The Future of Hotels?

The Future of Hotels?

Gregory Han
Jul 1, 2010

Imagine this: you're on your way to Milan for a holiday (one could dream!); you visit your hotel's website where all arrangements can be made online and you're provided an access code. When you arrive to your destination, a fully computerized "reception area" gives you access to your futuristic, LED illuminated hotel room with nary any staff. Hoteliers Alessandro Rosso and interior designer Simone Micheli's Townhouse@housestreet unveiled at Milan Design Week 2010 hints at a travel experience both technologically efficient, and arguably clinically impersonal.

A project born in Milan but intended for the leading metropolis around the world. A commercial ground, on the first floor of Via Goldoni 33 has been transformed in prime hotel suite facing the street, without a reception and completely automated. An idea conceived by Alessandro Rosso and materialized by architect Simone Micheli, has given light to four suites original in the conception and in their image. A new contemporary hospitality concept is brought forth by the desire to retrain those degraded or abandoned metropolitan spaces; the canonical hotel stereotypes are totally refuted: the reception, lobby, stairs, lifts and corridors are omitted. The single suite overlooks straight onto the city street, each having an independent access directly from the glazed door facing the street, electronically controlled by an alphanumeric keyboard on which one can digit the reservation code carried out on line through the web site ( Whoever enters the suite does it without further filters, directly from the city, crossing the threshold of what once was a commercial activity disused by now. It is the very same city that enters the suite with the metropolitan traveller sliding along the wall permeating completely. A semantics osmosis in which meaning and meaningful coincide, the room becomes the city and vice versa "Home away from Home". The macro photographs, realised by Maurizio Marcato depict breathtaking views over the city which enwrap the spaces expanding, transforming and containing in a confine space the ample dimensions of squares, streets, and most revealing monuments.

More photos and a full description of Town@HouseStreet at Contemporist.

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