- Keishin Horikoshi
The city of Guangzhou, known for its vibrant contemporary architecture alongside historic buildings, makes for an excellent destination for high-tech solutions in China; it caught the eye of global players which led to an unusually rapid growth. Surprisingly, its growth introduced an important preoccupation around sustainability and its enviroment. Diverse greenery, from gardens to city parks are found throughout, acting as small havens in the middle of such a pulsating metropole.
The boutique Hotel Far&Near acts as place for refuge. It is the product of a renovation project created by kooo architects, and every finishing touch acts as an extension of its central idea: to simplify. From its lobby to each guest room, the hotel celebrates its geometric lines and nimble practices. The original structure is always visible, and consequently, so is the original flooring and plumbing systems. The hotel flirts with an industrial identity, but is skilfully pulled back to minimalism with chosen décor and a monochrome aesthetic.
The idea of refuge grows stronger with its chosen outer shell, made of frosted glass all round. It offers absolute privacy without sacrificing light coming from entering all directions. Light and shadow pass through the steel deck to create a soft diffused radiance that welcomes guests. All rooms are blessed with constant light throughout the day, and during the night it is embraced by the gentle yellow glow of street lights. It is a unique arrangement for shadow play, and surely of the hotel’s main visual features.
The guest rooms are reminiscent of MUJI design, a mix of a Japanese sensibility with a Scandinavian touch. Light wood is applied with no holds barred, acting as the flooring and frames for bed and wardrobes. In parallel, raw and grey cotton are employed as additional visual elements.
Far&Near is a beautiful exercise in minimalist design, a cosmopolitan version of a boutique hotel.