Cartoonish Hotel Unique

This hotel abides by the name it beholds. The hotel unique resembles a cartoon boat — the face is weathered copper, with circular porthole windows, and the curved underbelly that would be the ship’s bow and stern are paneled in wood. Ribbon-thin sheets of concrete anchor the fore and aft to the ground (and guard against the seeming possibility of the whole thing rolling over). The rooftop lounge is floored in wood, like the deck of an old ship, and the water is up here as well in the form of a deep crimson swimming pool (which, we admit, seems a bit more decorative than functional). Still, this is a self-consciously hip boutique hotel, and the decor is highly modern, anything but conservative. Reception, rather than the typical imposing monolith, is just a couple of chairs around a small table with a bottle of chilled champagne. The guest rooms may not be as overstated as the structure, but they have their own daring flourishes. Rooms at the edges curve with the outer wall’s arc, and furnishings extend mischievously into the upper corners. The bathrooms are a bit avant-garde, with sliding dividers separating (or not separating) them from the bedrooms transparent bathtubs — just make sure you are traveling with someone you know well, or would not mind getting to know better.

If this hotel were in New York, Miami, or just about anywhere in Europe, it would be booked months in advance. Unique, by contrast, always seems to have a room, and for quite a bit less than you might be prepared to pay.

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