Cylinders replace walls in the new generation of affordable luxury hotels
citizenM is a new Dutch hotel group that developed a concept of affordable luxury hotel aimed at the “mobile citizen" of this world. They wisely teamed up with concrete, a dynamic and young multidisciplinary architecture team from Amsterdam, to produce their first prototype at Schiphol Airport, on the outskirts of the Dutch capital.
By cutting out all hidden costs and removing all unnecessary items the hotel is able to provide guests with a luxury feel for a budget price in the 230 identical rooms of 14 sq m. The very functional layout features two big glass cylinders with sliding doors containing the shower and the toilet and a small Corian cylinder cocooning the washbasin and extra storage space separating the functional spaces with the rest space. Questions of privacy and smell diffusion are contained by a curtain separating the shower-bed areas and a strong ventilation system in the toilet cylinder.
The hotel was built in just 12 months thanks to all rooms being prefabricated, produced in citizenM’s own factory and easily transported to the location. The rooms were then stacked on a ground floor where the colorful lobby, living-room, dining and meeting spaces are located.
The outer shell of the hotel is a black metal box, dominated by the pushed out large angled glass windows with various depths of aluminum frame, giving an individual twist to the rigid façade. The windows on the ground floor are placed inwards and allow for a natural transfer between inside and outside. Unforgettable visual features of the hotel are two huge art works created by local artists, printed on pvc mesh fabric placed on the façade and regularly moved between hotels in the chain.
Not surprisingly, the slick and ingenious citizenM was recently the winner of the European hotel design award of the year 2008 organized by the sleep event. The hotel group is now in the process of expanding the concept by building over 20 hotels in the near future, all with the room-module as a building block. The second citizenM will be built in Amsterdam near the south-axis, the third one in Glasgow and other possible locations are currently being assessed.