FOGO ISLAND INN - Joe Batt's Arm, Newfoundland, Canada

FOGO ISLAND INN - Joe Batt's Arm, Newfoundland, Canada


Todd Saunders

29 guest suites
From CAD$1675/night for two guests with full board

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“Fogo island Inn has an international reputation for exceptional, embodied, place-specific hospitality and bold, thoughtful, humanistic contemporary design.

Fogo Island Inn was designed by Newfoundland-born, Norway-based architect Todd Saunders. The 43,000 square-foot Inn is perched on stilts and hugs the North Atlantic coastline, affording all 29 suites with floor-to-ceiling views of sea and sky. All suites showcase the richness of their locality and clearly express a modern take on traditional Newfoundland outport design and décor. The Inn’s architecture is bold, optimistic, and distinctly of this place. Though radical in its design, the Inn still speaks to the traditional outport Newfoundland aesthetic.

Two floors of guest suites sit atop the Inn’s stilts, a distinct nod to traditional outport fishing stages. These stilts, or “shores,” underpin many of the buildings on Fogo Island due to the rocky, undulating topography. They support the Inn while also minimizing the overall building footprint and impact on the adjacent rocks, lichens, and berries. The Inn’s sharp angles and rough contours feel at home amidst Fogo Island’s jagged and uneven landscape.

The X-shaped structure features a two-storey west-to-east wing containing gathering spaces, and a four-storey South-West to North-East wing, parallel to the coast, containing all of the guest suites. The first floor includes the contemporary Art Gallery curated by Fogo Island Arts, the Dining Room, Bar, Lounge, and a Heritage Library containing works of both fiction and non-fiction pertaining to Newfoundland which is open to Inn guests as well as the local community of Fogo Island. The Cinema, Meeting Room, Gym, and Reading Room are located on the second floor, and the fourth floor roof deck houses wood-fired saunas and outdoor hot tubs.

Guest room sizes vary from 350 to 1 100 square feet, with suites on the third and fourth floors all including wood-burning stoves. The ceilings of the rooms on the fourth floor follow the dramatic slope of the roof, resulting in the three most easterly rooms enjoying double volume spaces with the sleeping area located on the mezzanine. Great care was taken to provide exceptional sound-proofing in order to ensure that guests hear only the sounds of nearby ocean waves. All of the Inn’s rooms were created using only natural materials such as wood, wool, cotton, and linen. The only plastic in the guest rooms is the telephone.”



The background story.  So inspirational. After garnering acclaim in the tech industry Zita Cobb went back to her childhood island home to help transform the local economy, which was struggling due to the collapse of the fishing industry. She describes her contributions as “a study in how to make a rural place relevant.” Brilliant. 

The concept of seven seasons. There is no off-season on Fogo Island. “Spring, trap berth, summer, berry, late fall, winter and ice pack” seasons are each compelling in their own right.    

The significance of the project.  On a remote island of 2000 inhabitants, Zita Cobb has created an environment where world-class architects, leading international contemporary artists, gifted local crafts people and design-loving visitors can rub shoulders and exchange ideas. The project shows how important one small island can be to the bigger island we call earth.

Cozy rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows. It’s super difficult to make rooms with this much glass feel warm and inviting. Kudos to the architect, interior designer and local crafts people who achieved comfort coupled with such amazing views. Well done! 

The light touch of the building. Numerous narrow columns perch the main mass of the building above the delicate coastal landscape. Simple. Lovely. 


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Travel + Leisure, Best Resort Hotel – Canada, 2017
Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Award, Top Hotel in Canada, 2017
Travel + Leisure, 100 Best Hotels in the World, 2016 & 2017
TripAdvisor Traveler's Choice Award, 2015 – 2017
Telegraph Travel, 50 Greatest Hotels in the World, 2016
Condé Nast Traveler: Gold List, 2015 & 2016
Founding Member of National Geographic Society Unique Lodges of the World, 2015
Travel + Leisure Global Vision Award, 2013
AZ Social Good Award, 2015
EnRoute Magazine Hotel Design Award, 2015
International Hotel & Property Award Shortlist, 2015
AFAR Experimental Travel Award, 2014
TIAC National Cultural Tourism Award, 2013

New York Times Magazine – The Possibility of an Island
Forbes – Fogo Island Inn: The Hot Hotel in Newfoundland’s Iceberg Alley
Ocean Home – The Platinum List: Fogo Island Inn
dezeen – Fogo Island Inn by Saunders Architecture
ArchDaily – Fogo Island Inn / Saunders Architecture
Metropolis – Fogo Island, Once an Obscurity, Now Brought to Prominence through Design


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