Ho­tels in ti­mes of tax credits

seeITALY - - Design - Pao­la Bal­dac­ci

“The real lu­xu­ry lies not in the man­da­to­ry use of sump­tuous or ex­ces­si­ve­ly ex­pen­si­ve ma­te­rials, but ra­ther in the qua­li­ty of the ex­pe­rien­ce, in the abi­li­ty to be hap­py and to know how to li­ve your own world to the max in this world”, ob­ser­ves ar­chi­tect Si­mo­ne Mi­che­li. The con­cept of “splen­dour” is ho­ned whi­le ho­tels en­joy­ing tax credits are dra­wing on funds for re­fur­bish­ment. The Ita­lian de­cree in May la­st year ma­de 20 mil­lion eu­ros avai­la­ble in fun­ding for 2015 and 50 for the

Funds ma­ke re­fur­bish­ment pos­si­ble, the bir­th of lo­ca­tions of­fe­ring un­re­pea­ta­ble ex­pe­rien­ces. Interview wi­th Si­mo­ne Mi­che­li

years from 2016 to 2019. And a re­cord num­ber of ap­pli­ca­tions ha­ve been re­cei­ved, has an­noun­ced the Ita­lian Mi­ni­stry for Cul­tu­ral He­ri­ta­ge and Tou­ri­sm. Over 77 mil­lion eu­ros we­re re­que­sted for the fir­st sli­ce and in the fir­st four mi­nu­tes of “click day”, the start of on­li­ne ap­pli­ca­tions, re­quests sent in equal­led 86% of the to­tal al­lo­ca­ted. Fe­der­le­gno Ar­re­do re­por­ted that for fur­ni­tu­re alo­ne, ap­pli­ca­tions to­tal­led 27.1 mil­lion eu­ros again­st the two mil­lion avai­la­ble, na­me­ly 10% of the ma­xi­mum to­tal. “We are not sur­pri­sed that the re­sult of this fir­st round of fun­ding was all over in a han­d­ful of se­conds”, said Gior­gio Pal­muc­ci, pre­si­dent of the Ita­lian Con­fin­du­stria As- so­cia­tion of Ho­tels. We ha­ve al­rea­dy asked the Go­vern­ment to in­crea­se this mea­su­re, bo­th in terms of mo­re funds and a lon­ger ex­pi­ry da­te, con­si­de­ring that re­fur­bish­ment work re­qui­res plan­ning. Wi­thout then for­get­ting that, in ad­di­tion to the ho­tel sec­tor, this ma­noeu­vre al­so af­fec­ts the buil­ding and fur­ni­shing sec­tors wi­th a po­si­ti­ve im­pact for the coun­try’s eco­no­my". Plan­ners and de­si­gners are in fa­vour of the ini­tia­ti­ve be­cau­se it dri­ves to­wards “the qua­li­ty of ho­tels and com­pa­res them to the in­ter­na­tio­nal com­pe­ti­tion”, em­pha­si­ses Mi­che­li. “The­se in­cen­ti­ves pro­mo­te the eli­mi­na­tion of ar­chi­tec­tu­ral bar­riers, to­ge­ther wi­th ener­gy ef­fi­cien­cy and sa­vings. En­cou­ra-

ging di­gi­ta­li­sa­tion, we ha­ve fi­nal­ly star­ted to gi­ve com­mu­ni­ca­tion the va­lue it de­ser­ves”. It is pre­ci­se­ly this lat­ter fac­tor, th­rou­gh the tel­ling of ex­pe­rien­ces, that has tran­sfor­med the ho­tel in­to so­mewhe­re wel­co­ming on its way to be­co­ming an icon.

Icon lo­ca­tion

This planner’s ad­vi­ce to tho­se de­ci­ding to re­fur­bi­sh their ho­tel or si­mi­lar, is to turn it in­to “an at­trac­tion, put­ting it at the cen- tre of the dy­na­mic sy­stem of re­la­tions and emo­tions that man crea­tes eve­ry day”, he con­ti­nues. “And to do this it mu­st be kno­wn to a lar­ge num­ber of peo­ple, who ha­ve bo­th phy­si­cal and vir­tual ac­cess to it, ea­sy con­tact and the chan­ce to view it and get to know about the fa­ci­li­ties it has to of­fer”. But ar­chi­tec­tu­res able to ge­ne­ra­te si­mi­lar ad­ven­tu­res are still “too few, even in lar­ge, Ita­lian ci­ties well­k­no­wn world­wi­de”. “In or­der to put itself in the cen­tre of that

sy­stem of re­la­tions I men­tio­ned be­fo­re, a ho­tel mu­st at­tract and fa­sci­na­te the mind of vi­si­tors, of­fe­ring them an en­ga­ging, com­ple­te ex­pe­rien­ce that they can en­joy no­whe­re el­se in a si­mi­lar fa­shion”.

In­vest­ment sec­tors

In Mi­che­li’s ex­pe­rien­ce, the tax cre­dit has rewar­ded tech­no­lo­gi­cal in­no­va­tion as the main sec tor of in­ter­ven­tion. “Great im­por­tan­ce has been gi­ven to di­gi­ti­sa­tion and do­mo­tics, wi­th au­to­ma­tion of sy­stems to im­ple­ment cu­sto­mi­zed re­spon­ses to guests’ needs”. This has led to ener­gy sa­vings and ef­fi­cien­cy, wi­th a re­duc­tion in wa­ste and the crea­tion of su­stai­na­ble pro­jec­ts.

“Fi­nal­ly, this cre­dit has been es­sen­tial in breaking do­wn ar­chi­tec­tu­ral bar­riers”. Pu­blic areas we­re, the­re­fo­re, the fir­st to un­der­go si­gni­fi­cant work thanks to the tax cre­dit: halls, re­stau­ran­ts and mee­ting rooms ha­ve “of­ten been tur­ned in­to open cut­ting-ed­ge spa­ces for spen­ding qua­li­ty ti­me wi­th others, no lon­ger tem­po­ra­ry pas­sing pla­ces”, he con­clu­des. “Rooms, ba­th­rooms, ac­ces­ses to the spa or treat­ment area, the ho­tel as a who­le has, over re­cent years seen a big shift to­wards chan­ge, new­ness, or­ga­nic”.

2016 pro­jec­ts

Af­ter To­w­n­hou­se Duo­mo by Se­ven­stars in Mi­lan and the World Ho­tel Ri­pa in Ro­me, among pro­jec­ts for 2015, the ar­chi­tect and tra­vel­ler Mi­che­li has va­rious ho­tels in the pi­pe­li­ne in Ma­te­ra, Ve­ro­na, Co­mo, Ca­sa­blan­ca and Du­bai, to men­tion ju­st a few pla­ces. “We crea­te lo­ca­tions that are su­stai­na­ble from bo­th an en­vi­ron­men­tal and eco­no­mic point of view, built al­so wi­th the in­ten­tion of pay­ing ho­ma­ge and en­han­cing the di­stin­gui­shing fea­tu­res of their re­gions and cul­tu­res. Spa­ces whe­re con­tem­po­ra­ry man’s thoughts ma­na­ge to sli­de ‘elsewhere’, but whi­ch could not exi­st in any other pla­ce or mo­ment than whe­re and when, in that pre­ci­se in­stant, they are crea­ted”.

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