Is FFE construction included for lifestyle hotels? Can you design successfully without them?

Lifestyle Hotel 1

The Crescent Club - Design by Bergman Interiors

Are you ready to learn about FFE constructions and lifestyle hotels? To get a grasp of what a lifestyle hotel is and what FFE construction really means? It’s all a part of interior design and a major part of an FFE designer’s life, so if you are looking to get a deeper look on this topic, you have arrived at the right place!

The previous weeks we have been talking about various topics in regards to FFE design, so let’s start with a little recap - because freshening our knowledge is never a bad idea!

First, we spoke about what FFE design is and how you should approach it from every possible aspect. As we know some of you are in the early stages of Interior Design, we wanted to create a trail of articles, where you can learn all the basics to help you navigate through the learning phase.

Second, we wrote a beginner’s guide on FFE design - because at this point you already knew what you were dealing with. But we don’t stop here!

With our next step, we have decided to start getting technical, therefore we have written an article, where we spoke about FFE schedules and their uses in Interior Design. Some of you may not think, but they are the spine of any design work - if we talk about the loose items and overall scheme.

And now lastly, to complete this cycle of series about FFE design, we are diving into FFE construction, as well as lifestyle hotels. Are you ready?

What does FFE construction mean?

Lifestyle Hotel 2

The Other House (South Kensington) - Design by Bergman Interiors

FFE construction refers to the acquisition and installation of the furniture, fixtures and equipment that are used to decorate and furnish the property to achieve livable and usable spaces in the project.

What is included in the package?

  • Carpets, Rugs
  • Drapery / Fixture
  • Casegoods
  • Upholstery
  • Bed / Bedding
  • Lighting Fixture
  • Artwork
  • Accessories
  • Operational Equipment (only for hotels - super important to mention today)

As we mentioned last week, these groups are a part of the overall FFE package. Now let’s clear up what an FFE package is exactly.

An FFE package consist of:

  • Casegood drawings
  • FFE schedule
  • Mood Boards
  • Fabric Samples
  • Finishes Samples
  • Layouts
  • Technical Drawings

...And don’t worry! The list is not going on! These pieces are all essential parts of the design process to make sure every item, color, fabric, material is at its place and the placing and sizing is correct.

Now let’s move on to the construction side of the project. What does an FFE designer do there? Do they even do anything? Or do they have a specific role in the FFE construction? Let us explain the process further in detail.

The Other House (South Kensington) - Design by Bergman Interiors

FFE Construction:

This is the part, when everything is built, in and outside of a project. Mainly for the architectural side FFE isn’t involved aside from helping with the furniture layout, position of power sockets, fixtures and maybe the artworks - if we wish to be super detailed (and of course we are). Even though it is a smaller part in the grand scheme, it is essential. You may wonder...Why?

A few reasons. Conscious planning and budgeting for example. Imagine you just start putting power sockets everywhere, not thinking about wiring, function and aesthetics. Do you think you would end up with a functional and aesthetically pleasing place? Probably not. Working with intention and closely with the rest of your team is essential in order to stay on schedule, plan and budget.

Now let’s talk about the budget for a moment!

Every project has one - whether it is small or large, there is always one and you should definitely be mindful about with your spendings and intentions. If you think of it, especially when you are working on a larger scale - the bigger the budget, the bigger the mistake can become.

Largely scaled budgets are common in hospitality given the multitude of products that have to be designed. Here you shouldn’t necessarily think that everything is going to be the most expensive on the market - but definitely high quality, meeting hotel standards.

And this is when it becomes tricky. You have to think about quantity, function, design and the BUDGET! This is when you usually realise you have to make a cut somewhere. Although it may sound upsetting at first, we firmly believe it is an opportunity to get more creative and explore new options. It may surprise you how good the result can be, when you are willing to pivot!

The task of designing a hotel is always challenging, especially if you are on your first few projects. It involves all the steps we have mentioned previously - combined with hotel and brand standards. But what are hotel standards and brand standards? Are they the same? Not exactly.

Let’s talk about Hotel Standards first:

Hotel standards are made by the Hotel Owner / Building owner and it applies to all local rules in terms of - fire safety, HAACP for restaurant, fire and durability treatment for materials, safety exits and the list goes on...Endlessly. (We are kidding.)

These standards are here to give you a framework on what are your limitations when you are making your selection, therefore you will have an easier time during production and installation.

Moving on to Brand Standards:

This is where the fun is kicking in. No, we are not kidding now, this is truly exciting. Why? Because brand standards and the Brand Guidelines are the ones that determine the overall look and feel of the hotel. This is how you will know the difference wherever you go in the world, for example between a Ritz-Carlton and a Mondrian. These places are the perfect city sanctuaries to visit.

Both brands are within the five star category, however their style is completely different. The Ritz-Carlton always represents a timeless and effortless luxury, while the Mondrian Hotels have taken luxury to a fun, more quirky level. To be able to showcase looks so different, designers need guidelines and brand standards, in order to make sure they have met the brand’s needs.

This is no different when we talk about Lifestyle Hotels, which has been an existing category, however due to recent events occurring the past two years, the rise of calmness and serenity is on the horizon. Reason for that is that people have become more interested in exploring outside of the big cities, enjoying nature and living with a little bit of “distance”, as the past two years have forced us to slow down on many levels. As our physical and mental well being became more of a priority, the focus on design has shifted tremendously.

The Crescent Club - Design by Bergman Interiors

The Rise of Lifestyle Hotels:

As the world slowed down - hospitality joined. Previously most hotels were located in the city centers and major developments were on the horizon, before our whole world has changed. With these changes came the need for a different travel experience - one, that makes you feel more connected to nature and nurtures your soul.

Accommodation, that makes you feel connected with nature and yourself, while being able to travel safely. This has become the renessaince of lifestyle and wellness hotels. Suddenly it became clear that people still want to connect, but in a completely different manner, and the hospitality sector had to have an answer if they wanted to stay in the game. Our mental well being became a priority.

Don’t just think of various types of spa sessions, rooms or five different gyms in one hotel. It is much more than that. Hoteliers have created a way to not just operate for travellers, but to have a safe and sustainable way of existing within our current climate.

What does it mean?

It means - open workspaces in hotels, all day dining with a more casual menu and opening hours, outdoor workout spaces and different types of accommodation options for those, who wish to use this opportunity to work truly remotely in a place that is absolutely serene.


And to answer our biggest question - Is FFE Construction included for lifestyle hotels?

Absolutely! However, you have to think of these areas as more subtle projects - less about crazy ideas, more about the smart and serene. This doesn’t mean you cannot be insanely creative, but this is what should be held back a little - the insanity. The overall goal with these hotels is to create a calming and engaging experience through our design.

Therefore, here you will have less legroom to go the “extra mile”, however you should definitely make sure you use some tweaks - such as marbles with special veins, exciting weaves on fabric to create depth and different tones and grains of wood to create interest throughout the space.

While it may look and sound challenging first, it can be one of the best experiences to design a hotel, such as this one, as you can truly explore your creativity throughout the project.


FFE Construction is absolutely a part of any hotel designs, not just Lifestyle, however it is always a part of the bigger picture, which we hope we were able to shed some light on.

Don’t forget to check out our Pinterest and Instagram pages to see more of our upcoming and finished projects and to be able to sneak in behind the scenes with us!