A £120m project to build a series of micro-room hotels around the country launches in Birmingham this week, conceived and designed by architect and interior design consultancy Tibbatts Associates.
The first Nitenite hotel opens this weekend, offering 104 rooms measuring 2.1m by 3.4m in size. There are plans to extend the concept to 30 major city centres by 2010, with London, Cardiff and Glasgow earmarked for the next stage of development, according to Tibbatts Associates operations director Olivier Delaunoy.
Nitenite’s corporate identity and brand positioning were created by design consultancy Boxer, which was appointed to the project last summer, following a four-way pitch.
The logo design is based around a speech bubble icon, which is used as a graphic device to present captions of information displayed in the hotel and on the booking website, www.nitenite.com. The site, which is live, was designed by e-commerce digital media group Open World.
The business is the brainchild of Tibbatts Associates founder Neil Tibbatt and is owned by the consultancy, with financial backing from Capital Invest and Bank of Scotland.
‘The idea was to design a room which is very small, very functional and of high specifications. One hundred people tested a room for market research and we found they wanted it to be less modern and space-age [than the original design], so we’ve used warmer materials like cherry wood and leather,’ says Delaunoy.
Each hotel room is fabricated off-site and dropped directly into the main hotel building, offering a double bed, plasma television, Wi-Fi access and en-suite shower for £49.95 per night. The Birmingham site also includes an on-site café bar.
The establishment of Nitenite precedes the long-awaited launch of Yotel, the Priestman Goode-designed capsule-room hotel concept from Yo! Sushi founder Simon Woodroffe (DW 4 November 2004). The first two Yotel sites will open in Heathrow and Gatwick airports late this year, with a central London location due in 2007.
• £120m expansion plan for central locations in major UK cities, first in Birmingham
• Rooms measure just over 7m2, offering the ‘feel of a luxury yacht cabin’
• Interior designs by Tibbatts Associates
• Corporate identity and brand positioning by Boxer