Sleep, eat, record, repeat. Jack Southan reports on the emerging trend for luxury hotels to install recording studios, with the arrival of the W Bali Sound Suite.
Ever been singing in the shower and found yourself accidentally creating something lyrically masterful? If you’re a serious musician, inspiration can hit at any time, yet more often than not the melody or beat which so suddenly appears just as easily dissipates before you’ve had time to put pen to paper.
Well, enter the new W Hotels’ exclusive world-first – the W Bali Sound Suite at the W Retreat and Spa – Seminyak.
World-renowned luxury hotel chain, W, from Starwood Hotels and Resorts, now offers creatives the chance to stay in top-end suites that also have an integrated private music studio and writer’s room set up for professional recording artists, studio musicians and producers, in addition to regular hotel guests, to record in style while they are on the road.
Guests also have access to an on-site “music curator”, high-speed 90Mbps wifi, unlimited access to the fitness centre and Detox Chamber spa, a sound engineer for in-room sessions and DJ booth set up.
The main mixing room in the W Bali Sound Suite includes professional equipment from Native Instruments, Pioneer and Moog, as well as a private vocal booth overlooking a tropical garden.
“W has a long history of musicians staying, playing and celebrating at our hotels,” says Anthony Ingham, global brand leader of W Hotels Worldwide. “We know that inspiration can strike at any moment, so the W Sound Suite is today’s tech-savvy version of scribbling lyrics on a cocktail napkin.”
He adds: “Bali, a vibrant and creative hub often called ‘the alternative Ibiza’, is the perfect setting for our first music studio, with Hollywood, Barcelona and Seattle to follow. After all, who can’t find inspiration in paradise?”
There is a global trend emerging for record production on-the-go, and although W is the first hotel to provide guests with the luxury of an in-room recording studio, others have offered them as an additional feature for some time.
Hotels such as Ushuaia Beach in Ibiza and the Eden Rock in St Barths provide their musical clientele fully equipped studios to rent during their time at the luxury properties. As the trend catches on, more hotels are sure to follow.
The more people (and more specifically musicians) travel and work on the road, the more they require hotels to be a home-from-home. Providing everything they should ever need to create, to relax and to live while touring. And so has begun the battle of commercial hospitality to be the first to cater to the ever-growing list of niche requirements customers may have.
This trend for “unique selling point” rooms has come about as more and more hotels begin to collaborate with top industry personnel in varying fields to fill the gaps in their business models and to keep up to date with the ever expanding industry.
The 50 sqm W Bali Sound Suite are in part the brainchild of the W brand’s North American music director, DJ White Shadow, the Chicago-based producer best known for his work with Lady Gaga.
He worked closely with W to identify the best sound equipment and studio layout to ensure the suites on offer were optimal for professional use.
He says: “While travelling around the globe making music for the last decade, I’ve run into many challenges including costly studio rentals, the risk of disturbing other guests, and not being able to find a suitable place to listen to or create music.
“We dreamed up an environment for musicians to create that is convenient, stylish and functional. I’m thrilled to partner with the equally innovative team at W Hotels – there isn’t another brand that could bring this idea to life on such a global scale and in such an innovative way.”
Whether you’re Jessie J or Iced T, it seems the future of music is the Bali W.