In the early Twentieth Century, the city of Bandung in West Java, Indonesia was an exclusive weekend resort situated in the elevated valley of the Parahyangan Mountain range enjoying a relatively cool year round temperature averaging 24 degrees. Founded in the early 19th Century by the Dutch, the city was a favourite destination for European plantation owners who frequented luxurious hotels, restaurants, cafes and European boutiques. Its art deco Architecture and unique style earned Bandung the moniker “Parijs van Java”.
After Indonesian independence on 1945, rapid development and urbanization transformed Bandung from an idyllic town into a dense metropolitan area with 15,000 people/km², a living space for over 2 million people. Although now densely populated, Bandung still has the charm that attracts weekend travelers, visitors and business travelers from Jakarta and beyond.
The interior design of the Bandung Hilton celebrates the glamorous tradition of travel in Java set against a strong architectural backdrop and integrated into the architecture and landscape of the hotel.
The owner’s brief called for a contemporary urban business hotel with a world class conference and function facility to cater to Indonesian tourism and events aligned with best practices in 21st century hospitality. Situated at the heart of the city as well as the heart of the social scene in Bandung, it is a venue for frequent weddings and large social events playing host to large family, business and social groups.
The building engages the ground plane with a complex topography of public spaces leading to a roof-top leisure retreat. Conceived as an urban resort integrating aspects of Javanese Culture and engaging the distant mountain range visually, the hotel public spaces are organized around a strong ground plane which is folded and wrapped up the building to form the reception, ballroom, business center, spa and pool deck. The room wings are suspended above in perpendicular double loaded blocks, the main wing facing North and South to the distant mountain vistas and the lower West-facing block overlooking the leisure deck.
The topography of Bandung, with its surrounding volcanic mountain range was the inspiration for an architecture emerging from the ground plane, transforming the topography into a complex of twisting and folding planes creating interactive social spaces around a central atrium riverbed.
The notion of a retreat, which embodies the qualities of the foothills is further expressed with landscape features surrounding the public areas stitching together the distant vistas and gardens at many levels. The materiality of the ground plane is bent and folded to form a dynamic stone atrium wall facing the lobby with a carved texture inspired by a geometric Javanese batik pattern. The landscaped ground plane is then extended upwards, wrapping the ballroom and culminating in a leisure roof garden comprising a pool, fitness center, spa and casual poolside dining area.
Woven into the folding plane are a series of bridges and stairs to enable the smooth flow of guest traffic to the ballroom, dining room, business center and spa. Most dramatic is the asymmetrical cantilevered spiral stair on which guests promenade in droves to the ballroom at weddings and events. From the entrance lobby, a veritable stage of events unfolds throughout the hours of the day and night like a performance than never ends.
Suspended above the atrium lobby, the business center overlooks the spiral stair with breakout spaces opened to the atrium. The meeting rooms feature high ceilings and dramatic views of the city and transform to dark A/V rooms with the blinds down. Behind the massive stone canyon wall, the ballroom pre-function room can be adapted to follow the modules of the 1200 seat ballroom when divided into smaller areas.
One level above, the spa is reached from a skybridge across the atrium canyon featuring a dramatic wall of water flowing down from the leisure deck. Into this level are nestled the yoga room, spa treatment rooms, changing rooms and aesthetic salon.
The folding plane that starts in the lobby area, culminates at the leisure deck where the pool extends across the deck with landscaping around the perimeter and a shallow water deck along the edge. A row of woven rattan pods inspired by nests provide families with an intimate lounging space adjacent to the pool where they are protected from the sun and can spend the day relaxing. A casual outdoor dining venue completes the resort atmosphere of the leisure deck overlooking the pool and poolside celebration pavilion.
From the lobby level, hotel rooms are accessed from a separate discrete set of elevators, which enable hotel guests to retreat from the excitement of the lobby and public areas. Rooms and suites were created with families in mind with a generous 40m2 per typical room. All rooms have dramatic views of the mountainous perimeter and glass enclosed bathrooms with dramatic views reinforcing the resort qualities of the hotel. Like the public areas, the rooms feature refined furnishings with rich materials inspired by the Javanese aesthetic. Rich timbers, Ikat woven fabrics and Batik inspired carpets continue the tradition of glamorous travel with which Bandung is associated.
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