Aluvia pendant fixtures made of precision-cut aluminum leaves hang above tables in this hotel restaurant
Below custom arboreal-printed acoustic panels, Aluvia pendant fixtures made of precision-cut aluminum leaves survey the restaurant.

Studio Shoo Designs a Winter Wonderland in Western Siberia

Contemporary geopolitics renders travel to Russia verboten. But that has not meant the nation’s hospitality designers have ceased creative output. Witness Studio Shoo’s most recent hotel, in Kogalym, Western Siberia. The 123-key property for Ibis Styles—a French brand of no-frills budget destinations owned by Accor—was slated to open to the public last year but, for obvious reasons, never did. When or if this Ibis eventually welcomes guests, its 7,600 square feet are primed and ready to go, conceived as a winter wonderland that draws inspiration from the location’s subarctic climate.

Studio Shoo was founded in 2017 by architect Shushana (“Shoo”) Khachatrian, who specializes in interiors and furniture for clients such as Novotel that evoke what she terms “vivid minimalism”: bold but simple shapes, bright colors, and a dash of ironic whimsy. Based prior to 2022 in both Moscow and Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, Studio Shoo has since decamped to the latter for good.

Icy Blue Hues Add to the Ibis Styles Hotel Design Aesthetic 

the lobby lounge of hotel in Siberia
Potted evergreens and Shane Schneck’s Bowler granite-base side tables dot the lobby lounge.

The Russian Ibis—now in essence an empty dressed set—is more fanciful than Khachatrian’s typical designs, with an icy palette evoking hues of snow and sky. Level one houses reception and lounge, a restaurant and bar, and a pair of meeting rooms; guest accommodations are located on the next five stories. “We did our utmost to create a multisensory approach and came up with the concept of taiga, a magnificent fairy forest with a one-of-a-kind ecosystem,” the designer says.

Generally referred to in North America as boreal or snow forests, taiga feature thick coniferous groves of pine, spruce, fir, or larch. Naturally, real evergreen specimens dot the lobby lounge, joined by a curved glacier-blue sofa, forest-green armchair, and tree-stump side table arrayed around a midcentury-style fireplace with a flared black-metal hood. It’s a cozy vignette capped by an acoustic ceiling custom-printed with a ghostly crosshatch of branches and foliage—a motif that repeats on guest room walls. “I was inspired by engravings,” Khachatrian says, noting the intriguing push/pull effect of viewing the abstract details close up and the larger photorealistic image from afar.

Elsewhere, guest room carpeting has lichenlike variegation; in the restaurant, wood-look shingles are a postmodern pastiche of the cladding on traditional alpine ski lodges; and geometric blue, white, and black tiles and mountainous wall graphics add pop. The narrative through line is clear from the get-go, as even the reception desk is a piece of taiga theater: an enormous real boulder embedded with a cantilevered tabletop.

Inside the Ibis Styles Hotel in Western Siberia 

a wooden ceiling element resembles tree growth rings above the reception desk at this hotel
Suspended wooden ceiling elements resemble rock strata or tree-growth rings in reception, where the check-in desk is a tabletop inserted into a real boulder.
shades of blue accents are found on the seating, floors, and tables in this Siberian hotel
The palette was influenced by the subarctic climate of freezing winters and cool summers.
blue flooring tile with Bauhaus-inflected shapes
In a breakfast area, built-in terrazzo seating and a custom table meet 41zero42’s Futura porcelain floor tile, printed with Bauhaus-inflected shapes.
a birch-printed tabletop in the restaurant of a hotel
Emilio Nanni’s Hippy seat cozies up to a birch-printed tabletop standing on concrete-effect porcelain tile in the restaurant.
inside the restaurant at a hotel in Western Siberia designed by Studio Shoo
Also in this space are Estudi Manel Molina’s Kaiak chairs.
Aluvia pendant fixtures made of precision-cut aluminum leaves hang above tables in this hotel restaurant
Below custom arboreal-printed acoustic panels, Aluvia pendant fixtures made of precision-cut aluminum leaves survey the restaurant.
abstract mountain peaks are painted on the walls in this area of a hotel
Painted abstract mountain peaks on walls lend dynamism to circulation zones.
snow forest-inspired graphics line the walls of this guest room at a Western Siberian hotel
Graphics on guest room walls further the concept of a taiga, or snow forest.
a tree-stump nightstand in the guest room of a Siberian hotel
Tree-stump nightstands feature in guest rooms.
a guest bathroom with wall tile depicting a hand-drawn fossil motif
In guest bathrooms, wall tile depicts a hand-drawn fossil motif.
a green sofa in the guest room of a Western Siberian hotel
A guest room’s polyamide carpet and Trevira CS polyester–upholstered sofa are custom.
a hallway on a guest floor in a Siberian hotel designed by Studio Shoo
Guest rooms are located on levels two through six.
a hotel meeting room with carpet boasting a design by Studio Shoo
Studio Shoo designed the pattern on the meeting room’s polyamide carpet.
from front

&tradition; missana: seating (lounge).

hay: side tables.

halbmond teppichwerke: carpet (guest room).

delius: sofa fabric.

billiani: gray chairs, white chairs (restaurant).

muuto: banquettes.

enea design: stools, wood chairs.

umage: pendant fixtures.

enea design: chairs (meeting room).

ceramiche refin: wall tile (bathroom).

hansgrohe; ideal standard: plumbing fixtures.


atlas concorde: gray floor tile.

41zero42: graphic floor tile.

ecophon: acoustic ceiling tile.

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