A guest’s welcome to the hotel begins before they reach the open-air Living Room itself. Upon arrival, guests are greeted with a cheeky and oversized 9-foot Huichol statue, along with a fleet of colourful TukTuks that whisk travellers further into the hotel. Surrounding the Welcome Desks, irreverent images from Mexico’s past (sugar skulls, song lyrics and pop culture icons) come to life in the form of Papel Picado, a traditional Mexican folk art, that is reinterpreted through white metal screens. After checking-in, guests then move seamlessly into the Living Room, the Mexican inspired social space at the centre of the property.
The W resort is nestled into the hillside at a secluded Mexican beach. Individual casitas are beachside or gathered around an enormous spring fed reflecting pond with beach views. The design brief for Mister Important Design was to create a W resort environment for W Punta De Mita inspired by the local bohemian surf culture and to embrace the historical, social and spiritual context of the region. Traditional patterns of the Huichol people (indigenous people of Nayarit), images of traditional Mexican celebration, vivid handcrafts with ancient roots and the amalgamation of European and Indigenous cultures were sought for the hotel’s luxurious and stylish villas, public spaces, and buzzing bars and restaurants. The team were asked to create an overall narrative for the project and execute a design that brought that narrative to life. To this end they worked with talented local artist that could help combine the traditional with contemporary culture.
A combination that manifests the touchstones of the W experience, Art, Fashion and Music. The designers were also asked to create iconic pieces and experiences for the hotel guests, one of which was the “Camino Huichol” walkway, This special feature of the hotel is a stunning representation of Huichol patterns realised as a walkway or carpet uniting the landscape, pool, bar and lobby. The Huichol carpet, made up of intricate bright green and blue floor mosaic, is a walkway that stretches close to 460 feet. It acts as a path, guiding guests through communal areas of the hotel from the entrance through the Living Room (W’s answer to the traditional hotel lobby and the social space at the centre of the property) and onto the centre walkway of the WET deck (outdoor pool, bar and lounge area), finally jutting out over the beach for a stunning view of the Pacific Ocean. It is a fun and vibrant reminder of the hotel’s historic and cultural location. A representation of the Huichol life journey, highlighting life’s ups and down, that ultimately terminates in an ascension to spiritual (and physical) heights.