Dutch hotel chain Citizen M first made a splash in 2008 with two prefabricated hotels in the Netherlands, but a new wave is launched with two hotels in the UK. It demonstrates some of the main benefits of prefabrication, as Architect Rob Wageman of Dutch Architecture firm Concrete tells Wired UK:
The modular design means CitizenM is applying lean manufacturing to the hospitality business: "We have way less waste, and we know the number of hotels we're planning to open so can build rooms in huge numbers," says Wageman. "That allows us to keep the price of production low."
There's nothing prefab about the interior design; it is all very modern and slick. The ground floor, with the public spaces like this, is built conventionally; the prefabricated rooms are stacked on top.
The rooms are small; they have to be to fit on a truck. They break a lot of the rules of hotel design, but as the architect notes in Wired,
We did not set out to create a hotel. If you do that there are all kinds of rules. So we started with the room.
The rooms are 99 percent finished at the factory," says Wageman, "The sheets are not on the beds, but everything else is in. All we do is clean them, make the beds and connect them to electricity and water."