As I was roaming the World Wide Web today I came across something I felt was the answer to all my prayers, so naturally I wanted to share it with you. Imagine you could take what you love about hostels and combine it with what you love about hotels – then maybe you would wake up at the new HI Matic Hotel in Paris.
First things first.
During my recent trip through Mexico, I faced an issue that was pretty new to me: I had enough money to enjoy the comfort of a decent midrange hotel, but as I was traveling alone I felt I needed to stay at hostels in order to meet people. Now, of course, some hostels have single rooms and whenever one was available I did prefer that over sharing a room with 13 others. Nevertheless, none of those hostel rooms ever come with wifi, cable TV or any of the other anemities I have come to love and look for while I travel.
It seems that the makers of the HI Matic have found a bridge that really works for people like me. They created a boutique hotel with inspiring design, a comfortabe feel and a high standard. Plus, by means of modern technology, they found ways to let people staying at the hotel connect with each other, taking away the anonymity coming with most hotels.
The entire hotel is hooked up with a network by means of interconnected touch screen monitors all throughout the building. They allow you to share specific info with the neighboring room or the entire hotel. For example, if you’re traveling alone and are looking for a drinking buddy – just post it on the network. Chances are, someone else staying in one of the 42 rooms would love to join you for dinner or a beer in the neighborhood.
While the online connection is certainly helpful, there is also a lobby and a restaurant set up to facilitate encounters. Ipads are always around at your free disposal to allow you to select music, specific information or communicate with other hotel guests and staff.
But the social aspect is not the only thing that makes this hotel special.
Designer extraordinaire Matali Crasset has created a hotel that meets modern standards an expectations by values of practicality, comfort, economy, ecology and downright fun.
The furniture is multi-functional and flexible, meaning you can move and shape things into what or where you want them to be. Sleeping turns into a unique experience on one of the custom-made, memory-shaped mattrasses. The fact that you essentially sleep on the floor, adds to the overall character of freedom in an almost childhood-evoking setting. I just can see myself jump around on that mattrass…
The whole place is ecologically friendly with the materials of choice being wood, rubber and natural paint.
Not even breakast here is served in the usual manner. Organic goodness is served from automatic dispensers, allowing you to take whatever your heart desires.
A similar concept was applied at the HI shop, selling books, tooth brushes, or small gifts from an original 24/7 vending machine.
Here’s a short video giving a better idea of how the rooms are set up:
HI Matic Hotel is located at 71 Rue de Charonne in 75011 Paris. It’s right in the heart of Paris’ most desitrable neighborhoods of Bastille where a lot of great bars and restaurants are located. All in all a pretty great place to stay when visiting the city of love.
Rooms cost around €129 per night and can be booked through the website.
*all photos by Simon Bouisson