With more than 150 brands, Sleep+Eat 2018, which took place from 20 to 21 November at the Olympia London, asserted itself as a must-attend event for the hospitality, hotel, bar, and restaurant sector; one that attracted architects, designers, owners, and operators at the international level. From bathrooms to lighting, the keyword was ‘tailor-made’, for a design that responds to the needs of increasingly demanding clients.
The ability to customise is a major advantage that is in the very DNA of the Italian brands that participated in the event. Like Estro, a Tuscan company that specialises in lighting fixtures and creates personalised solutions according to space and style. For example: “In London we created and mounted a fabric lighting fixture for a little boy’s room, measuring two and a half meters in diameter,” says the company.
At the exhibition Estro focused on its cordless, rechargeable table lamps. Small and easy to transport, they are conceived for restaurant décor, providing an autonomy of approximately seven hours and suitable for exterior spaces as well.
Among the ambassadors of ‘Made in Italy’ lighting were Contardi, which presented poetic and flexible lighting fixtures that enhance both indoor and outdoor spaces; and Fabbian, with Armilla, one of its most striking products, a suspension lamp in the shape of a large, blown glass and metal sphere that calls to mind renaissance instruments used for taking astronomical measurements.
The bathrooms of the most exclusive hotels become intimate and welcoming environments, decorated with warm materials, rich wallpapers, lights, and perfumes that recreate a domestic atmosphere; a flexible space where one can even indulge in a drink while relaxing in the tub thanks to the glass holder by Victoria+Albert.
In terms of beauty and wellness, wood and colour are a winning pair, a trend seen in the sinks by VitrA, resting on wood surfaces, and in the bright green and blue sinks by Alape, all enhanced by the elegant finishes of the faucets, like Perrin&Rowe’s brushed brass, bronze, and gold. A must-see at the trade fair were the exhibition spaces, the three Eat Sets and the four Sleep Sets, concept rooms conceived by architects and designers with a specific “challenge”: to interpret a brand unrelated to the world of interior design, yet somehow kindred to the style and attitude of the designer. For example, Yasmine Mahmoudieh, architect, interior designer, and entrepreneur, designed Room Three of the Sleep Set, based on the novels of the famous publishing house, Penguin Books.
The result was a space that articulated itself in three parts: the first was a lounge with writings by the Persian poet Rumi, the second was a bedroom that referenced Plato’s Symposium, and the third was the bathroom-wellness area decorated with fixtures by Dornbracht and inspired by the novel Elizabeth and her German Garden by Elizabeth Von Arnim. Lastly, among the most interesting stands was that of Zonca International, a brand of lighting fixtures that showcased its own gin in place of lights, in a concept bar designed by architect Chiara Caberlon and built with GMC Contract&Mobili.