Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Bathroom Blogfest '08 - How Hotels Inspire Me

By now, you must know that I like to take A Foot's Perspective. It offers me a view of what's often forgotten or overlooked. In so doing, I inevitably discover something inspiring, particularly in hotels! That's why, in honor of Bathroom Blogfest '08 - Cleaning Up Forgotten Spaces Around Us, I plan here on sharing with you inspiration from hotels.

Unfortunately, too many hotels are essentially forgotten places that need major cleaning up in literal and figurative terms. They suffer from lack of imagination and forced utilitarianism that would numb body and soul if you were to spend more than a night.

Rather than dwell on those poor lost examples, I prefer to highlight some of the hotels that have delighted me in their stylishness. Not only were their bathrooms unusual, but their carpet style and pattern choices inspired me to no end!

The photo above comes from the Chase Park Plaza Hotel in St. Louis, MO. Yes, the quarters were cozy, but every detail added to the visual interest of the space. Don't you love the combination of the rectilinear carpet pattern with the organic bedspread pattern?

These next two photos come from the DoubleTree Hotel in Chicago.

I am just mad for the polka-dot pattern! It's whimsical yet sober, and visually interesting without being dizzying.

And, check out the texture in the second photo! Isn't that cool? The dots have dimension. They are fuzzier than the background loop construction. They rise above the background.

From the photos you barely get a taste for the room color scheme. However, note that the bedspread [it's actually a coverlet] offers a warm counterpoint to the coolness of the carpet with its warm, velvety solid Merlot color.

Final point about this hotel room: the striped bed skirt. I never would have thought to do that, and it works marvelously as a bridge between the bold cool carpet pattern and the intensely warm coverlet.

This next hotel room is in New Jersey. More specifically at the Grand Cascades Lodge.

Although more subtle than the polka dot pattern above [no color contrast], this bold trellis pattern works beautifully with the busy organic diamond couch upholstery fabric and the dark wood.

The close up of the carpet pattern gives you a feel for that delicious contrast between a loop and a cut texture construction. It creates dimension and begs for you to walk on it barefoot...

[Can you tell I love texture? I used to take black and white photos of tree trunks... Lately, I've been taking shots of rocks. I may need to revisit tree trunks.]

And, here is the bathroom.
The carpet pattern has been extended into the bathroom via the tile choices and the cabinet doors. Notice the tiles on the countertop, too. [BTW, this bathroom and the one below capture several of the trends that I detail in Bathroom Blogfest 2008: Trends in Bathrooms.]

The last example isn't from a hotel, but rather from a restaurant in Chattanooga, TN. More specifically the St. John's.

Although not from a hotel, it reminded me of the NJ hotel bathroom. I liked how the walls and floor tiles work together. They aren't quite the same: notice the difference in shape and size. If they were the same, the space wouldn't be as interesting.

What do you think of the wash basin? Especially on that pedestal. Different, eh?
But, effective.

Notice, too, the table for placing a bag. Very thoughtful.

As many dreary hotels and bathrooms exist out there that are better off forgotten, I'm finding that more hotels are making an effort around style and design. Not just in bathrooms, but also in the choice of fabrics and carpet and in creating interesting pattern, texture and hard/soft surface contrasts.

It's exciting and inspiring, too!

Did you see Elizabeth's latest: Bathroom Blogfest '08 - Potty Parity?

Visit the members of the Bathroom Blogfest Community [BBC] for Bathroom Blogfest ’08 updates:

Susan Abbott at Customer Experience Crossroads
Katia Adams at Transcultural Marketing
Shannon Bilby at Floor Talk!
Laurence Borel at Blog Till You Drop
Jo Brown and the blogging team at Kohler Talk
Lisbeth Calandrino at Lisbeth Calandrino
Sara Cantor at The Curious Shopper
Becky Carroll at Customers Rock!
Katie Clark at Practical Katie
Iris Shreve Garrott at Circulating
Ann Handley at Annarchy
Marianna Hayes at Results Revolution
Elizabeth Hise and C.B. Whittemore at The Carpetology Blog
Maria Palma at Customers Are Always
Sandra Renshaw at Purple Wren
Kate Rutter at Adaptive Path
Claudia Schiepers at Life and its little pleasures
Carolyn Townes at Becoming a Woman of Purpose
Stephanie Weaver at Experienceology
C.B. Whittemore at Flooring The Consumer

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