Yotel, the innovative hotel concept from Yo! Sushi founder Simon Woodroffe, is in discussions to secure two ‘high profile’ sites in central London, director Gerard Greene has confirmed.
The hunt for prime locations comes as Yotel announces the appointment of Priestman Goode to become lead design consultant on the project, replacing previous incumbent Opius, with which Yotel has parted company.
Priestman Goode is currently designing full-scale prototypes of the hotel’s ‘capsule’ rooms, which will be unveiled in six to eight weeks’ time. The designs for the value-driven, business class offering draw heavily on the consultancy’s transport expertise.
‘Hotel rooms often don’t know if they’re a product, an interior design or a piece of architecture, [but] most are tackled by interior designers, who create boxes,’ says Priestman Goode director Paul Priestman. ‘Yotel will be a mass-produced environment that is still very much a first class experience. If the rooms require a certain type of light, we’ll design that light specifically; economies of scale allow that,’ he adds. Despite the switch in lead designers for Yotel, the basic concept of the modern, Japanese-style capsule room has not changed, says Greene. Priestman sees the concept as more of a ‘community-led’ space than existing hotels, which he says are ‘lagging behind other modern environments’.
Neither of the two potential sites has planning permission, although one ‘probably doesn’t need it’, says Greene. The company is also looking at an additional site ‘slightly outside London’.
Priestman Goode was appointed after a credentials pitch with ‘three or four’ other consultancies, says Greene.