Influenced by the timeless tradition of 'Al Halqa', Blink Design Group reimagines the art of storytelling at the hotel
Words by Aneesha Rai in The Lifestyle · Aug 18th, 2023
As soon as you enter through to the lobby of the W Dubai - Mina Seyahi, you enter into a fun and playful take on design with an homage to the region. Floating glass pages, rich tapestry and unique pieces stand out, with woven fabrics and lighting. Designed by Blink Design Group, we step into this world where storytelling meets design.
Drawing profound inspiration from the venerable tradition of Al-Halqa - the storytellers' circles deeply rooted in Arabian culture. This time-honored practice, as ancient as the sands themselves, once drew captivated crowds around masterful narrators who wove enchanting tales. Now, a modern rendition of this cherished heritage has materialized in the form of a remarkable hotel - a creation that seamlessly melds history, culture, and design.
Dubbed the "Port of Travellers," this visionary project was born from a deep appreciation of Dubai's history - a history shaped by generations of traders and storytellers coming together to forge a shimmering city by the sea. The profound influence of these tales and journeys birthed an equally captivating narrative for the hotel, one that pays homage to the soul of storytelling and the vibrant spirit of the souk - a bustling marketplace where people share their travel stories and aspirations, a modern-day haven for dealmakers and adventurers.
Leading the design effort was Clint Nagata, Founder and Creative Partner of Blink Design Group, who saw this concept echo through every corner of the establishment.
From the moment guests step into their rooms, they are greeted by an ambiance of opulence and intrigue. The furnishings exude hints of adventure and romance, with intricate details that whisk visitors away to distant lands. Bedside tables take the form of treasure chests, concealing delightful surprises within.
The allure of maritime history finds its place in the room's white leather bed headboards, adorned with motifs reminiscent of Dhows - traditional Arabian sailing vessels. Fabrics bearing motifs from local calligraphy celebrate the region's artistic heritage. The lighting pays homage to ancient lanterns, evoking the enchantment of Arabian Nights.
Suites, envisioned as spaces for convivial gatherings, boast luxuriously appointed seating areas and tilted mini-bars finished in brass and dark blue lacquer. These spaces effortlessly balance functionality and elegance, perfect for leisurely conversations or pre-dinner drinks among friends.
Even the walk-in closets exude an air of mystique, closed off by billowing curtains that transition through a gradient of sunset hues, echoing the colors of the bay. The hotel's designers masterfully play with the notion of concealed treasures, drawing guests into a world of secrets and surprises.
This homage to storytelling transcends even into the bathrooms, where calligraphic themes in bold black and white hues reflect the contrast of ink on paper. The bathrooms, complete with their own seating areas, beckon guests to indulge in leisurely bathing rituals while fostering conversations and cocktail sipping.
Ginger Moon's split-level ocean deck merges seamlessly with the sparkling waters of the bay, creating an enchanting connection to the sea. From the vantage point of the restaurant and pool bar, you have views of the iconic Ain Dubai.
The rich storytelling theme extends even to the BAR-B spa experience, embracing guests in a uniquely exotic ambiance that carries forward the narrative of the hotel. With each corner adorned with intention and every design element thoughtfully curated, this establishment breathes life into Dubai's rich heritage, rekindling the magic of Al-Halqa for a new generation of wanderers and dreamers.
All images courtesy W Hotels