Like a kaleidoscope, hotel Andaz Munich in Schwabing reflects the culture and tradition of the neighbourhood, creating a stimulating and inspiring atmosphere where guests and locals can feel at home. Designed by Netherlands-based architecture studio Concrete, the design scheme weaves state-of-the-art technology and old traditions into the interior, reflecting what makes Munich unique, forming a sense of tension that can be found throughout the hotel design. The ceiling structure illustrates this contrast via a literally interwoven network of rough wood and high-gloss anodised metal. The connecting axis between the different areas, which brings all functions together in a single hybrid space (we share), is a lively place to meet and mingle.
The many facets of Bavarian culture run like a leitmotif through the design. This is reflected from the largest scale to the smallest details; for example, the diamond shape (the Bavarian flag) is placed over the whole layout like a matrix, while details like deer horn buttons on the cushions remind one of Bavarian fashion.
Stone floors and luminous ceilings with diamond patterns and real copper, copper-coloured design details in room numbers, indirect lighting, leather sofas, herringbone oak floors, as well as polished chrome and brushed steel - all these elements together create a mixed array of surfaces and facets.
“We tried to capture today’s Munich as much as possible, as well as the things that have shaped the city over time, such as breweries, beer gardens, trendy bars, the Englischer Garten and museums, as well as the local area and the history of Schwabing and the Bohemian scene,” explains Melanie Knüwer, interior designer at Concrete Amsterdam and project manager for Andaz Munich.
In a nod to the Englischer Garten and Munich’s numerous other parks and green spaces, the conference area features a green wall of vertically hanging plants. The lounge, the hotel’s generously proportioned entrance area, has a typical Bavarian feel, and was designed as a space where guests can come together to enjoy a casual chat along with a drink or snack. The lounge also boasts of different types of seating, including the ‘golden pretzel’ — a decorative metal seat that is already becoming something of a selfie hotspot.
Knüwer adds, “The biggest challenge, however, was to interpret the city’s traditions in a new way, to create a modern, contemporary environment that reflects the city’s way of life in an abstract way, while also satisfying the demands of today’s international travellers.”
The rooms at Andaz Munich Schwabinger Tor feature works by Munich art director and typographer Mirko Borsche, who has won a number of German and international awards and is one of the country’s most popular designers. In the lounge, video installations by Munich-based artist and creative director Yves Peitzner have been set up and depict the city’s skyline over 365 days. Peitzner has also won several awards for his work and is one of the key players in the local creative scene. In addition, Munich-based designer Saskia Diez has teamed up with La Bottega to develop exclusive room fragrances and bath amenities for the hotel.
Speaking of the collaboration with Hyatt’s Andaz, Roland Wüst, a member of the management board at Jost Hurler and head of Schwabinger Tor project, explains, “Schwabinger Tor is international, multicultural, and innovative in its approach. We are ready to leave behind old ways of doing things and pursue new ideas. This is a philosophy that is also apparent in the concept for the Andaz hotel. The way it involved local artists, its innovative approach to customer service, and the fact that the interior design is individual, yet still has an international feel.”
It is quite evident that many icons associated with the city of Munich have been reinterpreted or abstracted as small highlights drizzled throughout the hotel, while traditional materials have been given a modern interpretation via a contemporary design language. Hence, this is the hallmark of the new breed of luxury hotels that are here to stay.