Haworth Hotel by Patricia Urquiola
You may not have heard of the city of Holland (in Michigan, not the Netherlands), nor Hope College; but you would almost certainly have heard of Haworth, one of the largest furniture companies in the world, which, like Hope College, is also located in Holland. What connects the two is the Haworth family's longstanding commitment to connect the company with the college and the community. The Haworth hotel, for example, is located on the campus of Hope College and serves as a hotel (especially for the company's guests), a conference and events space for the city and as a student hang-out.
When Patricia Urquiola, a long time Haworth collaborator, was commissioned to renovate the hotel, she created a multi-functional space which shows how good hybrid work-hospitality-leisure spaces could look.
The lobby atrium of the hotel is dominated by a sculptural spiral staircase which not only acts as a dramatic focal point but also provides an easy link between the ground and first floors that did not exist before. The seating areas on either side of the lobby strike a clever balance between the formality of a reception area and the intimacy of a domestic living room. The use of different furniture (Cappelllini on one side and Cassina on the other) creates a subtle variation in vibe whilst respecting the overall style.
The meeting rooms, which can also be turned into private dining spaces, come in a range of sizes to accommodate different groups. Most have transparent walls to promote a sense of openness. Indeed there is a generous amount of open space throughout the public areas, partly as a reaction to the desire for greater social distancing. This was, afterall, a project executed under the shadow of the pandemic. Upstairs, the hotel rooms are equally light and airy, with furniture and a colour scheme that wouldn't look out of place in a boutique design hotel.
Overall, the hotel feels fresh and contemporary, with a flash of design flair that is vintage Urquiola style.