Wallpaper's Best Business Hotel: The Winners
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The Peninsula, Shanghai
Set on Shanghai’s fabled Bund, The Peninsula is a speedy cab ride from the financial district of Pudong, which might explain the frisson that greeted its opening late last year. Inspired by the Bund’s art deco architecture, the public spaces, such as the pool (right), have an interwar glamour about them, while the 235 rooms are styled like a 1920s private home, albeit offering wi-fi, complimentary international and local calls, humidity control systems and Nespresso coffee machines. Michelin-starred chef Tang Chi Keung presides at the Yi Long Court dining room where he serves up exceptional Cantonese fare.
www.peninsula.com/shanghai (opens in new tab)
In W*138, we announced Wallpaper* and Fortune magazine's shortlist of the world's 40 slickest new business hotels. Here, we reveal the winners and our judges' eight other standouts.
The joint winners are The Peninsula hotel - which captures the 1920s glamour of Shanghai's fabled Bund - and the Mandarin Oriental in Barcelona, housed in a former mid-century bank, recently made over by Patricia Urquiola.
Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona
Situated in the heart of the city's modernista-studded Quadrat d'Or, this former midcentury bank has been transformed by Barcelona architects Carlos Ferrater and Joan Trias de Bes and designer Patricia Urquiola. The vast sunken lounge (pictured), once the trading floor, features Urquiola's lattice screens and hanging baskets moulded from her B&B Italia 'Fat Fat-Lady Fat' tables. Throughout the 98 rooms, her furniture is mixed with vintage and custom pieces, while in the Banker's Bar, safe doors from the old bank vaults line the wall. Signature restaurant Moments serves up Catalan cuisine by chef Carme Ruscalleda.
www.mandarinoriental.com (opens in new tab)
La Mamounia, Marrakech
In the heart of the imperial city, this former Moroccan palace sits in 20 acres of gardens. It has been redesigned by Jacques Garcia, whose particular brand of contemporary opulence proved such a hit at Hôtel Costes in Paris, and now showcases the best of Moroccan craftsmanship. The 207 rooms feature wooden latticework, traditional zellige tilework and marble bathrooms, while the indoor ozone-treated pool is set amid striking mosaic interiors.
www.mamounia.com (opens in new tab)
Mamilla Hotel, Jerusalem
Within strolling distance of the Bible-era Old City, Italian designer Piero Lissoni and Israeli-born architect Moshe Safdie have created a new landmark, making use of earthy, pale Jerusalem stone and dazzling local light. The 194 rooms, studios and suites feature stone walls, dark wood floors, black leather furniture and bathrooms with liquid-crystal glass walls. The hotel has an indoor pool, while the sundeck and rooftop Italian brasserie boast stunning views.
www.mamillahotel.com (opens in new tab)
The Jefferson, Washington DCA
A multimillion dollar renovation has converted this Beaux Arts gem, four blocks from the White House, into a bona fide business facility. The Jefferson's restaurant, Plume, headed by executive chef Damon Gordon, has been lauded as one of the finest in DC. Breakfast and lunch are served beneath a 1923 vaulted glass ceiling in The Greenhouse. After your dealing is done, try the spa treatments using herbs grown on Thomas Jefferson's Monticello gardens in Virginia.
www.jeffersondc.com (opens in new tab)
The Mark, New York
Set amid Manhattan's ritzy Upper East Side's best blocks, The Mark's austere early-20th century façade opens up into an unexpectedly modern, sassy interior. The space has been reimagined by interior designer Jacques Grange and hotelier James Sherwin with a light French vibe, bold geometric shapes, specially commissioned artwork and comfortable oversized furniture. Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten crafted the menu of European classics for the hotel's restaurant.
www.themarkhotel.com (opens in new tab)
The Upper House, Hong Kong
In the heart of the commercial and retail district, The Upper House was envisaged by local designer André Fu as an inner-city bolt-hole. The Bedonia stone portico is by British designer Thomas Heatherwick, the public spaces are a grand mix of limestone and bleached oak, and in each of the bedrooms (from the 38th floor up), Fu has dreamed up an eyrie of bamboo, shoji glass and lacquered paper panels. Café Gray Deluxe offers Victoria Harbour views and simple international dishes.
www.upperhouse.com (opens in new tab)
The Yas Hotel, Abu Dhabi
Set beneath a shimmering metallic cloud on a 25 sq km island between Dubai and the Abu Dhabi coast, the hotel overlooks the Yas Marina and a Formula 1 circuit, and is within easy reach of mega-malls, golf courses and Abu Dhabi city centre. With 13 restaurants and lounges, finding a quiet corner for a lunch meeting is never an issue. The six meeting rooms and four boardrooms have private terraces and, if desired, breakout rooms can be arranged on yachts.
www.theyashotel.com (opens in new tab)
Le Gray, Beirut
In a new four-storey sandstone building, Le Gray's smooth façade, ranks of tall, narrow windows and street-level sunshades seem straight out of French Mandate Beirut. This historical sleight of hand is courtesy of Kevin Dash, who introduces overt modernity in the glass-walled rooftop bar, the ice cube-like infinity pool overlooking Martyrs' Square and the Med, and the Bundestag-esque light well at the hotel's heart. Gordon Campbell Gray and Mary Fox Linton decorated the 87 rooms.
www.campbellgrayhotels.com (opens in new tab)
Soho House Berlin
In a late-Bauhaus building that has housed both a department store and the East German Communist Party, Soho House Berlin is one of the latest openings of the chic members' club group. There are 40 rooms, a Cowshed spa and gym, a cinema, a library and a heated rooftop pool and bar with views over the Mitte district. Anyone can book rooms, and guests are able to enjoy almost every corner of Soho House Berlin, from the public Cecconi's Italian restaurant to the private lounges.
Melina Keays is the entertaining director of Wallpaper*. She has been part of the brand since the magazine’s launch in 1996, and is responsible for entertaining content across the print and digital platforms, and for Wallpaper’s creative agency Bespoke. A native Londoner, Melina takes inspiration from the whole spectrum of art and design – including film, literature, and fashion. Her work for the brand involves curating content, writing, and creative direction – conceiving luxury interior landscapes with a focus on food, drinks, and entertaining in all its forms
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