2018's Coolest Hotel Trend: The Un-Hotel

By Fiona Kerr
19 September 2018
Travel, Trends, Inspiration
Vipp Shelter
A hotel's rooms used to be all under one roof. Now they don't even share the same postcode.

There have been many ages of hotels. The grand hotel, the boutique hotel, the design hotel, the micro-hotel and the home-tel. But the latest iteration turns the whole idea of a hotel as we know it on its head: instead of many rooms under one roof, these new un-hotels have different rooms in various locations, united only in character and concept. 


Sweets Amsterdam

Sweets Hotel launched in Amsterdam this spring, with 28 cleverly crafted rooms in the city’s former bridge houses, spread across its waterways: a white Sixties cube in Amsterdam-Noord, for example, and a 1928 Amsterdam School house near Westerpark. The first 11 are available now, with the final buildings being transformed over the coming years.


Loft Exterior

Danish design company Vipp is another to have branched out into the un-hotel business. Currently, it has two offerings: one Vipp Shelter, a glass-and-steel box on a lake in the Swedish wilderness; the other, an open-plan Vipp Loft on the top floor of the group’s offices in an old printing factory in Copenhagen. A third, Vipp Chimney House, opens in a former water-pumping station in the north of the city this year. Meanwhile, in Vienna, Grätzlhotel has transformed 21 empty street-front spaces in three neighbourhoods to create a trio of un-hotels, themed by area.


Loft Kitchen

Stay in a serene pale wood space that used to be an electrical shop in happening Karmelitermarkt, or a funky former tobacconists in bourgeois Belvedere near the palace. Or, in Meidlinger Markt, check in at a Sixties-tinged space that used to be a vinyl dealer’s, then head around the corner to Milchbart restaurant, where owner Christian Chvosta acts as the local guide for guests. Because at the un-hotel, the city itself is the lobby, its residents the in-the-know staff.


Via Condé Nast Traveller UK