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A Luxury Resort, for Everyone

American hotel visionary Ian Schrager tells us how The Sanya EDITION is offering a new and original luxury resort experience in China – one that’s generously catered to people from all walks of life.

A Luxury Resort, for Everyone

In what way does The Sanya EDITION offer visitors a new kind of luxury hotel experience?

Luxury is a state of mind. It has nothing to do with how much something costs. A level of sophistication and simplicity together with great service and exciting food and beverage concepts, as well as the operational expertise of Marriott will set it apart from every other lifestyle hotel.

The Sanya EDITION is distinct because it emanates from this specific vision rather than replicating someone else’s idea or simply doing it in a different colour. That originality always resonates with people.

Why did you decide to set up an EDITION hotel in Sanya? The Sanya EDITION seems to be the first one in Asia – why here and why now?

We’re in an opportunistic business, and we take opportunities in the order they present themselves. I felt that Sanya was the top place to explore, not only for a traditional market but for another market as well. Location is not as important to us as it is to most people. We deal in product distinction and unique experience. Our approach is: build something special and people will come.

What brief did you give the designers regarding the interiors and architecture?

The Sanya EDITION has to have unique visuals that are very sophisticated but at the same time very simple. It should be very tasteful without contrivance or artifice. It’s all about having effortless living. The level of the finishes, details, and sophistication sets it apart from anything else. This all adds up to unique product distinction and an elevated original experience. That’s what [makes Sanya EDITION] different from all other hotels.

Why did you choose to work with I.C.S. Design Studio, CAP Atelier and Madison Cox?

All the studios that I’ve worked with are different and bring something unique to the process. Each one was chosen to do a specific project based upon their own contributions as I perceived them. They all shared the same goal that I did: to do something really great. And they have been brilliant.

How involved were you in the design? What was the dynamic like between each of the studios?

Our team worked very closely with our partners throughout the process. Just like for the other EDITION hotels, we communicated the brand philosophy so that it is reflected in every aspect of the design, materials, layouts, colour palettes, etc.

Hainan’s history has clearly been incorporated into the hotel’s design. Why was this important to you?

We wanted to give the hotel a sense of time and a sense of place. We wanted to do a hotel that could only be in Sanya, it could only be in China. We wanted to show the exotic, mysterious and cosmopolitan China that we know and we wanted to create a resort that manifested that.

There is an existing market that has been coming to Sanya, but we felt that there’s also a new market. In this new emerging China, there are new sensibilities and we wanted to do a hotel that would not only satisfy the traditional market but would also attract and satisfy a new market. We are creating a new and distinctive product to help accomplish that.

What do you like best about the end results?

We also wanted to do something that worked for all people. Young, old, people from different walks of life, extroverts, introverts… So, we wanted to create different zones to the hotel. We wanted to do something very modern and very new, but something that embraced the culture and the people of China.

We are especially proud of the private ocean, which is the first in China. There are also five different pools, some with fresh water, some with saltwater. People interact with their kids and families differently in China, and that’s why we made such a great effort to have a Playland in Sanya. That’s why we have so many different kinds of restaurants, why we have the private ocean.

What should hotel design be mindful of now and in the future?

I think a great hotel is always one that makes people feel great, at home, completely comfortable, and provides a unique experience. There is no formula. We just need to be subversive to the status quo and unafraid to go out and break the rules.

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