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In Profile: Alejandro Escudero / Urbana

In Profile: Alejandro Escudero / Urbana

Shortlisted: for 3 Categories Awards

The International Hotel & Property Awards 2024

The International Hotel & Property Awards 2024

Name: Alejandro Escudero Pumarejo
Company: Alejandro Escudero / Urbana
Position within company: Director / Head Designer

Tell us a little about your background in design (education, experience, etc)

First and foremost, I was born into a family of creatives, so creativity was at the core of my lifestyle. While traveling with Christina, my wife, we specialized on sourcing unique pieces and bringing them back to Mexico to incorporate them into spaces where they could communicate our art and design vision. This led us to establish Urbana, our brand specializing in manufacturing skillfully crafted furniture tailored exclusively for every project. As our vision continued to grow we formed our firm focusing on Architecture and Interior design.

How would you describe your personal design style?

I regard my work as a reinterpretation of the classical principles with an eclectic twist, in which natural & organic materials are always present, along with finely crafted details.

Where does your design inspiration come from?

From the architecture, interior design and local artisanry of the vernacular constructions in the countryside of Europe and Mexico.

In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?

I think we’re leaving behind the time when everyone wanted their spaces to look the same, and gravitating towards designing unique spaces. We want to detach from standardization and the effects of globalization in design.

Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2023 and beyond.

1-Improving project sustainability via energy-efficient methods and water conservation strategies. 2-Paying attention to the users’ lifestyle and how they live in a particular space.
3- Achieving harmonic integration of interior and exterior spaces.
4- Prioritizing the use of locally sourced & renewable materials.

5- Designing taking into consideration the site’s natural and social context.

If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to design schemes, what would it be?

Forget trends.

How important are The International Design & Architecture Awards?

It’s a great platform for sharing our work and ideas within the Architecture & Interior Design Industry.

What projects are you currently working on?

We currently have projects in Spain, USA and Mexico. We are working on a residential complex in the Canary Islands, a boutique Hotel in Deia (Balearic Islands), a project with the equestrian riding club in New York; as well as the Thompson brand residences, and the expansion for the Nizuc Hotel in the Mexican Caribbean

What was your favorite project to work on and why?

Nizuc, because the client was perfectly aligned with my firm’s philosophy, so I was given full creative liberty and my team was allowed to manage every activity throughout all the stages of the design and construction process.

What was your most challenging project to work on and why?

Secrets Resorts & Spa in the Mexican Caribbean. The large scale of the project inherently brought very specific and complex requirements. We envisioned multiple spaces, which had each a unique character, so achieving visual integrity within the project was a challenge. On top of that we had to adapt to restrictions of the Covid pandemic, which was happening simultaneously.

Which products/services could you not live without when designing?

All of the elements that comprise the buildings and spaces we create demand skilled craftsmen and high-quality furnishings, fixtures and appliances. At the same time, I always rely on the use of natural materials such as wood and fabrics.

What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?

To focus on interesting, challenging and rewarding projects that break free from conventionalities.

Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself and your daily inspirations: Your most treasured possession?

My family and my books

Your favourite holiday destination?

Visiting the Tramuntana mountain range or enjoying a horseback safari in Bostwana.

Your favourite hotel, restaurant & bar?

My favorite hotel is La Bastide de Marie in Provence. For restaurants I am fond of, La Parrilla de Ribadesella in Asturias, Restaurante Sa Fordada in Deia (Balearic Islands) and Restaurante Casa Oaxaca. My favorite bar is Bar A-Kan in Nizuc.

Your favourite book, film & song?

Speaking of books I like “El valor de elegir” by Fernando Savater. My favorite movie is La grande Belleza by Paolo Sorrentino and I really enjoy any James Taylor song.

Your favourite food and drink?

Grilled Monkfish and Tequila.

Your favourite way to spend an afternoon?

Walking or Hiking

If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?

Songwriter or Archeologist

Anything else interesting?

My designs always borrow from different disciplines, so I am constantly highlighting the importance of working within a multidisciplinary team. Lately I have gravitated towards pursuing creative ventures that allow me to explore the ample spectrum of possibilities within my practice.

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The International Hotel & Property Awards 2024
are organised by design et al

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