The old real estate adage “God’s not making any more of it” seems particularly true of Venice – in fact it’s a constant battle to preserve what’s already there from being sucked back into the water. No problemo for The Design Agency‘s Anwar Mekhayech though – the serial urban recycler was in his element as he went to work creating hostel chain Generator‘s latest branch in the famous old Italian city. A former grain warehouse on the archipelago’s Giudecca island was selected, across the water from St Mark’s Square, and the building’s feature-packed skeleton of stone columns, timber beams and twin staircase has been fleshed out in impressive style; the city’s Fine Arts Committee was on hand to ensure the work was sympathetically done.
Mekhayech and his team took off (and surprisingly made it back) in a Fiat van to scour the surrounding region’s markets and fairs for suitable additions to the interior. Among their finds now restored and sitting pretty inside Generator Venice are a salvaged rustic pantry table and a show-stopping apothecary shelving and drawer unit. Modern additions to the look such as the flamboyant wallpaper help reinforce the unashamedly ostentatious Venetian vibe. The hostel has 240 beds across 36 rooms – as usual (we’ve recently dropped by on the brand in both Barcelona and Berlin) the higher the better, with the timber filled loft being the pick offering great views across the extraordinary city.