Hotel bedrooms very nearly have to accomplish the whole agenda of your entire house in one tiny footprint: they’re private lounges, dining chambers, storage closets, dressing rooms and work studios all rolled into one. Also of course they have to provide the ideal environment for a healthy night’s sleep.
Hotel bedrooms carry a lot of responsibility. The atmosphere they project when you walk through the door for the first time has to make you feel at home in one glance. Or if feeling at home is not desired, then at least they have to compel you to play along with whatever suspended reality lifestyle you’ve sought out.
Above and beyond most other types of spaces, bedrooms carry extra psychological baggage. They’re the last places you inhabit before losing consciousness each night and the first places you encounter whenever you are lucky enough to wake up to a new morning. They have to shelter you when you’re most vulnerable. They have to be trustworthy. It has to be easy to find an extra blanket in the dark. After all, you’re spending a solid uninterrupted chunk of your life each night in the confines of these rooms. Bedrooms have the unique job of needing to serve you equally well in both daylight and in total darkness. It’s a place where the cycles of the human body and the cycles of the earth’s rotation around its axis have to work in concert with each other.
It’s a type of room that can easily be shrugged off as being too ordinary to think much of. Yet the very weighty stuff that these rooms are about means that a whole lot is at stake if they’re not designed and furnished with the utmost care.
On top of all of that, the hotel bedrooms Bekah and I visited on our mad jaunt from the Sacred Valley to the Galapagos still somehow had to exude the atmosphere of the particular lodge or region of the world they’re located in. When done well these spaces are secret little masterpieces of invisible efficiency, well-tuned mood and conflicting agendas coexisting peacefully. And all you’ll really notice is what a nice night of sleep you got and how nice the room looked in the daylight. The real artfulness of hospitality stays mostly invisible.