Have you every dreamed of staying the night in an furniture showroom, slipping into a comfy bed on the shop floor? Now, US furniture design studio Stephen Kenn has opened the Stephen Kenn Loft – a showroom that doubles as a micro-hotel in Los Angeles. Samuel Ballard reports
Stephen Kenn opened the shoppable Loft with his partner Beks Opperman, in the summer, with the idea being to host guests in an Airbnb-style space that would be continuously updated with new homeware collections that are available to buy.
Situated in the Arts District of LA, the building was originally a 1920s furniture factory. The minimalist, concrete-walled Loft spans 149 sqm and comes with a full kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, gym and meditation room, which is accessed via a flight of steps. Inside, the furniture reflects the studio’s handmade, industrial aesthetic, mixing timber and metal. Reservations opened on 1 September for stays beginning from October. Upon arrival, Kenn gives guests a personal tour of his standout pieces, as well as custom products from partners such as Allied Maker lighting and gym equipment from Japanese fitness company Itani Athletic.In addition to being available for overnight stays, the Stephen Kenn Loft will act as a community hub, hosting curated dinners and cocktail parties for people to partake in. All this is a great example of “experiential retail” in action.The company said in a statement: “Guests will experience the full expression of hospitality that Stephen and Beks have dreamed of creating for many years. Guests will be encouraged to make full use of the space and enjoy using all the designs just as they would in their own home – reading a book from the loft library on the Stephen Kenn sofa, resting in bed on the Hästens mattress, sharing a drink in the bar, or exercising in the vintage-inspired home gym.”
Shoppable stays take off
The concept of shoppable stays is not unique to Stephen Kenn. Floyd, another US furniture manufacturer, has a number of Airbnb listings that have been decked out in its furniture, while IKEA also has its own hotel (the IKEA Hotell), situated right next to the world’s first IKEA store, in Almhult, Sweden.
Japanese homeware brand Muji has also been opening hotels (the one in Tokyo is pictured below), as has online furniture supplier Made.com; the former has properties in China and Japan, while the latter has one in New York.