Engineering blog
15 Apr 2022

Exploring Elements of Hotel Lobby Design: A Closer Look at Interior Detailing

This blog has been updated on – April 15, 2022

The lobby is by far the most dominant location in a hotel, and so paying attention to the interior detailing is in your best interest.

It is the one place that almost every single guest will see at least once. It will also be the guests’ first impression, and provide a snapshot of the overall image and atmosphere of the hotel, whether that is luxurious, laid-back, or anything else. This in turn sets their expectations for what is to come with regard to service, rooms, and facilities.

To ensure that your hotel lobby’s first impression makes a lasting impression on your customers in the best way, read on.

Introduction: The Importance of Interior Design Detailing

Hotel design trends may come and go, but a hotel’s interior design detailing will always remain relevant.

An interior project isn’t just about the design – detailing can make or break your project. They can contribute to the design intent and provide functionality while being attractive in their own right.

On the other hand, poorly designed details often leak, break, splinter, and even collapse, creating safety hazards. Additionally, poor design detailing can be difficult to build, frustrating to clean, and impossible to repair. At best it may annoy a customer. At worst it can result in lawsuits and large financial losses.

Of course, it is important to balance design with technical detailing and not favour one over the other in a way that might compromise the experience and safety of your customers. 

What is Detailing?

Detailing can be considered a subset of interior design. It is a process of solving problems meant to help translate broad design concepts into a construction reality. 

While detailing can mean different things to different designers, there are broadly three things that design detailing does:

  • It provides a way to fit various pieces together, visually and physically connecting components of your interior space. For example, a doorframe needs to be attached to a wall opening in some way, whether it is simple or wickedly ornate and complicated.

  • Detailing helps to solve functional problems. For example, for a bar design, you might want a water-resistant countertop. However, there are many ways in which you can create such a surface. Detailing deals with this aspect.

  • It enhances the overall design intent. Design elements can be reinforced with the smaller details that help make up a space – in this case, a hotel lobby.

As a part of the project process, interior detailing falls broadly between the design conceptualization and the endmost construction documentation. Think of it as a junction where the artistry and imagination of the designer meets the rigid requirements of actual construction. 

Note that interior design detailing is not usually listed as a design activity in itself in invoices and proposals. However, it is an important aspect of any designer’s skillset.

Key Elements of Interior Detailing for Hotel Lobbies

We have already covered the hotel lobby’s specific function in our piece about lobby millwork, so there’s no need to repeat it here. However, we recommend going through it, since the hotel lobby’s varied functions guide its interior detailing.

Since detailing is mainly determined by design, we will be focusing on the latter.

1. The layout is the key focus

When creating interior detailing drawings for a hotel lobby, it is crucial to take into account the layout of the space. Understand the kind of furniture that will be used in the design and where it will be placed.

Ensure that, in addition to the right furniture, your lobby has enough space for guests to move around with their suitcases, and potentially trolleys.

If you are designing a hotel from scratch and planning for there to be a lot of rooms, the size of your lobby might not be as large as you want. Hence, consider the adequate proportions of the lobby furniture and decor.

2. Redefining ‘reception’: Going beyond the desk and wall

Welcoming your guest is a vital part of your service and can create a lasting memory. Make sure it’s a good one.

It’s not just your staff that needs to be warm and friendly – your entire reception area should reflect those qualities. Simply shoving a desk by a wall isn’t enough if you want to offer a great experience. You want your guests to feel welcomed and special.

3. Zoning

The hotel lobby isn’t necessarily just for checking in – it can also be used for business meetings and casual conversations between guests. In essence, it can be a multifunctional space. 

Bear in mind that the unique role your hotel lobby plays will be determined by your guests and their requirements. Are most of them here for remote work and professional meetings? If so, they will require wireless printing, high-speed Internet access, ergonomic or at least comfortable seating and desks, and so on. 

Or are your guests here for romantic getaways? If that’s the case, offer them a luxurious, opulent place where they can enjoy each other’s company and make happy memories.

4. A Sensory Experience

You know what separates a good lobby experience from a fantastic one? Sensory experiences.

  • Sight: Consider the hotel’s colour scheme, the types of lighting that will be conducive to your lobby’s purposes, and the furniture design. If you want to know how your lobby will look before it is built so you can catch any errors, we recommend 3D interior rendering.

  • Smell: According to Bloomberg, the scent branding industry is worth over $300 million and is fed generously by hotels. Remember that, for hotel guests, simple scents are preferred to complex ones, so you can go for scents like lavender, rosemary and eucalyptus.

  • Touch: Use a variety of textures for your decor, pillows and couches. If possible, go for materials that are easy to clean.

  • Sound: Set the mood with some background music. For maximum comfort and serenity, wour speakers should be evenly distributed.

  • Taste: Last but not least, consider offering refreshments to guests, especially ones who have just arrived to check in. They are probably weary from their travels, so try to ease their mood. Even some cool water with mint and sliced lemon can go a long way.

    If you want to offer a broader experience, you can install a cafe and bar, or a complementary tea and coffee station. (And don’t offer bad coffee. Just don’t.)

5. Biophilia

Biophilic design can have a great impact on your guests’ mood. Everything from natural light to potted plants can serve you well. 


The modern hotel lobby is a multifunctional space that prioritizes function over design, yet is still well designed. Its interior detailing drawings need to reflect this. 

If you are at a loss for where to find good interior construction drawing services, it’s your lucky day. BluEntCAD has extensive experience in complex CAD drawing and detailing. We serve architectural firms, interior design firms, retail chains, and hotels for hospitality, commercial and residential projects. Browse our portfolio to see how we’ve helped businesses like yours.

Are you ready for a great hotel construction or renovation project with the aid of interior design CAD drawings? Contact us now! 

Maximum Value. Achieved.



Your Citation

CAD Evangelist. "Exploring Elements of Hotel Lobby Design: A Closer Look at Interior Detailing" CAD Evangelist, Apr. 15, 2022,

CAD Evangelist. (2022, April 15). Exploring Elements of Hotel Lobby Design: A Closer Look at Interior Detailing. Retrieved from

CAD Evangelist. "Exploring Elements of Hotel Lobby Design: A Closer Look at Interior Detailing" CAD Evangelist (accessed April 15, 2022 ).

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