El Llorenç Parc de la Mar
An Arabic inspired Aesthetic
La Calatrava, the oldest neighborhood in Palma, is at the crossroads of a rich cultural heritage influenced by the Moors, Arabs, and Spaniards. You can see the influences throughout the neighborhood. Swedish designer and visionary, Magnus Ehrland, has taken the history of the area and embedded it into every aspect of hotel El Llorenç Parc de lar Mar.
Having a fearless vision, he created layers upon layers of design that meld together beautifully. There is an Arabic-inspired aesthetic and a perpetual star pattern that is reflected in a variety of materials: wood, stone, glass, metal and ceramic. You will, find it in ceilings, milled into doors, laser cut in lampshades, and in jacquard woven towels and linens to mention a few. It’s a bold direction that only a creative genius can produce – and it takes someone like Ehrland to have the ability to make it all work.
“I wanted the hotel to have an inspiring environment with a classic authenticity, full of unexpected and unpredictable clashes, yet that all work together" says Ehrland.
Blending Heritage with Creative Renewal
The overall idea was to create a design that would be timeless. Walnut moldings inspired from the 1920/30’s are used throughout the hotel. This detail combines old with the new, bringing a bit of authenticity to the hotel – making the building look like it has been there for a long time, but renovated during different stages of time. Guests would be unable to pinpoint when the hotel was built, nor be able to tell what is new and what “is original” – yet it is all new.
Ehrland tapped into the Spanish tradition of tile manufacturing selecting ADEX, one of the oldest tile companies now operated by the fifth generation of the founding family. He selected 35 tile patterns to be embossed and custom made in three colors: Smoke Grey, Deep Ocean Green, and a Creamy Beige.
“The trend in tiles is and has been ‘the bigger the better’ but I chose the opposite direction.”
He has taken vintage embossed tiles traditionally used as decorative borders, which are seen today as old fashioned. Ehrland set the tiles in staggered vertical lines, all in a singular tone, with a mix of the embossed and plain tiles in the bathrooms, dressing rooms, public restrooms and the wellness area. The effect is clean while the texture adds a rich and unexpected quality. Additionally, most bathrooms feature a window to the room with adjustable wooden blinds to give natural light and a more spacious feeling to both areas.
Intarsia requires precision cutting, sanding and intricate work – a technique that dates back to the seventh century in Islamic North Africa. For months, expert craftsmen created and built the new Versailles style intarsia parquet floors. Some consider it a lost art, certainly it is a rare scenario for a hotel to undertake today based on the investment of time in creating it.
During the demolition, it was discovered remnants of an ancient Arabic oven from the 11th century – called a Tannur. The project was stopped for a long period of time due to the excavation work required by the historical authorities. It has been preserved and is now highlighted in a section of the restaurant. This special find is taken as inspiration and weaved into the name of one of the restaurants.
The color palette overall is warm and neutral with some bright accents to spice it up and not make it too serious. The tones of the local stones - Santanyi and Binissalem, and the different colors of the ocean influenced the main color palette. These are combined with all types of metals, stones and wood (mainly walnut) and with occasional pop color contrasts. This color scheme runs throughout the hotel but with an alternated focus. Since 1887, Anaglypta has been creating wallpapers in authentic styles. Magnus chose different vintage crisply embossed wall coverings painted in a cool smoky teal shade that lines the hallways. The public spaces have real plants to bring a snug feeling and where it can’t be done in a natural way, exotic leaves with accent color contrasts are printed on custom made carpets produced by Danish manufacturer Ege.
Ç The Rooftop
The crowning glory is the three-tiered rooftop terrace. Here you find a 12-meter pool with Balinese day beds and loungers, with some of them set in the shallow level raised platform of the pool. Funky green, fringed raffia parasols add a pop of color and a touch of humor while also offering shade. The second tier offers a large bar, lounge area and dining tables (seating 32) where guests can watch the sunset, see mega yachts sail by, enjoy specialty cocktails along with an amazing array of snacks from the Tannur bar menu. The third tier rises just a bit higher and the 360-degree views over Palma Bay and old town, which is nothing less than breathtaking.
Ç the Wellness Studio
At the opposite end of the hotel, when it’s time to restore and refresh, guests will find a haven of tranquility in the Wellness Studio where they can indulge in beauty enhancing and body revitalizing treatments from Natura Bissé. Complete with a 14-meter indoor thermal pool, dry sauna, steam sauna, ice fountain, along with cascade and aromatic showers, the space is designed with soothing deep ocean green tiles. Alternatively, the fully equipped gym is in a bright almost neon yellow color chosen for energy. It is open 24 hours and is equipped with the latest fitness technology.
“The world gets more global in its style every day and there is a tendency to see the same designs everywhere, and I am not one to follow current trends. I have chosen to use various materials, methods and techniques that have a connection to the historical aspect of the neighborhood, the island and the country. The intention was to use them in a new and unexpected way to make them feel fresh again – as well as something that will last over time.” says Magnus Ehrland
Brands: Andrew World, B&B Italia, AOO Barcelona, Baxter, Beltá & Frajumar, Dale Italia, Dedon, Emu, Ethimo, Flexform, Flou, Gandia Blasco, Johanson Design, Kartell, Kettal, Knoll, Novocastrian, Paola Lenti, Pianca, Roche Bobois, Skyline Design, Viccarbe, Vondom, Zeitraum, Tal, Modular, Kreon, Delta, Flos, Castro Lighting, Laurie Lumiere, Sans Souci, Point 1920, Expormim, Santa & Cole, Rotschild & Bickers, Duravit.
Designers: Patricia Urquiola, Antonio Citterio, Miguel Milá, Robert Ortega, Gam Fratesi, Sebastian Herkner, Patrick Norguet, Rodolfo Dordoni, Warren Platner, Michael Schultz, Emilio Nanni, Giulio Lacchetti, Désmarmeux & Carrrette, Cédric Ragot, Marc Krusin, Javier Mariscal, Hanna Ehlers, Magnus Ehrland.
Materials: Santanyi & Binissalem (local stones), granite, marble, slate, gravel, pebbles, concrete, walnut, oak, wenge, petrified wood, wicker, iron, brass, copper, stainless steel, colored chrome, reed, venetian plaster, painted stucco, embossed wallpaper, 3D and embossed surfaces, tiles, glass, ceramic, plastic, cotton, linen, wool.