Bring home the best ideas from chic hotels

Mary Jo Bowling,  – May 2, 2005

Boutique hotels give us a chance to experience another lifestyle. Next time you check into one of these intimate accommodations – whether it’s a Zen retreat or an urban getaway – pay close attention to the interiors: You might well check out with a suitcase full of decorating ideas for your own home.

If you’re drawn to a serene, natural environment, visit the lobby of San Francisco’s newest boutique property, Hotel Vitale. The nook pictured here displays an intriguing blend of organic textures and materials. “The space is all about patterns and light,” says interior designer Colum McCartan. “We used wood, stone, and fabrics in muted colors inspired by nature. It’s a look that won’t date.”

A stump end table (from $600; Oberon Design, or 415/865-5440) gives Hotel Vitale’s lobby an organic look.