Suzanne Oxenaar's Llove Hotel 10.08.11

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For Design Tide Tokyo this year, hotelier Suzanne Oxenaar put together a designer take on that unique Japanese cultural phenomenon, the "love hotel". Love hotels cater for frisky couples with more on their minds than rest and relaxation, and are notorious for their themed rooms and wacky interior design. For the Llove Hotel, Oxenaar – artistic director of Amsterdam's classy Lloyd Hotel, hence the double-L – marshalled eight Japanese and Dutch designers to transform an unassuming 1970s apartment block, with architect Jo Nagasake taking the lead.

"What inspired me the most about love hotels was the diversity of the rooms," Oxenaar says. So the Llove hotel puts the emphasis on variety. Scholten & Baijings (Icon 085) expressed their familiar graphic sensibilities, painting every inch of their assigned room in pale purple and etching the walls with the medical paraphernalia of in-vitro fertilisation. Pieke Bergmans (Icon 069) used a gigantic, undulating mattress that appeared to be crawling up the wall and has filled the room with her trademark merging furniture and lamps, which look suitably locked in embrace. Richard Hutten, with a nod to The Princess and the Pea, stacked a pile of multi-coloured mattresses chest high to create his room's only piece of furniture – at once a bed, a table and a storage unit. On the walls he used ribbons of tape to create a layered mosaic that enveloped the viewer in vivid colour.

Oxenaar's only disappointment was that she wasn't able to persuade the reservations team to let guests book in by the hour. However, there are hopes to reopen the Llove Hotel, perhaps even as a permanent establishment, and Oxenaar is keen to see the admissions policy corrected. "Next time, by the half hour," she promises.

 

Image

Takumi Ota

 

Words

Christien Garcia

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What inspired me the most about love hotels was the diversity of the room

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