Olivia Putnam

In conjunction with Journal des Palaces, I co-organized a round table around the theme of “Shifts in Renovations at High-End and Luxury Hotels.”

Olivia Putman, designer and director of Studio Putman, Jean-Philippe Nuel, interior designer and head of the architectural agency Agence Nuel, and Max Flageollet, director of Ligne Roset Contracts, were invited to take part in this round table.

I invite you to discover my interviews with these three individuals around the same questions so that you can learn more about their points of view. Below you can read my interview with Olivia Putman:

What distinctions do you make between a 4-star and 5-star hotel when you find yourself in charge of its renovation? What are the differences in terms of product and architecture? What concrete changes might take place in the method of re-doing a room, for instance?

The difference between a 4-star and 5-star hotel has to do first with the structural qualities of a building that may or may not allow for the modifications necessary for a change in category. After that, it’s left to an assessment between various criteria and options that will go on to satisfy the awarding of stars.

The spirit that we bring to the project will also make the difference. How can we enable the existing condition to evolve and respond to the desires of our contemporaries? This requires us to be on a permanent lookout, to be constantly observing and listening. Everything changes very quickly and all at once. It’s important to understand these evolutions, to synthesize them, and incorporate them into the design to give shape to the spaces or objects that will thoroughly integrate themselves into the environment for decades to come.

I’ve just finalized the interior design for Sofitel Paris Arc de Triomphe. To render this establishment pleasant, I had to create an elegant and modern atmosphere in which individuals from various nations would come together to stay. I put myself in the shoes of these travelers, imagining them on a business trip one minute, on vacation the next, then on a romantic getaway. I had to make sure that this unique location I was in the middle of designing for them would be flexible, to give them the impression that it was tailor-made for each of them.

How does sustainable development influence you in the choice of materials and the design of the hotel?

Ecology is not just a matter of politics and higher officials. As a designer, I have the choice to use environmentally responsible materials. It’s important to work with experts to reduce energy consumption by improving thermal insulation or considering a relevant array of light sources.

My biggest preoccupation is the preservation of water, my favorite element. The use of vapor for cleaning bathrooms was among the innovative features at Sofitel Paris Arc de Triomphe. It’s an effective way of economizing water and minimizing the use of detergents. I also love the idea that this new device preserves the health of the cleaning ladies, who will be less exposed to toxic chemical products.

Sofitel Essaouira
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Sofitel Essaouira

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