Sometimes unfinished is just as fascinating as complete. Just as fashionistas would be intrigued by seeing a Sarah Burton wedding dress – as for Kate Middleton – in the construction stage, or a suit from Gieves & Hawkes that is still all shapes covered in tacking, so those who care about luxury hotels take an interest in construction, or reconstruction. The gal found that Hyatt Regency Mexico City is undergoing a $40 million rehab, which will take until end of 2014. The lobby is out, but you can look through windows at what is going on.
The deconstructed lobby, if you want to call it that, leads to a theme of shapes and images that are worthy of comment in a 734-room tower block (43 floors high) built by Japanese in 1987. Once I started thinking of shapes and patterns they were everywhere. I was in suite 4106, which can be described as a soft lemon environment divided into two by a white can-can ribbon curtain, the kind of strings that sometimes tassel down from Victorian lampshades. Someone had taken a lot of care with this rose display, to make it into an art shape.
Similarly, the placing of this white orchid by the bank of six elevators that fill the semi-circular area at one end of each floor means that the shadow behind looks like someone dancing. Shades of Diaghilev spring to mind while waiting for the elevator. I am going down to the workout centre and cannot believe that all the elevators are really in use at this hour, long before dawn. Someone said no problem, they would open it early, which means I need to turn up at that appointed hour to avoid losing face.
Exiting the elevator at the third floor is another marvellous image. I look across the indoor pool to the main gym. Obviously I have it all to myself, except for not one but two really lovely local girls who have come in at this extraordinarily early hour to open the gym (bet they are pleased I turned up). More lovely local girls, dressed in kimonos, served oh-so-carefully at dinner last night. Japanese continued to own this place, running as a Nikko, until late 2012, and they left not one but two superb Japanese restaurants.
Another image presents itself at one of the two breakfast buffets. Those on the top four floors can breakfast in the Club Lounge, which is really excellent, but it only has two chafing dishes. Down in the main The Jardin restaurant, I was intrigued by the pattern the roll-call of chafing dishes made. On another table, glasses of different fresh herbs stood by cheeses and cold cuts, and another table had heavy clay dishes, holding Mexican foods, over nightlights.
This is becoming like a show and tell. My last image at this luxury hotel is far removed from the start of this theme. One wall at Teppan Grill, the more modern of the Japanese restaurants, has rows of bottles. The Dom Pérignon display says quite a lot. Yes, Mexicans do appreciate the best but they do not want anyone to see – not for them the Ferraris and Lamborghinis of the Middle East (question, wonder what Carlos Slim drives?).