As IHG’s first Hotel Indigo in New Zealand, our challenge was to interpret IHG’s neighbourhood story for this property in Auckland. This involved telling Auckland’s unforgettable stories and revealing its hidden gems, while creating a unique boutique hotel that attracts the Upbeat Curious Traveller and captures the local soul of the place. 225 Key Hotel Indigo Auckland is part of a 43-storey, mixed-use development, with 24 luxury apartments on the top 11 levels that benefit from the services and amenities offered by the below hotel.
This project celebrates downtown Auckland’s transformation from a forgotten warehouse and light industrial area, into a vibrant cultural hub for entertainment, business and living, which recalls the Golden Era of entertainment. Until now, Auckland’s character has been shaped by the old and new, and there has been little celebration of its heritage, as well as a lack of any story-telling with high end property brands.
The building’s industrial features are set against bold and creative interior design solutions, such as elements from vintage car detailing, layered with subtle local references to enrich the story of the hotel. In the lobby, F&B offers and public areas of the hotel, the character is inspired by the heritage building in which these spaces sit. Exposed brick and reclaimed timber from the site will be featured, set off by architectural details, such as metal framed reeded glass partitions, that take their reference from the industrial nature of the building, and lighting inspired by the hotel’s neighbour, St Patrick’s Cathedral. Vintage car detailing is evidenced in the rich leathers and button and tufted seating, while a reclaimed basketball court floor pays homage to the building owner and our client.
Moving up into the guest rooms in the modern, 43-storey tower, heritage elements become more streamlined. Bathroom furniture and room joinery showcase vintage and industrial detailing, which is set against warm timber flooring, white rendered walls and gold metal trim to create a fresh canvas. The neighbourhood story is featured through the quilted upholstered bedhead and lounge seating. A scaffolding-inspired open wardrobe and peg-board display make reference to the building’s auto-mechanic history and provide space to tell the neighbourhood story in imagery such as the tui feathers on the throw cushions, and objects such as jet plane lollies for guests to enjoy.