Ace Hotel branches out into new territory
Ace Hotel, in many ways, has been the blueprint for the current trend of lifestyle-focused, experiential boutique hotels. With a new location on the cards in Japan and the opening of a sister brand, we check out how Ace Hotel plans to move forward in the coming years.
Ace Hotel in Japan
Ace Hotel has had major success since it launched in 1999. With nine locations in prestigious destinations all over the world including New Orleans, New York, Portland, Chicago and London, Ace’s next venture is set to be the thing of Japanese dreams. The newest Ace property will be located in Kyoto, Japan, and will “be a place in honest dialogue with Kyoto’s past and future legends”, according to Ace’s website. Ace’s chief brand officer Kelly Sawdon spoke about the location, saying, “Kyoto is the cultural center of Japan. It’s always been one of those places that people go to and really find a different point of view or a different way to evolve their craft.”
The hotel will be designed in part by starchitect Kengo Kuma, a legend in the world of architecture. Sawdon also elaborated on Ace’s choice of designer, saying, “He’s a kindred spirit in that he’s very thoughtful and his approach to architecture is in line with our point of view. Kuma-san’s attention to detail and the way he uses a lot of natural materials and really celebrates those materials we feel is similar to our design approach.”
Sister City, Ace’s new brand
Not only will Ace be landing in Japan at the end of 2019, but a new brand will be launching in New York in fall of this year. Sister City made industry headlines earlier in the year when its website was launched, which gave little away about Ace’s new offering. Boasting “200 intimate, efficient rooms”, Sister City bills itself as “a hotel distilled to its most beautiful working parts. It gives you shelter when you need it, but helps deliver you out into the wider world, too.” Sawdon expanded on this mysterious new hotel, saying, “Sister City is a place that’s still encouraging people to go out and explore these cities, but it’s about having a place to come back to that’s quiet and calming. It allows the guests to engage with the community as they please and not be participating in it when they come back to their hotel.” The design and concept is inspired by intimate lodgings and avant garde cultural offerings such as Finnish saunas, Japanese bento boxes and scores by John Cage. It will be located in the trendy Bowery district of New York City.
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