Meet the award-winning global designer duo creating amazing spaces all over the world
Award-winning global designer duo Inge Moore and Nathan Hutchins (co-founders of Muza Lab), together create multi-faceted hotels, super-yachts, luxury developments and private residential spaces all over the world.
They have designed hotels around the world including Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro, Donovan’s Bar in Mayfair, Andean Explorer in Peru, Eagle Island Lodge in Botswana, Finolhu Baa Atoll and Kanuhura Resort in Maldives, as well as a superb classic Super-yacht, to be launched later this year.
How did you first get interested in the hospitality industry? What are some of the signatures of your design aesthetic?
I: Hotels are for me a place of celebration, of escape, of escape… of fantasy! When I saw a job posting for a design position at a hotel company, I was working in a museum as an in-house designer and decided the job was mine! The owner tried to cancel the maintenance that day because he was traveling and busy, but I refused, and basically told him I was the only person he could possibly employ! He did, well, here I am 25 years later working and living the job of my dreams.
NOT : Growing up in the Caribbean, hotels were an integral part of local life. It was always wonderful to see how happy people were on vacation and how the hotel environment and the destination created that joy.
What are some of the trends you have noticed in hotel design and what are some of the trends you see going forward, both in terms of technology and aesthetics? Fortunately, we are beyond technology for technology. Streamlined systems that integrate with mobile phones similar to the ones we have in our homes are the norm. Aesthetically, hotels should be tactile, attractive and memorable. The cookie cutter does not cut it.
You notice on your website that your spaces are places where people go to share special moments. Tell me about designing spaces that bring people together? Hotels are a getaway away from home, and they are also places where people meet or celebrate special events. These are spaces where memories are made. What people remember the most from their childhood is often family vacations. So, as a hotel designer, it is our responsibility to design spaces that bring people together and serve as the backdrop for those special life events.
What are some of the technological innovations that are helping you and your business get through Covid-19? I think what we’ve really achieved is that yes, you can operate through Zoom or Teams, but nothing replaces personal meetings, workshops, and collaborations. We don’t believe that a good design is created in isolation and that you waste a lot of time debating things that a real model room would solve in a matter of minutes.
How do you concretely think that the hotel industry will evolve in the years to come? I think Covid has taught us how special it is to get away from it all, travel and collaborate in person. We believe it has made the raison d’être of the hotel industry even stronger!
What have been some of the unique challenges in designing over the past year and what challenges do you envision for the future? Looking at fabrics and colors online has certainly been a challenge. Websites and photographs can be so deceptive.
You make a real mix of product design, styling, artistic advice and interior design, how do you balance these different facets of your business?It’s about creating the perfect final piece, and that’s all part of it.
What gives you hope right now? The excitement of face-to-face meetings and travel again. It’s clear we all missed the human touch, interaction, and friendships of pre-Covid life. Plus, we have so many fabulous projects opening up over the next couple of years, and we’re excited to see all of the hard work come to fruition.