September 2014

Guest editors issue

Building foundations with Jean Nouvel and Frank Gehry

Sofitel My Bed Universe – The Winner!

The winning design in Sofitel’s MyBed Universe competition is by Paris-based designer Clementine Pautrot. Back in April, her fantastical bedroom installation formed the centrepiece for a cocktail event, co-hosted by Wallpaper* and Sofitel, to celebrate the climax of the competition. Pautrot’s prize-winning bed, on display in the lobby of the Sofitel Munich Bayerpost, was inspired by her fantasy of sleeping outdoors, surrounded by water … and the party was pretty dreamy too.

The installation

  • Watch the winning Sofitel MyBed Universe concept come to life, presented in the lobby of the Sofitel Munich Bayerpost hotel

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  • Designer Clémentine Pautrot in front of her prize-winning bed. Wallpaper* and Sofitel urged entrants to turn their wildest reveries into sensational realities, using Sofitel’s MyBed products

  • A visualisation for Pautrot's idea

  • The Paris-based designer’s prize-winning bed was inspired by her fantasy of sleeping outdoors, surrounded by water

  • Pautrot’s concept won out, capturing that mysterious phase between falling asleep and dreaming

  • The bed’s ladder, handmade by artisan metalworkers in solid brass tubing, she explains, ‘represents the upward journey into the delirious dream state’

  • Pautrot’s bedscape was the impressive centrepiece for a cocktail event, co-hosted by Wallpaper* and Sofitel, to celebrate the climax of the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition back in April. Pictured are Accor chief marketing officer Grégoire Champetier and Accor Austria COO Philippe Alanou

  • From left: Wallpaper* international sales director Malcolm Young, creative producer Carly Gray, Wallpaper* Bespoke art director Ben Jarvis, Sofitel global partnership development manager Oliver Vernus and Wallpaper* Bespoke director Rebecca Morris

  • Accor Austria COO Philippe Alanou and Accor VP global communications and partnerships luxury & upscale brands Charlotte Thouvard

  • Nibbles came courtesy of Sofitel's in-house catering team, including luxurious fruit caviar

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Clémentine Pautrot’s bedscape was the impressive centrepiece for a cocktail event, co-hosted by Wallpaper* and Sofitel, to celebrate the climax of the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition back in April. 

The Paris-based designer’s prize-winning bed, presented in the lobby of the Sofitel Munich Bayerpost hotel, was inspired by her fantasy of sleeping outdoors, surrounded by water. 

Earlier this year, when the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition launched, Wallpaper* and Sofitel urged entrants to turn their wildest reveries into sensational realities. With Sofitel’s MyBed products – bed base, mattress, pillows, topper and duvet – at the core of all creations, designers were asked to conceive a fantastical bedroom installation, an idealised sleeping environment of ultimate soft furnishings and premium bed linen. 

Competition judge Rick Harvey Lam, Accor Group’s senior vice-president of global marketing for luxury and upscale brands, acknowledged that the designers faced challenges when conceiving such a space. ‘It’s all about finding the right balance between functionality, design and comfort,’ he said. ‘The bed takes centre stage and the rest of the space must be structured around it.’ 

Other judges, who included interior designer Nicolas Adnet of Studio MHNA, interior architect Hervé Van der Straeten and Wallpaper* creative director Sarah Douglas, were looking for originality and an imaginative projection of the Sofitel MyBed product. An environment that surprises, declutters and looks beautiful.

The standard of work submitted to Wallpaper* was dazzling and diverse, but exploring the notion of sleep as a magical experience, Pautrot’s concept won out, capturing that mysterious phase between falling asleep and dreaming. The bed’s ladder, handmade by artisan metalworkers in solid brass tubing, she explains, ‘represents the upward journey into the delirious dream state’.

The judges

Rick Harvey Lam
Senior vice-president marketing , Accor luxury & upscale brands

Harvey Lam joined Sofitel on February 2012 from Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG), where he was responsible for driving integrated sales and marketing efforts for IHG’s five brands across continental Europe and Africa. He has also held senior marketing roles at Center Parcs Europe and the Walt Disney Company. A Dutch-born national of Chinese descent, Harvey Lam speaks five languages and graduated from the Erasmus University Rotterdam, in business administration. He obtained a CEMS Master’s at Copenhagen Business School.

Wallpaper*: What challenges does a designer face when conceiving a bedroom space?

Rick Harvey Lam: They must find the right balance between functionality, design and comfort. The bed takes centre stage and the rest of the space must be structured around it.

W*: What details do you look for when booking into a hotel bedroom?

RHL: I look for effective, accessible and easy-to-use technology – as well as a functionally designed bedroom in terms of optimal layout. The design concept must be clear and original with a true personality and consistency, but nothing overwhelming or too edgy.

W*: How do you think the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition will benefit the winning designer?

RHL: It’s a great showcase for a young designer as it offers outstanding international visibility through Wallpaper.com. Moreover, the winning designer will be able to present their project live at Sofitel Munich, where a special event will take place on 4 April.

W*: What will you be looking for when you judge the competition?

RHL: Originality, functionality, pragmatism, comfort and, last but not least, the project must match with a luxury brand like Sofitel.

Nicolas Adnet
Interior designer, Studio MHNA

Self-taught and passionately involved in fashion, Adnet has held key administrative posts with fashion house Lanvin. An innate feeling for fine materials, a love of colours and a sense of detail led him to team up with business partner and interior architect Marc Hertrich. As Studio MHNA, their commissions for hotels, homes and restaurants are all about instilling harmony through materials, colours and furnishings that are contemporary in spirit, whether they be in a historic setting or in modern architecture.

Wallpaper*: What challenges does a designer face when conceiving a bedroom space?

Nicolas Adnet: Finding the right balance. It’s a delicate exercise in offering a unique customer experience. The philosophy of our studio is to create emotion.

W*: What details do you look for when booking into a hotel?

NA: A hotel room for me must be a haven of wellness – a sort of cocoon. I am extremely sensitive to details such as lighting, bed quality, space, comfort, originality… and thoughtful amenities. I need to be able to appropriate the room instinctively. I hate reading 100-page manuals or searching for hours to find out how things work.

W*: How do you think the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition will benefit the winning designer?

NA: The winner will have a unique opportunity to shine. The combination of two big names like Wallpaper* and Sofitel offers huge visibility and exceptional credit.

W*: What is your tip for a good night’s sleep?

NA: A good book… and a good bed.

Sarah Douglas
Creative Director, Wallpaper*

Douglas joined Wallpaper* as art editor in 2007, and was appointed creative director in 2012. She graduated from the University of Brighton in 2001, was previously art director
of the Architects’ Journal, and lead a redesign of the magazine in 2005. She was awarded Art Director of the Year at the Periodical Publishers Association Awards that year. Douglas has also produced architecture books for Laurence King and New London Architecture, as well as Frontline, a quarterly political newspaper.

Wallpaper*: What challenges does a designer face when conceiving a bedroom space?

Sarah Douglas: To try to create a room that’s contemporary, functions efficiently and offers something different from the visitor’s home…while still feeling welcoming. It’s a delicate balance.

W*: What details do you look for when booking into a hotel bedroom?

SD: Blackout blinds, a decent sound system, big wardrobes, Wi-Fi and a very powerful shower. Mainly blackout blinds.

W*: How do you think the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition will benefit the winning designer?

SD: It’s a great opportunity to achieve some valuable media exposure as well as see something he or she has designed actually get made.

W*: What will you be looking for when you judge the competition?

SD: Something that makes me smile. Tracey Emin meets Sleeping Beauty?  

Hervé Van der Straeten
Artist, designer, interior architect

Van der Straeten stared his career as a jewellery designer, but has since gained worldwide recognition for his collections of furniture and lighting, including those for Sofitel. He specialises in bold pieces of contrasting materials, variations of form, defiant volumes, purity and elegant lines combined with perfect proportions. Van der Straeten shows at his gallery in Paris and makes everything in his own workshops. He has received numerous awards from the French government, including the Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant and the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.

Wallpaper*: What challenges does a designer face when conceiving a bedroom space?

Hervé Van der Straeten: Conceiving a bedroom is finding the right balance between a comfortable environment and a great deal of character, allowing every client to feel suited.

W*: What details do you look for when booking into a hotel bedroom?

HVDS: Comfort and a quality service are my main criteria. I’m also extremely sensitive to nice and cleverly conceived bathrooms. Above all, silence and good views are luxuries I truly appreciate.

W*: How do you think the Sofitel MyBed Universe competition will benefit the winning designer?

HVDS: We are all travelling more and more. Reflecting on both what ensures a good night’s sleep and the hotel trade seems essential to me.

W*: What will you be looking for when you judge the competition?

HVDS: I have often found the hotel rooms in which I have stayed overloaded, so I will be sensitive to uncluttered spirits. I am also looking forward to being surprised by an environment that won’t necessarily be linked to my everyday life.