Opening of shimmering lakeside Fontenay hotel set to cement Hamburg's leisure destination status

The wealthy owner of one of the world’s largest logistics companies is preparing to open a luxurious new Hamburg hotel, designed to promote the city’s image and capitalise on the popularity of Herzog and de Meuron’s recently-opened Elbphilharmonie.

Set to open in the final quarter of 2017, The Fontenay will be the first five-star hotel to open in Hamburg for almost two decades. The 131-bedroom property will be located close to the city centre on the banks of Lake Aster, where investor Klaus-Michael Kühne was raised.

Construction on the €100m (US$106.4m, £87.5m) project began in August 2014. Work is now nearing completion, with the gradual revealing of the building’s sculptural curving form – intended to mirror the fluid lines of the lake and surrounding parkland.

Hamburg architect Jan Störmer of Störmer Murphy and Partners has designed the hotel, which evolves from three fusing circles that follow the principles of Feng Shui and form two interior open spaces, including a 27m (88.5ft) high atrium flooded with natural daylight.

“The circular shape repeats itself throughout the building,” said Störmer. “Straight walls, except for the partitioning walls, do not exist.

“The shape of this hotel is so prominent that every single piece of furniture must take the architecture into consideration. The hotel was conceived in a way that the guestrooms are located on one side, while the other side allows for a view into the courtyards. The path to the guestrooms and throughout the entire hotel complex must always be an experience with beautiful views and perspectives.

“The public areas are vast. Unlike in other hotels, guests can go for a proper stroll following the circular shapes. There are wonderful views into the atrium, which is in a sense the living room where you can meet and comfortably lounge around enjoying the views above.”

Lightness is the focus of the design concept, with a façade of white ceramic tiles reflecting both sunlight and the shimmering water of the lake. The interior décor also reflects this theme, with the use of warm colours and parquet wood flooring creating a feeling of brightness in the guest rooms and public spaces, and floor-to-ceiling windows and balconies offering panoramic views of Lake Aster.

Leisure amenities will include two restaurants and a bar and full-service spa on the rooftop. The latter will feature a 20m (65.6ft) horizon edge indoor/outdoor pool that, from a certain angle, appears to merge with the sparkling water of the lake below.

Kühne, who is the majority shareholder of global firm Kühne + Nagel Logistics Group, said: “Our goal is that The Fontenay makes a lasting and positive contribution to the further development and enrichment of Hamburg, not only as a business centre, but as a unique destination for international leisure travellers, embraced by its local community.”

General manager Thies Sponholz added: “The hotel is a reflection of modern Hamburg, a homage to the Hanseatic city. As Hamburg’s dynamic spirit gathers momentum, the international traveler is discovering the Elbe metropolis as a new hub. For this clientele, The Fontenay offers the place to stay.

“Our aim is to create a contemporary and cosmopolitan lifestyle experience that connects with each individual guest, ensuring they feel recognised, at ease, respected and understood.”

The hotel takes its name from the American shipbroker John Fontenay, who came from Pennsylvania to Hamburg in the 19th century and settled by Lake Aster.

The Fontenay  Hamburg  Lake Aster  Elbphilhrmonie  architecture  design  Klaus-Michael Kühne  Jan Störmer 
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FEATURE: News Feature – Elbphilharmonie

The wealthy owner of one of the world’s largest logistics companies is preparing to open a luxurious new Hamburg hotel, designed to promote the city’s image and capitalise on the popularity of Herzog and de Meuron’s recently-opened Elbphilharmonie. Set to open in the final quarter of 2017, The Fontenay will be the first five-star hotel to open in Hamburg for almost two decades. The 131-bedroom property will be located close
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The design evolved from three fusing circles that form two interior open spaces / The Fontenay
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