Tag Archive | "Sao Paulo"

Hotel Unique – Sao Paulo, Brazil


Have you ever slept inside a piece of art work?  Check in to the Hotel Unique and you’ll understand.  Brazilian architect Ruy Ohtake is the genius behind the semicircular 6-floor building. So many design hotels are cool once you’re inside but from outside they often look like nothing special. Unique Hotel is a complete experience that starts even before you get inside. The lobby is a huge as the nave of a cathedral.  For me space and calm are the essence of what I expect from a top class hotel.  When I took the elevator the first time and arrived to the 3rd floor I couldn’t wait to see how my room would look like. When I arrived on my floor I had to walk inside a very dark corridor with only a few rounded windows bringing in a limited amount of concentrated light.  Strange and appealing.  The teasing was all to discover my room a complete success as well.  When I opened the room’s door I could see a very bright space with again a rounded window and minimal design furniture, mostly white.  The shape of the window is the kind of detail that makes feel that I’m in a unique place.  Behind the bed there’s no separation between the wall and the ceiling, it’s actually one rounded surface that reminds me of a half-pipe for skateboarding.  The bed was a delight of softness and king-size-ness.  Then in the bathroom more goodies were waiting for me. I got inside the bathtub and activated the waves functions while watching Fernando Meirelles’ “City of God” on the TV next to me.  Later on in the afternoon I went with a friend to the bar on the roof top to enjoy the best view possible on Sao Paulo’s skyline. I took a few photos of her jumping ‘above’ the buildings in the background. The bottom of the swimming pool is red instead of the traditional blue and that’s neat.  Hotel Unique can be easily considered as one of the coolest and most inspiring hotels in the world.

-Yvan Rodic

Av. Brg. Luís Antônio,
4700 – Jardim Paulista
Sao Paulo – SP, 01402-002, Brazil

Poko Pano by Paola Robba


The Amazon Forest, one of the regions of greatest biodiversity in the world, with its magnificent flora and fauna, was the inspiration for Brazilian stylist Paola Robba to develop Poko Pano her spring-summer 2012 collection. Not only did the beautiful nature prove itself to offer an abundance of creative stimulus, but the local cultural traditions provided fuel for the design of the collection. Poko Pano’s environment friendly clothes and accessories were made in partnership with native communities and matched fashion and sustainability by reverting part of the gains to projects of improvement in these population life conditions.

Two years after designing her highly successful swimsuit collection for Victoria’s Secret with Miranda Kerr as the face for the design’s campaign, Brazilian swimsuit designer Paola Robba has gone solo with a swimmingly grand splash (pun intended) participation in Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim Spring 2012. Miami Beach’s MB Fashion week is considered the greatest swimwear fashion event in the world.

The Miami show featured 40 looks on the catwalk. The highlights of the show included exclusive prints and texture in crochet and lacework; kaftans, mini dresses, shirts, skirts, pantaloon pants, all designed in ample shapes, present a whole lifestyle that goes beyond beach surrounding, proving that enjoying the sun goes with fanciness; and charming accessories, such as hats, bags and caps. The fashion pieces also have a modern touch, with minimalist design, high-tech clothes and elements such as rings and metal loops.

Paola Robba is a renowned name in the swimwear world. Beyoncé, Mischa Barton and Elle Macpherson are a few of Poko Pano’s famous customers list. Also, Paola developed a highly successful collection to Victoria’s Secret for two years in a row (2009/2010), with supermodel Miranda Kerr starring the campaign.



Hotel Emiliano – Sao Paulo, Brazil


Review and Photos by the Cobrasnake

My stay at the Emiliano hotel in Sao Paulo was out of this world. The energy of the hotel is fantastic. When I checked in I was greeted by an amazing staff that spoke great English, they offered me a drink as I filled out the paper work for my stay. The hotel lobby feels fresh and has great furniture and orchids everywhere. I was escorted to my suite and told about all the features of the room, from the special vegetarian menu, the “toto” toilets from Japan, the DVD catalogue with over 150 titles, and just about everything you could imagine in the mini bar. The staff at the Emiliano hotel will even unpack your luggage if you are super lazy or busy. The room was huge with a full living room, flat screen TV, office area, dining area. The leather couch in the living room was at least 10 feet long and I took the most amazing nap there. The bed was big enough for 5 people with more pillows than I could count.

The climate control was in both celsius and farenheit. The bathroom was full of special soaps and bath products made especially for the hotel. A friendly man delivered some fresh pineapple in the afternoon. I went to the gym, located on the top floor of the hotel, with a view of the entire city, used all of the most top of the line equipment, even watched The Simpsons on the built-in TV on the treadmill. After my amazing work out I had an hour long massage and spent a few hours in the spa, taking advantage of everything. The sauna had a built in television and I watched rap videos while sweating like crazy.

At night I slept like a baby, and had dreams of success. The hotel was quiet and peaceful, and I was more comfortable there than in my own home. I woke up early to have breakfast, which was top notch, fresh juices, fresh baked goods, cheeses, fruits… I also had the pleasure to dine with the general manager of the hotel; he told me the history of the property and the fundamentals of running such a high end property. Half way through breakfast the OWNER of the hotel sat down to personally greet me. He was a super nice man. They were excited to have me and told me about a new resort that was in development. I can’t wait to stay there.
Another great point is that the hotel is located in a great area full of shops and resturants, there’s even an American Apparel directly across the street in case you forgot your gold lamae body suit at home, or want to try to pick up on hot girls. I would recommend this hotel to everyone. Such an amazing experience.


Hotel Emiliano
Rua Oscar Freire, 384 – Jardim Paulistano
São Paulo – SP, Zip Code 01426-000, Brazil
+55 11 3069 4369



A square salt and pepper set called “Murazzo”, designed by Rubens Simões, and a cutlery collection created by architect Arthur Casas, both for Riva are available at The Museum of Modern Art store in New York and online. Riva is one of the most awarded Brazilian brands, specializing in innovative design products using stainless steel and silver. Both collections have received important international design awards. The cutlery set won the Red Dot in 2008 and the Murazzo won the prestigious IF Product Design Award, in 2006.

Rubens Simões, who is the art director and designer for RIVA fittingly named his creation after a small and cozy city in Italy. Simões created the sleek, stainless steel salt and pepper shakers out of concern for ecological waste by using the remnants of Riva’s other manufactured products. The result of his creative process: two tiny boxes (1.5”h x 1.5”w x .75″d) that align contemporary design with practical use, a clear and straight-lined conception.

The second collection designed by the architect Arthur Casas – was inspired by the geometry of a jararaca which is a snake indigenous to Brazil. The set’s knife, forks, and spoons each feature a triangular shape modeled after the jararaca’s head. The knives, forks, spoons, the handles of a soup bowl and a tray all assume a triangular shape. The cutlery is composed of 130 items, which includes 10 household pieces, 10 individual accessories, as well as a storage case made with Brazilian wood. Casas is one of the most reknowned architects and interior designers in Brazil and Internationally. From architecture to furniture design, his work is clean and marked by the symmetry of spaces, natural materials, transparency and style that combine elegance with intelligence.


Arthur Casas
Q: What was your inspiration for the cutlery collection you designed for Riva?
A: The design of the spoon was inspired by the head of the Jararaca snake, a common type of Brazilian snake and based on the spoon shape I designed the other items for the Riva collection.

Q: What are some of the latest trends you are seeing in architecture and interior design?
A: Clearly the latest trend is to be concerned of the source and sustainability of materials and finishes. Sustainability will drive architecture and interior design from now on.

Q: What have been some of your favorite projects?
A: Honestly I don’t have one in particular. The best project is that one that I’m designing, especially if I’m design something for myself.

Q: Are there any architects past or present whom you admire?
A: I have plenty that I admire. I will mention two of them just to summarize my personal list, Richard Neutra (past) and SANAA: Kazuyo Sejima+ Ryue Nishizawa (present).

Q: What are the key influences in your work today?
A: Nowadays my work is the result of a rationalist approach, transparency, simple color schemes and of course, taking into consideration the materials and finishes, which is this is the approach that I’ve been taking for the past 20 years. I’m constantly keeping my eyes opened to contemporary work form other architects and professionals, however I’m always following my own paths, inspirations and beliefs.

Q: How did your personal style and signature play into the designs of cutlery set you did for Riva?
A: The beauty of the silverware is its shape, the form follows function. For these who don’t remember this is the Bauhaus’ concept of production which many architects have taken as a priority into their design including me. I always try to not over decorate my work and I believe this principle is evident in my silverware line.

Q: How would you describe your design style in 3 words?
A: Simplicity, functionality and elegance.

Q: As a successful architect what advice would you give to a young student who wants to follow in your footsteps?
A: To become a successful architect it is necessary to have a very well tuned sense of observation, be tuned in to new things, stay updated and evidently develop the talent to be an architect.

Rubens Simões
Q: What was your inspiration behind the salt and pepper shaker you created?
A: The Murazzo’s inspiration came from my ecological concern. Dealing with steel, I was worried about the destination of thousands of products produced every day by our company that went to waste. I put a pile of products on my desk. Looked at them for a couple of days and then found a solution to reuse the material: it could be a box full of surprises and why not pepper and salt shakers? The name Murazzo was in honor of a small and very cozy Italian city.

Q: What are you favorite kinds of design projects?
A: What I really look forward when I am starting a new project is what kind of innovation the object can bring and offer to the market. Most of the times, just one innovation is enough for the project to stand a chance and became a good seller. Obviously, a great finish and good design are also needed, but the aspect of innovation, for me, is the kind of design project that grabs my attention.

Q: What would you do if you weren’t a designer?
A: Sometimes, I catch myself involved with my motorcycles, since I was a kid I have had bikes and always liked to deal with engine parts and leaving it with the look and sound the way I liked. Right now as a matter of fact, I’m working on 2 used bikes and customizing every single bolt and paint job detail… so maybe, just maybe , having my own shop for custom bikes and cars would make me a happy man.

Q: What time periods in history have an influence (if any) on your work?
A: During the 80′s, I grew up going every year to Milan with my father, to visit the Macef (Salone Internazionale della Casa) fair. There, I observed and learned to appreciate many Italian manufacturers and designers. For me, it was the best schooling I could have ever had. During this period I didn’t realize that by going to all these gift shows in Milan, I was creating my own concepts and understanding about design and how soft and modern the Italian design already was.

Q: What advice would you give to a young person who would like to take the same career path as you?
A: Travel, travel, travel and then travel some more. And understand that our country (Brazil) has all the natural resources waiting to be discovered and applied on the next design project.

Q: How would you describe your design style in 3 words?
A: Durable, clean and desirable.

Q: What are some of your future plans?
A: Make Riva a brand that is synonymous with modern, sophisticated, desirable and long lasting objects.