork structures erected as Buddhist shrines in the past. Not many of them remain to be seen today. It’s these historic sites built of bricks that inspired us to try and revive old brick masonry to all its former glory. One of the results of all this is evident in the façade of the Pusayapuri Hotel in U-Thong.”

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

In essence, it’s about building a hotel façade with the power of telling a story about life in U-Thong in former times. Thanks to their understanding of architectural heritage, the architects were able to create a new hotel that stood out from the rest in terms of color, texture and design, and yet no old-fashioned bricks were used.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

The Pusayapuri is built using innovative materials including glass reinforced concrete, or GRC, that’s lightweight but tough making it an ideal material to use on a variety of structures. It can be dyed to resemble brickwork or concrete surfaces.

Sections can be prefabricated from the factory to enable quick and easy assembly on site. Plus, GRC helps reduce weight on building foundations, saves construction time, and is unaffected by environmental conditions.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

In the case of the Pusayapuri, the GRC façade sections arrived ready to be installed on site as soon as concrete frame construction was completed. It’s a dry construction system that’s suitable for all buildings or portions of buildings such as balconies with a variety of window bench seating designs. On the outside, they perform a dual function as façades and awnings used to protect against sun and rain.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

The Pusayapuri’s 56 spacious guest rooms provide a comfortable retreat in a historic town style setting. All of them are designed to create a light and airy atmosphere. Where appropriate, guest rooms are taken out to create a void of space for lighting and ventilation.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

The void of space starts from the first floor all the way to the roof top resembling a well-lit staircase when seen from a distance in the nighttime. Together, they ventilate the building by drawing fresh outdoor air inside and force warm air to exit through rooftop vents. The hotel loses some rooms, but it gains comfort from good ventilation. Plus, it’s a feature that adds rustic appeal to the overall design.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong

The Pusayapuri presented both challenges and opportunities even for the experienced designers at EKAR Architects. The team was tasked with creating a hotel with the power of storytelling about the history and architectural heritage of U-Thong, plus turning it into an important landmark in the lives of all concerned.

What makes it original and unique is the hotel façade that bears the imprints of time and a civilization of years gone by — a masterpiece that creates a sense of calm in architecture and indoor thermal comfort. Swing by the Pusayapuri next time you sojourn in this part of Thailand.

Pusayapuri Hotel U-Thong


Architect: EKAR Architects (ekar-architects.com)

Landscape Architect: Top Form Design Studio


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Blackbird Hotel: Hotel in Bandung Enlivened by a Round Honeymoon Suite Trio

Blackbird Hotel: Hotel in Bandung Enlivened by a Round Honeymoon Suite Trio

/ Bandung, Indonesia /

/ Story: Phattaraphon, Kor Lordkam / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Nilai Asia /

Blackbird Hotel in Bandung remembered for its modern white building has undergone exciting expansion by adding a trio of unique round shaped rooms to its vibrant Indonesian country garden setting.

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung

The new extension, aptly called “The Drum Rooms” for its likeness to a set of percussion instruments, is the pride of the Blackbird Hotel located in the major West Java city about 3 hours’ drive from Jakarta, the capital.

Occupying 200 square meters of land inside the hotel compound, the trio of round shaped rooms offer opportunities to discover stimulating new experiences in travel, comfort and relaxation in the form of innovative design in synch with the rhythm of nature.

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung
A river rock path winds among the trees and round shaped rooms set on the ground, standing back to back for increased privacy.

Built of wood in varying shades of brown, the three of them sit beautifully ensconced amid lively green surroundings. They are viewed as a unit apart from the nearby main hotel building.

Marketed under the name The Honeymoon Suites, the new extension project was quite a challenge event for experienced builders. It was built while the Blackbird was operating normally. Like so, every precaution was taken to ensure that nothing would impair its ability to perform business functions.

This was achieved by avoiding wet construction, such as poured cement or concrete, at the same time focusing on dry construction, which included materials such as wood and steel framing preassembled in the factory.

The new extension now stands out from the rest thanks to the unique building envelope made of timber in a beautiful mix of brown tones. The wood used in the project came from many different sources.

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung
Multiple pane skylights illuminate the bathroom upstairs while a louver window allows fresh outdoor air into the room.

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung

For good ventilation, louvered wall panels let air flow freely into the room and illuminate the interior space during the daytime. Each of them has a bedroom with bath on the first floor. The second floor holds another bathroom with a bathtub under multiple pane skylights with a view of lively green treetops and blue skies.

For harmony, unity and variety, the extension project also contains penthouse suites built of timber in complementing shades of brown.

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung

There is more. Besides the round shaped room trio, the extension project also includes two penthouse suites at the top of the main hotel building. Built of timber and steel framing to avoid impacting ongoing business operations, they come complete with a food preparation area, living room, and a small balcony plus a semi-outdoor Jacuzzi bathtub.

From a distance, they add visual interest to the white hotel building and prove a perfect complement to the round shaped room trio on ground level.

Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung
The louvered walls of the penthouse suite serve as engine that drives natural ventilation.
A beautiful array of large windows connects the penthouse bedroom with the vibrant natural environment.
Blackbird Hotel Hotel in Bandung
Redefining bathing experience, the bathroom lies illuminated by a round-shaped rooftop skylight mimicking a Jacuzzi bathtub below.

Taken as a whole, they evoke admiration through size, color, texture and well-thought-out design. And the result of all this: a beautiful piece of modern architecture amid nature’s peaceful embrace. A unique travel experience, no doubt. Swing by the Blackbird next time you’re in Bandung.


Architect: RDMA (www.rdmadesigns.com)


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Sep’on Heartfulness Center: A Stylishly Chic Boutique Hotel with a Narrow Frontage

Sep’on Heartfulness Center: A Stylishly Chic Boutique Hotel with a Narrow Frontage

/ Nha Trang, Vietnam /

/ Story: Phattaraphon / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Duy Nhat, Le Ba Loc /

Here’s Sep’on Heartfulness Center, a small-capacity boutique hotel built on an elongated rectangle in Nha Trang, a coastal town in the South of Vietnam. Even with a narrow frontage to the street, it offers 600 sq. m. of accommodation spaces with views of the city landscape. The design-driven wholesome destination conveys a great deal about truth-to-materials architecture, which holds that everything is used in its natural form — unadorned, unpainted, neither polished nor hidden.

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Named “Sep’on Heartfulness Center, the boutique hotel project is the brainchild of 324PRAXIS, an architectural practice based in Ho Chi Minh City. Their main mission: overcome every challenge on the project site and come up with a small stylish hotel, one that’s full of character and suitable for an urban environment.

The result is a five-story building that’s graceful and chic in appearance. Its front façade is made attractive by small balconies accessible from guest rooms on the upper floors. Enclosed by twisted wrought iron balustrades, they give good views of the cityscape, admit fresh air and add natural light to the interior.

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Such is the elegance of design that’s also found in several places throughout the five-story concrete building. The ground floor contains a semi-outdoor sitting room and coffee bar decorated with greenery that has become a popular meeting place among locals and tourists.

Hotel rooms on the upper floors are accessible via metal staircases attached to the rear of the building. They are built outdoors to give the appearance of a more open engineering structure, thereby showcasing the true nature of building materials.

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Site Plan Courtesy of 324PRAXIS
Ground Floor Plan to 2nd Floor Plan Courtesy of 324PRAXIS
3rd Floor Plan to 5th Floor Plan Courtesy of 324PRAXIS
Section Courtesy of 324PRAXIS

The same open-concept design applies to the roofed platforms and passages along the outside of the building. They are suited to serve several purposes, from outdoor sitting rooms and cityscape viewing spots to yoga workout class and room to practice meditation. It’s a calm and peaceful place to take a breath of fresh air and enjoy views of the city.

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Even with its small capacity, the hotel is able to provide a variety of accommodations ranging from suites to deluxe rooms and duplexes consisting of two apartments. They share one thing in common — a design that faithfully represents the principle of truth-to-materials architecture.

This holds that any building material is used in a way that’s the most appropriate, while the method of construction is unhidden. Besides taking in views of the cityscape, it’s about bringing the outdoors into the room, thereby creating a comfortable ambience filled with fresh air and natural light.

Plus, furniture is kept to a minimum to ensure the room is uncluttered, safe and right for simple living.

Sep'on Heartfulness Center

Taking everything into account, Sep’on Heartfulness Center is a boutique hotel beautifully made to fit the circumstances that form the setting of the coastal city neighborhood. Despite the challenges and limitations, the design team at 324PRAXIS is able to create a place for board and lodging that’s stylishly chic. It’s a charming place to be next time you sojourn in this part of Vietnam.


Architects: 324PRAXIS (www.324praxis.com)

Lead Architects: Dat Dinh

Design team: Nguyen Ngoc My Ngan, Vo Ngoc Khanh Chi


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A New Boutique Hotel in Singapore’s Historic Chinatown

A New Boutique Hotel in Singapore’s Historic Chinatown

Embracing warmth, comfort, and privacy, a new boutique hotel takes up a row of six former shophouses in Singapore’s historic Chinatown. The beautifully renovated Hotel Mono retains the charm of Southeast Asian styled architecture, while highlighting the distinctive personality of Rococo-era ornamentation.

/// Singapore ///
Story: Weena Baramee /// Photography: Hotel Mono

An expression of art and the interior inside the Lobby at Hotel Mono

Its Rococo aesthetic is apparent in the lightness of interior design, cozy spaces, and the tall and narrow windows that speak to the French stylistic period. The gentle black and white theme on the exterior seamlessly interweaves with the lifestyles of traditional Singapore and the city’s urban bustle. 

Loft style décor that is a component in interior design
Single Room
Relaxation in a Rococo styled studio

A striking new landmark on historic Mosque Street, the 46-room Hotel Mono is an independent hotel catering to the needs of design-conscious travelers. Its statement-making black-and-white facade has been turning heads. The hotel occupies a row of six conservation shophouses, which have been completely transformed in an extensive refurbishment by President Design Award-winning firm Spacedge Designs. Hotel Mono was officially opened in November 2016.

The stylishly chic hotel presents an appealing proposition for discerning travelers – high quality rooms and service standards at very attractive prices. “We want to provide accommodations that are the best value for the money and a five-star service experience,” said GM Glenn Quah.

Besides charm and comfort in every room, guests enjoy better quality beddings, bathroom amenities and more spacious rooms, for prices comparable to the budget accommodations in the same area. Rates at the 46-room Hotel Mono start at just $160 net per night for a Double room, while a Family room sleeping four people costs under $300.

The bathroom ensemble reflects simplicity with contemporary flair.

Its bathrooms represent the conceptualization of a hip retreat for design-savvy travelers (and locals) – guests who appreciate the originality of design. A bold and contemporary design language is relevant throughout the hotel. Every room features a seamless integration of metal bars that traverse the space like lines drawn in the air, meantime, functioning as light fixtures, coat hangers and sculptures.

The boutique hotel celebrates the quality of being the only one of its kind. Due to restrictions and particulars in the floor plans of shophouse styled architecture, no two rooms are identical. Their unique characters are manifested in the name that affirms the validity of these bold and original design concepts.

Link : http://hotelmono.com/

Sekeping Kong Heng: A Boutique Hotel Treasures the Charm of Ipoh

Sekeping Kong Heng: A Boutique Hotel Treasures the Charm of Ipoh

/ Ipoh,  Malaysia /

/ Story: Wuthikorn Suthiapa / English version: Bob Pitakwong /

/ Photographs: Sitthisak Namkham /

In the old town of Ipoh, a stylish boutique hotel named Sekeping Kong Heng not only blends into its historical surroundings, but also contributes to restoring all its former glory.

boutique hotel

boutique hotel

ibh13

The history of Ipoh dates back to 1880 when Hakka immigrants arrived for work in tin mines and made a permanent home here. As mining industries continued on the decline, the once exuberant town was losing its luster.

A pleasant twist of fate, the waning days of Ipoh attracted the attention of many designers, who banded together to keep the old-world charm from disappearing. Giving it their best shot, they succeeded in bringing Ipoh back in the limelight.

Among the projects aimed at restoring glory to Ipoh was Sekeping Kong Heng, a small boutique hotel designed by Ng Sek San, an internationally renowned Ipoh-born architect.

The charming small hotel is tucked away on the upper floors of a three-story Colonial-era shop-house complex in the old town. The first floor is reserved for a famous local coffee shop known for a variety of Chinese-style coffees and Ipoh’s favorite dishes.

Its food menu includes the noodle dish called Hokkien Mee, satay, and spring rolls. Its existence guarantees that hotel guests will never run short of delicious foods and beverages.

ibh12

boutique hotel

boutique hotel

boutique hotel

To check-in, know that the entrance to the hotel lobby is located on a small alleyway. Sekeping Kong Heng offers three types of accommodation — standard rooms, a family room and glass boxes.

With its location, hotel guests can expect the authentic Ipoh experience. They wake up each morning to the heavenly smell of coffee being brewed fresh in the shop below. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. The same applies here. Come breakfast time, expect to eat with locals and like locals do. Time well spent is time spent exploring this and other alleyways a stone’s throw away.

The boutique hotel’s time-honored appeal blends seamlessly with Ipoh’s old-world ambience. It’s obvious the Ipoh-born architect has intended to keep this part of town like it has always been.

In the process, the hotel’s existing structure is left intact. A loft-style twist adds contemporary feel to the hotel’s interior, while patches of greenery adorn the exterior walls keeping the building cool.

The open-concept design provides easy access connecting the café to retail shops and a flea market nearby. The architect’s thorough understanding of Ipoh’s lifestyle is manifested in the way the boutique hotel is neatly restored. Sekeping Kong Heng now contributes in its small way to breathing new life into the old city.

boutique hotel

boutique hotel

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boutique hotel

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Architect: Ng Sek San of Seksan Design Landscape Architecture and Planning


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One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

Silhouetted against a stone forest, this one-of-a-kind boutique hotel is a thriving, delightful escape adorned with works of art. Check it out.

/// Thailand ///
Story: skiixy /// Photography: Dumrong Leewairoj, Soopakorn Srisakul /// Style: Somboon Kreangkrai /// Design: Thavorn Ko-Udomvit, Kawit Ko-Udomvit, Anan Tantasanee, Kattika Kittiprasarn

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

Perched atop an abandoned marble yard in Nakhon Ratchasima, the boutique hotel affords views of the rocky landscape. The old rock quarry became inactive after the gleaming stones had been extracted. To create a unique and pleasant setting, the owner went to great lengths to ensure every aspect of the surroundings was kept intact. Hard terrain dictated that accommodation units be built strong like rock. That’s what makes the Nhapha Khao Yai Resort look like no other.

Over time nature goes to work, and the old marble yard comes alive turning lackluster cliff faces into a kaleidoscope of colors. Aptly named “Grand Villas Chom Hin Pha,” the guest lodges at the top boast 90 square meters of well-appointed rooms looking out over the pinkish brown rocky landscape.

If you prefer quirky, unusual locations, the “Villas Ping Pha Hin” are definitely your must-visit. The 40-square-meter cube-shaped lodges are placed inside the rock forest. Ingenious design takes advantage of the existing cliff faces, turning rock formations into naturally beautiful walls. The rocky surroundings turn out to be nifty temperature control inside the interior living spaces.

And not to worry about rainwater leaking in during storms. The gaps between natural and built environments are sealed tight while a system of gutters are in place to ensure storm water runoff is drain out fast.

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

Interior design is at the heart of the boutique hotel on the rock. Every unit showcases handcrafted wood furniture by award-winning designer/carpenter Yutthana Bumrungkit.

To make every visit feel like the first time, each villa is designed to highlight a different ambience and character. Together they turn the unique hotel into a thriving, delightful escape. Everywhere paintings and sculptural masterpieces abound. It’s like walking into a museum and actually living history.

Understandably the owner hopes that his unique hotel will one day turn into an attractive art venue in the Region.

Beautiful abstract sculpture adds a modern appeal to the pool.
Beautiful abstract sculpture adds a modern appeal to the pool.
View from the Grand Villa perched atop the old marble quarry.
View from the Grand Villa perched atop the old marble quarry.
The dining room showcases masterpieces by the hotel’s master artist.
The dining room showcases masterpieces by Thai master artist.
The hotel reception area
The hotel reception area

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel

One-of-a-Kind Boutique Hotel


2017 looks to be a great year as more exciting attractions are being added to the Nhapha Khao Yai Resort.

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The family room at the Gallery Villa showcases works of art with strong imaginative appeal. // Photo: Nhapha Khao Yai Resort
The family room at the Gallery Villa showcases works of art with strong imaginative appeal. // Photo: Nhapha Khao Yai Resort

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A travel trailer is available on site. Go for the legendary RV if you prefer to live a life of adventure and passion. // Photo: Nhapha Khao Yai Resort
A travel trailer is available on site. Go for the legendary RV if you prefer to live a life of adventure and passion. // Photo: Nhapha Khao Yai Resort
A brand new swimming pool comes with a waterfall descending over a sheer rock face. // Photo: Nhapha Khao Yai Resort
A brand new swimming pool comes with a waterfall descending over a sheer rock face. // Photo: Nhapha Khao Yai Resort

 

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