Not quite a room with a view but a view from a room, kind of. . .
Digital photography has changed the way people record their lives, whether through an actual camera or a smart phone. With the cost of making prints to see what it looks like gone completely, there is no reason not to take a photo of anything at all. If it’s no good, the delete key is right there, and if it is. . .or even if it isn’t, if it’s just a moment in time that has some interest or other (or not), it can be whomped up on a blog post or anywhere at all on the net, or even – daring but done – a print can be made and stuck in a photo album, or in a show. . .or pasted on a door, or the floor. . .It’s good! It’s better than good! Amazing! A friend of mine takes a lot of photos of what she eats. Why ever not? I’ve tended to continue taking photos of things that cost me a bomb to record in the old film days, but have added a few. . .
In my cycle trip through Germany, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands at some point I started taking photos of hotel interiors. They range from hostel bed shots – of the mattress above from a lower bunk in a hostel – to rooms, hallways and stairwells. . .and in one case the skylight of an atrium, and a strange sculpture in a hotel in the Netherlands. Some are modern, and some older. . .
It struck me that there is probably an endless elaboration of the division of labour in hotel design too, that if you can’t get a degree in hotel hallway design now, it won’t be long away.
Here is a selection, just for you.
This hallway is in a “Scandic” hotel in Malmo, Sweden. The carpet is not one that would suit someone somewhat the worse for wear in my opinion. But maybe, given that it’s Sweden, it’s about sex:
Below is a hallway in Jonkoping, Sweden. The colours are cool, though I was not too taken by the carpet.
This stairwell in the hotel is not at all bad.
Here is the view from above, with a certain derelict cyclist’s machine locked up:
But the room! Wow! For the unfit guest, or the guest who is superfit and just forgot to bung a set of barbells in the luggage:
I used them. I did! You wouldn’t know.
In Gothenburg, which is spelt many ways, here is the atrium of one of the Scandic hotels (there are heaps of them):
Below is another corridor from a Danish hotel in a chain that wants guests to feel they are in a ship. The prices are very reasonable.
Somewhat more elegant, a revamped historic hotel in a small Danish city outside Aarhuis.
A window from same:
This amazing work is in the lobby of a hotel in Apeldoorn in the Netherlands. I have tried, and so far failed, to discover what it’s about, so have in the interim made up its story, which I will share with you.
The hotel is opposite a memorial to the Canadian soldiers who fell in the campaign to rid the Netherlands of the Germans in World War II. Quite a few died – it was a very hard campaign. The Canadian headquarters were nearby – the palace where the King and Queen of the country once lived.
My theory is that this carving was a gift from Canadian natives who had served in the campaign, either to the royals or the hotel. It symbolises – according to me – the hunting prowess of the subjects, the warrior standing on the head of the bison revealing this, plus the warlike success and failure of the people, symbolised by the head in the one hand. . .there is more. I would be grateful for any information that either debunks this, or adds to it.
Onward! Here is a lift in a Leipzig hotel. . .
and here another window in a hotel near Dresden, in the area known as “Saxon Switzerland”:
There you go. This is a teaser for some other “themes” that will surface eventually. If you haven’t enjoyed this one – sorry! Maybe one about gallery installations that are art in themselves (fire hydrants for example). Yes or no, thanks for reading this one.