Organic forms punctuate the flow of Hotel Esencia, for which the studio engineered a series of sequential rooms grounded in geometric space softened by a hand-tooled feel. Hotel Esencia is also a study in traditional Mexican craft: tiles made in Guadalajara, rugs in Oaxaca, furniture carved in Cancun from local wood. Nearly everything is fixed into the structure, the simplicity and stolidness of it inversely creating a lightness of feeling, like the comfort of being rooted to the earth.
Subtle touches reveal themselves: stones precisely embedded into the cement floors and ground to different levels create patterns that reference a style typical of the region; the artist Marcel Dzama’s winsome interpretation of Mexican wildlife dotting the pool references Talavera tile. In the spa, a fulsome carved stone tub situated under a shaft of light calls to ancient Mayan bath ritual.