“We designed Villa M as a ‘naturalist architectural manifesto’; that is a building of a new era, where man is no longer opposed to nature and the living,” explain Olivier Raffaëlli and Guillaume Sibaud from Triptyque Architecture, Architects and Designers of Villa M.
“Villa M is a bubbling, honest and warm place, where life is good and beautiful and where it is good to live and eat well. Throughout the restaurant and the bar, fertile surprises, hidden places and mental games arouse curiosity and guide the gaze of visitors, reminding them that intelligence is one of the most beautiful symptoms of humanity,” adds Philippe Starck, Architectural Design and Art Director of the spaces of Villa M.
The programme, imagined by Thierry Lorente and Amanda Lehmann of Groupe Pasteur Mutualité, is a mixed-use building, with a Paris Society Hotel, a co-working space, and a dynamic healthcare-focused centre.
“We could not conceive a building dedicated to health and mutualism without including a notion of hospitality, welcome, hotel business. Mutualism implies sharing,” expains Thierry Lorente, Villa M Concept Creator and CEO of Group Pasteur Mutualité.
The building’s architecture stands out with its living exterior, whose geometry is formed by metallic structure beams, conceived to house medicinal herbal plants, fruit trees and medium- to large-sized perennial species. Designed as an exoskeleton, the building has a minimalist, light look, composed of prefabricated pieces.
“The edifice supports this vertical garden, which will grow and occupy the entire facade, turning the building into a vertical, medicinal forest, becoming the main architecture,” explains Olivier.
In addition to the reintegration of nature into the city through architecture, the living building contributes to sustainability since it collaborates with thermal comfort and, therefore, with the building’s energy efficiency.
“We explored all available surfaces to potentialise the greenery and avoided energy and carbon waste,” explains Guillaume Sibaud. Environmental responsibility is also present in the primary and organic material choices, proposing a low-tech architecture.
Connection to nature
Villa M’s design is intended for the architecture to bring nature back to the city. The primary goal is to provide citizens with a new urban experience with the advent of a ‘nature-city’.
“Breathing, sunbathing and connecting to nature are vital needs that urban lifestyles can no longer guarantee,” states Olivier. “To resist urban expansion, which is unsustainable by nature, the city must provide this experience and stimulate the correlation between external and internal spaces in built areas.”
Villa M, a Paris Society Hotel
The hotel is designed as an enveloping and relaxing cocoon, with breathtaking views of the ‘City of Light’. Its 67 rooms and six suites have been designed as green spaces. Some have a balcony or terrace to admire the Montparnasse and Invalides districts. Above all, nestled at the corner of the seventh floor, the Pasteur Suite is a unique space with large bay windows, a double green terrace and a living room open to the capital.
Speaking of the hotel design, Philippe Starck adds: “The traveller must feel at home in calm, soft and maternal rooms, pleasant to live in, so that the human being is always at the heart of the Villa M concept.”
In these spaces, guests will find noble and durable materials, organic colours, warm contemporary furniture, the play of mirrors and eco-responsible products. It also features the essentials of a high-end hotel, including a boxing and fitness club and yoga rooms and 20 open offices and co-working spaces.
‘Good living, good eating’
A unique and timeless place for families and young people to lunch, dine, meet and mingle around a generous and accessible menu. Upon entering, the visitor is plunged into a place of life, energy and benevolence. An agora, made of wood, concrete and vegetation, offers a friendly welcome and an open kitchen surrounded by a lush terrace with trees. The decor evokes the playful spirit of the French Riviera, where one forgets time and where we feel good.
The vast and luminous restaurant is highlighted by wood, leather, shelves of books and knick-knacks and mismatched furniture that seems to have a history.
On the large outdoor terrace, under the shade of the fig trees in summer, five times a week, at nightfall, Villa M becomes one of the most lively places on the left bank with a live music programme and cocktail menu. Meanwhile, in spring, weekends incorporate the sign of friendliness. Villa M puts brunch in the spotlight to treat late risers, families and friends from the neighbourhood and the whole of Paris in a relaxed and warm atmosphere.
With its incredible view of the Eiffel Tower, the Dôme des Invalides and the roofs of Paris, the rooftop is an unparalleled experience. A suspended oasis comprises fruit trees and plants, with large wooden armchairs, wicker lamps and garlands. Guests come here to drink during the day and late into the night.
A health-oriented building
The health crisis has intensified and accelerated healthcare challenges already known, and geographic and urban issues have started to figure as health issues as well. On the other hand, healthcare has exceeded the hospital walls, spreading around the city and creating a more open relationship between citizens and health professionals.
Designed before the COVID-19 pandemic, Villa M’s groundbreaking programme catalyses the idea of opening healthcare to the city and the city to healthcare.