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4 Steps to Achieving Hyper-Local Hotel Design

June 20, 2023
Here's how to envelope guests in the culture, flair and cuisine of their locale.

Hotel guests continue to seek more than a standardized experience—they crave personalized and distinctive encounters that capture the essence of their chosen destination.

This is where the trend of hyper-localization comes into play. Not only does it add extra flair to your hotel, but it also proves to be a cost-effective and ethically sustainable approach. By seamlessly incorporating the local environment into design choices (such as embracing historical elements and capturing the essence of the surrounding landscape) hyper-local design immerses guests in a world that truly represents its sense of place.

Below are a few steps one can take toward embracing this design genre and making sure guests are captivated from the moment they step through the lobby doors.

Identify Local Craftsmen

In the hospitality industry, it can be hard to stand out. But by establishing connections within the community to locate local craftsmen and artisans your hotel can become not only a hot spot for tourists but a valued part of the community. Attend local trade shows, artisan fairs, and exhibitions where talented individuals practicing traditional crafts can be found. Engage with local organizations and cultural centres to obtain recommendations and referrals. Social media can be your best ally when it comes to connecting with local designers and artists. Reach out to them through their online pages, as it's a great way to establish a network of local contacts. Introducing nods to the local community instantly establishes a comforting and familiar atmosphere for your guests, evoking a sense of being "home away from home" and creating an immediate sense of familiarity.

From a design perspective, support the local community and small businesses by commissioning local artists to create custom artworks, murals or graphics that authentically reflect the local culture and bring visual interest to the space. This approach not only adds an ethical dimension but also helps avoid the common pitfall of incorporating uninspiring, repetitive patterns, especially on large walls. Instead, opt for an eye-catching bespoke mural that stretches from floor to ceiling, capable of transforming the entire ambience of the space. As the mural takes shape, it becomes a captivating canvas that weaves a story, evokes emotions, and sparks conversations—an unforgettable experience for customers.

Be Eco-Conscious

Sustainability is a fundamental principle in hyper-local design. At Unalome Interior, our furniture is meticulously handcrafted by highly skilled artisans, showcasing the exquisite artisanship of Indonesia. From intricately etched teak woods to consciously sourced materials for products like our bar carts and al-fresco seating, we prioritize eco-friendly practices at every stage of our process.

By embracing hyper-local design, your venue can join this movement. Today's customers are increasingly conscious of the environmental impact of their choices and actively seek out venues that align with their values. One way to achieve this is by being inspired by local material. Incorporating reclaimed wood or repurposing materials can infuse your space with a unique character while minimizing waste.

Additionally, consider the longevity and durability of your design choices. Opting for quality craftsmanship ensures that your furniture and fixtures have a longer lifespan, reducing the need for frequent replacements. This not only saves resources but also contributes to long-term cost-effectiveness.

Location Legacy

Bali's design aesthetic is often characterized by its connection to nature, rich wooden textures and a sense of tranquillity. The use of natural
materials in Unalome Interior's outdoor collection reflects typical Indonesian design and the island's tropical environment. The architecture often incorporates open spaces, lush gardens, and traditional elements like intricate carvings. Take a city like Barcelona, on the other hand, iconic for its vibrant modernist architecture. Barcelona's design showcases a blend of bold colors, curved lines and mosaic tiles. When attempting to reflect the design that the locale is well known for, start by thinking about the story you want to tell about the destination, because the legacy of the location is the reason your guests will keep returning as they simply can’t find the same experience anywhere else. Create narratives around the materials and craftsmanship, sharing the stories of the artisans, their techniques, and the cultural significance of their work. Remember to display information plaques or signage to educate and engage visitors.

The aim is to seamlessly blend the outdoor environment, indoors so your guests feel fully immersed in the location. Searching further afield can also be a means to creating a space that mimics local surroundings. For example, if your hotel, bar or restaurant is based in a mountainous area, opt for stones, whereas if you are based in a tropical place, opt for biophilic greenery.

Go Further Than Interior Design

In addition to design elements, it's important to consider the broader aspects of the trend. Utilizing locally sourced ingredients and providing immersive culinary experiences are equally vital. These components not only attract repeat customers by offering an unmatched experience, but also cater to tourists seeking an authentic taste of the locale. Moreover, you'll also captivate "locavore" eaters—those passionate about consuming locally sourced foods—who actively seek out establishments like yours that celebrate the culinary scene. Embracing unique food and drink experiences allows a venue to truly stand out.

The top tip to remember is a profound understanding of the locality can guide us away from creating superficial imitations. By delving into the rich tapestry of the locale, you can uncover the unique elements that shape its identity and translate them into your design decisions, creating an experience guests will never forget.

About the Author

Ako Ardalan | Founder & CEO

Ako Ardalan is the CEO of Unalome Interior. He began his professional journey as an investment banker at Goldman Sachs in Sydney, where he honed his analytical and strategic thinking skills. His entrepreneurial spirit soon led him to chart a new course with the founding of Unalome Interior, a company that combines his love of design with the traditional craftsmanship of the Indonesian people. Ardalan’s vision, drive, and unwavering commitment to quality, sustainability, and ethical practices have made Unalome Interior a renowned brand in the luxury hospitality decor and furnishings industry.

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