The Warsaw Voice » Culture » Monthly - August 28, 2015
On the town
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Not Your Average Hotel
The Autor Rooms, an unusual hotel that recently opened in the heart of Warsaw, combines quality Polish design with a historic setting, while guests are offered an insight into the Polish capital that they won’t find in a travel guide.

The hotel, which has just four rooms, is housed in a large, meticulously renovated apartment in an early 20th-century townhouse at 17 Lwowska St. It caters to customers who enjoy personalized service in a homely atmosphere. The hotel’s four rooms were refurbished in compliance with recommendations from a local buildings inspector and each has been arranged in a distinctive style.

The hotel’s unusual look is the work of several designers and artists—the “authors” that its name refers to.

The interiors were designed by independent architect Mateusz Baumiller, who asked colleagues of his to provide some extra finishing touches. Curators from Warsaw’s Starter Gallery contributed original works of art. The rooms boast furniture designed and made in Poland specifically for Autor Rooms by designers and companies such as Beza Projekt, Maria Jeglińska, Comforty, Ultralight, Paged Meble and Purpura. Fashion designers from the ZuoCorp company came up with bathrobes for the guests and the hotel’s bathrooms are equipped with organic Polish cosmetics.

Instead of television sets, the rooms come with book collections in several languages and a selection of music CDs. Guests can socialize in a shared kitchenette and a lounge, where they can also watch movies.

The Autor Rooms hotel is the brainchild of Mamastudio, a Warsaw-based studio specializing in visual brand design. Magdalena Ponagajbo, one of the hotel’s founders, says she and her colleagues wanted to introduce a new type of accommodation to Warsaw. “We want to fill the niche between cheap hostels and rooms for rent on the one hand and chain and exclusive hotels on the other,” says Ponagajbo.

The hotel aims to attract customers keen on contact with artists and designers. Patrons who take a liking to a specific furnishing can buy it.

Meanwhile, guests are given a glimpse of a side of Warsaw that rarely appears in popular travel guides. Michał Pawlik, one of the hotel’s owners, says that the capital “has far more to offer than the Old Town and colorful fountain displays, a fact the writers of the most popular travel guides seem oblivious to.”

He adds, “We love our city and we know all its nooks and crannies. We want our guests to step off the boring tourist routes and explore the true face of Warsaw.” To this end, along with their room keys, guests are handed a “Key to Authentic Warsaw,” a custom-made, subjective map featuring the city’s most interesting sites. Guests can visit exhibitions with curators as guides, while visitors interested in fashion are directed to the best boutiques and designers in town. Avid partygoers receive passes to the best clubs in towns.

Room prices start at 80 euros a night, including breakfast, prepared fresh from local, organic ingredients. You can also browse through the menu of the Kaskrut restaurant and have dishes delivered to your room.