Excerpt from Quartzy
When you walk in the entryway of The Hoxton hotel in Paris, you\'re greeted by a bright and airy courtyard flanked by a 300-year-old staircase. Offering visitors both scale and perspective against a naturally-lit backdrop, the elegantly spiraling stairs are undeniably photographable—as evidenced by the hotel\'s geotag on Instagram.
That a staircase can be described as photogenic is a sign of our times. Yet as social media—not to mention ever-improving smartphone cameras—have made our culture more visually literate, travelers increasingly journey to sights, hotels, and attractions not to take in the spectacle, but to digitally consume them. As that has happened, the designers, hoteliers, and curators who build these spaces have had to adapt, too.
Instead of physical souvenirs or wild anecdotes to tell friends, we now crave status-granting geotagged selfies or dynamic, art-directed shots on Instagram. And in turn, more and more places crop up that seem to be designed to offer just that: There\'s the Dubai Frame, the made-for-Boomerang swings in Superflex\'s residency at Tate Modern\'s Turbine Hall, the technicolor escalators at Ian Schrager\'s PUBLIC Hotel New York, and the incongruous golden wooly mammoth statue at Faena Hotel Miami Beach. Thanks to elements like scale, texture, size, symmetry, light, color palette, or sheer ostentation, these spectacles seem destined to become digital landmarks—even more than physical ones.