Sheraton‘s new five-star deluxe hotel happens to be in the ever-connected and fashion-driven city of Bangalore, India. With DiLeonardo heading the interior design for this new build, it had to make sure the glamour of haute couture is captured with fresh and cutting-edge, yet timeless design along with the implementation of Indian-inflected patterns and materials that are seen creatively throughout the property.
As guests arrive, they enter a very contemporary space, a high atrium, featuring decorative high wall panels with elaborate Indian motifs. A large, focal water feature greets guests, which was designed around the architecture of the interior that activates the cenre of the lobby. A bespoke lighting crystal shines down leading guests to the reception area.
A city of technological culture, Bangalore ranks as one of the fastest-growing cities in Asia. The integration of this vast technology is seen in the use of the latest entertainment technology and bathroom fixtures. The guest room experience proposes a beautiful contrast to the fast-paced, always moving, city of Bangalore. The guest room can be described as tranquil, modern, and sophisticated while continuing to evoke a sense of luxury.
The guest enters a very spacious interior which is enriched by a clear glass window with enclosed closure system dividing the bath and guest room allowing daylight into the bathroom.
DiLeonardo’s vision is woven throughout various parts of the property including the grand ballroom which features this unique ceiling design, inspired by women’s jewellery. Rings of custom lights and soffits in various sizes redefine grandeur.
Reflecting the setting of this modern and trendsetting city, additional public spaces designed by DiLeonardo include the Feast Restaurant, inspired by a Botanica all-day bistro, where nature is invited into the space like a modern architectural masterpiece. Sunlight washes over most of the dining area throughout the day.
The Durbar lounge is a mix of old and new, paying homage to the India’s regal past while spearheading the trend for the next generation. Bene Trattoria & Bar is an authentic Italian gastronomic experience with a small town Italian feel. Lastly, the Persian Terrace located at the pool level, creates a relaxing atmosphere for enjoying unique cuisine and exotic cocktails.
Innovation with a strong sense of glamour is easily seen throughout this great new property, DiLeonardo’s design in all parts of this five star hotel will truly make the Sheraton Bangalore experience a new must-have for people travelling to this exciting city.
When associating travelling with fashion, one of the first names to come to mind, is Louis Vuitton (LV). With a tradition in high-end travel products such as suitcases and bags starting in the 1800s, LV became a fashion icon by constantly expanding product line and re-inventing itself to meet the contemporary demand while maintaining its prestige through the use of its timeless logo and textile pattern.
The ground floor public areas design is inspired by the newest LV shops opening around the world in terms of its simple blend of materials, forms and trademark symbols and logo.
Guests enter the hotel lobby through an impressively high atrium featuring breathtaking high walls with patterned panels using Indian-inspired motifs. The music from the lobby lounge pulls patrons in further.
Looking ahead, guests will see on their left, a swooping platform rising out of the sandstone flooring treatment with two inviting steps that lead to an unique, grand staircase and water feature up to the meeting room level. This platform marks the formal arrival for guests attending functions and meetings above.
As guests proceed to the right along an elegant, curved path they notice a magnificent custom-made light fixture, with a combination of blue and clear crystal that will direct guests to the reception area.
Each registration pod is designed with dark wood and metal trims to resemble a display case of a fashion boutique. But most people will have their eyes on the feature wall behind the pods which is an elegant wood sculpture wall that’s dramatically lit from all around.
Turning around from the registration pods, guests enter through the bronze glass screen into the lounge, resplendent with luxurious modern furnishing such as the banquette, lounge chairs and sectional sofas. The lounge will also have a Sheraton link area and a large back-lit wall as a backdrop that ties everything together. This is where guests can achieve a connection virtually, through wireless internet and physically, by sharing a table and having a drink together.
The lounge is filled constantly with light music coming from the closely-located grand piano to stimulate conversations. A grab-an-go area that combines deli, bakery, and cafe is also placed strategically between the lounge and the Feast Restaurant so that guests in the lounge could enjoy a snack and other guests on the go could pick up something for the road.
The design of the ballroom level is meant to feel very Chanel, which is about dressing and accessorising women through whimsical yet restrained design that results in timeless glamour.
The prefunction area expands the water theme from the lobby. Instead of chandeliers, the ceiling is adorned with suspended wood soffits that have crystal beads of light in various sizes, quietly hinting the glamour of events taking place here. Grand wood panel walls with custom-designed inset sconces dance up and down the walls in a variety of colours create a dynamic atmosphere for lively conversations.
The grand ballroom features the most unique ceiling design. Inspired by women’s jewellery, the impressive rings of custom pendant lights and soffits in various sizes redefine grandeur. As a complement to the rich ceiling, contemporary acoustic panelling on the wall allow for the coexistence of grandeur and intimacy. This sophisticated quality is interpreted throughout meeting and function rooms to maintain a cohesive design.
Guest rooms and suites
In the early 1980s, Giorgio Armani almost single-handedly redefined sophistication in men’s tailoring. By removing the shoulder pads from his suits, he allowed the fabric to hang naturally to create a more relaxed look. He also introduced a variety of earth tones into his fabric colours and revolutionised men’s fashion.
Dileonardo’s guest room design is a tribute to Giorgio Armani’s fashion. The guest room environment is tranquil and sophisticated. The layout is pragmatic yet luxurious. The colour scheme is subtle yet memorable. The architectural features are bold yet relaxing.
The built-in headboard design consists of highly lacquered wood, tinted glass, and leather. It towers over the bed to accentuate the height of the room while achieving a superior degree of scale and comfort with the padded leather panel and tinted glass above it.
The chaise-longe chair offsets the formal qualities of the room layout for an added degree of casual elegance.
The millwork design is inspired by fine men’s stores which is about having a compartment for every piece of clothing and accessory and having a great place to dress up and look good. The vanity mirror is placed next to the closet with built-in compartments above the luggage bench for storing ties, cufflinks and keys on the other side so guests will be able to get dressed conveniently with everything at their finger tips. The accessory compartment is integrated in a wood panelling that stretches across the wall to also house a flat-screen TV, wall-mount task lamp above the desk, and a mirror. It serves as a practical and decorative element tying all of the millwork together.
The bathroom design maintains the same attitude as the rest of the room. A modern vanity mirror with built-in lighting on either side sets the mood for a very clean and modern look. The vanity counter’s asymmetrical elevation with a built-in shelf for towels and other amenities creates a harmonic composition with the contemporary wash basin on the counter.
The toilet is carefully shielded by the vanity counter while the bath and shower open up to the bathroom for maximum light and comfort. The glass partition next to the bath features glass-enclosed electrical operated wood blinds which provide privacy without the maintenance concerns.
The walls are clad with large sandstone tiles that continue up from the floor with small glass tile inlay in key areas that enhances the refinement of the room.
Expanding on the idea developed in the typical guest room, the suites will have similar features however with more furnishings and amenities.
The Nino Cerruti presidential suite
Cerruti 1881 started off as a family-owned textile business. It wasn’t until the 1960’s when Nino Cerruti took the family business into fashion starting with men’s suits. As part of the storyline, DiLeonardo designed the presidential suite with Cerruti in mind. It is very fitting because Cerruti is more about classic tailoring which is line with the traditional and formal layout of the presidential suite. Cerruti is also where Armani was working before he had his own label.
In terms of furnishings, they are more transitional versus the modern pieces in the typical rooms and suites. DiLeonardo is maintaining the modern flair of the property though with very simple architectural features and clean lines and glass sliding doors. The big wow’ occurs in the master suite featuring almost a 360-degree view plus large whirlpool bathtub and tandem shower in the bathroom.
Z executive lounge
Like a Zegna suit, sleek and elegant is how the executive lounge is perceived. Upon entering, guests are greeted in the tradition of a foyer and reception desk in the front. However all of the decor is very contemporary with streamlined built-in desks and chairs with metal arm rests. A modern meeting facility and internet stations are visible to one side while a low profile Italian seating group can be seen on the other.
The main lounge consists of three types of seating conditions, lounge chairs with cocktail table along the windows, banquette with dining chairs along the guest corridor wall, and tables for four along the middle. This mix provides the comfortable environment of a lounge and the necessary seat count for peak hours. The buffet counter is centrally positioned to be convenient for all guests.
A sloped ceiling design with indirect lighting combined with a decorative full length wall mirror feature, creates the perfect atmosphere for this space.
Bene by Gianni Versace
For Bene, DiLeonardo wanted to create a fun, yet sophisticated, Italian restaurant that is interactive and lively. Inspiration was taken from the works of Gianni Versace, a man who was never afraid to combine bold forms, colours and patterns in his designs to create sporty, yet luxurious clothing.
In terms of planning, DiLeonardo integrated the restaurant’s requirements with that of a VIP lounge to create a very synergetic space. Upon entering through the shared entry from the terrace, one immediately notices the variety of wines displayed all around with the wine screen in front spanning into wrap around the wine bar in the lounge. Clearly visible to the right is the pizza and seafood bar in the restaurant. The Italian gastronomic experience begins here.
The pizza/seafood bar is designed to be the main feature of the restaurant where guests can see how pizzas are made from start to finish. The counter is finished with warm wood with colourful, back-lit glass inlay; its ceiling above continues the design as a soffit to highlight the area and to create a suitable seating condition for hotel guests dining alone. Inside the station is a beautiful wood burning pizza oven that’s wrapped in a textured dark red brick wall.
Adjacent to this area and flanking the entrance from the Terrace corridor, guests are welcomed with an anti-pasti display table, designed with warm wood and rich marble top, this piece is complemented with back wall display shelves in similar materials.
As the dining room wraps around the corner of the building, the environment also changes with the Big Bene table as the centre piece with lively pendant fixtures over it and banquette seating against the kitchen wall for more intimate environment.
The two private dining spaces for this restaurant follow the colour scheme of the open area but provide intimate space for parties and special occasions.
The Terrace dining area features a service bar and outdoor dining seating with the right amount of greenery to provide flexible private spaces for the guest to enjoy.
Jose Olivares, principal and project manager for the project, answers some questions on the Bene restaurant:
What is the inspiration behind the name Bene?
Jose Olivares: The name Bene is a trademark used by Sheraton Hotels. The translation means “good” and comprises the simplicity but richness of Italian dishes.
It’s quite a large space. What are the various sections and how have they been differentiated?
JO: It’s certainly a large space, and each section has a special design element guests start their experience from a lounge area, where the oval-shaped bar and the wood pizza oven are the main features.
The restaurant also has an open kitchen. How does this merge in with the rest of the design?
JO: The idea for this space was to create an interactive bar-pizza experience, where guests can visually participate in the cooking process, while enjoying the Italian wines on the drink menu.
The Pizzaiolo is a much talked about feature of the restaurant. What can you tell us about the concept and design of this?
JO: The wood burning pizza oven is a design element that perfectly represents the combination of the concept of a fun, lively, interactive, modern trattoria. The textured dark-red brick wall that wraps around this item creates a good balance with the warm wood and colourful back-lit bar counter, to bring the casual sophistication we envisioned.
After reading the brief for Feast, which talks about a highly interactive and dynamic all-day dining environment coupled with a green-Botanica theme, DiLeonardo decided to create a space that resembles an indoor garden taking maximum opportunity of the daylight coming from the wrap-around window wall glazing plus using the different ceiling heights achievable in the space.
Buffet counters and cooking stations are designed to resemble soft curved rock formations. They are arranged to create an urban street market feel. Each one of them slightly different according to the type of food being served from the counter. The Indian counter features a tandoori oven and columns have been designed as display for spices. Other counters will incorporate places to hold plates, steamers or custom covers above for custom designed exhaust hoods, that incorporates the Botanica theme into them.
DurBar Urban Vibe
This is where it happens for all the party people. It’s all about traditional elegance and Indian heritage combined with the urban vibe of this city.
There are several design features in the space, from a beautiful custom-made glass chandelier to the glass towers as a central element of the bar, moving to oversize sofa seating and complemented with wall paintings highlighting the grandeur of the Indian royal ancestors.
The staircase takes guests up to the exclusive mezzanine level where the very special VIP room is located with other seating. Underneath the staircase is the DJ booth where the mood is controlled by the mixes that the DJ is spinning.
To go along with all of the activities, DurBar features a variety of ultra-modern seating including banquette/lounge chair combination, large sofa groupings with a retro floor lamp arching over the coffee table, and a cluster of drink stands in the middle of the dance floor for those who just can’t stop moving with the groove.
For those looking for a more private experience, there is a separate cabana-style seating area that provides a relaxing and cosy space to enjoy drinks and conversations.