A day with Jaime Beriestain
CEO and Founder of Jaime Beriestain Studio in Barcelona.
Can you tell us a bit of your background and what made you fall in love with design?
Since I was a child, I had a great imagination and I wanted to create things that didn’t exist. So I use what I had in my house to create them, with Mecano, mockups, etc. At this age, I had no clue that “design” existed. I used to move the furnitures in my room and in my house, put filters on the bulbs to change the light.
What challenges are involved in designing for hospitality versus home environments?
The main challenge is that when working in hospital spaces, it is necessary to comply with a series of regulations regarding fires, emergency exits, durability that does not exist in homes.
What or who are your biggest sources for inspiration right now?
I am a fervent admirer of the work of architects such as Oscar Niemeyer and David Chipperfield, distinguished artists such as Peter Halley, Josef Albers, James Turrell, Olafur Eliasson and the designer Piero Lissoni.
You also run a concept store and café, how did these places come about?
They are born out of need. In Barcelona around 2008 there was not a place like the one I was looking for. I was looking for a place with flowers, with coffee to drink every day, with objects to find for my projects and for my clients. When I did not find something like that, I decided to open my own store and share this interest with the rest of the people.
Which is your favorite Hotel in the world right now and why?
If I am traveling for pleasure, I do not care much about the type of hotel whether it is comfortable or not, for me the main thing is the atmosphere you have and your willingness for adventure, I love adventure.
On the other hand if it is a city, I like the hotels that I design – boutique hotels, with small spaces, few rooms, that have a concern for the sheets, pillows, bathrooms and rooms in general. As it could be the case of The One or Almanac.
What would you say are signature Jaime Beriestain trademarks?
For me it’s like a laboratory where I can create and try results of my experiments. Designing products, I design my own rugs, lighting and fabrics. Products such as candles and cosmetics. Or food for my restaurant.
It’s like an extension of my house where I put my own art collection and share moments and a Gin and tonic with the customers.
For me the main thing is the atmosphere you have and your willingness for adventure, I love adventureJaime Beriestain
You are putting the finishing touches of Almanac Vienna right now, what have been the biggest challenges of this project?
I believe that the biggest challenge was to create a single hotel with two different building cores. One that was made at the beginning of the 19th century and another in the middle of the 20th century. Uniting these buildings of different heights was a great challenge. Since we had to do ramps, review the issues with firemen and in this way a series of technical difficulties that I would say have been the most relevant so far.
Finally, what are your go-to places on a sunny, lazy weekend in Barcelona?
Actually I normally don’t stay in Barcelona on weekends, as I go to my farm one hour outside of Barcelona, with beautiful views of Montserrat mountain. There I have a vegetable garden, chickens and goats.
But if I to stay in the city, I would have a walk with my dog to the beach, have breakfast in the Born area. Then I pass through the Galeria Senda to explore the new artists they have. And later a dinner and cocktails with show at the new restaurant I designed in Barcelona called ZUU.