Crit­i­cal ac­claim for AR­CHI­TEC­TURE and DE­SIGN


M Style - - The Good Life -

The Gran Meliá Pala­cio de los Duques in Madrid and the Gran Meliá Don Pepe in Mar­bella, both part of the Meliá Ho­tels In­ter­na­tional group, re­ceived a dou­ble dose of praise at the lat­est Spain Lux­ury Ho­tel Awards. Ál­varo Sans and his ar­chi­tec­tural firm were also recog­nised for their cre­ativ­ity and artistry in the ho­tels’ ar­chi­tec­ture and in­te­rior de­sign.

The aim of the Spain Lux­ury Ho­tel Awards—or­gan­ised by Grupo Vía—is to recog­nise the ef­forts that ho­tels put into be­ing the best. They re­ward ex­cel­lence in ev­ery­thing from de­sign and at­mos­phere to cus­tomer ser­vices and man­age­ment. Meliá Ho­tels In­ter- na­tional is proud of both the ac­claim they have re­ceived for their ho­tels and of Ál­varo Sans, who has helped the ho­tel po­si­tion it­self amongst the top lux­ury ho­tels in Spain.

A key player in the com­pany’s most out­stand­ing projects, Sans was also the driv­ing force be­hind the mag­nif­i­cent ren­o­va­tion of the Gran Meliá Pala­cio de los Duques. Now a mem­ber of the ex­clu­sive ‘Lead­ing Ho­tels of the World’ club, this land­mark ho­tel has be­come one of the three best lux­ury ho­tels in Madrid after open­ing less than a year ago. In Sans’ eyes, ‘It was an ex­tra­or­di­nary chal­lenge to mod­ernise and adapt this for­mer neo-Re­nais­sance palace by en­hanc­ing its ar­chi­tec­tural fea­tures, in or­der for it to be­come a des­ti­na­tion im­bued with his­tory. To give some ex­am­ples, I would point to the suc­cess­ful sym­bio­sis be­tween Ve­lazquez’ works and the lat­est trends in con­tem­po­rary ho­tel suites, bath­rooms and fur­ni­ture de­sign by ma­jor ar­chi­tects. Of course, I have to men­tion the con­ver­sion of the old sta­bles into the restau­rant, as well as the restora­tion of the his­tor­i­cal gar­den and foun­tain which, thanks to ex­haus­tive ar­chae­o­log­i­cal and restora­tive work, was able to re­spect the orig­i­nal struc­ture’.

Be­cause of the build­ing’s his­toric value, some of its orig­i­nal 19th-cen­tury fea­tures were re­tained, in­clud­ing the El­iz­a­bethan fa­cade, the spec­tac­u­lar cen­tral stair­case made of wood and wrought iron and the orig­i­nal arched clois­ter with its glass ceil­ing, which to­day houses the ho­tel lobby. The Ve­lazquez-in­spired in­te­rior de­sign and dec­o­ra­tion was led by Adri­ana Sans, who gave some of the painter ’s most fa­mous works a mod­ern twist.

The Gran Meliá Pala­cio de los Duques re­ceived ar­chi­tec­ture and de­sign awards in the Best Lux­ury City Ho­tel cat­e­gory.

Above, the award­win­ning ho­tels: on the left, the in­te­rior de­sign of the lobbyin the Gran Meliá Pala­cio de los Duques, with re­pro­duc­tions of paint­ings by Velázquez,and on the right, the Gran Meliá Don Pepe.

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