Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Why This Room Caught My Eye

After a tiny break my Tuesday series 'Why This Room Caught My Eye' is back and celebrates the last days of summer with a warm, vibrant and inviting living room design. While we are heading towards autumn and winter, our down under friends in Australia are facing spring and summer. Thus, this beautiful living room was featured in the Australian Inside Out Magazine and caught my eye instantly. The reasons are pretty obvious, right? But let's break it down:
  • Yellow Accents: Yellow is the strongest colour to create a warm and sunny atmosphere in interiors, even during winter. I love to add a few yellow accents in my home too. But this living room exemplifies it to perfection: A round rug, an accent cushion and fresh yellow flowers tie the color story together.
  • Matching Blue: Here we are with my all-time favorite colour combination: yellow and blue. By placing the white and blue accent cushion on the sofa the entire interior gets a summery look and feel recalling the seaside and warm sunshine. It is literally like holiday at home. 
  • Pink & Purple Details: The colour story of this home is brought to completion with the subtle pinch of pink and purple hues to round up the warm feeling. Soft pink accents on a cushion, a pink bowl and books as well as a bright purple vase and pink kitchen towel in the background please the beholding eye and make this home a colorful but not overdone interior.
Is this interior catching your eye, too?

Photography by Brooke Holm, styling by Marsha Golemac, via Inside Out Magazine

Monday, September 1, 2014

From Place To Space: 25 Hours Hotel Bikini In Berlin

Last week I was off on a work mission in Berlin. Not for the blog but for my regular day job. However, I wouldn't be a blogger if I didn't try to squeeze in something that would yield a new story for my Happy Interior Blog. Given the fact that I was working from morning till evening in a studio producing some corporate videos, the only option I had was the hotel. So I did what a good interior design blogger has to do: I picked a hotel I would really love to visit and feature on my blog. Thus, I opted for the recently opened 25 Hours Hotel Bikini in Berlin.

I've already experience the 25 Hours Hotel in Hamburg, Germany, but every hotel of this cool design hotel chain has a different concept and tells a different design story. The new Berlin based hotel is in a historical building complex that is referred to by the Berliners as Bikini. It is located in the city's west between the landmarks Memorial Church and the famous Berlin zoo. Its peculiar location resulted in the hotel's design concept called 'Urban Jungle'. Now you can imagine that I as an Urban Jungle Blogger was all ears when the hotel's manager told me all about the story.

The concept was created by the famous German designer Werner Aissliger with an extended team including guest designers like the Japanese artist Yoshi Sislay who hand drew illustrations in every room and other public areas of the hotel. The juxtaposition of an urban life and the jungle vibe from the adjacent zoo led to a combination of urban materials, vibrant colours and lots of plants. While the rooms on the 'urban side' (facing the Memorial Church) use raw materials like concrete floor screed, copper and cooler colours, the 'jungle side' (facing the zoo) uses natural materials like wood and nature inspired colours with floor-to-ceiling windows and a hammock to relax and watch the monkey jump around in the zoo. 

It is the monkeys that also triggered the naming of the top floor hotel bar, the Monkey Bar. A big rooftop terrace and a relaxed atmosphere with warm hues, colorful furniture and lots of kilim cushions invites every guest to enjoy a drink while enjoying a bird's eye view over Berlin. For the hungry ones there is the wonderful Neni restaurant placed in a greenhouse on the top floor with an abundance of houseplants and delicious Middle Eastern influenced cuisine. 

The public area on the third floor includes a cool reception area made of old Berlin metro tiles, a bakery for a grab & go breakfast, working spaces, a music area, conference facilities, funky green public restrooms and a little design shop of the Berlin based Gestalten publishing house. On the ninth floor guests will find a little gym, a relax zone and a sauna overlooking the Berlin zoo - fancy!

All the above mentioned facts, the attached pictures and the very reasonable prices for a design hotel make the 25 Hours Hotel Bikini a perfect home base for your next Berlin trip. Thumbs up from my side!

Happy new week!

Photography by Igor Josifovic, design products shot by Gestalten

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Home Textiles From Finland By 'Saana ja Olli'

It's like two years ago that I discovered the Finnish design duo 'Saana ja Olli' for the first time. It was more or less love at first sight and I purchased one of their cushions immediately that I dearly love ever since (you can see the blue cushion HERE). Now they've launched new products, for their label and in collaborations with other brands. Among them a wonderful carpet, beautiful cushions and blankets.

What I love about 'Saana ja Olli' is their dedication to local craftsmanship, their focus on 100 % natural materials and their inspiration drawn from nature and Finnish tradition. Most of their designs have roots in the Finnish tradition yet seem to be timeless in their appeal. The new 'Koko iäksi' carpet looks even very contemporary if you ask me. A fantastic piece of design! And the collaboration with Novita resulted in a wonderful set of blanket and cushion - perfect for the coming winter!

If you don't know 'Saana ja Olli' yet, check their website to get acquainted with their fantastic design work since 2008. A young and inspiring Finnish design couple! And a very promising one I'd add!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Happy Interior Blog Recommends...

Currently I am pondering about a new bookshelf for my tiny apartment. A slightly bigger one than the current one I have, so that I can store more books in it and that I can use some shelves for those tending 'shefies' - you know, it's quite a good way to train your styling skills with shelves:-) 

I haven't made up my mind about the shelf yet, but I have found a few new accessories that would look rad on my new shelf. These and a few more findings, including some lovely home accessories I already own, are part of this week's recommendations. Hope you gonna like them! Have fun & happy hump day!

1. Simple and beautiful organic bedlinen by Laura Thomas Linens
2. Kay Bojesen Monkey via Nest
3. Tivoli Model One radio in white and yellow
4. Rama chair via Olsson & Gerthel
5. Mid-century Danish walnut candlesticks via Ebay
6. Handmade cactus print via SR Paper Works
7. Blue Pantone espresso maker via Howkapow

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Plant Of The Month: Echeveria

Today I am very happy to introduce a new mini series on the blog - the first written in both, English and German. I have teamed up with Pflanzenfreude.de, a platform dedicated to houseplants and part of a larger project funded by the European Union. Now, a project that is raising the awareness for more greens in interiors sounds like the perfect partner for me as an Urban Jungle Blogger. Thus, I am happy to present the first out of three 'Plant of the Month' posts. Even though we are in the last days of August, I would like to introduce this month's plant to you: the Echeveria.

The Echeveria is a desert beauty. It originates from the Mexican desert and was discovered in the 19th century by botanist Antansio Echeveria hence its name. The cute succulent plant comes in many different varieties and hues: big, small, dark green, grey-green, lilac, reddish, hairy, smooth or downy. But they have all one thing in common: they store water in their juicy, sturdy and beautiful leaves as well as in their stems and roots for dry periods. 

Its the looks and its sturdiness that make the Echeveria one of my all-time favorite houseplants. It requires a minimum of care, you can go on long summer holidays without caring whether your plant will be fine or not and you will always be rewarded by a beautiful housemate. Moreover, check out this fantastic DIY idea for an indoor garden made of Echeveria plants, it is beyond cool:

In order to give you a little cheat sheet, I will summarize the most important care instructions for every plant in one image. So what you're waiting for? Get yourself a little Echeveria succulent and enjoy the end of the summer!

Hallo zusammen! Zum ersten Mal gibt es auf dem Happy Interior Blog auch einen Blogbeitrag in deutscher Sprache. Zum Anlass nehme ich eine neue Miniserie auf dem Blog, die das Leben mit Pflanzen in den Fokus rückt und die ich in Zusammenarbeit mit Pflanzenfreude.de entwickelt habe. Für mich als Urban Jungle Blogger ist das natürlich der ideale Partner! Heute möchte ich euch den ersten von drei Beiträgen zur 'Pflanze des Monats' vorstellen. Und auch wenn wir schon Ende August haben, will ich euch heute die Pflanze des Monats August vorstellen: die Echeverie.

Die Echeverie ist eine Pflanzenfamilie aus der mexikanischen Wüste und wurde dort erstmals im 19. Jahrhundert vom Botaniker Antansio Echeveria entdeckt, daher ihr Name. Diese wunderbare Pflanze aus der Familie der Sukkulenten kommt in einer Vielzahl an Formen und Farben vor: groß, klein, von dunkelgrün über grau-grün bis hin zu lila und rötlich, haarig, glatt oder flauschig. Eines haben aber alle Echeverien gemein: Sie speichern Wasser in ihren schönen, fleischigen und robusten Blättern genauso wie in ihren Stielen und Wurzeln für Trockenperioden. Außerdem sind die Blätter der Echeverien immer leicht erkennbar, denn sie sind stets rosettenförmig.

Für mich machen diese Faktoren die Echeverie zu einer meiner Lieblingspflanzen. Sie benötigt ein Minimum an Pflege und sogar in den langen Sommerurlaub kann man ohne Bedenken verreisen, denn die Echeverie übersteht auch mal einen Monat ohne Wasser. Das ist doch mal ein perfekter grüner Mitbewohner, oder? Außerdem seht ihr in dem Video hier eine wahnsinnig coole Idee für einen DIY Echeverien-Indoor-Garten:

Damit ich euch auch einen kleinen Spickzettel anhand geben kann, habe ich die wichtigsten Pflegetipps zur Echeverie in einem Bild zusammengefasst. In diesem Sinne: Auf geht's, legt euch eine Echeverie zu und genießt den Sommerausklang!

Photography by Igor Josifovic, first image by Pflanzenfreude.de
This post was supported by Pflanzenfreude.de

Monday, August 25, 2014

From Place To Space: Summer In Paris

With summer reaching slowly its end, I think it's time to take a full scoop of it again. Let me take you to my second home town Paris for this summery scoop. I spent a very sunny and warm weekend a few weeks ago and discovered a few new favorite spots in the 'City of Light' - let's have a little summer walk through Paris, shall we?

This time I was set to discover a little bit of Paris' 9th arrondissement which stretches from the borders of the Montmartre district in the north to the more posh 2nd and 8th arrondissement in the south and southwest. That stretch can be seen within the 9th arrondissement too - it starts off a bit unspectacular and rather residential in the north and becomes more and more classy and posh towards the south - it also includes some landmark sights like the Galeries Lafayette, Printemps or the Opera. 

One very beautiful spot in the 9th arrondissement of Paris is the picturesque and very Parisian Place Saint Georges. Beautiful Haussmannian buildings linde the square, little cafés and restaurants and the Theatre Saint Georges make this a picture perfect spot for a Paris experience. Just around the corner you will also find the fabulous restaurant Le Bon Georges. I enjoyed a wonderful dinner with excellent and well chilled rosé wine on a very hot Paris summer night there. The staff is very friendly, the restaurant's interior design is an epitome of a Parisian bistro and the menu is exquisite boasting with seasonal produce from small French farms. If you want a magic dinner for two in Paris, go there, you will not regret it!

The Place Saint Georges is a good starting point for a little walk around the center of Paris, too. Walking from the restaurant Le Bon Georges you will find a cool concept store featuring fashion, jewelry and design just around the corner - Sept Cinq is dedicated to 100 % design made in Paris and offers a little café corner too for a shopping break. 

After the 9th arrondissement I took a stroll down towards the southeast past the Palais Garnier to the 3rd arrondissement with its little organic restaurants and cool cafés. I stopped at the Café Loustic to enjoy a great iced coffee with maple syrup and I tried a homemade ice tea, too. I loved the cool and urban interior design mixing styles, colours and patterns. Great spot for a little break in Paris!

After that I walked down to the Seine to peek at the busy Paris Plage, a summer beach along the Seine river during July and August bringing some seaside vibes to the heart of Paris. Lovely but pretty busy and lots of kids - still a nice sighting during summer. However, Paris Plage has finished two weeks ago so you will need to wait for coming summer to experience the sandy Seine riverside again. Oh and once you're at the Seine, stay there for a fantastic sundowner - a wonderful Paris experience!

If you feel the need for a sweet break I recommend a stop over at the Pâtisserie des Rêves - you can find one branch in the BHV department store. I tried a financier and a canelé à l'orange - beyond delicious! Especially the canelé made me swoon - I will have to return there the next time again.

To round things up I drove back to my home base in Paris, the 20th arrondissement. Off the beaten track and devoid of tourists, you can enjoy beautiful sights of Paris and the Tour Eiffel from the lush green Parc de Belleville. Just atop the park you will find a very vivid spot for young Parisians, the O'Paris. Have a seat, take a sip and look down at the eternal 'City of Light'. 

Happy summer week, my friends!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

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