Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Villalon

Joel Villalon

President, Brayton Hughes

As a child, Joel Villalon discovered beauty during each of the many summer vacations he took with his parents and siblings. Whether he was hiking in the painted Grand Canyon or driving through the magnificent Centro Historico of Mexico City, his fascination with travel and the differences he noticed in space, light and architecture in different parts of the world began to take form. He still retains this sense of wonder and observation and brings that focused eye and attention to detail in each of his projects. After receiving his degree in Architecture from the University of Texas at Austin, Mr. Villalon honed his skills with Larry Speck in Austin, Rafael Vinoly Architects in New York City, and SOMA in San Francisco before he ultimately joined BraytonHughes in 1992. Since joining the firm, Mr. Villalon's hand is evident in his team's designs for the Alpine Club in Stowe, Vermont, the Fairmont in Nanjing, China, and the Overlake Golf and Country Clubhouse in Medina, Washington. He also designed several of Discovery Land's golf clubhouses: Kukio Golf Club on Hawaii's Big Island, Mirabel Golf Clubhouse in Scottsdale, Arizona, El Dorado Golf and Beach Club in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and the Madison Club in La Quinta, California. He is currently working on various projects for the Yellowstone Club in Big Sky, Montana, the renovation of Ventana Inn in Big Sur, California, the Grand Hyatt SFO in San Francisco, California, the Montage SilverRock in La Quinta, California, and the Montage Spanish Peaks Lodge in Big Sky, Montana. Mr. Villalon's projects have been recognized for design excellence by the AIA receiving local, regional, and national AIA Honor Awards for his work.

Please visit http://www.bhdstudios.com for more information.

Mr. Villalon can be contacted at 415-291-8100 or jvillalon@bhdstudios.com

Coming up in November 2019...

Architecture & Design: Biophilic Design

The hospitality industry is constantly evolving to meet and exceed guest expectations. As a result, hotels are always on the lookout for new ways to improve the guest experience, and architecture and design is an essential part of this equation. Bold design is often the most effective way to make an exceptional first impression - an impression guests use to distinguish between brands. One design trend that is being embraced worldwide has become known as “Biophilic Design.” Biophilic design is based on the concept of biophilia, which is the theory that human beings have an innate tendency to seek out nature, natural elements, and natural forms. Biophilic design is more than hotels simply adding a surplus of plants; it involves incorporating specific design elements into a hotel in order to imbue it with a sense of wellness and well-being. Some of those elements include exposure to natural lighting; views of nature and rooms with a view; natural architectural patterns; salvaged or reclaimed woods of all types; reclaimed metals; sustainably sourced stone; living green walls and vertical gardens; and direct and indirect exposure to nature. Hotels that have incorporated biophilic design into their properties are reaping the benefits associated with this trend including reduced stress responses, better air quality, lower energy costs, and more positive guest reviews. Biophilic design has also been shown to improve guest moods and to satisfy consumer demand for environmental responsibility. Savvy hotel owners and managers are aware that nature-inspired elements enhance their guests' comfort and well-being, which is why this trend is becoming so prevalent. Biophilic design is just one topic in the fields of hotel architecture and design that will be examined in the November issue of the Hotel Business Review.