Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco has long been a bold brand collection unto itself, channeling the quirky world traveler who collects inspiration from design and localized experience wherever they go. When the Monaco brand architecture and identity required an overhaul for today’s boutique luxury guest, careful brand strategy was required. Where most Kimpton hotels exist as brands of one within the Kimpton family, the Monacos form a distinct “collection,” each with its own spirit aligned with the unmistakable Kimpton sensibility.
Guest Journey as Brand
It always begins with the guest experience. Touring each property and determining the most compelling threads to amplify in visual and brand standards was the first step in laying the brand foundation. Through a journey and dashboard documentation, the experience at each location was enhanced with small details, unified in meaningful ways, and used as the basis for everything from design to service training elements.
A collection-wide rebranding to refine and amplify Monaco’s whimsical, curated appeal to the gregarious world traveler used deft design and brand touches to architect the ideal balance of localized touches and brand-wide connection. Each Monaco location “ladders up” to the Monaco style which, in turn, belongs to the Kimpton master brand. Think of it as the eccentric uncle to the parent brand’s irreverent luxury. Mapping guest experience and dashboarding the unique brand traits for each was the first step toward helping guests see, and feel, the relationship and complementary experience offered by each contributing brand.
A Mark Worthy of Collection
At the visual core of the Monaco brand identity is a consistent mark that unifies the brand’s intent; a core diamond motif logo echoes passport stamps or steamer trunk decals, delivers the name and location, and anchors Hotel Monaco’s story about the world traveler seeking an immersive, fanciful experience in each city. Most importantly, it represents an experience they can “collect” on their adventures in Baltimore, Chicago, D.C., Denver Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland, Seattle, and Salt Lake City.
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Illustrating Local Distinction
The central visual element is then customized through a suite of richly diverse illustrative identities that establish local relevance, loud and proud. It’s the cast of characters, colors, and elements surrounding the diamonds that illustrate distinction between hotels; they become visual cues to a deeper sense of place and experience you’ll find everywhere you go.
An Immersive Sense of Place
As with all Kimpton branding, the inspiration begins with the tangible experience and journey within each location. Drawn from every hotel’s brand dashboard and aesthetic, logo design patterns draw upon singular property design elements, experiential cues, and the characteristics of each host city. In Pittsburgh, the bird cages become the singular defining element. Elsewhere, curated city-specific symbols set the tone—tropical foliage-engulfed parrots, bamboo forest cranes, busy bees, wrought iron keys, and stone lions all play leading roles.
Touchpoints That Color Perception
A dynamic collateral system demonstrates how a consistent compositional structure can be accessorized and enhanced with each location’s brand accoutrements to clarify how it all fits. Each property’s unique color palette emerges from the unique palette of each hotel’s interior. Mark usage is tailored by touchpoint—the standard collection mark is used for cross-property elements, while the property-specific mark inhabits in-room and on-property experience.
Collect Them All
Balancing brand consistency and property-specific irreverence, the Hotel Monaco collection achieves a shared point of view while enabling diverse experiential deliveries. It’s the rarest of balancing acts—each hotel becomes a brand within a brand within a brand. The result immerses guests in both singular properties and cities, and invites the curious to explore and collect them all.