A hotel is more than just a place to lay your head down. If you don’t believe it, check out a fascinating new show at the Canada’s Vancouver Art Gallery convincingly argues that hotels are far more than just bricks and mortar.

The gallery’s newest exhibition is Grand Hotel: Redesigning Modern Life, which is described in a news release as “a ground-breaking exhibition exploring the impact of the hotel as one of the pre-eminent architectural and social structures of our time.”

The exhibit, which runs through Sept. 15, was six years in the making and covers two floors. It explores the physical and psychological aspects of these edifices using four key themes: culture, design, social and travel.

Photo Credit: Grand Hotel: Redesigning Modern Life is the exhibition at the Vancouver Art Gallery until September 2013. Cord Rodefeld / Flickr