As I write this, the temperature in Berlin is speeding along towards 100 degrees and the sky is hazy and unpleasant with the type of scorching heat I normally associate with, say, Texas parking lots, or maybe the sixth circle of Hell. While I'm being sure to stay hydrated and immobile, I'm also cooling my mind by visualizing myself in various beautifully climatized situations: darkened movie theaters, a quiet porch on the edge of some breezy body of water, and - in particular - luxury hotel lobbies.
Naturally, of this trio of cooling visions, I find the idea of hotel lobbies most appealing, largely for its total experience: after awaking from an untroubled sleep on cooled, crisp sheets, I can't imagine what would be better than passing the unbearably hot hours in a bustling (yet serene) marble-floored and satin-walled dome, reading the newspaper and perhaps being brought something very cold from the bar.
However, given my current physical position (collapsed on my couch) and financial situation (similarly desperate), these visions are all merely fantasies of the first order. But they do seem to have the effect of making me less panicked about my current physical discomfort while providing a welcome, meditative (aspirational?) distraction.
So, without further ado, I happily present you with the fruit of the last few hours, which - to put it plainly - is simply a slideshow of hotel lobbies. Ranging from the gothic, hippie glamour of the Chateau Marmont to the mid-century perfection of the Hotel Okura in Tokyo (due to be torn down!*), to the thick gilding of the Plazas and Ritzes the world over: I see a free seat over there - under that giant potted palm, in a velvet clubseat - that's meant just for you.
So, please enjoy slipping into the lap of luxury for just a moment. And in the meantime, I'm hoping The Secret is a real thing and that looking at this slideshow for long enough will make my presence upon a five star banquette a reality.
- Hotel de Paris, Monaco. Via luxurylifereview.com
- The Ritz, Paris © 2009 ERIC LARRAYADIEU
- The Fairmont, San Francisco (in the 1950s). Via Epicurienne.com
- The Breakers Hotel, Palm Beach (North Loggia, 1920s). Via Floridamemory.com.
- Hotel Okura, Tokyo. Image via Luxury Hotels of the World
- Ritz Carlton, Kapalua, Hawaii. Via Ritz Carlton
- The Palmer Hotel, Chicago. Via New York Times
- Hotel Danieli, Venice. Via Wikipedia
- Chateau Marmont, Los Angeles. Via Hollywood Reporter
- Residenza Napoleone III, Rome. Via Residenza Napoleone
- The Savoy, London. Via Premium Europe
*Read our friend Sam Cochran's article in Architectural Digest about the campaign to save the Okura!