BISHA HOTEL & RESIDENCES, TORONTO, CANADA
A bright hotel with a rock ‘n’ roll sensibility, the Bisha Hotel & Residences, Toronto, is a shining star for the Canadian city’s hospitality scene…
At the epicentre of Toronto’s Entertainment district, the Bisha is a 44-storey hotel with 96 rooms and an entire floor designed by rock icon, Lenny Kravitz. Managed by Loews Hotels, this stylish property from Canadian hospitality impresario Charles Khabouth marries laid-back glamour with razor-sharp design, offering boutique-hotel intimacy alongside luxury-chain comfort.
Visitors are welcomed into a lobby that screams lavishness and exuberance via black marble, crushed velvet and etched gold. The public spaces are bold and textured, with panelled walls, natural stone, soft leathers, lacquered wood trimming and rich textiles, with a real focus on the smallest of details.
The whole hotel promotes an art-gallery vibe, complete with dozens of Warhol prints and more than 3,000 pieces of art. Blending style and sophistication, the Bisha Hotel was imagined as a temple devoted to the senses, an intoxicating journey through the night, inspired by and embodying the spirit of a sophisticated nomad. It’s a liberation from minimalism and a projection into grandeur. The creative minds behind the hotel’s design was the team at Studio Munge, who worked tirelessly on a concept designed to seduce the curious and creative into an oasis where more is more; an unconventional experience that rejects all preconceived notions of hospitality design. Taking inspiration from local galleries, residential comforts and singular toned palettes, Bisha is meant to convey coveted indulgences from every corner of the world.
Old-school opulence and jet-set glamour are mixed with modern yet eclectic aesthetics in the decently sized 96 rooms (including 14 suites). The overall approach to the design of the rooms was ‘Your Coolest Friend’, hence the bar cart, patent-leather sofas and Instagrammable salon-style art featured on the walls. The prints and photos, which are different in every room, look like they were collected over time, adding to the design cohesion.
Deco-inspired lacquer armoires are a gorgeous extravagance, as are the bathrooms replete with Nero Marquina marble and satin nickel finishes. Lenny Kravitz brought a rock-and-roll sensibility and soulful elegance to the design of 14 rooms, including the 2,000-square-foot Bisha suite, which features a 1,000-square-foot terrace.
Exquisite materials and textures have been carefully selected while sophisticated furnishings have been custom designed for a rock styling with a luxurious edge. The interiors, curated to encourage a sense of lavishness, are intended to make its occupiers feel like rock stars themselves – an excellent concept that works very well here. Within each suite is a collection of customised furnishings in a high gloss lacquer finish featuring hidden details, as well as an abundance of tactile surfaces and different textures.
Fun additions include a 9-foot rotating TV stand framed in smooth leather that, when not turned off, doubles as a black chrome mirror; a wardrobe of the deepest sapphire blue features a succession of routed ovals across the double door front and opens to reveal merlot coloured shelves; an en-suite with an exaggerated three-panelled mirror, and subversive graphic prints hanging over an ellipses shaped porcelain tub.
The Bisha also offers a sophisticated selection of dining areas. From the ground floor lobby bar, wrapped in layers of emerald fabrics, to the one-of-a-kind 24 hours French Made café of Parisian specialties; the second-floor addition of internationally acclaimed Chef Akira Back’s culinary mastery serving Japanese delicacies in a chamber of layered gold and black volumes; and finally KŌST – the highest pool lounge in Toronto with a bright beach house-style space sporting porcelain table tops and a modern Mexican menu. Within Bisha, the impressive and all-encompassing food and beverage programme is a sanctuary for the modern foodie.
Located on Bisha’s 44th floor, KŌST is a reimagined coastal paradise that exudes a fresh outlook for hotel dining. The rooftop destination was a fantastic choice to break free from the usual formulaic restaurant structure and gives visitors a wonderful view among towering skyscrapers. On offer to tempt guests’ tastebuds are delicacies inspired by the Baja peninsula, available from morning to night. Chef Ben Heaton’s menu fuses together lively flavours from California and Mexico all the while enjoying the boundless panoramic views of Toronto.
Reflecting a beach house ambiance, custom Canadian oak trellises criss-cross along the ceiling in angular form and continue to stretch onto the wood-cladded interior walls. Adding a touch of contemporary culture, art consultant GZ International has lined a feature wall with edition prints from John Baldessari’s collaboration with Visionaire 64 ART. Following a nonconformist layout, the white frames play with negative and positive spacing allowing the oak to frame each piece of art.
The bar is a coveted gem of marbles in shades of tropical peach, ivory and seafoam green. Floating above the exotic stone are rosé tinted glass shelves supported by delicate white metal hardware and cherry coloured accents. Custom seating features barstools with muted apricot, velvet upholstery, and rounded oak frames, woven rattan chairs and ivory banquettes with orange detailing that spark vibrancy throughout the main dining space. Created as a shining stage for the Bajan menu, artisanal white interlocking tiles perform as perfect tabletops.
Connecting city to sky, the interior restaurant is surrounded by a 92-foot NanaWall extending the dining space onto a 4,257 sq. ft. terrace. On the rooftop, guests are treated to the exclusive urban luxury of a glistening pool, the city’s highest aquatic playground. The Bisha logo and signature crown are emblazoned on the turquoise pool floor in a striking jet-black stone and seamlessly align with the CN Tower. The pool is accessed by a circular white podium lined with exaggerated curved railings and is the ultimate hotspot for relaxing in. For sun worshippers, woven daybeds and black-framed lounge chairs provide the ideal setting to mix and mingle.
Through a vivid coastal palette and natural materials, the modern retreat thrives all year long. As the city becomes blanketed in winter’s icy grip Bisha remains vibrant, enticing the hibernating urbanite to embrace sight, touch, and taste. A celebration of colourful glamour, the team at Studio Munge have created a modern oasis of contemporary form and exuberance.
Amidst lights that sparkle on lacquered furnishing and exotic marbled surfaces, the Bisha invites guests to experience the finest cosmopolitan destination and world-class entertainment venues under one roof. The decadent and culture-rich property is a solid player in Toronto’s positioning as an impactful global destination.