In Mexico City's central Cuauhtémoc neighborhood, the new Hotel Carlota revives a once-glamorous location. The 36-room hotel takes the place of Hotel Jardín Amazonas, a popular 1970s hangout that had fallen out of favor and lingered on into the 21st century as a run-down budget motel.
For architect Javier Sanchez of JSa Arquitectura, the transformation from motel to (boutique) hotel began with "urban-archeological work," as his team researched the structure's past lives. Digging through decades' worth of renovations, and, virtually, through Google Images, they found inspiration in the relaxed poolside glamour of the interior courtyard in its heyday—then updated it by losing dated touches like the AstroTurf patio and by streamlining the swimming pool into a modern, glass-edged refuge.
To complete the project, JSa called in an army of young interior designers and emerging artists, who transformed each room into a singular place to stay in the capital city—one that combines chic accommodations with a total immersion in a city's booming design scene.