Category Archives: design

Invisible Mirrorcube eco-hotel room available for purchase

Situated in the forest area around Harads, Sweden, Treehotel has now implemented five of the 24 rooms it has planned for the area. Among those are “The Blue Cone,” “The UFO” and “The Bird’s Nest,” all suspended four to six meters above the ground and designed in eco-minded fashion by some of Scandinavia’s leading architects.

Designed to blend into its surroundings so as not to ruin the view, the Mirrorcube is an addition to this collection, featuring mirrored walls that reflect their surroundings and yet are safe for passing birds thanks to a layer of infrared film. Featuring six windows and a panoramic view, the Mirrorcube accommodates two people with a double bed, bathroom, lounge, and rooftop terrace.

Perhaps most interestingly of all, the Mirrorcube is now for sale, with a delivery time of roughly four months. Retail pricing is reportedly about EUR 275,000 excluding transportation costs.

Because of the cube’s ability to blend into its surroundings so well, it may be a perfect choice for those looking to create accommodation in areas of natural beauty. Treehotel is currently looking for suitable resellers for its Mirrorcube.

via Swedish hotel’s nearly invisible glass ‘tree rooms’ | Springwise.

Pimkie’s site documents changing color trends on city streets | VIDEO

Just as sites such as Brayola have used the crowds to help women find recommendations for bras, now a new site is providing hints at the most popular color choices in three European cities. The Pimkie Color Forecast analyzes webcam footage to provide infographics detailing current trends in Paris, Milan and Antwerp.

With the help of interactive artist and software developer Pedro Miguel Cruz, France-based fashion retailer Pimkie has set up webcams in the “most fashionable” areas of the three cities, the images from which are then put through a computer program. The program isolates the pixels that represent people by monitoring their motion over time – the environment stays still but people move across the image space. The color of these pixels is then logged and the data is organized and presented in an easy-to-understand way to visitors of the Color Forecast.

Users can watch the live feed, see the most popular shades at different times of the day, week or month (in bar chart or pie chart form), or check Pimkie’s clothes recommendations for each city based on its most popular color.

These recommendations can then be purchased through the Pimkie store. The video below explains more about the process behind the site:

The fashion industry is full of opinions on the latest trends, but the Color Forecast provides digestable information based on actual data from the street, as well as providing a unique way to engage customers for the brand. Retailers, could you take inspiration from Pimkie’s lead?

via Fashion site documents changing color trends on city streets | Springwise.

S. Pellegrino’s 2011 World’s 50 Best Restaurants

The 2011 S. Pellegrino “World’s 50 Best Restaurants List” is out, with Denmark’s Noma landing on top for the second year in a row, and Spain’s El Celler de Can Roca and Mugaritz capturing second and third.

The annual award, organized by Restaurant magazine and now in its tenth year, is widely considered to be the Oscars of the restaurant world. Results are voted by a 837-member panel of industry experts from 27 regions around the world, including chefs, food writers and restaurateurs. There are no set criteria for judging and votes are cast based on personal dining experiences.

Noma, headed by chef Rene Redzepi, is famed for its imaginative treatment of regional ingredients. CNN reported that a day after the best restaurants list came out in 2010, Noma received more than 100,000 requests for a table.

The list is dominated by restaurants in Europe, with only five restaurants in Asia-Pacific cracking the top 50 list.

China made its first appearance on the list: Chef Richard Ekkebus’ modern French restaurant Amber at Landmark Mandarin Oriental in Hong Kong was placed 37th.

Japan’s Les Creations De NARISAWA, which serves unorthodox French cuisine cooked with organic soil and charcoal, is placed at number 12, claiming the Best in Asia award for the third year running.

Nihonryori Ryugin, at number 20, is the fasting rising restaurant on the list, up 28 places from last year.

Other entrants in the Asia-Pacific region including Quay Restaurant in Sydney, placed 26th, and Iggy’s in Singapore following close behind at number 27.

Restaurants from Peru and Russia also made the list for the first time. Peruvian restaurant Astrid Y Gaston was placed at number 42 and restaurant Varvary in Moscow, Russia, appears at 48.

Five-time chart topper elBulli in Spain is missing from the list this year as chef Ferran Adrià will serve its last meal as a restaurant on July 20, 2011.

It will reopen as a nonprofit gastronomy think tank in 2014.

The top 50 list:

1. Noma (Copenhagen, Denmark)

2. El Celler de Can Roca (Girona, Spain)

3. Mugaritz (Errenteria, Spain)

4. Osteria Francescana (Modena, Italy)

5. The Fat Duck (Bray, England)

6. Alinea (Chicago, Illinois)

7. D.O.M. (São Paulo, Brazil)

8. Arzak (San Sebastián, Spain)

9. Le Chateaubriand (Paris, France)

10. Per Se (New York)

11. Daniel (New York)

12. Les Créations de Narisawa (Tokyo, Japan)

13. L’Astrance (Paris, France)

14. L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon (Paris, France)

15. Hof Van Cleve (Kruishoutem, Belgium)

16. Pierre Gagnaire (Paris, France)

17. Oud Sluis (Sluis, Netherlands)

18. Le Bernardin (New York)

19. L’Arpege (Paris, France)

20. Nihonryori RyuGin (Tokyo, Japan)

21. Vendôme (Bergisch Gladbach, Germany)

22. Steirereck (Vienna, Austria)

23. Schloss Schauenstein (Fürstenau, Switzerland)

24. Eleven Madison Park (New York)

25. Aqua (Bath, England)

26. Quay Restaurant (Sydney, Australia)

27. Iggy’s (Singapore)

28. Combal Zero (Rivoli, Italy)

29. Martín Berasategui (Lasarte-Oria, Spain)

30. Bras (Laguiole, France)

31. Biko (Mexico City, Mexico)

32. Le Calandre (Rubano, Italy)

33. Il Ristorante Cracco (Milan, Italy)

34. The Ledbury (London, England)

35. Chez Dominique (Helsinki, Finland)

36. Le Quartier Français (Franschhoek, South Africa)

37. Amber (Hong Kong, China)

38. Dal Pescatore (Mantova, Italy)

39. Il Canto (Siena, Italy)

40. Momofuku Ssäm Bar (New York)

41. St. John (London, England)

42. Astrid y Gastón (Lima, Perú)

43. Hibiscus (London, England)

44. La Maison Troisgros (Roanne, France)

45. Alain Ducasse Au Plaza Athénée (Paris, France)

46. De Librije (Zwolle, Netherlands)

47. Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville (Crissier, Switzerland)

48. Varvary (Moscow, Russia)

49. Pujol (Mexico City, Mexico)

50. Asador Etxebarri (Atxondo-Bizkaia, Spain)

via S. Pellegrino’s 2011 World’s 50 Best Restaurants | CNNGo.com.

The People’s Supermarket

Located in the heart of London this cooperative non-profit is unique. Managed and owned by the members, the shop operates on a membership system, it offers local and seasonal products for the lowest prices possible.

Design agency Unreal was responsible for developing its branding, with in mind the low budget constraint of the cooperative. For the people, by the people.

Set up in Spring 2010 by chef Arthur Potts-Dawson, retailer Kate Wickes-Bull and an army of others, The People’s Supermarket is a community-based shop that’s managed and owned by members and open to all. It’s based just around the corner from Unreal’s studio, on Lamb’s Conduit St, London WC1 and takes its format from the popular co-operative ‘Park Slope’ in Brooklyn, NYC.

In addition to the membership scheme, much of the produce in the shop is locally sourced, seasonal and sustainable, meaning they stock the best food at the lowest possible prices. The story of the supermarket will be broadcast in its own Channel 4 documentary, due to air in early 2011.

The People’s BrandAfter approaching the Supermarket to design some launch posters, we were tasked with developing the brand, which needed to reflect the co-op’s core values of being communal, affordable and democratic without appearing too virtuous or elitist. A full identity program was required including logo, stationery suite, advertising, packaging and brand guidelines.

(All photography shot on location at The People’s Supermarket by supermarket members Liz and Max of Haarala Hamilton photography. More information at http://www.thepeoplessupermarket.org & http://www.unreal-uk.com)

via The People’s Supermarket [Branding] | Trendland: Fashion Blog & Trend Magazine.

Condé Nast to open GQ and Vogue restaurants in Turkey and Ukraine

Condé Nast to open GQ and Vogue restaurants in Turkey and UkraineSophie Maden, 22 September 2011, 3:00pm Be the first to commentVogue and GQ publisher Condé Nast has announced it will open branded restaurants in Kiev and Istanbul next year, as part of a plan to target high-end consumers worldwide.Vogue Cafe, Moscow: established by Condé Nast last yearThe publisher established Condé Nast Restaurants, part of Condé Nast International, in August last year.Now the Vogue Café, Kiev, and GQ Bar, Istanbul, are set to join Moscows Vogue Café, GQ Bar and Tatler Club.Stuart Nielsen, director of restaurants for Condé Nast International, said: “Turkey and the Ukraine are both exciting emerging markets with a strong appetite for luxury brands in retail and hospitality. Vogue Café and GQ Bar address this powerful consumer desire.”Condé Nast is working in partnership with the Otrada Luxury Group in the Ukraine, and the Dogus Group in Turkey, to launch the outlets.Nielsen said more openings would be announced in the coming months, including in Asia, the Middle East and Latin America.Condé Nast will also launch mens title GQ to a Turkish audience for the first time in March next year. The magazine, edited by Mirgun Cabas, will be published under a licensing agreement between Condé Nast and the Dogus Media Group.Last week, Condé Nast announced it would open its own college in London offering Vogue-branded fashion courses.

via Condé Nast to open GQ and Vogue restaurants in Turkey and Ukraine – Media news – Media Week.

Norman Cescut’s Tweets: August 2011

In case you missed my tweets, here’s a summary of the most important ones.                  You are more than welcome to follow me on Twitter @norman_cescut to get real-time updates. Enjoy!

You are more than welcome to follow me on Twitter @norman_cescut to get real-time updates!

DESITA and ECOFFEE at 2011 Meeting Rimini

DESITA and its ECOFFEE partner Serint Group Italia are pleased to announce the partnership reached with the Fondazione Meeting, the organizing committee of Meeting Rimini (Rimini, Italy 21-27 August 2011), event which is recognized as one of the most important festivals in Europe collecting great political personalities, managers, representatives of different religions and cultures, intellectuals and artists, athletes and protagonists of the world scene. It offers stories of men and women through conferences, exhibitions, shows, and sporting events.

The partnership signed among DESITA, Serint Group and Fondazione Meeting concerns the development and creation of a long-term and ambitious project, called “Il Parco del Meeting (The Meeting Park)” which will be disclosed to a large number of invited companies at the Rimini Meeting next Friday, August 26 during a day-long meeting together with the Fondazione Board of Directors. In the next following months, the project will be implemented involving companies, local authorities, institutions and schools belonging to the province of Rimini (Italy)

The project aims to gradually introduce sustainability in the MeetingRimini event, thus creating a tighter bond between the city of Rimini and the event and allowing the Parco del Meeting to become a place for dissemination of the best sustainable practices related to culture, products, technology , projects and services. The Parco del Meeting will become the park of the city of Rimini, a place of reference and aggregation active throughout the year, with restaurants designed according to our ECOFFEE guidelines, event areas and much more.

Other collateral projects are under development, including the design of sustainable exhibition areas of a pavillon of the RiminiMeeting offering to those exhibitors attentive to environmental issues the opportunity to participate actively in the Park project, as early as next year.

With this great news, we are going to take a little rest from a period of intense and successful work, wishing you a wonderful holiday time. We will be back on September or, if you are spending your holidays in Italy, we will be more than happy to meet you at the RiminiMeeting on Friday August 26th

For more information norman [at] ecoffee.it

PS. Have you already voted for the Green Sheikh, Ambassador ECOFFEE, who has been nominated as Best Green International Celebrity at next Best Green Awards? Do not hesitate to vote for him! Vote for Green Sheikh!

A new shop concept by DESITA and …ECOFFEE

I am glad to announce that DESITA is planning a shop concept for the new image of the Saadeddin pastry shops chain located in many states and cities of the Arabian peninsula, whose first restyling project has been planned for one of its Riyadh branches.

After having spent a couple of months briefing with the client in Italy and in Saudi Arabia and after having visited the shop location in Riyadh, we are now defining its layout following the client wishes and our already confirmed inputs about the sale process. The chain’s new brand image will be a young, fresh, trendy and European one.

The pastry shop project will be developed over an area of about 350 square meters and will include an innovative sale formula, for the Saudi habits, which we are sure will generate great interest and attention not limited to the Arab area only.

Thanks also to our fortnightly experience in the foodservice business, to our knowledge of the Arab culture and customer behavior and to the unlimited trust from our Client, we will merge the local traditions and habits into a new shop concept, designing innovative interiors and also a new way to intend the coffee shop area along the “single” (reserved to men only) and the “family” rooms areas.

It is in fact required in Saudi Arabia that food shops with catering facilities have specifically reserved entrances, men-only sitting rooms and other ones for women and families.

Furthermore, in agreement with the client, the concept is going to be developed following, where possible, the ECOFFEE guidelines as per the use of materials, equipment, products and sustainable solutions.

This important client has been collaborating with us for many years and his trust has always been rewarded allowing his company to be a trendsetter one in his area of business. His willingness to embrace sustainability in this new sales formula will grant him a sure competitive advantage. It is a honor for us to collaborate with such of farsighted and open minded client.

The combination of the new business formula and of the ECOFFEE guidelines applied to this first pastry shop will be next used in all the other chain branches, so that to make it a point of reference for the sustainability trend in a geographical area more and more sensitive to this issue.

A new sustainable design policy for Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is expanding its green commitments through a new sustainable design policy. In addition to promoting the use of recognized green building certification systems such as LEED, the policy includes new environmental criteria and checklists for renovation and retrofit projects, environmental consultation during the design brief and construction process, and the creation of a green-build best practices repository for use by Fairmont’s hotels, engineers, developers, project leads, and architects.

“We literally wrote the book on hotel sustainability and have been focused on making our properties as environmentally sound as possible, says president, Chris Cahill. “Now, we’re instituting formal design and construction guidelines for our pipeline of new hotel projects and ongoing capital agenda. Environmental stewardship is part of Fairmont’s DNA and we want to ensure it’s evident in all phases of our business.”

The program has been implemented at two Fairmont hotels. Fairmont Pittsburgh, the brand’s first LEED-certified hotel, incorporates energy efficient lighting and appliances; enzyme waste systems; furnishings and other guestroom amenities made from recycled, organic, or sustainable material; and the use of paints, adhesives, sealants, carpets, and fabrics with no or low emissions. Meanwhile, the Savoy in London (pictured) has a waste management system, as well as a heat and power plant that reduces the hotel’s reliance on the national grid by approximately 50 percent.

The policy is part of The Fairmont Green Partnership program, allowing the Group to meet and exceed guest expectations of operational sustainability. It focuses on improvements in waste management, sustainability, and energy and water conservation at Fairmont’s properties, and innovative community outreach programs involving local groups and partnership. (Source: Hospitality design.com)