Generator Berlin Mitte hostel by Ester Bruzkus with Anwar Mekhayech and Mark Asipowicz
Exposed ductwork and rough materials feature at this hostel in central Berlin (+ slideshow).
Anwar Mekhayech of Toronto firm The Design Agency collaborated with local architects Ester Bruzkus and Mark Asipowicz of WAF Architects to design the hostel interior.
The latest accommodation in the Generator chain is located in an early twentieth-century building in Berlin's central Mitte district, close to the city's Museum Island.
Minimal en-suite rooms and dorms with exposed concrete ceilings can accommodate up to 552 guests.
In the reception light wood panels contrast with dark flooring and seats in pink and red. Patterns are created by overlapping strings stretched from the exposed ceiling pipes to the walls.
Wooden work benches act as tables in the dining area, accompanied by wood and copper-coloured stools. Bright artwork on corridor walls is based on graffiti around the city. The doors are covered with large room numbers.
"The attention to the detail and local materials was the main idea of our design," said Bruzkus. "Rough wood panelling, open ceilings and raw copper panels, which were a surprise discovery during construction work in the basement, contrast with black walls under a mirrored ceiling in the bar area."
Communal areas include a bar, library, cafe and central courtyard. An event space in the basement with seating integrated into steps will host exhibitions by local artists and performances by local bands.
"Generator Berlin Mitte has been one of the most exciting Generator projects to date because of our collaboration with local interior designer Ester Bruzkus and also the talented Berlin-based artists who added a relevant cultural dimension," said Mekhayech.
Generator also operates a hostel in Berlin's Prenzlauer Berg district and has recently opened branches in Venice and Barcelona.
Photography is by k+w fotografie.
Read on for more details from the hostel:
Generator continues to challenge the traditional hostel concept with the launch of its third property in 2013
Generator Berlin Mitte follows the openings of Generator Barcelona and Venice and further strengthens the company's position as Europe's largest and most innovative urban design hostel group
Located in a historic 1900s building in the bohemian neighbourhood of Mitte, the design-led Generator Berlin Mitte accommodates up to 552 guests across 139 en-suite rooms and dorms. Public spaces include a lively Generator Bar, chill-out library, café, historic central courtyard and a basement event space that will be used to showcase the work of local artists, designers and musicians.
Carl Michel, Executive Chairman at Generator which is backed by Patron Capital, said: "Our new Berlin property is in an area that has undergone many transformations, from being the old Jewish quarter to the pulsing heart of the city that it is today with a vibrant nightlife scene. Our newest Generator offers our growing customer base a high standard of comfortable and stylish accommodation at an affordable price and just a stone's throw from the Museumsinsel (Museum Island)."
Chief Designer Anwar Mekhayech, one of the partners at The Design Agency, has set the standard for the new wave of Generators with his work in Barcelona and Venice. For Berlin Mitte he has worked in collaboration with Mark Asipowicz from WAF Architects and guest designer Ester Bruzkus, from Ester Bruzkus Architects, whose impressive portfolio includes some of Berlin's most celebrated boutique hotels and restaurants.
Bruzkus' very distinctive style is combined with strokes of Berlin's own grunge flair, very present in the use of cement tiles. The style is very clear: old vs. new, bright vs. dark and moody, rough vs. smooth and sleek; all visibly translating into a contemporary atmosphere that exudes an air of unpretentious style. The rough wood panelling and open ceilings, raw copper panels against black walls in the basement and the simple furniture and mastic asphalt in the breakfast area that contrast with the mirrored ceiling in the bar are just some examples of the stunning design details that are featured in this project.
Anwar Mekhayech, chief designer, said: "Generator Berlin Mitte has been one of the most exciting Generator projects to date because of our collaboration with local interior designer, Ester Bruzkus and also the talented Berlin-based artists who added a relevant cultural dimension."
True to Generator's commitment and passion to creating an authentic and locally inspired experience, the Berlin Mitte property has embraced the city's love of street art. The colourful mural was created by London artist Luke Embden during a Berlin residency, while the legendary Thierry Noir has adorned the corridors with his famous 'heads with big lips', similar to those at the Berlin Wall, Eastside Gallery. In addition, over the coming months, the collective Urban Art Clash will be in residence, running a studio from the hostel's top floor and curating an open exhibition in the basement space. Other artist collaborations include Bella Leonard, who has created a distinctive crochet sculpture in the shape of Generator's "G" and notable artist Sebastian Preschoux has set up one of his famous string installations in the café and reception.
This new urban design-inspired hostel joins Generator's first property in Berlin, situated in the bohemian Prenzlauer Berg, and will cater for the growing number of travellers choosing to explore the German capital.
Josh Wyatt, Investment Director at Patron Capital responsible for the Generator brand, said: "We are thrilled to bring another Generator to Berlin. As well as being one of Europe’s most visited destinations, it was also the first city where Generator opened when we expanded outside of London. Having grown our leadership role as the hostel industry's largest urban design hostel group, this new property seems a natural step. Berlin's cultural and social heritage, coupled with the vibrant art and music scene, is a perfect fit for the Generator brand. Building on this latest opening, we will continue to increase our portfolio both within Europe and globally."