PROJECT 224-room hotel; five meeting rooms with breakout areas; a function/ballroom; large rooftop alfresco; Springs Kitchen restaurant; WXYZ bar; Refuel food station; reception and lobby; Backyard (games rooms); 24-hour gym; and Splash (pool area).
BRIEF The vibe of the interior was pitched to a young demographic (early 20s to 40). However, it also needed to capitalise on the 60,000 crowd capacity at the new Perth Stadium (ie sports lovers and families), and be a local destination within its precinct and surrounding suburbs. It had to offer more than a boutique hotel experience.
SCOPE Ground floor area (1000sqm): complete interior design service for Springs Kitchen, Refuel, Lobby, WXVZ Bar, Splash, Backyard.
Mezzanine meeting room and breakout areas: art and furniture package.
Hotel rooms and corridors: art, cushions and additional furniture package.
RESOLUTION We were brought onboard late in the design process – one year prior to opening. The parameters of the planning were mostly set through the brand’s DNA and the architecture. We needed to balance catering to locals with providing for visitors, while merging an international brand brief with local context.
Colour was an important design consideration for local context and subtle wayfinding. Fresh blues, greens and lighter wood tones – referencing West Australian flora and landscapes –transition into darker timbers in the lobby and moodier colours in the bar area, while fresh colours re-emerge in the pool area before darkening up with bold accents in the games room. The darker timbers and warm reds in the lobby play with the loft aesthetic, while the fresh colours of the pool mimic Perth’s iconic beachside obsession.
Less expensive materials, such as pavers used as a feature wall and concrete soakwells as oversized bases for outdoor tables, bring an industrial edge to the design, while also injecting an element of surprise. We also custom designed clean-lined iron and wood tables and integrated carpets into each area. These are balanced with loose furniture throughout, including the blonde timber Mattiazzi chairs in Springs Kitchen and the iconic B&B Italia UP chair by Gaetano Pesce in the lobby.
“When you ride up an elevator to a beautiful big loft, you walk into a living space with an amazing atmosphere. When entering Aloft, we wanted that feel. By introducing the B&B chair, we hope people feel like they are in someone’s home, rather than in a lobby waiting to be checked in. We chose this chair because it’s memorable – people may google and find out about it. We didn’t want to dumb down our design for a broader demographic,” says Lisa.
Springs Kitchen, so named because the hotel is location in a precinct called The Springs, is primarily pitched at the local market and foot traffic. The Lobby is designed to meet the needs of an international hotel brand, yet provide that boutique, loft feel. A long table in this area sits in front of the reception desk and is designed for concierge conversations, overflow from the deck, guest hot-desking and waiting for an Uber, friend or colleague. The bar, pool and games areas are pitched to the hotel guest, but will also attract locals (especially the bar with its fireside vibe).
Art is an integrated focus throughout the hotel. Our co-director Lisa put on her curatorial hat to create a stand-out hotel collection that seamlessly blends with the interior design and architecture. Guests are greeted by a colourful weaving, they walk past walls of commissioned art and are intrigued by a large-scale painting that comes to life in the evening, while the work of two local artists (who share a working history) sit side-by-side in the rooms.
We enjoyed the challenge of this project and our resolution has worked for the company, which exceeded its first year targets within the first three months of opening (even before the launch of Perth Stadium, on which its business model is built).