future

The Future of Hotel Design

At Virgin Hotels in Chicago, Dallas and Nashville, and coming to Las Vegas early next year, the company’s app was made more robust this year to control room lights, temperature and television. Room configurations separate the back bedroom from the dressing room near the hallway with a barn door behind which guests can remain, allowing attendants access to make deliveries without contact.

“We don’t make you sign the room-service check,” said Raul Leal, the chief executive of Virgin Hotels. “That’s an archaic accounting tool.”

Not every hotel can offer outdoor dining year-round. Neither can their restaurants thrive with the capacity restrictions forced by social distancing requirements. The solution: Make the entire hotel a dining area. And throw in robotic servers.

“This is meant to be an answer to how do you deconstruct the restaurant experience so you don’t have to eat in one small place,” said Ron Swidler, the chief innovation officer at The Gettys Group, a Chicago-based hotel design, development and consulting firm. The Gettys Group recently convened with a consortium of 325 industry professionals from Hilton, Marriott and Cornell University, among others, to come up with the Hotel of Tomorrow project, collaborating on future hotel innovations. (The company has a track record with the workshop; in the early 2000s, it came up with the idea of a robotic butler, later developed by the Aloft brand of hotels as the Botler).

The think tank envisioned delivery units of various sizes that could keep food hot and drinks cold and provide video or music for entertainment.

“Maybe these robots have personalities and hang out with you,” Mr. Swidler added.

Even without robot partygoers, existing hotels have a great incentive to repurpose their now underutilized meeting rooms, ballrooms and even event lawns.

“We’re thinking the whole

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Why these extreme multihull concepts could be the future of catamaran design

Holiday homes, restaurants, even cities may soon be coming to a quiet beach or harbour near you, reports Sam Fortescue

As boats become ever more like homes on water, something else is changing: designers and builders have been turning their attention to the market for floating buildings. New concepts to emerge range from a thatched beach cottage atop a catamaran hull to an entire floating city, generating its own food and power. The one thing they have in common is they’re movable structures that can be parked wherever they can drop the hook. And soon they could be coming to a peaceful estuary near you.

There is an opportunity here, of course, to create additional living and leisure space in areas where the land is already choked with people. Imagine being able to moor a temporary holiday village off Bournemouth Beach, for example, or create a restaurant off Dartmouth without affecting the townscape.

But the flip side of the coin is that someone could park a large floating structure right in front of your sea view, or occupy a quiet, sensitive environment. Imagine, as sailors, falling asleep in a deserted anchorage and waking up with a throbbing beach bar right next to us!

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Floating homes and docks are being designed to use Seafloatech’s eco-friendly anchoring system

“If a craft is movable and can drop an anchor, it would be classed as ‘any other vessel’ and would not need consent,” confirms Martin Willis, executive officer of the UK Harbour Masters’ Association. “But if it’s a commercial business, it’d be subject to the relevant regulation – there are no rights to come in and open a business in a harbour without the Harbour Master’s consent.” Alternatively, it may fall under MCA coding as a passenger craft.

In some parts of the world,

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Future City: Democratizing vacation homes, Bungalow’s breakdown


Spencer’s second act: Vacation homes for all!

Zillow co-founder Spencer Rascoff is back in the real estate game.

The former CEO went public this week with his latest venture: Pacaso, a startup that helps ordinary people purchase second homes.

“We’re trying to create a new category of home ownership, which is second-home ownership,” Rascoff said during an interview on CNBC. To “democratize” ownership, Pacaso’s marketplace helps aspiring owners purchase from one-eighth to one-half of a vacation home. The company will generate revenue on the home sale, and it will collect a fee for managing the property.

Founded by Rascoff and Austin Allison, who sold dotloop to Zillow, Pacaso came out of stealth mode with a $17 million Series A led by Maveron, with participation from Crosscut and Global Founders Capital. Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz and Amazon’s Jeff Wilke also invested. Pacaso also secured $250 million in debt to help buyers purchase homes.

It’s not Rascoff’s only new venture. The serial entrepreneur has also formed a blank-check company that’s looking to take a tech unicorn public. Since stepping down as Zillow’s CEO in February 2019, Rascoff has invested in a slew of real estate startups.

He has a penchant for early-stage startups, too. This year, he launched dot.LA, a news site covering Southern California tech. And he’s written checks to PocketList, a rental listings platform, and La Haus, a Latin American listings site. He was also an early investor in smart-intercom startup ButterflyMX.

“This is just a dressed-up version of the typical asshole landlord scenario.”

Frustrated Bungalow resident 

Airbnb valuation could hit $30B in IPO

It’s finally happening. Airbnb is looking to raise $3 billion in a December IPO, according to a new report. Sources told Reuters that Airbnb plans to file a prospectus in November after the presidential election.

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Mighty Buildings’ 3D-Printed Homes Points To The Future Of Sustainable Housing

There is a problem with housing in this country. From decades of bad public housing policy to retrofitting the suburbs for sustainability to near consistent affordable housing shortages, we have to start looking at more innovative housing solutions. Not looking to solve all that, but certainly falling somewhere within the mix is Mighty Buildings, an Oakland based company 3D-printing generally affordable homes. All you have to do is find a place to put them.

Which, isn’t too far fetched a concept. People are building apartments in their backyards and from a luxury standpoint, offices or extra rooms in the backyard. Like container homes, 3D printed homes seek to offer a generally affordable alternative to a small, sustainable home created in a non-traditional manner. 3D-printed homes are not a new concept but have mostly been stuck in the conceptual phase until recently.

Mighty Buildings built a 79,000 square foot facility and received approval under the California Factory Built Housing program as well the first UL certification under the new standard for 3D printed construction. It can create 3D-printed homes quicker and more efficiently (it’s literally a giant 3D-printer that prints homes) and sells its output for $115,000 for a studio at the low end to $285,000 for a 3b/2ba. If you live in an inflated housing market (anywhere in California for instance) then you can see the cost benefit immediately.

The innovative part here is not necessarily the methodology of 3D-printing a home instead of cutting up a series of shipping containers to make a container home, but it’s that Mighty Buildings literally developed a new composite material to build its homes, making them more energy efficient and structurally sound.

The new composite solves general issues with the existing 3D process that still involves concrete

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Alison Victoria Reveals the ‘Future of Kitchens’: Will It Catch On?


Alison Victoria of “Windy City Rehab” is in some serious trouble. After getting sucked into legal scandals involving her former partner, Donovan Eckhardt, she’s parted ways with him and is trying to move on.

But can she? In the episode “Going Big on Berenice,” Victoria has begun working on a huge house on Berenice Street in Chicago, but soon runs into problems. Since Eckhardt was involved in this deal early on, and had allegedly bungled paperwork along the way, a stop-work order was placed on the building. This causes an expensive nine-month delay, and eventually Victoria realizes that she may not turn a profit on this house.


To make up for lost time, she decides to add features that are so amazing, the house could fetch a high price—all without making her spend a ton more money. Read on to find out the special upgrades Victoria adds that make this house stand out, and might work well in your own home, too.



Curb appeal matters a lot

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Before: The old exterior was very plain.

HGTV

When Victoria starts work on this house, she’s disappointed with the exterior. With faux stone on the façade and a brown door, it looks dated and dull.


“Curb appeal in this neighborhood is just like any other neighborhood: very important,” she explains, and makes plans to completely reimagine the exterior.

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After: With new paint and wood accents, this home looks modern and inviting.

HGTV

She gives the house a modern look by painting the exterior black and white. For some character, she adds cedar shingles as an architectural accent. This mix of colors and materials adds dimension to the house—it’s a far cry from the boring stone exterior that was there before.


When

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