Building - Lauber & Wöhr
Munich Interior - Lutz Hesse, Berlin
In an urban centre built anew by international star architects, The Mandala Hotel is one of three Potsdamer Platz projects by Ulrike Lauber and Wolfram Wöhr.
The entrance off the bustling Potsdamer Strasse is unassuming and the lobby small: the all-suites residence is meant to provide long-term guests discreet relief from the area’s hustle and bustle outside, which is indeed aided by most rooms facing the inner courtyard. Interiors pare luxury down to its modern essence of serenity and subtle harmonies, but spare no expense with furnishings by Donghia and Chinese antiques handpicked by Lutz Hesse, who runs the hotel together with Christian Andresen. Windows of the first floor QIU lounge hideaway offer glimpses of the busy rush outside, but the Donghia mohair sofas and water cascading down a Bisazza glass mosaic wall easily draw your undivided attention. The restaurant FACIL is hidden away on the first floor courtyard, which is nearly entirely open to the elements during summer months: The glass ceiling retracts over tables that extend into a garden surrounded by bamboo.
Guestrooms at The Mandala Berlin are modern and smartly devoid of trend. Handcrafted tables and ornamental items such as Chinese stacking drums provide solid, dark accents amongst the soft colour- palette of the raw silk curtains, cherry wood floor and pear tree wood furnishings commissioned exclusively for the hotel. The design theme draws parallels with itself in the bathrooms, where light boxes are segmented in a manner similar to the door’s frosted panes. Even the windows work towards creating your inner balance: invisible crystals inside neutralise the electronic smog our technologically advanced life brings with it. Signed black-and-white photographs by Ellen Auerbach are the artworks chosen to complete the style-savvy picture.