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This Painting Technique is Cheaper than Buying a Headboard


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On its exterior, the recently opened Hotel San Fernando in Mexico City’s colorful La Condesa neighborhood boasts a cool mint green—but inside it’s the half-pink walls that lure visitors to book one of the 19 guest rooms in the former apartment building.

Mint exterior of the San Fernando Hotel

In fact, keeping original details from the 1947 structure was important to Paige Henney, director of design at Bunkhouse Hotels, who worked with local architects and contractors to transform the space’s style, which she calls “a Mexico City version of Art Deco,” into a workable hotel. The stained-glass window and curved breezeblocks, for example, remained. And the exterior shade stayed mostly the same. 

Original stained glass window and green walls in lobby

What about those pink walls? All new. “The rooms were solid white when we came in,” Henney says. “But we did notice, in the previous renovation, that there was a wall transition at about wainscoting height—there was a drywall finish below and a stuccolike finish above.” The team loved the texture but felt like it wasn’t being shown off in the best possible way, and they were also hoping to use the…

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