Ukio's Design Inspiration

Learn more about where we draw inspiration for our signature apartment designs.

May 28, 2024
hallway into apartmenthallway into apartment

Design is the backbone of Ukio. If you didn’t already know, our team hand picks and designs every single one of our apartments to create the signature Ukio look. Our talented designers transform an empty apartment and create a home from the structure we’re given.

All of our designers are skilled enough to create a fabulous apartment, but how do they make each location look and feel like an Ukio apartment? To better understand our designs, let’s break down the themes where we draw inspiration for our apartment transformations.

An intro to Ukio design

We have five overarching themes taken from nature that we base our apartments on; they are mountain, beach, jungle, desert, and grassland. Once we designate a main nature theme, we then choose a destination and focus on that region’s land, culture, architecture, and way of life to create our apartments. For example, the last round of grassland apartments were based off the grasslands in Andalusia, and for the jungle round, we drew inspiration from the Congo.

In summary, each overarching apartment theme has distinguishable characteristics that can be seen across the board, and apartments done within the same round also draw inspiration from their specific region of focus.


mountain house

Picture the rugged mountainous terrain, covered in coniferous trees, with snow covered ground in the winter, and shining lakes in the summer. This is the backdrop of what inspires Ukio’s mountain themed apartments. When you think of living in the mountains, many would describe it as quiet, fresh, cozy, green, and maybe even a little pristine, which our designers embody in each mountain apartment.

The design elements that you’ll find true to every mountain themed Ukio apartment are mineral tones, woodsy elements, warm textiles, and folksy patterns. You may notice a smell of pine or cedar in the air or some dried branches and air plants scattered around for a pop of greenery.


beach house

Relaxing, energizing, refreshing, cleansing, and rhythmic, this is what the beach exemplifies to Ukio designers. We pay an ode to the beach through the use of deep blues that match the tones of the ocean, the sandy neutrals of the shores, pops of seaweed green and coral pink, and pearly shell hues. Palm leaves and leafy plants are brought in to provide shade and a nice breezy rustle when you open the windows, along with scents of bergamon, mint, and lemon, to help transport the guest to the seashore.

Elements commonly seen on the beach can be repurposed for the perfect beachy design, such as driftwood and seaglass. Also, our designers use reflective surfaces, not only to help with lighting the apartment, but also as an ode to the sun dancing off the ripples of the ocean.


jungle house

Jungles are lush and lively. They’re filled with greenery so thick that sometimes, you can’t even see the sun through the dense canopy. Our jungle themed apartments are filled with greenery, from the paint color to the abundance of tropical plants we bring in for decoration, such as monsteras, birds-of-paradise, and bromeliad.

To further capture the wild jungle in our apartments, our designers utilize patterns of foliage and layers of materials to symbolize the overlapping elements of the trees, vines, and animals. The tropical smells of vanilla and pikake stimulate the nose and round out the jungle paradise. The goal is to create a playful feeling from within that radiates throughout the space.


jungle house

The hot and sandy backdrop of the desert can be used to create a very warm, welcoming, serene, and earthy environment in an apartment. The desert is known for its sunbaked tones of taupe, burnt orange sands, pops of green from cacti, and stoney grays to cool off. Civilizations have survived the desert climate for centuries, so textiles that mimic these ancient methods of weaving are present throughout.

Our designers incorporate mirrors and reflective objects to lighten the apartment and create a feeling of warm vastness. Furniture reminiscent of the nomadic desert lifestyle is placed for both utility and function. Of course, you can’t forget the plants, so we incorporate desert flora, yucca, and agave when we can. Scents of juniper and white sage complete the smell profile for desert apartments.


grassland house

The vast, natural, dry, textured, and subtle grasslands tend to fly under the radar when thinking of inspiring natural features, but these boundless grounds have much to boast for our designers at Ukio. Think soft hues and grassy husks contrasted against the endless light blue sky with accents of pink dust and off whites.

Calming natural elements, such as stone, wood, and woven materials create great decoral components that are complemented by patterns of wildflowers, stripes, and plaid, reminiscent of pastoral life. Any grassland apartment wouldn’t be complete without indoor trees, ficus plants, and scents of chamomile and lavender. The grasslands are found on every corner of the earth, so there is much material to draw influence from.

Our design in action

A lot of hard work and creativity goes into the designs of each of our apartments, from choosing the main theme, to vetting a region for the next round of apartments, to creating mood boards, and finally putting everything together. All of our apartments radiate the Ukio look and feel, and we hope that all of our guests can feel the love and care that we put into the creation of our apartments.

If you would like to experience Ukio’s beautiful designs firsthand, you can. Our website has all of our apartments listed with 3D tours and photos available to get a taste of our artistry. All you have to do to see our design in action is to book an apartment of your choice, and you can live amongst the wild grassland, the calm beach, the playful jungle, the rugged mountains, or the sandy desert.