For the recently launched boutique lifestyle brand, me and all hotels, interior architect JOI-Design developed a concept of ‘urban natural chic’ blending nautical influences from its setting along the inner fjord of Kiel, Germany, with industrial elements from the docks and nearby train station. The uncomplicated hospitality of the hotel is designed to instil guests and locals with a sense of ease. Careful to avoid kitsch, the studio selected casual maritime accents that cleverly reference me and all Kiel’s proximity to the water and the port, while steel and concrete elements allude to the rough character of a shipyard. Natural materials and references to nature go hand-in-hand to create a relaxed, down-to-earth atmosphere. A special-yet-challenging scenario: all the public area amenities coexist within the hotel’s open-plan layout at street level. Ensuring guests’ comfort from the moment of arrival was essential. JOI-Design’s solution uses visual cues and varying floor heights to distinguish each zone and create a natural spatial flow that intuitively guides visitors. The overall atmosphere is characterized by authentic natural materials such as real timber floors and wall cladding made from recycled wood accompany concrete finishes, joining forces to create a strong character. Rough-hewn accents inspired by the nearby shipyards are softened by numerous plants, flattering light fixtures and smooth, high-quality leather upholstery. The bar on the far side of the lobby has the WOW effect! Lightbulbs spelling out ‘WOW’ draw attention from a distance and inject a spirit of fun. With their dark, moody atmosphere and illumination fashioned from industrial ship lights, the corridors suggest being under the spell of a ship at sea. The 164-key hotel features 58 superior and 106 standard rooms designed in the spirit of a maritime shipyard using raw, Nordic-inspired materials in their pure forms, for example timber planks, black ironmongery, OSB chipboard and bare concrete walls. Ropes with cleats become clothes hooks and a seawater blue-coloured sink complete the nautical ambience. Built-in windows seats finally offer a quiet perch to take in the buzz from the Kiel fjords and harbour beyond: Time to relax.

JOI-Design is the creative catalyst behind numerous prominent, internationally-renowned hotels, restaurants and spas around the world. The globally-minded, Hamburg-based studio teams with owners, developers and both boutique and well-known brands to design award-winning, one-of-a-kind hospitality interiors that weave each locale’s distinct spirit with the comfort and belonging valued by all cultures. Launched in 1984, in 2018 JOI-Design appointed Sabrina Voecks, Heinrich Böhm and Thomas Scholz as partners to continue the thirty-five-year legacy of founders and co-managing directors, Peter Joehnk and Corinna Kretschmar-Joehnk. JOI-Design India, led by managing director Gaurav Premchandani, opened in Mumbai in 2018. 

Comprising interior, architecture, engineering, graphic and product experts, the studio creates hospitality spaces people love and return to time after time. As highly regarded thought-leaders and consultants, JOI-Design embraces client goals to realise optimal and sustainable solutions. Keen observers of the world, they understand how spaces affect people’s physical, psychological and spiritual wellbeing, and therefore reflect the modern-day zeitgeist through unique designs that elevate the human experience.

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