If you are familiar with the work of Philippe Starck, you know that the famous French designer has his hands on many projects all around the world, and especially through the firm YOO where he is a partner. In Buenos Aires, where the program “Sustainability in the Developing World” is set, you can find a hotel designed by Philippe Starck. The Hotel Faena Hotel And Universe is located in the former industrialized port district of the city, Puerto Madero. This “barrio” is now home of many new building development projects, and modern towers. The area is rapidly gentrifying and hosts many high-end restaurants, cafes and hotels. Despite its fresh new design and its attractiveness among tourists, the area is severely judged by the locals for its artificial look and the way it prevents views of the waterfront from older streets and buildings.
The project for the Hotel Faena is the adaptive reuse of an old brick building called El Porteño Building. The bricks were imported from England when it was built in Buenos Aires in 1902. The rehabilitation and conversion of the building into a hotel happened for a total of US$100 million [ ! ]