MIX, Bruxelles

Hotel operator: Limited Editions Hotels group
Heritage architecture: Metzger et Associés Architecture
Interior design: Atelier Lionel Jadot (Lionel Jadot; Cristina Gusano; Pierrot Deconinck; Guillaume Thilly; Juliette Geeraert; Juliette Moyersoen; Julien Croenen; Louise Michiels)
Furnishings: Zaventem Ateliers (Thomas Serruys, Pierre-Emmanuel Vandeputte, Pierre Coddens, Lionel Jadot x David Chair Docter, Arthur Vandergucht, Ateliers JetJ)
Lightings: Zaventem Ateliers (Studio Elementaires, Roxane Lahidji, Pascale Risbourg x Atelier Haute Cuisine, Lionel Jadot)
Bathrooms: Zaventem Ateliers
Photo Credits: Mireille Roobaert, Serge Briso, Amber Vanbossel, Louis Vielle, courtesy of Lionel Jadot

Material is part of the capacity to become a moldable element, and designers work with ideas, consciousness, and meaning. The architect and interior designer Lionel Jadot understands this well as an insatiable explorer of the design/artisan relationship applied to systems of objects and spaces and social and material connections.

Jadot, from Belgium, is a self-taught, bold, and tenacious businessperson. He grew up in a family of established cabinetmakers and proves himself again an excellent director of creative commingling. For the Mix Hotel in Brussels, he promoted the power of handcrafting and the intrinsic strength of the synergistic collaboration between artisans, designers, and other interior design specialists.

In 2018, in Brussels as well, he turned a 6,000 square meter former paper mill into the lively Zaventem Ateliers creative center, true to the principle of community ethos. The center is an analog, open-source network specialized in producing art and design objects.

Jadot and his studio took this concept to a higher level in Mix by converting an iconic, huge functionalist 1960s building, the Royale Belge in Brussels, into spaces for hospitality, preserving the historic cross-shaped building envelope designed by architects René Stapels and Pierre Dufau. 

 The property covers 25,000 square meters, holding a 4-star hotel with 140 rooms and 40 studio suites, a gym, a wellness center, a co-working space, an auditorium, three restaurants, and a dining area. Drawing from the Zaventem Ateliers team, Jadot brought together more than 40 professionals, including designers and manufacturers, to furnish the interiors with bespoke installations, sculptures, and furniture. Every piece, from chairs down to the individual knobs, was the work of an independent artist or designer. 

This model is an amplifier and has commercial advantages, such as the certainty of compensating designers appropriately. It also promotes sustainable projects, favoring the use of locally sourced materials and production and fostering a creative community based on the collaboration, talents, and unique values of each designer.

As Jadot says, “Our mission was to turn this gigantic iconic building into the ultimate showcase for Belgian collectible design – a space signed collectively by all the artisans involved and where every corner is filled with bespoke, handcrafted pieces, telling each a unique story. Mix is a space that arouses curiosity and stays away from clichés, a true permanent group show that redefines collectible design.”

Throughout Mix’s spaces are extraordinary works in stone, fabric, metal, and wood. The reception desk, for instance, was designed by Maison Armand Jonckers, and the stools by Belgian designer Thomas Serruys. The textiles are the brainchild of French creative Emma Cognée who collaborated with Erika Schillebeeckx and Justine de Moriamé of Krjst Studio to produce them.

Roxane Lahidji designed the lighting; the foam seats bear the signature of the French-German artistic duo, Carolin Gieszner and Théo Demans of studio touche-touche; the tables are by the Belgian designer Pierre Coddens; the bespoke sconces are by Studio Elementaires; and the tapestries by La Gadoue Atelier. There are also two monumental pieces, a sculpture by Belgian designer Arno Declercq and a papier-mâché piece by Maud Bocquet and Zélie Boubou, from the Belgian collective Les Boulettesin.