Style Profile: Lazaro Rosa Violan

Yesterday, I blogged about the beautiful Hotel Pulitzer in Barcelona after having fallen in love with its design. Upon doing a little research, I found out that the hotel was designed by Spanish interior designer, Lázaro Rosa Violán, who has soared to the top of my list of favorite designers. Violán is a self-described “urban archaeologist” and “style hunter”, which I can certainly appreciate. Violán has been designing restaurants and hotels in his native Spain since 1990. His interiors are perfectly layered, with various styles blending together perfectly. Violán’s palettes are typically sophisticated and restrained and he balances masculinity with a touch of glamour nearly every time. In a word, his work is sublime. According to Violán: “The interior designer is an actor. He must dress up and change roles, understand new identities and integrate them with his own.” This personal philosophy of his further concretes my opinion of Violán as a true design visionary.

{Hotel Pulitzer Roma}

Hotel Pulitzer Contemporary design 3
Hotel Pulitzer Interior design 1

{Hotel Market, Barcelona}
1 Hotel Market and Restaurant Barcelona
2 Hotel Market and Restaurant Barcelona

3 Hotel Market and Restaurant Barcelona
5 Hotel Market and Restaurant Barcelona

{Hotel Praktik Rambla, Barcelona}
1 PRAKTIK Rambla Hotel Barcelona

6 PRAKTIK Rambla Hotel Barcelona
3 PRAKTIK Rambla Hotel Barcelona

{Big Fish, Barcelona}
We HAVE to go to this restaurant when we visit Barcelona! The design is incredible! I love the rough luxe look of it all. The combination of worn, whiskey-colored chairs, floating capiz chandeliers, industrial pendants, and black and white palette are too good to miss! Let’s just hope the food is half as delicious as the décor!
1 Big Fish restaurant Barcelona
2 Big Fish Contemporary restaurant Barcelona

3 Restaurant Interior Big Fish
4 Big Fish Contemporary restaurant Barcelona 2
5 Big Fish Contemporary restaurant Barcelona

{Bazaar, Madrid}
1 Bazaar Restaurant design Chueca

3 Bazaar Restaurant design Chueca
4 Bazaar Restaurant design Chueca

{Fishop, Barcelona}
1 Contemporary restaurant design FISHOP

2 Contemporary restaurant design FISHOP

{Miu, Barcelona}
Miu 3
Miu 4

{Flamant Café, Barcelona}
3 Flamant Interior Design

4 Flamant Interior Design
5 Flamant Interior Design
7 Flamant Interior Design

{La Polpa, Barcelona}
1 La Polpa Contemporary Interiors
2 La Polpa Contemporary Interiors
{La Rita, Barcelona}
1 La Rita Interior

4 La Rita Interior

{Felix, Barcelona}
1 Felix Shop Interior design

2 Felix Shop Interior design
3 Felix Shop Interior design

Click on the images to enlarge them and see them in their full glory! I keep going back and looking at them in order to take in every detail.

Image Credit: Lázaro Rosa Violán

Sweet Temptation

pulitzer lobby

So many of you were kind enough to leave personal advice and recommendations for our upcoming trip to Spain when I requested your help in Monday’s post. There were many helpful comments and I also received several personal e-mails with many suggestions. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it! Having personal recommendations can make a huge difference in one’s travel plans. Through all of the comments and e-mails, there seemed to be a reoccurring suggestion: don’t miss Barcelona! Originally, I was thinking we would just visit Granada and Seville. Then, I thought we might throw in Madrid for good measure, but everyone says Barcelona is so much more thrilling and inspiring, and alas, I’ve already been to Madrid.

pulitzer lobby3
So what are we to do? Getting from Barcelona to Andalucía in Southern Spain isn’t a huge deal as there are plenty of cheap flights and trains available. My dilemma is how to space it all out over the course of seven to ten days. I am afraid we would be moving around too much, thus foregoing the whole relaxing aspect of our trip. How many days would you allot to Barcelona, Granada, and Seville? Should we forego one of the southern cities? In my excitement, I looked into incorporating Barcelona into our itinerary and fell in love with the Lázaro Rosa Violán-designed Hotel Pulitzer. Both my husband and I are suckers for well-designed boutique hotels. We subscribe to the theory that the hotel is a destination in and of itself and the Pulitzer is so enticing. It is majorly increasing Barcelona’s appeal!

pulitzer lobby2The Luxe Lobby
pulitzer dining Dining Area Adjacent to Lobby
pulitzer visit The Pulitzer’s VISIT Restaurant
pulitzer visit3
The Dining Room at VISIT

pulitzer visit2

So chic!

pulitzer terrace

Rooftop Terrace

Barcelona Pulitzer Hotel Interior bar

The Hotel’s Bar and Lounge
pulitzer standard The guestrooms are so sumptuous and elegant. They would make for the perfect place to begin and end one’s day in a city as exciting as Barcelona.

pulitzer deluxe
pulitzer suite
pulitzer suite2
pulitzer bath
pulitzer deck

It’s pretty tempting, isn’t it? Stay tuned for our hotel selections in Seville and Granada, along with more of Violán’s inspiring work.

Jet Set: Babington House

Just the other day, Oliveaux posted a few pictures from the idyllic Babington House in Somerset, England. I was instantly smitten and wanted more! This is the type of place you go to get away from the stresses of everyday life. The estate is located on 18 acres of pristine Somerset parkland and is comprised of a Main House, Coach House, Stable Block, Lodge, and a Walled Garden. You can spend your time playing tennis or cricket, or you can choose to relax at the hotel’s famed Cowshed Spa. The small village of Somerset also has several area attractions including the Roman Baths, Jane Austen Centre, Glastonbury Abbey, Wells Cathedral, and several historic castles and museums.
Just this year, the Babington House was named to Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List for Best Ambience / Design 2009. The centuries-old estate is now home to thirty-two beautifully-appointed rooms, twenty-three of which are located in the Main House and Coach House. There are five rooms in the Stable Block, three in the Lodge, and three rooms adjacent to the Cowshed Spa with views of the walled garden. In addition, the property also features several dining options including The House Kitchen, The House Bar, and The Log Room. The beautiful Orangery is the most beautiful of the dining spaces and is frequently reserved for wedding receptions and other special events. In addition to its restaurants, spa, and outdoor activities, the hotel also features a cinema, library, pool room, and study for further relaxation. Like its sister property, the SoHo House in New York, the Babington House and all of its amenities are available to guests and members of the elite Every House Membership Plan
Another View of the Stately Main House
The Log Room

The Orangery

The House Kitchen
The House Bar
The Study

Cowshed Spa

A Second Look at the Cowshed Spa
A Lovely Room in the Main House
Main House Attic Bathroom
A Beautiful Room on the First Floor of the Main House
A Sleek Bathroom

A Romantic Bathroom in the Coach House
The Playroom is the premier guest room at the Babington House. It is located on the first floor of the Main House.
The Playroom’s Luxurious Bathroom

I am not sure what would be more difficult; choosing a room or leaving at the end of one’s holiday!

All images via Babington House

Jet Set: Château de Massillan

The Courtyard at The Château de Massillan in Uchaux, France

Do you have spring fever yet? Luckily, the weather has been quite warm in Houston lately. However, that doesn’t stop me from daydreaming about beautiful places to get away from the daily routine. I recently came across a gorgeous hotel that had me wishing I could hop on a plane that very day!

The storybook Château de Massillan is located in Uchaux, France in Vaucluse region of Provence. It is only 10 minutes away from the cities of Orange and Avignon. There are also many important site nearby, such as the Palais du Papes, or Papal Palace, the Ancient Roman Theater, Pont du Gard, the Gorges de l’Ardeche, and the Vaison la Romaine.

The château was originally built in 1550 by Diane de Poitiers, the mistress of King Henry II. The 24 acre manor was initially used as a hunting lodge, but the land surrounding it is now used as a vineyard.

The Gorgeous Grounds at the Château de Massillan:

The interior of the château is just as gorgeous as the fairytale-like exterior. It is presently owned by Peter Wylly and Birgit Israel, owner of the London-based interior design company, Birgit Israel Interiors. Naturally, Birgit designed the romantic interiors for the château.

Lobby/ Sitting Room
The restaurant at the château serves French International cuisine.
Notice the sunflowers, typical of Provence.

The hotel is filled with gorgeous architectural details and design elements.

Sitting Area

The 12 sumptuous guest suites are absolutely breathtaking:

Okay, I’m off to listen to Tori Amos’ “A Sorta Fairytale”. Seriously, isn’t the chateau absolutely gorgeous? It would be perfect for a romantic getaway.

Jet Set: Marqués de Riscal

Marqués de Riscal in El Ciego, Spain

Aside from my husband, travel is one of the big loves of my life. I am constantly dreaming about places that I would like to return to or visit for the first time. I’ve blogged about travel destinations in the past, but this will be the first official installation of my new weekly series, Jet Set. In the series, I will spotlight an interesting travel destination each week. They may be places that I daydream about on a regular basis or interesting design or cultural destinations.

I have chosen to start off with the magnificent Marqués de Riscal hotel in El Ciego, Spain for several reasons. First, it was designed by one of the most important architects of our time, Frank Gehry, who designed the Guggenheim in the city of Bilbao, a mere 115 kilometers from El Ciego. El Ciego has quickly become a destination for wine connoisseurs and foodies alike as it is situated in the heart of the Rioja region in northern Spain. Despite the fact that there is a very sharp contrast between the traditional Spanish architecture in El Ciego that dates back for centuries and the decidedly unique hotel which was completed in 2007, they seem to coexist quite peacefully.

The Marqués de Riscal hotel is home to 43 suites, two restaurants, a state of the art gym, and Caudalie Vinothérapie Spa. It offers extraordinary views, is situated in the heart of Spanish wine country, and is sure to be the ideal backdrop for an unforgettable experience.

Architectural Juxtaposition at its Best

For more information on the Basque region of Spain including attractions and restaurants click here. For a glimpse into the visit Gwyneth Paltrow, Mark Bittman, Claudia Bassols and Mario Batali paid to the Marqués de Riscal and the area for their show, Spain: On the Road Again, click here.

I must say that Spain absolutely captured my heart when I visited for the first time last June. Seeing as how I come from a Mexican and Spanish background, it was never a place I longed to visit growing up. It was too familiar and I always wanted to visit places that were different, like France or Italy. Well, after visiting all three countries, I was completely surprised to have loved Spain as much as I did. It was so unexpected. I was so enraptured by the culture, the history, and the sheer beauty of it. I think about it each and every day and hope to go back this year with my husband in tow.

All images via Marqués de Riscal Hotel