Design is all about details

Design is all about details

Currently we are designing a branded, 4-to-5-star hotel in Zaporozhye, Ukraine. In fact, the owner really wanted a 6-star property, but the internationally known hotel operator was certain that a 4-star level would be enough for this location. At any rate, it will still be a very nice hotel!

Interestingly, what I have recently discovered is that cultural practices extend not only to design aesthetics, but to construction methods and coordination among planners and tradesmen too. 

Germans like me are usually seen as being very precise and technically oriented (that renowned German engineering!). But I have often felt “boxed-in” by that stereotype, since as a designer I enjoy being creative and sometimes even try my hand at being an artist — and certainly not a technical or efficiently organized one! 

But in Zaporozhye it has become obvious that the people working on-site, who should be meticulous and organized, are also artists — and they love to improvise!

Now you might think that all creative artists should be happy people who work together in perfect harmony, but suddenly, I have just discovered (rather unhappily!) that I am, quite obviously, very “German.” The reason can be seen in these photos:

The first one shows a large duct, which had not been identified, had not been planned for and was suddenly standing in our boardroom — instead of being placed behind the wall where the layout had specifically been configured for plenty of storage space and all kinds of ductwork.

The other one, which must have been a painstaking exercise, shows where a wall in the public toilets has literally been sandwiched into the structural façade. Maybe it’s my genetic predisposition or just a mental block, but I would never have been able to even imagine such a design improvisation without first having seen it built!