Swiss hotel designed by Stylt wins UNESCO architecture award

Posted in News on 9 May, 2017

Hotel Spedition in Switzerland, designed by the Swedish concept agency Stylt Trampoli, has won UNESCO’s European architecture prize Prix Versailles for its interiors. The hotel is also nominated for the global hotel award.

Spedition Hotel & Restaurant in Thun, just outside Bern, is located in what was formerly a logistics hub for a cheese factory. Behind the redevelopment of this heritage building is a local team of restaurateurs and hoteliers, with backing from Credit Suisse.

Stylt Trampoli has created the concept from the ground up. Each room is home to a unique and personal collection of souvenirs inspired by the travells of the spediteurs who used to work here – a playful connection to the building’s history. Great efforts have been made to preserve and make visible the structure of the building: heavy wooden beams contrast with ultra-modern glass-box bathrooms.

The overall mood of the hotel stands in stark contrast to the standard staid and proper Swiss chalet style: Spedition offers moody lighting, muted, rich colours and tactile surfaces like velvet and leather.

The Prix Versailles, which is a global architecture prize for stores, hotels and restaurants, is arranged by UNESCO (the United Nations special organ for education, science and culture). 2017 is the third year that the prize has been awarded. The aim of the award is to highlight quality, sustainability, creativity and innovation in commercial spaces, and eventually to eliminate the perceived opposition between commercial and cultural architectural values.

“This award confirms that the most powerful hospitality experiences result from working with values beyond design in itself,” says Erik Nissen Johansen, founder and creative leader at Stylt Trampoli. “We always start from the place, the building, the social and historical context, and that leads to meaningful concepts that remain relevant for a long time – and opportunities to preserve heritage values.”

This year’s Prix Versailles jury consisted of, among others, the Japanese star architect Toyo Ito, the Chinese fashion designed Guo Pei, the chef Guy Savoy and the philosopher Gilles Lipovetsky. Among previous winners Alexander McQueen’s Paris flagship store, TOG Sao Paolo by Philippe Starck and the stunning five-star Les Bains hotel in Paris stand out.

The awards will be presented at a gala at UNESCO’s head quarters in Paris on 12 May.


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