Hotel F+B



W Retreat & Spa | Maldives | Fifteen Below

Fifteen below, is as it's name suggests, is a subterranean space. In fact, the Maldives very first underground club. The principle behind this concept, is that offering a dance space with international dj's could prove to be disturbing to some guests, so by placing the club underground, noise is contained.

Entering Fifteen Below is via a paisley shaped corridor that captures the base-noise created from the sound system. The room was given an unusual shape so that upon first glance it is nearly impossible to see the boundary walls of the room. An alcove with wine display is near the entry and beds are placed in niches along the far wall - viewed from over the oval shaped central bar counter. The floor drops further and a dance area with a dj station is at the far end of the space. Columns were added and connected to ceiling beams criss-crossing in abstracted "w" shapes, resembling some sort of tribal tatoo. Buff Palimanan stone, sheer draperies and an ice-resin bar top keep the space light, fresh and ethereal.


Wine racks and vodka displays are not left to a city-club expression. With guests lazing about in hammocks, why not the bottles too? Hundreds of bottles are each individually hanging from canvas slings, some lit internally with colorful LED lights, and backed by panels of ice-resin.

The ice-resin product was custom fabricated for W in Manila. Extensive experimentation resulted in a method of layering liquid resin over clear crumpled cellophane. When set, the product resembles melting ice, but without the mess. 

In order to keep this space from literally popping out of the beach during tide fluctuations, more than 1 meter of solid concrete was poured for the floor. FIRE, the bbq restaurant was placed on top of this construction to further weigh the building down.

Seating is a combination of Cobonpue and custom by Poole Associates.

Michaelangelo Produces W Hotels’ Seventh Edition of Music CD


Maldives Promotion House – Renowned international music expert Michaelangelo L’Acqua as first ever Global Music Director and strategic advisor for the W brand, has strengthened W Hotels’ presence within the music community in new and exciting ways, including producing the seventh edition of W Hotels CD, attracting partnerships within the music industry, and identifying ways to further integrate music into the W guest experience globally.

For more than 10 years, with the opening of the first W Hotel in New York City in 1998, W has continually broken new ground through innovative and first-of-their-kind music programs and partnerships. As W Hotels continues to grow globally, more than doubling its current portfolio of 33 hotels by 2011, the contemporary lifestyle brand has engaged L’Acqua to ensure this passion for entertainment is integrated in authentic and original ways, positively impacting the guest experience in its hotels worldwide.

“Like fashion, which is also a passion of the W brand, music is a global language that is always evolving and reinventing itself,” Global Brand Leader of W Hotels Worldwide and Le Meridien, Eva Ziegler said. “This helps us connect to our loyal jet setting guests, who are always looking out for what’s next and what’s new, and Michaelangelo, who shares both of these passions with us, is the perfect fit to help us globally attract and implement music into our hotels in a credible way and engage guests and locals alike.”

Since being discovered by Tom Ford and brought on as the Music Director of Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent in 1999, Michaelangelo L’Acqua, who holds a prestigious music degree from The New School Jazz & Contemporary Music Program, has worked with some of the biggest names in fashion, producing over 150 fashion shows in Paris, Milan, Berlin and New York for the likes of Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Michael Kors, John Varvatos, Jil Sander, Chanel, and Diane von Furstenberg.

As a recording artist working under the name “Onda,” L’Acqua has scored and licensed music for nearly 200 commercials, including campaigns for Revlon, Cotton Inc., and Old Navy. He also served as a producer on The Isley Brothers’ “Taken To The Next Phase” remix project for Sony Music Entertainment’s Legacy Recordings.

L’Acqua recently executive produced a large scale concept record for EMI/Capitol Records, Re: Generations: the Nat King Cole Remix Project, bringing on board the talents of such artists as Cee-Lo, The Roots, with Natalie Cole, TV On The Radio, and Brazilian Girls, among others. For this record, he also produced the “Brazilian Love Song” track, featuring Bebel Gilberto. Most recently, L’Acqua was tapped by fashion legend Karl Lagerfeld to produce Elle Germany’s 20th Anniversary event as well as Chanel’s runway show, both at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin.

With his ability to seamlessly meld the worlds of fashion and music, it is fitting that L’Acqua has made his debut as W’s Global Music Director during New York Fashion Week, where W Hotels is hosting its VIP Backstage Lounge for the 12th consecutive season. While the W VIP Lounge has always been a hotspot for celebrities and fashion’s elite throughout the week, L’Acqua is taking things up a notch by implementing new and exciting music programming in the stylish space.

In addition to personally DJing in the lounge, he is bringing in established and emerging artists for surprise performances in the Lounge while debuting tracks that he has hand-picked for the latest instalment of W Hotels’ signature CD, including a preview song by Bebel Gilberto.

“It is such an exciting time to join the W Hotels brand as they are expanding globally,” said L’Acqua. “While the music industry is trying to adapt to change and reconnect to its core audience, W is undertaking innovative ways to offer music to their guests as an integral part of their contemporary lifestyle. I am honoured to have been chosen as the Global Music Director to help execute W’s vision.”

W Hotels has long been an innovator in the world of music. The first hotel brand to produce a CD that captured the vibe of its public spaces, W Hotels’ released its sixth compilation in this exclusive series, The Sound of Wonderlust, in 2008. In partnership with MasterCard Worldwide and SONY MUSIC, W Hotels also sponsors Wonderlust Live, a groundbreaking platform offering W Hotel guests and loyalists exclusive insider access to a world of musical experiences through an exclusively curated series of live performances by award-winning and emerging artists, such as Natasha Bedingfeld, Gavin DeGraw, and Peter Bjorn and John.

Welcome | W kitchen | Wet | Fish + Sip | Fire | Fifteen Below