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Maison & Objet Paris 2016 , the biggest international furniture trade show just started! Today BRABBU shares with you one of biggest duos in hospitality industry, more precisely in luxury hotels decoration…The duo of Réda Amalou and Stephanie Ledoux, founders of a french architecture studio, AW2, brilliantly develop their expertise in international luxury hotels. As they said it’s all about “the process raher than a style”. See below all the Maison & Objet News.
The Phum Baitang five-star hotel in Cambodia and the Àni Villas boutique-hotel in Sri Lanka have both just opened as has a private home in Corsica. And Réda Amalou is off again to visit a location in Vietnam, attend a design meeting in Morocco and put the finishing touches on the Sri Lankan project. The architect, who co-founded the Parisian design agency AW2 Architecture Workshop with Stéphanie Ledoux, is a frequent flyer. And for good reason : the studio works in every latitude and realizes 70% of its sales internationally in 30 different countries. “We don’t do an identifiable, signature architecture that can be recognized everywhere in the world. Our approach is more a process than a style. We confront different cultures to reinvent them in an architectural space” explains Amalou, a cosmopolitan fifty-something who studied at East London University in Great Britain.
The key words of this process: context and space. The study of a location’s topography, climate and natural environment plus doing an inventory of local techniques and materials helps nourish an understanding of the context that “brings out an idea and anchors it locally”. Thus, on a flat terrain surrounded by rice paddies, the Phum Baitang building and its interior design takes inspiration from the vernacular architecture of traditional Cambodian villages. Wood, terracotta and straw roofs, bamboo wall coverings, tree-trunk furniture … all refer to the Khmer culture and give rhythm to the sensory experience. The timeless location is humbly diluted into the beautiful landscape. “Our challenge is to never repeat a model. We develop a unique, formal language for each project. We think of haute couture since, with each venture, we try to create something new and surprising to go beyond the initial request”, notes Réda, who has a great capacity for listening.
The architects’ global approach extends from architecture to interior and furniture design, like the brass rod and wood chairs they designed for the Sri Lankan project. Since its creation in 1997, the studio has been juxtaposing scales : “We design large-scale buildings, create interiors and design furniture”. The Franco-Vietnamese hospital in Hô Chi Minh City, the French Lycée in Amman, Jordan or a luxury boutique for Patek Philippe watches in London … plus furniture. Each project applies the same attention to materials, skills and details as in the luxury world.
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This method has proven itself. AW2 has won prizes for excellence. According to Condé Nast Traveler, the Nam Hai Six Senses Con Dao is one of the world’s best hotels. And projects continue to pour in: six to eight openings are programmed this year in Morocco, Oman, Switzerland and the Caribbean. Their dream ? “Create a museum, a project that will offer us spatial freedom.”
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