Clean the World Recycles Hotel Toiletries to Save Lives

March 20, 2017 by  
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When it comes to the hotel industry, the biggest symbol of waste would have to be the complimentary toiletries. As it stands, the majority of hotels in the U.S. aren’t involved in any recycling programs — which means that a staggering amount of…

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Clean the World Recycles Hotel Toiletries to Save Lives

North Korea’s ‘Hotel of Doom’ is the world’s largest abandoned building

February 16, 2017 by  
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This pyramid-shaped building in North Korea was once a contender for the tallest hotel in the world – but construction was interrupted in 1989 and it became the world’s largest abandoned building instead. The notorious 105-story Ryugyong Hotel – frequently referred to as the “Hotel of Doom” – could come to life after all, as Egyptian company Orascom fired the project back up again in 2008. The structure, designed by Baikdoosan Architects & Engineers, first broke ground in 1987 in Pyongyang, North Korea. It was supposed to open in 1989, two years later after the frame was finished. Work stopped in 1992 after the collapse of the Soviet Union (an ally and backer), and the hotel remained unfinished , looming over the North Korean capital. Related: Abandoned Floating McDonalds to Be Given New Life As a Marina in Canada In 2008, an Egyptian company took over the hotel and began adding exterior glass in the hope of finishing the project. Reports say that the interior has no plumbing or electricity, and it could require another $2 billion to finish. As of late construction on the hotel has stopped again, leaving the fate of the hotel unresolved. Photos via Wikimedia Commons

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North Korea’s ‘Hotel of Doom’ is the world’s largest abandoned building

Former opium den in Singapore reinvented as luxury waterfront hotel

February 7, 2017 by  
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The newly opened Warehouse Hotel in Singapore is undoubtedly posh, but it’s very different from the average luxury hotel. Set on the Singapore River, the Warehouse Hotel is housed in a heritage building, a former godown, which dates back to 1895 and has a surprising sordid history as a former hotbed for secret societies and underground activities. Zarch Collaboratives led the redesign of the 121-year-old building, converting it into a 37-room boutique hotel with state-of-the-art amenities, while paying homage to the area’s industrial past. Located on Havelock Road along the Singapore River, the historic godown was originally built for business purposes on the Straits of Malacca trade route. In the early 20th century, the area was notoriously known as the operating neighborhood of Chinese and Fujianese secret societies and was rife with gambling dens, prostitutes, and moonshine operations. While much of that history has disappeared and been replaced with the upscale Robertson Quay neighborhood, Zarch Collaboratives and interior design consultant Asylum Creatives wove playful references to the godown’s colorful history during the meticulous restoration and renovation process. Related: WOHA’s solar-powered SkyVille in Singapore boasts a deep-green public skypark Painted bright white, the Warehouse Hotel’s distinctive and symmetrical facade features the original peaked roofs with restored louvre windows, cornices, doors, moldings, and Chinese characters on the leftmost gables. The interior blends the warehouse’s utilitarian aesthetic, like exposed brick and vaulted ceilings, with modern decorations that allude to the area’s industrial and vice-filled past. Naked light bulbs and pulley systems, commonly found in godowns, are suspended from the ceiling of the double-height lobby. A set of handcuffs and other interesting trinkets are visibly displayed next to the check-in counter, while every room is equipped with a “Minibar of Vices” with local treats. + Justina Via ArchDaily Images via Justina

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Former opium den in Singapore reinvented as luxury waterfront hotel

Snhetta’s winning hotel design for Helsinki waterfront is inspired by broken sea ice

February 3, 2017 by  
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Prolific design firm Snøhetta seems to be leaving their architectural stamp around the world one city at a time , and that’s just fine with us. The talented team’s proposal for the Hilbert Hotel in Helsinki has just been announced as the winning design in a competition held by the city. The design for the swanky hotel, which will sit on the Hakaniemi waterfront, is a zigzag volume clad in a luminous white glass skin inspired by broken sea ice. The exterior of the hotel will be covered in a geometric series of reflective panels . The small “cutouts”will correspond to the hotel occupancy. On the interior, each room will have a number of small windows, one of which will be operable. Related: Snøhetta’s luxury cabin with Aurora Borealis views opens at Treehotel According to the architects, the hotel design is meant to convert the Hakaniemi waterfront into a vibrant part of Helsinki. In addition to the hotel’s many amenities such as a restaurant and bar, visitors will also be able to enjoy an outdoor seating area and a rooftop terrace . Snøhetta founding partner Kjetil T. Thorsen explains that the design is inspired by the hotel’s surrounding nature , “Snøhetta is thrilled by the prospect of contributing to the vast architectural heritage of Helsinki. We have tried to actively celebrate the presence of visitors in the city. Simultaneously, we have tried to promote the qualities, such as the connection to the water, of this specific site as a gift to the visitors and inhabitants of Helsinki. This mutual task is at the core of architectural creations. The City of Helsinki and Arthur Buchardt are the best possible partners in the realization of a building Helsinki deserves.” + Snøhetta Images via Snøhetta

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Snhetta’s winning hotel design for Helsinki waterfront is inspired by broken sea ice

Snhettas luxury cabin with Aurora Borealis views opens at Treehotel

January 18, 2017 by  
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If a room with Aurora Borealis views sounds like the perfect getaway, you’ll love what’s popped up at Sweden’s Treehotel . The boutique hotel, which comprises designer treehouses near the Arctic Circle, just welcomed its first guests to the 7th room, a luxury elevated cabin designed by architecture firm Snøhetta. Hovering ten meters off the ground, the elevated dwelling is a contemporary take on the traditional Nordic cabin and comfortably immerses guests in the beautiful Lapland landscape. Nestled within the evergreen canopy of a tall pine forest, Snøhetta’s 7th room offers stunning views of the Lapland treetops and the Lule River. The cabin is clad in dark-colored pine and thrust into the air by twelve columns. The architects blur the lines between indoor and outdoor living by adding large panoramic windows , a netted terrace suspended above the forest floor, an opening for a tree to pass through the cabin, and even an optical illusion: the cabin’s bottom surface is covered with a large black-and-white print of pine trees to make the cabin appear invisible from below. The elevated cabin is accessible via a staircase and a small lift. In contrast to the dark facade, the 55-square-meter interior features light-colored ash wood floors and birch plywood walls. Built to accommodate five, the cabin comprises two bedrooms, a living room, bathroom, and terrace spread out across two floors. The bedrooms are located on the upper level. Ample glazing allows copious amounts of natural light to pour in and frame landscape views. Expansive, openable skylights in the bedroom as well as a north-facing floor-to-ceiling window in the living room offer prime viewing opportunities of the Northern Lights. Related: Stunning Swedish Treehotel Opens This Weekend! “The design of the 7th room aims to bring people and nature closer together, extending the cabin’s social spaces to the outside and further blending the distinction between indoor and outdoor,” writes Snøhetta. “With its wooden characteristics and unique location in the treetops, the 7th room is a celebration of the Nordic cabin and the pine tree forest.” + Snøhetta Images © Johan Jansson

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Snhettas luxury cabin with Aurora Borealis views opens at Treehotel

This plant-covered Singapore skyscraper could be the tropical building of the future

December 8, 2016 by  
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Steel and glass skyscrapers may work in the climates of New York City or San Francisco, but in tropical Singapore they heat up fast. So WOHA Architects designed the sustainable 30-story Oasia Hotel Downtown , presenting a green vision for better tropical towers. Plants creeping across the facade and several sky gardens cool the structure naturally. 20 species of plants and flowering vines crawling across the aluminum mesh exterior afford the hotel located in Singapore’s Central Business District a lush appearance. Eventually the entire building should be covered with the plants. For now, guests can stay in one of 300 rooms and explore sky gardens in the tower. Related: Tel Aviv’s Gran Mediterraneo Tower will feature a lush vertical garden The architects behind the project planted the greenery in a manner that wouldn’t require too much maintenance, as it’s hard to find “laborers who are both Spiderman and gardeners,” according to WOHA Architects co-founder Richard Hassell. And while the client’s goals weren’t necessarily sustainability or energy efficiency – they primarily wanted a stunning building – Hassell said he thinks the building design will offer significant energy savings. He believes the Singapore hotel could offer a model for other tropical skyscrapers around the world, which could green up city skylines. He told Curbed, “What’s interesting is the emotional appeal it has for people all over the world…Examining the central business districts of so many cities is like looking at the moon from the Earth; one is filled with life, the other is just this collection of dead stone. With Oasia, we’ve seen so many birds and insects flying around the building. People respond so well to seeing a hummingbird flying right outside their office window.” If the plants grow as planned, the tower could be more densely covered with verdant plant life in around a year. You can book a room in the hotel here . + WOHA Architects Via Curbed Images via WOHA Architects , WOHA Architects Facebook ( 1 , 2 , 3 ), and Oasia Hotels & Residences by Far East Hospitality Facebook

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This plant-covered Singapore skyscraper could be the tropical building of the future

Sweden’s new ICEHOTEL 365 uses solar cooling to stay open all year-round

December 2, 2016 by  
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Sweden’s famed ICEHOTEL , perhaps the “coolest” hotel in the world, has just unveiled a permanent luxury lodge made entirely of ice. The newly-designed ICEHOTEL 365 has all of the chilly charm of its sister hotel, but will be open 365 days a year thanks to state-of-the-art solar-powered cooling technology that will keep the structure frozen during summer months. Located 200 km north of the Arctic Circle in the Swedish village of Jukkasjarvi, ICEHOTEL rose to fame thanks to its unique igloo structure made out of “snice”, a mixture of snow and ice collected from the Torne River. The fantastical structure has been built and rebuilt every year since 1989. Related: World-Famous Swedish Ice Hotel Forced to Install Fire Alarms Despite Sub-Freezing Temperatures Now the new ICEHOTEL 365, which sits adjacent to the other temporary structure, has just been unveiled. Thanks to the solar-powered cooling technology , guests can now enjoy either cold or warm rooms year round, along with a cocktail room, saunas, and even an ice church. The cold rooms are kept between -5 and -8 degrees Celsius, and although the beds are made from blocks of ice, they have thick mattresses on top of wood crates for added comfort. Reindeer hides and thermal sleeping bags keep guests warm and comfy during the night. Like the original hotel, the 365 version has a series of thematic rooms called Art Suites. Each room has carved ice detailing created by artists from around the world. And if you really want to splurge, go for the Deluxe Suites. The largest suites in the hotel, the Deluxe Suites also have individually designed carvings as well as a private heated relaxation area, sauna, shower, and en suite bathrooms. + ICEHOTEL 365 Via Contemporist Photographs by Asaf Kliger and ICEHOTEL

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Sweden’s new ICEHOTEL 365 uses solar cooling to stay open all year-round

22 Nobel Prize winners tell Trump that science must play a "critical role" in US policy

December 2, 2016 by  
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In an open letter addressed to President-elect Trump and the incoming 155th Congress , 87 scientists urge the new government to respect the critical importance of science in setting national policy. The group of prominent scientists, which includes 22 Nobel Prize winners, seeks to convince the soon-to-be Republican-controlled federal government that climate change is a real, existential threat to the nation and the world. “From disease outbreaks to climate change to national security to technology innovation, people benefit when our nation’s policies are informed by science unfettered by inappropriate political or corporate influence,” read the letter. “To build on this legacy and extend the benefits of science to all people, including Americans who have been left behind, the federal government must support and rely on science as a key input for crafting public policy.” So far Trump has largely disregarded the consensus of the scientific community during his campaign and transition. The President-elect once referred to climate change as a hoax and has appointed climate skeptic Myron Ebell to lead his Environmental Protection Agency transition team. “Creating a strong and open culture of science begins at the top,” read the letter. “Federal agencies should be led by officials with demonstrated track records of respecting science as a critical component of decision making.” Related: A catastrophic climate feedback loop long feared by scientists is happening The letter also addresses the President-elect’s consistently disrespectful comments and policies directed towards historically marginalized groups. “Recognizing that diversity makes science stronger, administration officials should welcome and encourage all scientists regardless of religious background, race, gender, or sexual orientation.” Finally, the letter addresses the concern that the Trump Administration will suppress ideas and views that are contrary to its own. “Federally funded scientists must be able to develop and share their findings free from censorship or manipulation based on politics or ideology,” reads the letter. Time will tell whether this letter wins hearts and minds in Washington. Via Christian Science Monitor Photo by Gage Skidmore

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22 Nobel Prize winners tell Trump that science must play a "critical role" in US policy

Plans for a new underground hotel have been approved in London

December 1, 2016 by  
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London tourists may soon get a chance to spend sleep underground at the upcoming subterranean LDN Hotel, the first of its kind in the city. Ian Chalk Architects is working on the sustainable hotel , which will reportedly feature a plethora of plants , and air that’s cleaner than outside. The underground hotel, slated for construction in London’s West End under St Giles Hotel, will house up to 166 guests at affordable prices. The LDN Hotel would sprawl across what is currently an underground parking lot on the fourth and fifth floors below ground. The LDN Hotel design will be similar to Japanese pod hotels, according to Design Curial, except with a toilet and shower in the room. Related: Incredible eco-friendly mansion is hidden entirely underground While critics raised concern about air quality in an underground hotel, the hotel design features a mechanical ventilation system for air purification that is said to ensure the air will be even fresher than outdoors. Sustainability was also said to be an important consideration, though it is yet unclear what features would make it so, apart from comprising a better use of space than the disused parking lot. Wood paneling, flourishing plants that improve air quality, and bright rooms are among the planned hotel’s interior features. While some may balk at the idea of staying in a room without a window, the hotel will be near to tourist attractions, according to planning inspector David Prentis, and offer unique budget accommodations. The initial proposal for the underground hotel was rejected, but planning officers have since granted permission for its construction. Via Design Curial and Evening Standard Images via Ian Chalk Architects

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Plans for a new underground hotel have been approved in London

Germany’s Merkel latest world leader to reach out to Trump on climate change

December 1, 2016 by  
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The US election of the only world leader to deny climate change  sent shock waves throughout the international community that only days earlier was celebrating the Paris climate agreement entering into force. With the reality of President Donald J. Trump starting to set in, world leaders concerned about climate change are weighing in. German Chancellor Angela Merkel asserted on Wednesday that she will attempt to work with Trump on climate change, saying that they spoke by phone after the November 8 election and agreed “that we’ll try to cooperate.” Merkel told members of her Christian Democratic Union in the western German city of Muenster that she would bring up man-made global warming with Trump. “Of course I’ll say that I believe that climate change is certainly caused by humans –- and we’ll want to see if the position there develops,” said Merkel. “One always has to try to find compromise through mutual respect and a clear position. That’s politics — always to find compromise.” Related: Majority of Americans support Paris climate deal as Trump reconsiders pulling out With the US ceding its leadership role on climate post-Obama, Germany is expected to play a stronger role on environmental action . At the recent global climate talks in Marrakech, Morocco, the world’s fourth-largest economy announced plans to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. The country intends to go 100 percent renewable energy and completely phase out coal power — joining the UK, Canada, France, the Netherlands, Austria and Finland in committing to end coal production. Trump has promised to bring back coal in the US. Pope Francis on Monday, speaking indirectly to Trump, warned world leaders not to abandon the Paris climate agreement. Trump has threatened to exit the Paris pact, although he recently told New York Times reporters that he would keep an “open mind” about pulling out of the climate accord. Addressing the Vatican’s academy of sciences, the pope said that “never before has there been such a clear need for science to be at the service of a new global ecological equilibrium.” Via Reuters Lead image via Wikimedia , other image via Wikimedia

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