Crafting Kimpton Vividora Hotel, in Barcelona's Barri Gòtic

  • Rémi Lefèvre
  • Megan Ong

Now, when we learned we had the opportunity to be a part of the famed Barri Gòtic, we were incredibly excited, and a little scared. It's one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Barcelona. Its history and heritage are strong, long, and very much alive. It's got the most passionate inhabitants. How to create a space, or a collection of spaces, that would not just be IN the Barri, but really OF it?

Design, architecture, engineering

Natali Canas del Pozo (El Equipo Creativo), Ave Bradley, Henry Reeve, Jean-Philippe Perrouty, David Taylor

Creative & brand

Pablo Juncadella, Ariadna Valldeperas, Georgina Roselló (MUCHO), Connor Smith, Tom Rowntree, Emily Shoop, Claire Chapoulet, Laura Channon, Megan Ong, Madeleine Blumgart, Remi Lefevre


Jake Curtis, Megan Ong

Kimpton Vividora Hotel, Barcelona | Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants

Design-first: the Kimpton way

As always with Kimpton, each new hotel, restaurant, bar or spa project starts with a blank slate. The process starts, continues, and ends with design. Working hand-in-hand with a local architecture studio and creative agency is crucial, and the concept takes shape through extensive, on-the-ground research.
It's informed by going deep in the history of the building. By watching passers-by, in Carrer del Duc. By slowly building an image of what it is like to live not only in Barcelona, but in the Barri Gòtic itself. It's different every time, and that's the point.


The tones of sienna, for instance, were born of the terracotta tiles of the neighbouring roofs. The hues of dark and lighter blue are a nod to the seafront, as well as details from the ceramics found everywhere in the alleys of the Gothic Quarter. It was all about creating an emotional texture to bring the outside in, and blur the lines between old and new, home and away, familiar and yet to-be-known.
In the same vein, the interior spaces were modelled after the labyrinth of intimate alleyways, secret gardens and hidden-away patios that are dotting the urban landscape of the area.
But the ceramics were at the heart of the project, permeating through the room design, notes in the corridor, and of course the rooftop itself. The idea of Terraza de Vivi, as it ended being named, was very much a celebration of a Mediterranean garden's warmth and vibrancy.

Guides & considerations

Constraints breed creativity, as with this project, the relative small size of the ground floor presented the creative team with a dilemma. How to best welcome hotel guests and locals, in a natural way? Moving the reception and the restaurant, Fauna, to the first floor, made the latter much more intimate, inviting guests to step in as it were a friend's place.
It also left enough space on the ground floor for an inviting, approachable, and ultimately indispensable link to the local community, a coffee shop and bar called Café GOT.
Besides, distributing the living spaces throughout the vertical dimension of the building also helped with visitor flows. One would enter, intrigued by the perspective of a coffee or a glass of something, and then find one's way up through the floors, until reaching the terrace itself.

Four names, four brands, starting with Kimpton Vividora Hotel

Working closely with MUCHO Design, a Barcelona-based practice celebrated for its savvy irreverence, the team created four distinct brands designed to coexist and elevate one another. Each Kimpton Hotel has its own name, from Kimpton Fiztroy London to Kimpton The Rowan Hotel in Palm Springs. Finding the right one is always a group exercice, which starts with the design concept's sketch of a muse.
Kimpton Vividora Hotel refers to the quintessential Barcelona bon vivant, "the one who lives". It embodies the design concept's bright, layered and colourful approach, and focuses on the social theme central to the experience.
The logo itself uses an eponymous MUCHO-designed custom font, anchored in the Catalan capital's fêted Art Nouveau heritage. The visual identity layers a simple, yet not quite minimalist font work with vibrant watercolours illustrations to create an inhenrently joyful creative route