In our era of stark minimalism and clutter-free micro homes, the utterly outlandish, over-the-top aesthetic of Marcel Wanders can feel like a breath of fresh air. A Dutch interior and product designer, Wanders is known for his signature warped-fantasy style filled with color, pattern, and oversized elements that tend give off an Alice in Wonderland vibe.
Wanders’ latest interior—the recently opened Mondrian Hotel in Doha, Qatar—is another stunner filled with enormous bell-shaped lights, bulbous all-white trees, hundreds of gold-framed mirrors, oversized patterns, and golden eggs just chillin’ on some columns.
Wanders began this design process by exploring traditional Arabic patterns and images from the Middle Eastern folktales collected in One Thousand and One Nights. Then he did his thing transforming those ideas into extravagant interiors.
"Conceptually, we have married local culture with a modern design aesthetic,” said Wanders. “While many themes are collectively layered throughout the hotel, each individual space tells its own tale."
A nearly all-white lounge features seating clusters placed atop carpets with photorealistic images of flowers. Between those seating groups rise glossy white trees. In the main lobby, a beautifully sinister-looking black staircase corkscrews its way up several stories to a viewing platform. And above the 27th-floor swimming pool is a massive stained glass dome that gives off the feeling of being inside a Tiffany lamp.