The end of the hotel room as we know it

New hotel brand Zoku has prioritised design to create compact lofts better suited to today’s traveller’s needs.

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It’s not all about the bed, even if it is king-size and layered in Egyptian cotton. That’s the guiding philosophy behind new Dutch hotel brand Zoku, which is ushering in a new way to experience hospitality. Zoku’s model of the loft hotel room is shaking up the hotel industry with its efficient design and customisable interiors that shift the focus from the bed to the living and workspace. 

The first Zoku property, featuring 133 loft suites, has launched in Amsterdam and will be taking bookings in July 2015. 

 “Zoku” – which is Japanese for family, tribe, or clan – prioritises open-plan communal living and co-working spaces to highlight and encourage interaction and networking.  Hoteliers Hans Meyer and Marc Jongerius envision a world with smarter solutions minimising the waste of space, resources and time.  

The design of each Zoku hotel room is compact and multifunctional. The central feature of the room is a four-person table that can be used for work, dining and entertainment. The room also features a fully equipped kitchen, extensive storage space and an alcove desk with office supplies.

“The advance of technology has changed personal and professional lifestyles. Boundaries between work and leisure are fading and blurring borders have made people more mobile than ever,” says Meyer.

The highlight of Zoku’s hotel room is the elevated, loft-style sleeping space, which can be accessed by a retractable staircase, and is screened off to make it feel cosy or business-like.

The loft will feature furnishings from Danish design brand Muuto. Zoku guests can add a finishing touch to their loft by choosing their own art, making the space truly personal.

“We are aiming for a fast international rollout in the world’s most creative cities,” says Jongerius. “All this with the aim of creating an international community network of Zokus.”

Amsterdam-based creative agency WE ARE Pi created Zoku’s visual identity and the brand film that introduces the revolutionary Zoku Loft by announcing the end of the hotel room.

The Zoku concept is the result of extensive crowdsourcing and research efforts by the team and futures consultancy, The Future Laboratory.

Designed in collaboration with Concrete, the award-winning interior design and architecture agency, Zoku will be a relaxed place to live, work and socialise with like-minded people while getting wired into the city.

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