EXCLUSIVE: RPW Design chief Ariane Steinbeck calls for more personality in hotel and spa design

by Kim Megson | 03 Feb 2016

The new managing director of hospitality interior design practice RPW Design has encouraged designers and hospitality operators to infuse their projects with more distinct personalities.

Ariane Steinbeck, who joined the London firm in December, told CLAD that despite the abundance of new hotel and spa offerings being developed, true diversity is hard to find.

“Consumers face a difficult choice between all the different brands that aim to serve a specific market segment, and may struggle to firmly distinguish one from another,” she said. “The hotel may have some variation in brief, but it’s increasingly hard for new locations to stand out from the crowd.”

Steinbeck – who has previously worked on the refurbishment of Peninsula Hotel’s flagship venue in Hong Kong and the Arabelle Restaurant at the Plaza Athenee in New York – added that “guests tend to relate more to their experience in a hotel than they do to brands specifically.”

She said: “If you look at Tripadvisor reviews, the brand image is what may have initially steered the purchase decision, but it’s the service that keeps guests coming back, or leaving glowing reviews. That is why the service element may be more important than a witty or familiar design.

“Many hotels at the top end of the market are known not necessarily for their specific brand, but for their personality – which is a unique combination of the atmosphere, design and service. Ultimately, they’re in the business of delivering special experiences.”

Steinbeck also stated that hotel brands could do more to take advantage of the growing trend for multigenerational travel.

She said: “These days, parents will travel with their children, their friends or their own parents, so you have different guest profiles you have to satisfy. It’s fine for a brand that is confidently tagging one profile – such as the aspirational traveller or the millennial traveller – but many other brands could do more to make their buildings more inclusive for different generations travelling together.”

RPW are currently working on interior design projects for the UK’s first Hilton-branded Curio hotel in London; the Fairmont hotel in St Andrews, Scotland; the London Marriott Hotel County Hall in London; and a health club for the Marriott London Park Lane – a hotel it previously refurbished.

Steinbeck said the studio is infusing each building with local personality.

“That sense of individuality should be the designer's goal,” she said. “My personal belief is that a good hotel is a good hotel, so your first priority should come from a design, service and technology standpoint to create the best guest experience, independent of anything else.”

Ariane Steinbeck  design  interior design  hotels  spa  architecture  RPW Design  personality 
Related stories

Andrew Gibson: Integrating ‘imperceptible wellness’ through design is more important than ever

FEATURE: Top team – Peninsula Hotels

The new managing director of hospitality interior design practice RPW Design has encouraged designers and hospitality operators to infuse their projects with more distinct personalities. Ariane Steinbeck, who joined the London firm in December, told CLAD that despite the abundance of new hotel and spa offerings being developed, true diversity is hard to find. “Consumers face a difficult choice between all the different brands that aim to serve a specific
CLD,SAB,HHR,HOT,ARC,DES,DEV
Steinbeck said 'guests tend to relate more to their experience in a hotel than they do to brands specifically'
 / RPW Design
More news
News stories: 1 - 30 of 6322     
 
 
 
News stories: 1 - 30 of 6322     
 
 
 
company profile
Company profile: DJW
DJW offer a way to interpret your story through the use of technology. We can provide Audio Visual consultancy to assist in the planning stage, follow up with AV system design, supply and installation, and provide a bespoke control system to suit your operational needs.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
Rosewood Sanya
Ed Ng
"Of all hospitality design, we feel that F&B is the most fun. You can be creative and it’s where you get all the limelight"

When ABConcept’s co-founder got The brief for the Four Seasons’ Mei Ume restaurant, he jumped straight on the plane to London. He tells us why

One of the bedrooms
Lund has worked as a designer for Soho House since 2014. She co-led the design of The Ned
"My favourite part of the building is the original bank vault, in the belly of the building. It once stored gold bullion deposits of £335m"

On the challenges of creating The Ned

Parks and public spaces are reported as ideal places for reflection and inspiraton
Tom Lindblom
"Public spaces support the widest diversity of experiences"

At last concrete proof that design is the critical factor that turns good experiences into great ones says Gensler’s Tom Lindblom

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
SimpsonHaugh 
worked with acoustician 
Larry Kirkegaard
"It’s a privilege to have completed a scheme of such importance to the cultural identity of Antwerp - Stuart Mills"

SimsponHaugh’s latest project

FaulkerBrowns’ Russ Davenport has worked 
on the project since 2012
"Whenever you’re looking at it, the elevation is running away from you, so it never looks quite as big as it really is "

FaulknerBrowns’ Dutch sports facility

features
Rossana Hu studied at the University of California at Berkeley, where she met Lyndon Neri
"Interior projects carried out by architects have a depth that’s generally lacking today"

Neri & Hu’s latest project

The timber Pavilion of Reflections featured an open air cinema, seating and a public swimming pool
"You could have cultural events and museums that go from city to city. It’s a new way of thinking"

Rising sea levels and a shortage of land are leading to increased interest in floating buildings. We take a look at some fascinating projects

cladkit product news
Parkside opens flagship Chelsea showroom
The showroom is designed to inspire its clients
Lauren Heath-Jones
Parkside, a designer of contemporary porcelain and ceramic tiles, has opened its first showroom in the UK. Located in Chelsea ...
Ben van Berkel launches UNSense startup to boost health and wellbeing in built environments
Kim Megson
Dutch architect Ben van Berkel and his design firm UNStudio have launched a tech startup to “improve the health and ...
Hotel Crescent Court opens new spa following multi-million-dollar renovation
Hotel Crescent Court has reopened its spa after a multi-million dollar refurbishment
Lauren Heath-Jones
Hotel Crescent Court, a luxury hotel in Dallas, Texas, has reopened its spa and fitness centre after completing a multi-million-dollar ...
cladkit product news
London's new pollution-eating living wall has air purifying power of 275 trees
CityTree is a living wall that reduces particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide in the air by 30 per cent
Lauren Heath-Jones
The Crown Estate, a London-based commercial real estate company, has partnered with Westminster City Council and cleantech specialist Evergen Systems ...
Empex Watertoys partners with Singapore architecture firm on new splash park
Buds is a new splash park that caters to children aged 12 and under
Lauren Heath-Jones
Empex Watertoys has partnered with Singapore landscape architecture firm Playpoint Singapore Pte to create Buds, an exciting new splash park ...
FAÇADE award winners 'diverse and remarkable', says SFE board member
Ramboll was awarded for the Blavatnik Building, Switchouse Extension of the Tate Moder
Lauren Heath-Jones
A trio of British leisure facilities have been honoured in the Façade2017 awards. Established in 2013 by the Society of ...
cladkit product news
Kvorning wins contest to design aquaculture exhibit at Norway's Coastal Museum
The exhibition explores the history of Norway's fish-farming industry dating back to 1970
Lauren Heath-Jones
Copenhagen-based design studio Kvorning Design and Norwegian advertising agency Vindfang have won a competition, organised by Museums in Sør Trøndelag ...
Dornbracht debuts Rainmoon wellness shower concept at  Salone del Mobile
Rainmoon is a multi-sensory wellness experience designed to revitalise and reinvigorate the user
Lauren Heath-Jones
Dornbracht, a German-based luxury bathroom specialist, has launched an innovative new shower experience, Rainmoon. Slated as the next generation of ...
x
Sign up with CLAD for regular news updates