Volve Hotel — Embracing the Past and Present
We get it: You’re an Asian travel connoisseur. You may be young but your passport is chock-a-block with stamps from Bangkok to Bagan, and you’re always on the eye for a new experience (at least once you step off the plane). You can probably pen an epic on the city’s myriad of coffee shops and cafés — or at the very least, navigate Khao San Road while blindfolded, and rattle off pro tips on what to see in the City of Angels. But if you’re seeking a new artistic thrill for your next Bangkok visit, then we’ve got good news: a new hotel setting hospitality standards in Sukhumvit 53 promises to be the coolest new destination on the right side of town. So we headed over to Volve Hotel and met with the Curator, Proprietor and interior designer to get a sense of what this trio has in store when the hotel starts to welcome guests at the end of 2016.
Volve Hotel is the brainchild of a visionary, artistically appreciative and urban-spirited Thai man, who is Curator of the hotel. He recruited the talented, young interior designer, Pitipat Jongsomjit (Khun Um), who is a design graduate of Silpakorn University and the driving force behind an agency called Private Scale.
Together, Curator, Proprietor and Interior Designer have created something that is truly unique — a hotel that is aimed at sophisticated and adventurous urban travellers, that exudes a sense of humour and fun. For those who appreciate the wonders of discovering new and eclectic experiences in Bangkok, Volve Hotel is set to welcome you inside this artistic oasis in a residential soi at Thong Lor.
No Limits to the Vision
At the start of the project, the Curator and interior designer decided that they would set no limits to the lengths they would go in achieving their vision. This is illustrated by the fact that Khun Um went to the extent of re-designing the layout of the hotel’s floor-plan to be more in tune with the interior décor’s bold thematic concept.
In working together, Curator and designer have combined elements of building and residential designs of the Thong Lor neighbourhood. Taking design cues from mid-20th Century Thai architecture, that have disappeared over time, and incorporating modern flourishes, to make Volve Hotel a thoroughly unique experience. The hotel’s unique interior design is an homage to classic Fifties retro and contemporary fashion.
The result is a stylish, yet comfortable décor which is simply astonishing in its attention to detail. The décor makes liberal use of monotone geometric shapes, that provide a modern basis to the design of the décor, while featuring retro inspired details that provide glimpses into memories of the past.
The intricate tile-work on the walls and floors alone is enough to turn heads. According to Khun Um, these details were some of the most difficult parts of the project. They necessitated reams of drawings in order to explain the concept and intricacy of the designs to the craftsmen that were responsible for bringing the design to life.
What they’ve created is a décor that continually draws the eye to discover new details and accents throughout the five floors of the hotel. From the exquisite custom inlay of the lobby hardwood floor, to the intricate tile-work on the walls, to the gracefully executed brass detailing of the room signage that are inlaid into the marble floor outside of the hotels guestrooms, there is always another element to surprise and catch your attention.
Creating a Balance
The furnishings, handmade objects and artwork continue this exquisite attention to detail. Decorative items have all been chosen to illustrate the youthful exuberance of the owner as well as bringing architectural shadows from the past into the spotlight of the present. The carefully crafted design balances modern with a time capsule glimpse into Thonglor from an era that once was. The inspirational partnership of Curator and designer has created a truly impressive mosaic of contemporary and mid-20th Century design.
Elegant fittings and furnishings consist of well-chosen pieces that continue the theme of retro. The long distressed wooden table in the lobby, for instance, was made from reclaimed stair rafters from the old house that once stood on the site that the hotel now occupies. It’s the evolution of the site and an appreciation for artistic detailing, from both the past and present, that is intrinsic to the imaginative décor that is everywhere you look in Volve Hotel.
The custom commissioned artwork, for which Khun Um served as the artistic director, was created by two upcoming young artists; Nakrob Moonmanas and Thomthong Chaijinda. The unique art pieces expand on the neighbourhood concept while illustrating the cultural diversity of Thailand as a whole.
Take a walk up the Seventies-styled polished concrete stairway and on each of the floor’s you will be presented with an amazing piece of contemporary art. The walls provide the perfect giant canvas to display Nakrob and Thomthong’s distinctive collage creations, and allow viewers to better appreciate the depth and richness of their works.
Hotel artwork has a whimsical take on the past and present, while vibrantly complementing the overall interior design concept, bringing a welcoming warmth and charm to the hotel. It’s well worth skipping the elevator and walking down, or up, the five floors to enjoy an artistic journey through the hotel. The contemporary style of art celebrates Thailand’s iconic landmarks. Take the stairs! It a welcome respite from clamouring for a spot in front of a tiny gilded frame (We’re looking at you, Mona Lisa).
Past and Present Serve the Future
As we wrapped our conversation with Curator and Proprietor, their interior designer and the duo of artists, we were treated to a preview of two giant modern masterpieces, to be hung in the stairway. While we admired the creative achievements on canvas, hotel workers continued with their craftsmanship, getting the hotel ready for its reveal. We know it’s been a bit of a wait for this stylish hotel to open — and we’ll be right back, with you, holding our collective breath as we check in to experience a new way of staying in Bangkok — but until then, stay tuned to the hotel’s development on www.facebook.com/volvehotel.