Luxury here is not in ornate glassware or golden faucets, but in waking up in the morning with a window at the foot of the bed from which to contemplate nature, stroll and listen to the trees, or watch the sunset from a privileged spot, in where there is a room of 26 m2 becomes a large viewpoint in the Guadalest Valley, in the province of Alicante. They call it “perceptual luxury.”
Daniel May, architect, has devoted 5 of his 29 years to researching the application of sustainability in architecture. Beginning with sustainable housing, he later transferred his designs to post-disaster housing and eventually patented a knock-down housing system that was shipped in Ikea-style pieces to be assembled at destination for tourism purposes and as ephemeral architecture for events. The latter was the project that Lanzadera selected in its support program for young entrepreneurs. However, it happened that Daniel Mayo was unsatisfied when there were 3 months left to complete the acceleration program and the billing data was already available. He didn’t want to limit himself to making shelters, but to manage everything from the environment that welcomed them to the use that would be given to them.
The Risks of Panning
He designed the hotel project almost in secret and when he had it, he presented his new business model in Lanzadera, moving from architecture to the tourism sector. So much spinning wasn’t very fun in the accelerator, but they agreed to spin on the condition that they find the right position within the three months remaining in the program. He traveled many kilometers to finally find it in Fotocasa, where the sale of an old animal enclosure of 84,000 m2 was announced.
The test was more than enough for Lanzadera to appreciate the entrepreneurial character of the young man from Segovia and commit definitively to the project, participating with 1.16 million euros from Angels, Juan Roig’s investment vehicle.
Daniel Mayo took a deep breath, but only to take a deeper breath to begin with sprint Final. “We ran the risk of the construction process dragging on, which would mean the demise of the company. The usual times for building a hotel, between 2 and 5 years, were prohibitive for a startup. We had to open as soon as possible as our economic resources were limited and our only source of income would come from the running hotel.”
Building against the clock
The execution of the project started on June 13, 2014 and the doors opened on June 29 Vivood Landscape Hotel, the sum of the words “our living spirit” and wood, which “symbolize our sustainable values represented by the presence of wood as the predominant material in our projects”. Without any promotions, the month of July recorded an occupancy rate of 50% and the month of August 80% with a price of €170 per night.
It’s an adults-only hotel, which, contrary to expectations, attracts more Spanish tourists than foreigners.
The complex consists of 25 suites in the form of modules integrated into nature, with a minimalist design but with all the traditional comforts and technology. The idea is to open another 3 similar hotels within 5 years, where they will continue to implement the advances in ecological modular architecture. An architectural, tourist, landscape and business challenge.