December 8, 2019
Aspen’s newest property has signature details behind every curtain and corner.
The W Hotel introduced tiered full beds, the first property in the country to do so.
Whether you grab a drink, cabana or a place to rest your head at the new W Hotel in Aspen, nuanced details executed by Aspen-based Rowland + Broughton, in collaboration with New York City’s Nemaworkshop, nod to local character and will leave no doubt as to which town this W calls home.
Upon entering the lobby, it’s hard to look anywhere but at the large geometric oval pod perched high above. This floating pièce de résistance is a DJ booth and a take on the world’s largest silver nugget, which came out of Aspen’s Smuggler Mine. At any point in the day, resident DJ Kevin Joyal may be performing and the 5,000-plus synchronized LED lights dance to his sound. But don’t forget to look down at the striated blue-toned carpet, which mimics a topographical map, reminiscent of the nearby Elk Mountains. Behind the welcome-stand desks, a wall of terrariums are subtly siloed into four seasons.
Peek down a guest-room hall and see a mining tunnel: Textured gray carpet transitions seamlessly into slate walls and ceiling, or wood scaffolding frames the space. The guest rooms themselves are far from standard. Banquette couches in cobalt blue and burnt orange oppose mirrored and glass-covered miniature fridges channeling the ostentatious party homes of the late ’60s and early ’70s. On the beds, exclusive throw pillows inspired by Herbert Bayer and Thomas Benton depict the skiing shrines of Aspen Mountain and the soiled doves of Durant, an allusion to the red light district that sat on this side of Aspen during its mining days. The silhouette of the luggage rack is a sleigh, and a see-through mining shaft doubles as a window in the separating wall between the bedroom and bathroom.
The W Hotel features three restaurant and lounge areas. Downstairs, 39 Degrees pays homage to the iconic après-ski bar that anchored the Sky Hotel, which the W Hotel replaced. In another reference to the red light district, female figures are seen in the carpet; crushed lilac and burgundy couches and low lighting imbue a sensual feel. On the rooftop Wet Deck, minimalist sunshades, a bright white terraced bar and a row of actual aspen trees channel Aspen’s Bauhaus days. In the living room, the W’s community space, brass rods and plush seating are part of Aspen’s bohemian counterculture, and natural woods and general coziness are reminiscent of a Swiss chalet.
On brand with W Hotel properties around the country, this new Aspen player is edgy, fresh and full of color. And there’s a story behind every detail. Rooms from $279, 550 Spring St., marriott.com
Photography by: W Hotel