Appointed approximately a year ago, Urquiola describes being approached about the project by the hotel group after meeting a member of Mandarin Oriental’s senior staff at a trade fair in Belgium.
‘They were having problems with the interiors, so asked me to help,’ says Urquiola, who explains that she wants the public to engage with the materials in the design and feel ‘sensation and comfort’.
The hotel has a communal public area ‘where people can just come inside for a cup of tea’, says Urquiola. She was working until last night ‘finishing the finest details’.
Mandarin Oriental has also engaged Urquiola to work on the interiors of its new resort in Puerto Rico, which will open in March, and a second hotel in Barcelona.