A new type of co-living experience is about to launch, with an ambitious 50 venues opening across the world by 2020. The Accor Hotel group are adding what they call ‘Open Houses’ to their extensive network of accommodation offerings. Somewhere between a hostel, hotel and bar, the Jo & Joe venues aim to cater for ‘Townsters’ (locals) and ‘Tripsters’ (visitors) alike.
The concept is focused on the international millennial, with a penchant for spontaneity, variety and the unexpected. Created in collaboration with UK design studio Penson, the multi-faceted venues have “been conceived as an experience enhancer thanks notably to its offbeat design, innovative digital ecosystem and catering offerings.” The design is decidedly playful, providing a variety of spaces that cater for a wide range of activities from chill-out to party and everything in between.
In terms of accommodation, options vary on the scale between shared and private. The ‘Together’ option sees a balance struck between personal and shared space, with specially designed pods with beds, private lockers, reading lights and USB ports, specifically created as a sanctuary amongst the shared recreation areas and bathrooms. Then there is the more private ‘Yours’ option, which consists of rooms and apartments for two to five people with a private bathroom and, depending on the format, a kitchen area. Each venue will also offer an additional ‘OOO!’ (out of the ordinary) option in an attempt to offer a memorable, left-of-center experience; this could be anything from a yurt, caravan, or hammock, depending on the location. The accommodations then come together in the ‘Happy House’; the area that provides travellers all the conveniences of home including cooking, dining and washing facilities.
Alongside accommodation, the common areas provide a range of activities including concerts and workshops that are open to both guests and public alike. By emphasising the importance of these two groups coming together, the ‘Open Houses’ aim to provide a space that fills a niche fueled by the desire of millennials to be fully immersed in the cities they visit. By inviting the locals in, there is a level of authenticity provided where visitors can feel connected to the city on a level not often offered by the traditional ‘resident only’ hostel experience.
With locations including Paris and Bordeaux (2018) as well as Warsaw, Budapest, Rio and São Paulo, the concept had been devised so that it can adapt to the different cities in which it is applied. Jo & Joe will therefore see co-living taken to the next level in both design and ambition. The unprecedented roll out will set a new bar in this accommodation sector, addressing the desires of today’s highly mobile and experience-craving young nomads in whole new way. One can only imagine what comes next in this exciting and ever-innovating sector.