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A Striking Lisbon Hotel by Christian Louboutin & Madalena Caiado

Fashion designer Christian Louboutin and architect Madalena Caiado’s 13-room boutique hotel in the village of Melides, south of Lisbon, celebrates craftsmanship and has been “designed at the scale of the hand”.

Named after the French designer’s signature colour, Vermelho, which is Portuguese for red, is Louboutin’s first hospitality project.

The hotel celebrates local art and design. Each of the 13 rooms is filled with work from local craftsmen and a selection of materials and furniture from Louboutin’s personal collection.

“This project has allowed me to empty my storage full of antiques and objects I have purchased over many years!”

At one point in the development of the project it looked like it might not be approved to operate as a hotel and so Louboutin decided “if it’s not going to be a hotel, I’m going to do it as my house”. As a result, each of the hotel’s rooms have been individually designed and have their own identity.

“If you build a house, you’re never going to design the same room,” the designer said. “I don’t know a house where you have the same room three times – it only exist in hotels.”

“Houses have feelings – they have different rules to hotels,” he continued. “You can’t have your house looking like a hotel.”

Vermelho was designed to be “well-integrated into the village” and it was important to Louboutin “that it really respects the area and environment”.

Working with Portuguese architect Caiado, the resulting hotel meets the street as a series of traditional buildings in the local architectural language: white render with blue plinth and window detailing, terracotta-tiled roofs and a scattering of chimneys punctuating the skyline.

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