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Japan’s Swankiest Capsule Hotel

Japan’s Swankiest Capsule Hotel

Japan’s getting yet another capsule hotel, but this one aims to provide something unprecedented: Luxury.

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As Design Boom reports, the 9h capsule hotel is the project of three years of design work, by Design Studio S, and it’s first location will open in December, Kyoto’s Shimogyo-ku district. At nine stories tall, the hotel will have 125 capsules, as well as locker rooms, showers, and a lounge. Each of the rooms has a panel, designed by Panasonic, which controls the lights and sound system; setting the alarm clock programs it to wake you gently, by raising the lights. Meanwhile, the sheets are the same ones you’d find in a four-star hotel:

capsule hotel

capsule hotel

capsule hotel

All of which makes you wonder: Why aren’t there more hotels like this? There must be a huge market for those seeking high-style luxury, without the means (or willingness to pay for it). That’s been one selling point of H&M and Forever 21; it’s also behind recent start-ups like Rent The Runway.

Actually, we do have a stateside analog to the 9h: The recently opened Jane Hotel, in Manhattan’s West Village. The common areas feature no-expense spared design, dripping with one-of-a-kind antiques and bespoke decorative flourishes:

jane hotel

The rooms, however, are teeny-tiny (in a former life, the hotel was a temporary residence for sailors). They begin at just $99. All of which is a pretty interesting combo of luxe/spartan that probably speaks to the aspirations of our time: Upstairs in your room, you can nearly touch all the walls at once. Downstairs, in the cocktail lounge, you can order an $18 martini.

jane hotel

[For more pics of 9h, check out Design Boom]

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