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Hotel Giulia by Patricia Urquiola #Patricia Urquiola


Architect and designer Patricia Urquiola is one of the best contemporary examples of the Milanese design tradition. Although she started her studies at the School of Architecture in Madrid, she completed her formation in Milan under such great names of the Italian design as Vico Magistretti and Acchile Castiglione, who illustrate the fruitful relation between Italian architecture and design.

The Hotel Room Mate Giulia, designed by Urquiola in 2016 in the city centre of Milan, is a declaration of love from this Spanish architect to her adoptive city. It is the result of the refurbishment of a late 19th-century building just a few metres from the Piazza Del Duomo and the Vittorio Emanuele gallery. Its interior answers to Urquiola’s personal approach to design: innovative and eclectic but homely, boldly combining different colours, materials, patterns and references.

These references follow the also eclectic character of the city: historical but modern, industrial but glamorous. Thus, the hotel uses marble as well as bricks, designer furniture as well as standard metal systems. A geometrical grid pattern is used in every room of the hotel adopting different colours and materials, answering to Urquiola’s passion for graphic design as well as for craftsmanship.

The furniture, displayed according to the “choosing and arranging” strategy coined by the Eames, answers also to this eclectic character, although it comes mostly from Urquiola’s own catalogue: translucent glass tables, carved wooden chairs, wool upholstered sofas, etc. But Urquiola winks again towards the Milanese character by choosing from Cassina, the Italian firm where she works as Art Director, a few classical pieces by Italian designers such as the Lady lounge chair by Marco Zanuso or the Tre Pezzi armchair by Albini and Helg, which in spite of being above fifty years old are a perfect match for this innovative but cosy hotel.