This weekend, fancy hotel Claridges revealed the Christmas tree that will grace its famed lobby this year. Designed by a different fancy person each year, 2016’s tree was was thought up by Apple impresario Jony Ive and industrial designer Marc Newson. Ah, so this is what it felt like when humans discovered fire.
It’s a tree (Image: Claridges)
In true Jony Ive fashion, the tree — which appears to be entirely unadorned — isn’t just a tree. In fact, the press release describes it as both “much more than a Christmas tree” and an “all-enveloping magical experience“.
Allow us to translate that for you, reader. There’s a large undecorated tree over in the corner, which is allegedly the main attraction. It’s accompanied by other, smaller trees, as well as “light boxes that glow with black and white photographic images of snow covered silver birch trees“. The light apparently changes depending on the time of day, and there’s some fake snow thrown in for good measure. It’s all situated on a “pure white floor”.
From the press release:
There are few things more pure and beautiful than nature, so that was our starting point, layering various iterations of organic forms with technology. Our aim was to create an all-enveloping magical experience that celebrates our enormous respect for tradition while recognising our excitement about the future and things to come.
Allow us to translate for you again, reader. “Our starting point for a tree was nature, because we like to think different. We’re throwing some technology in there, too, because, ha ha, I’m Jony Ive, what else did you expect? Also, for some reason, we’re still excited about the future“.
All of this makes me wonder what Jony Ive’s house is like during the holidays. Does it resemble a Williams-Sonoma catalogue, if Williams-Sonoma catered to obscenely wealthy people who hate warmth? Is there a fog machine? Are there light boxes projecting images of iPhones everywhere?
Whatever it looks like, at least you can count on some very expensive kindling for a fire.