In 1998 Christoph Henkel and Bernt Kuhlmann decided to develop a lifestyle resort in the famed Four Corners Region of the American Southwest. Surrounded by Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Zion, Monument Valley and many other national parks and monuments, the resort would be the ultimate base camp for visitors to the area. It would also have a real estate component with luxury villas for sale and for rent.
Amangiri Hotel and Spa opened in 2009 and quickly proved its competitive edge among extreme high-end resorts worldwide. Located in Southern Utah, just a mile from the shores of Lake Powell, the resort occupies a 2000 acre expanse of rugged desert lands. The actual site occupied by the hotel was carved out of the Glen Canyon National Recreational area, using a land swap that was ratified by President Bush in 2003.
Three design architects, with much vision, were brought onboard early on in the game: Marwan Al Sayed, Rick Joy, and Wendell Burnette. For this project alone the three friends formed a new corporate entity, I-10. The objective set for I-10 was relatively simple: to develop a hotel design best described as a "soft core in a hard shell". It would be inspired by the walled cities of the North African deserts, and it would be built using concrete mixed with sands found onsite. It would also have to match the high standards set by Adrian Zecha, chairman of Aman Resorts. The interiors would be luminous, warm, and luxurious.
As a hotel operator, Singapore based Aman Resorts, proved to be the perfect match. Aman owns and / or manages extreme high-end hotel properties in Asia, Europe, Africa, and America. Many of them are located in remote scenic areas.
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