No hotel in London even begins to approach St. Martin’s in sheer audacity of its design. Much of this is due to the Covent Garden hotel’s lighting scheme. One of-a-kind installations bask guest rooms in purples and yellows. Floor lights in the lobby turn every surface into bright radiance. Philippe Starck, the designer, bears some of the responsibility too. His is the mind behind the double-height yellow plexiglass revolving doors and the lobby full of golden stools that look like teeth, extra long chaise longue and divers sculptures. The fitness center, Gymbox, is half nightclub and half boxing studio. It too is awash in lights. And the restaurant, the perennial celeb hangout Asia de Cuba, basks in its own radiance and ceviches.
But comfort is sacrificed at the altar of design. The rooms are modern and simple, with Eames rockers, Malin+Goetz toiletries, and floor-to-ceiling windows. Some, like the Deluxe Garden, have outdoor spaces overlooking gardens. Others, like the Loft Junior Suite, are modern aeries, bathed in earth tones.
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