Damien Hirst is one of the most famous and talented British contemporary artists. He is known for his unusual style and controversial pieces. For example, one of his works include vats of formaldehyde containing suspended animal carcasses. Another features a human skull that is encrusted in diamonds. While Hirst is well-known for his artwork, he is less well-known for his interior design. All this could change thanks to the unveiling of the Empathy Suite at The Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. Designed by Hirst, this is the latest suite added to the Sky Villas collection.
As you would expect from something designed by Hirst, this is not just your standard hotel room. There is a high-level of attention to detail and an array of interesting and unique features. While these would look out of place in many settings, Las Vegas is the perfect destination to boast a room such as this because the city is known for its elaborate and extrovert style. In fact, everything in the suite is completely over-the-top and perfectly combines the dramatic design flair of Hirst with the pizzazz of Vegas. Everywhere you go in the 9,000 square-foot suite there is something to look at, and each piece is more unusual than the last.
One of the most interesting pieces is the tank embedded into the living room wall. This was inspired by Hirst’s former work using formaldehyde. The tank features two dead sharks suspended in the substance. Another focal point is the cabinet filled with medicine and dotted with diamonds. The piece is entitled ‘Vegas’ and is found in the suite’s hallway. The suite also boasts an interesting art collection that has a value in the eight-figure region. Some of the best pieces of art in this collection feature a kaleidoscope of gloss-painted butterfly canvases. These add splashes of interest and color around the suite.
Butterflies are not just found in the artwork as this theme is continued throughout the suite. While the main focus of the bathroom is the wall-to-floor Venus Gray marble, butterflies are a secondary feature of the room. The butterfly theme also continues to the exterior of the suite on the terrace where you will also find an impressive infinity plunge pool. Elsewhere in the suite, there is also a 13-seat bar for the guests to enjoy, and it is a bar like no other you have seen before. The curved bar is filled with medical waste and reflects the Medicine Cabinet series, which is one of Hirst’s earlier sets of work.
The rooms are filled with exquisite pieces that catch the eye. One of these is a custom pool table that is designed to represent one of the colorful spin paintings by the artist. Another is the Italian leather sofas. These feature drapes that feature the butterfly motif. A highlight of the suite is the movie theatre, which is perfect for guests who just want to chill in the suite. Another way that guests can relax is making use of the many wellness features throughout the space. These include a personal fitness suite, two massage rooms, and a private healing salt room. With so many things to enjoy within the suite, guests will hardly need to leave and explore Las Vegas. Unlike many designers, Damien Hirst adopted a very involved approach to the interior design of this room. His involvement went far further than selecting a few pieces of art and choosing a color scheme. In fact, he worked very closely with Bentel & Bentel Architects. This collaboration involved him choosing every detail, including the drapes and the carpet.
This is just one of Damien Hirst’s latest ventures show that he is a businessman and not just an artist. The result of his partnership with The Palms means that the Empathy Suite is now the most expensive suite in North America. Just one night in the impressive room will set you back $100,000, but there is a minimum stay of two nights. Prior to the creation of the Empathy Suite, the most expensive suite in North America was the Grand Penthouse at the Mark Hotel in New York. Guests staying in that suite paid $75,000 per night. The only way to stay in the Empathy Suite without the $100,000 price tag is to earn yourself a million-dollar line of credit with the casino and then you will have the privilege of staying in the hotel for free.
Written by Garrett Parker
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