Thursday, July 23, 2009

Unique Hotel Design | Million Donkey Hotel | Prata Sannita,Italy | feld72

2005 – 73% of the European population are living actually in cities.
This constantly increasing number does not result only in a constant enlargement of the cities and suburbia, but has a direct reflection in the disintegration of large areas of cultivated landscape by migration which in its complexity and negative consequences for the larger eco- and social system is hard to predict. The future of that areas is also the future of Europe. “PaeSEsaggio – Azione Matese” has invited a group of international artists to the regional parc of the Matese to create projects with the partecipation of the population. The projects should focus on the relation between identity, territory and social space. The Million Donkey Hotel of feld72 Prata Sannita is a town on the base of the Massiccio del Matese and is divided into the “borgo”, a medieval part on a hillside situation on the river Lete, called Prata Inferiore and the Prata Superiore of the last century. Whereas the medioeval town has suffered a lot by migration – right now its population is mainly formed by older persons-, Prata Superiore has had a bigger success with its different building typologies and the urban grid shaped by the impact of the revolution of the car and other paradigmata of modernity.
How could one transform this lost spaces of migration into a new potential for the future whithout denying its past? How could the spatial complexity of some already forgotten parts of Prata Inferiore again be part of a living public space? Prata Sannita will be perceived as a big diffuse hotel, which has some free rooms left:
The abandoned spaces. Those will not be considered just as space of memory, but as a space where everything is possible. This cells through the bigger concept of the million donkey hotel all become interconnected and the whole town of Prata Sannita changes into one space of interaction. With the help of more than 40 volunteers of Prata Sannita and with a very low budget in a month full of improvisations the spaces were transformed into new ones of experience, becoming so a big extension of the public space. The Million Donkey Hotel is a new perception of the whole town of Prata Sannita (21km²) and has re-given forgotten parts of the town to a broader audience of people, also the young ones. They can be used as meeting places, bedrooms, siesta spaces and a public bathroom. Occasionally they are filled with the protagonists of a new, much more contemporary kind of migration: the nomad of nowadays, the tourist, which in some moments can transform these spaces into a non-commercial version of a “Hotel”. But this all depend on the public itself – on their own responsibility how they use and how they share their new spaces.
Architect: Feld72
Text: Million Donkey Hotel
Photos: Hertha Hurnaus
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