Refuge From The Sun

Refuge From The Sun

Kelly Wearstler says: 'stand up for what you believe.'


Tahiti, Miami, St. Tropez; all destinations that evoke a pulse-pounding mirage of sun, fun, & glamour. While it was great going barefoot and seeing everyone outside, unfortunately, this week's three cabanas suffered from a crunching time-constraint and a little too much of one main ingredient: sunshine. Today, people seek refuge from the sun, a primary function of the cabana. As the owner of a collection of parasols that are always ready & available to shield my skin, I couldn't understand why Team Tahiti blew off the roof, so to speak. This, in spite of their fantasy design, rendered the cabana unfit for occupancy, as far as I was concerned.

However, Team Miami's color scheme was a bit iconoclastic for our tastes, and the daring architecture & blah furnishings of Team St. Tropez's cabana had a discordant dialogue at best. So, ultimately, it was Team Tahiti's roofless cabana that made the grade as this week's Top Design. I prefer cabanas clean, contemporary, and ready & waiting for the day's occupants. Today's seasoned travelers expect every modern convenience: personal refrigerators, flat screen TVs, internet hookups, and the open space to spread out and spend an entire day escaping in glorious semi-privacy.

Some of the designers risked being sent home because they did not make their creative voices heard during the design process. No matter how difficult the situation, as a designer, your creativity is your main calling card and not standing behind it makes no sense. Look what happened with Heather in Round I; stand up for what you believe or regret it later. In a boring building. Or an ugly room. Or a cabana with no roof. As a hotel designer, I've designed a lot of cabanas. To me they're about flexibility, refuge from the sun, and sanctuary. And a design.

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