The idea that earth was a difficult element for a hotel room was Completely Bogus. I practically wanted to yell at the television: "Green! Think Green!" And this was what Kelly asked her.
It was such an easy element to be given. Every hotel in the world is doing the California Spa experience with some Japanese touches as well like bamboo, teak and reed. A spa refers to materials like water and marble and sand. It also evokes stone and linen and iris; or jade and silk and orchid.
Frankly, that room Andrea came up with was bizarre.
It was like bad West Elm.
She seemed so stuck on the idea that earth = cruncy granola and folksy plows. To avoid this look she made something very dry and dull. The dimensions were off.
She couldn't break away from her fixed associations and move into ways of imagining that would help her create a room that felt luxurious. There are so many ways to indulge in the idea of sensuality with an element like earth. Rich color is one way.
This is Marimekko (above). Scandinavian designers -- and especially Finnish designers -- have so much life and energy in their nature motifs. Check out Lotta Jansdotter (below) -- she's mainly known for her textiles but her ceramics are also fabulous --
perhaps for a for a breakfast in bed.
There are so many hotels and spas that one could use as examples but one place that came to my mind was Hotel Vitale in San Francisco.
I remembered it as being green but in fact the colors in these pictures are more browns and blues but they couldn't be more different in feel from Andrea's. They are much warmer.
One thing none of the designers provided was a decent workspace:
Here is a great alternative to Andrea's insect-collecting grass tables:
At any rate, everyone today wants the hotel to provide the spa experience and that is very much associated with a kind of natural -- green -- sensibility.
It was driving me nuts to watch Andrea make a room that was so utterly wrong-headed!
Hotel Vitale Press: