FORMDEPOT: The perfectionists


Heinz Glatzl and Joachim Mayr aren’t just the founders and creators of Formdepot, they’re also the drivers behind Refugium Lunz. We spoke to them about the future and the past, the demand for the utmost handmade quality and inspiring collaboration.

In this issue of THE Stylemate, we’re dealing with “Future Blossoms”. How does a hotel meet the needs of the future?

A hotel of the future will place people front and centre. Our new luxury is based on personal, direct exchange. Space and time for this interaction and mutual inspiration. On a global level, as well as in the urban hotel business, it’s all about the moments in which you feel something: someone has thought about the guests, considered a role in more detail and chosen an active way to handle the various challenges – be it a staff shortage or the energy crisis. Honest communication is at the heart of that.

How does Refugium Lunz manifest itself?

For us, the Refugium is a balancing act between historic circumstances and today’s demanding technical requirements. We put a lot of effort into building a hotel where you can feel how the building was conceived several hundred years ago. For example, we have left the layout of the entry area exactly as it was. We could have moved walls and built a large lobby – the decision not to do this was a very deliberate one. Guests were coming through this door as far back as the 17th century, and when the door is open now and the summer breeze wafts in, it must have been the same back then, too.

Where did you get your inspiration from?

Our main driver was the need to make tangible the utmost handcrafted quality at all touchpoints. There must be no compromises. Through the collaboration with our Formdepot members and partners, we were able to use materials and products that normally wouldn’t find their way into hotel rooms for cost reasons.

So how much of Formdepot is there in Refugium Lunz?

The Refugium is the sister of Formdepot. We’re also involved in hospitality in Vienna from the very beginning and with the Refugium, there’s an added layer of professionalism that’s required in running a hotel. With the Refugium, we show the full diversity of the company, which has been at the core of Formdepot since the start. To our knowledge, it is the first building to have been created with such close collaboration between so many partners. New solutions were developed and everyone had the opportunity to show what is possible when you put your faith in them.

Which details are you particularly fond of?

I find joy in any places in the hotel that we have helped to return to their former glory. For example the lounge, the façade and the arched ceiling in the entry area. Aside from that, we’re still in the process of discovering new things about the building. The way the light comes in and the ambience constantly change during the summer.

How have you changed your way of working, the way you find work over the years?

We have the chance now to draw on our many years of experience to creatively and technically pursue new avenues. Our repertoire has grown and we’ve therefore become more flexible, more open and more capable.

What do you appreciate about each other?

Our exchange of ideas is definitely a key factor. We’ve been through so much together that we often understand each other without saying anything. We’re very different, but that means we complement each other in many areas and contribute our different perspectives. We’ve got used to working together to find good solutions.

What will the Refugium mean for Lunz in the future?

The Refugium has arrived in the centre of town, that is to say it’s reopened, even though the people of Lunz of course won’t remember the old guesthouse. We’re investing a lot in high-quality publications and perhaps speaking to a new audience. We’re always being described as a leading company. That also brings with it a level of responsibility to create positive momentum. We’re aware of this and are looking for regional exchanges.

What’s next for you?

We’re currently working hard on new event formats so we can achieve high-quality interaction more often at Formdepot. Formdepot has an open door policy and is intended to be a place of inspiration, independent of companies and brands. So it’s actually a bit like a hotel – without the overnight stay, but still a place to which people can come from different walks of life, exchange ideas and then take them away again in different directions.

About Heinz Glatzl and Joachim Mayr

Joachim Mayr and Heinz Glatzl have been working together since 1999. As a duo, they design furniture, build houses and founded Formdepot in Vienna. The Refugium Lunz boutique hotel opened recently in Lunz am See.

Photocredits: Gabriel Büchelmeier