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  • Writer's pictureRuth Arad

25 Hours Hotel

Updated: Jan 25, 2021

Hotel design is a blend of spaces of commercial, personal and domestic character, which are both public and private at the same time. It’s a space in which a personal and distinctive story can be woven into a total hospitality experience and as such it is of interest to everybody, whether guest or host, and the chain of people involved in making every guest’s stay a perfect one.

By: Ruth Arad | Architect and Interior Designer specializing in hotel design – 23/12/2015

This blog is the first in a series written as I travel the world in the wake of hotels that stand out because of unusual design. Hotel and hospitality design has been my discipline and business for about a decade, and I invite you to come along to wonderful, faraway places. In each blog we’ll take a short trip together toward extraordinary experiences that will be etched into your memory; each trip will be accompanied by professional explanations to add meaning to the hospitality experience.

Photography: Ruth Arad

Credit: for 25hours hotels

25hours hotel welcomes us by night and by day with signage on high bearing the message “come as you are” – inviting us to feel comfortable. Another catchphrase – “we are all mad here” – adorns the entrance, preparing us for entry into a lively atmosphere of happiness and avant-gardism. The hotel is a social laboratory – everyone leaves it with a unique personal story.

Beyond its excellent location, I chose this hotel primarily as a result of in-depth research into its rooms. Rooms make up most of the area of a hotel which means that the guest’s most intimate encounter with the hotel takes place in the room in which he stays. As such, I felt it important to be in a place that thinks about the hospitality experience all the way through to the end.

Credit: for 25hours hotels

Here room design communicates with the circus world through the use of elements, some of which are industrial and reveal the systems that traditionally architecture tends to hide away, such as electric wiring and other technical systems, and other elements that are eclectic, bursting with colour, and in combinations designed to stimulate our curiosity and awaken our spirit of adventure.

I particularly want to mention the amount of thought put into planning the smallest detail in reference to how we’ll use the room, and what we’ll need when we set out from it. This is expressed in many ways: from the designer bag on loan to the guest heading out to explore the city through to the pillow on which we’ll lay our head at night.

Credit: for 25hours hotels

The room design enchanted me. I like to feel part of a story and a fantasy; I like the way design allows me to step into a different world, an experience that grows on me in my travels around the world. The colour palette used in the design of the hotel suits the world of fantasy- the combination of shades of yellow and grey and the joyful wallpaper harmoniously blend into an all-embracing celebration. The heated floor allowed me to walk around barefoot and feel completely at home. The ‘window’ to the front - in fact a floor-to-ceiling expanse of glass - is a reminder that Vienna is right there, on our doorstep. The city’s classical buildings communicate the real world outside, rich in history, and a giant leap away from the magic kingdom inside.

For those who likes a more dramatic colour palette – that too is available. Each room gets the same wallpaper, but it comes in different shades, which means that on each visit you can enjoy a room that is slightly different. Animals feature in the game – a lion cushion sprawls on the ottoman, while a stuffed elephant peeks out from between the bed pillows as if we were children. Then there’s a stack of suitcases from which the TV appears to rise up and vibrant red hues abound – all showing that everything is possible here.

The branding is engraved in my memory – random thoughts have been translated into sayings embroidered on the pillowcases “let’s spend the night together” – a motto that also appears on the TV screen in the elevator. In fact, this seductive suggestion is ever present, accompanying us from the hotel entrance all the way to between the sheets, where another pillow announces “almost home”.

The “Please do not disturb” sign normally used on hotel doors is replaced here with a spiral-bound notebook offering a selection of verbal communications with the chambermaid – humorous texts such as “I tried to redecorate. It went terribly wrong” – which means, please clean my room, or another, which says “Still dreaming about Fiji” implying of course that I don’t wish to be disturbed from my slumbers.

To complete the feast, a special surprise awaited us. Apparently the hotel has a secret service – those who know, know, and those who don’t lose out! The hotel places two Mini Cooper cars at the disposal of its guests on a ‘first come, first served’ basis! And at no cost. Early risers can go and ask for a car to travel out of the city, as long as they return it the same evening. The vehicle, as becomes the hotel, is fully branded, and driving in it fills the guest with a sense of pride and a willingness to become an honorary joy-spreading ambassador for the hotel.

Photography: Ruth Arad

And, in conclusion, opposite the reception desk, you’ll find a vintage style photo booth, so don’t forget to take a souvenir snapshot.

Credit: for 25hours hotels

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