References are rich throughout the “Casa To” hotel, located on Mexico’s Pacific coast in an town named Puerto Escondido. Architect Ludwig Godefroy drew upon a number of visual and conceptual cues when crafting the building, while also calling upon local craftspeople to create its furniture.
Surrounded by an idyllic landscape, the nine-suite Casa To is intended to provide a “discreet oasis” for its guests. Simplicity drove the architectural design, and materials and color palettes have been informed by naturally occurring textures and tones. For Ludwig Godefroy and his team, further inspiration came from a wide range of sources – but its striking vaulted ceilings, in particular, took their design cues from two “historical hydraulic works of timeless beauty”: the Basilica Cistern in Istanbul, dating back to the 6th century, and the Hornsey Wood Reservoir in Finsbury Park, London, built in the 19th century.
Perhaps the show-stopping moment for the hotel is its covered infinity pool and solarium. Here, large circular openings are cut into the raw concrete walls, creating apertures to swim through. The blue of the water contrasts with the tones of the surrounding materials, which have largely been inspired by the modernist buildings of Le Corbusier. Suites are contained within a volume that sits adjacent to the pool and terraced solarium. Here, six ground-floor rooms open out onto gardens, and three upper-level rooms feature a terrace and luxurious outdoor bath.
“The natural surroundings of Casa To defined the interior design, inspired by the natural pattern of a Madagascar Blue Bismarck palm tree (Bismarckia Nobilis) standing on the original site,” the hotelier says. “The chosen color palette combines the natural tones of concrete and stainless steel with turquoise hues, and nuances of yellow, blue, and green.”
When it came to crafting the furniture, Godefroy wanted to have custom-design pieces that were made by expert carpenters local to the Puebla, Guadalajara, and Oaxaca areas. A human touch is evident throughout the woodworks, making the hotel feel homely and allowing a sense of warmth to break through the harshness of the concrete structure, such as a series of bamboo pieces designed by Tiago Solís Van Beuren,
Both the architect and the hotelier share a strong view of consciousness and sustainability and believe both should be intrinsic to today’s version of luxury living. In terms of the furniture, guests are also able to purchase the pieces under a Fairtrade model, and with the building, a water treatment plant was added to reuse wastewater for the planted areas; solar panels are used to store energy, and there is a strict zero-plastics policy.
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