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Furniture

A new chapter: Fabiia’s showroom opens in Chiswick, London

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
A new chapter: Fabiia’s showroom opens in Chiswick, London

Furniture brand Fabiia has opened its doors to a new London showroom just in time for Sleep & Eat 2019… 

Marking a significant milestone for the furniture company, Fabiia has opened its doors to a new showroom on the doorstep of the quaint yet thriving neighbourhood of Chiswick, London. The new showroom’s strategically placed location has become the company’s first base in the UK, and will shelter brands such as Miniforms, Lightyears, Normann Copenhagen, Schneid, Delightfull, Fast, Labbate and Sika.

“When we first decided to make the move from Dubai back to the UK, we were keen to pick out a prime location for what would become the Fabiia Showroom,” said Fabiia’s creative director Shija Walia. “Three months scouring the streets of London led us to The Light Box, a studio set two minutes from Chiswick Park and a stone’s throw away from the Chiswick train station.

“To put things in perspective, most of the last year was spent pouring over Fabiia’s signature line of furniture. The team divided its time traveling around Europe identifying the choicest manufacturing units alongside juggling multiple projects in the Middle East. We sure have kept ourselves busy, but the results are most definitely worth it!”

A heady mix of indoor and outdoor furniture, designer lighting, plus a signature Fabiia flair alongside our architectural Norse LED lighting invites visitors into a showroom that lives and breathes design.

Image credit: Fabiia

“What was once a pipeline dream has now finally taken shape in a one-stop location for all your contract furniture/lighting requirements,” added Walia.

The brand’s timely entrance to unveil a UK showroom unfolds as one of Europe’s largest and most talked-about hotel design trade show, Sleep & Eat prepares to get underway – of which Hotel Designs is a proud media partner of.

Main image credit: Fabiia

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island debuts redesigned villas

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Conrad Maldives Rangali Island debuts redesigned villas

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, the luxury destination resort located on the picturesque setting of Rangali Island in the Maldives, is redesigning a unique set of villas available on the property…

Just more than year after Hotel Designs interviewed the designers and architects behind the world’s first underwater hotel suite, the same hotel, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island has unveiled the design details of its new mix of villas.

By next month, the resort will introduce five new room types including the Two-Bedroom Deluxe Beach Villa, Grand Water Villa with Pool, Grand Water Villa, Two-Bedroom Grand Water Villa with Pool and Two-Bedroom Grand Water Villa, encouraging all travellers – groups, families and couples alike – to find the room best suited to fit their every need and desire.

Yuji Yamazaki, principal of Yuji Yamazaki Architecture PLLC, NYC and design collaborator on the underwater THE MURAKA residence will apply his signature style of simple paired back luxury to the updated accommodations. The design of the villas will feature a clean and minimalist aesthetic, giving the space a natural, bright and airy feel intended to focus on the beauty just outside of the villa. The new design will promote a sense of harmony with the surrounding environment, awakening but not overwhelming the senses and providing absolute privacy and exclusivity.

“Our pioneering innovative hospitality to cater to the passion points and needs of our guests is the cornerstone of this resort,” said Stefano Ruzza, General Manager of Conrad Maldives Rangali Island.“We are thrilled to debut new villa categories to discerning travellers, marking the beginning of the next chapter of Rangali history and our commitment to driving the evolution of travel to the Maldives.”

The Deluxe Beach Villas were refurbished throughout 2018 and 2019. A selection of villas have recently been converted into new luxury Two-Bedroom Deluxe Beach Villas to offer the ideal space for any Maldivian holiday. The Two-Bedroom Deluxe Beach Villas will feature a new design with a private garden and pool, indoor state of art bathroom, a private outdoor rain-shower and floor-to-ceiling glass windows that illuminate the villa with natural light. Set amongst the tropical greenery, the standout feature of the newly designed villa is the addition of the second bedroom adjacent to the main villa, which has been purposely designed to accommodate a twin bedroom with luxurious floor-to-ceiling glass windows.

Image credit: Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

In addition to the Two-Bedroom Deluxe Beach Villas, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island is reinventing the Retreat Water Villas into two villa types – Grand Water Villa and Grand Water Villa with a pool. A popular room category, the Water Villas are set on stilts above the gentle ocean waves where guests can discover the true meaning of indoor-outdoor living. The redesigned villa will greet guests with a large living room, which can be converted into a second bedroom, along with views of the outdoor deck complete with a Jacuzzi or pool. Featuring clean lines and muted natural tones, the villas are located in the Spa Retreat, 100 meters off of the tip of the main island Rangali Finolhu, with vistas across the Indian Ocean to the resort’s second island, Rangali.

The in-demand Family Water Villa will also be transformed into two villa types and renamed Two- Bedroom Grand Water Villa and Two-Bedroom Grand Water Villa with pool. The design of the Two- Bedroom accommodation will be similar to the Grand Water Villas, but will offer two bedrooms, instead of one and can host any group of guests. Set on stilts over the Indian Ocean, the villas offer views of either the lagoon or ocean and a sunset or sunrise view and can sleep a maximum of four persons – two adults and two children, or four adults.

Set across two islands connected by an open-air overwater path, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island plans to announce additional enhancements in 2020 offering guests a Maldivian playground full of possibilities.

Main image credit: Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

EXCLUSIVE ROUNDTABLE: Meaningfully differentiating luxury in hotel design

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
EXCLUSIVE ROUNDTABLE: Meaningfully differentiating luxury in hotel design

To continue Hotel Designs’ series of articles to put sustainability under the spotlight, editor Hamish Kilburn chairs an exclusive editorial roundtable, in collaboration with Minotti London, to understand how today’s leading designers are sensitively working to create a more meaningful luxury hotel design landscape. Joining us on the Minotti sofa to discuss this topic:

With the aim to conceive and design meaningful luxury hotels, there is undoubtedly a question mark on how designers and architects can differentiate their projects to stand out as timeless jewels. With the rise in technology and social media, competition for hotel operators and developers is no longer limited to a single neighbourhood; we have very much entered a global arena. But how are today’s leading designers confronting the evolving hospitality landscape, and just how significant is sense of place when approaching sensitive luxury projects? We invited a handful of the industry’s most distinguished innovators to Minotti London‘s alluring showroom in Fitzrovia to find out more.

Hamish Kilburn: What are the largest misconceptions when it comes to designing luxury?

Jo Littlefair, Director and Co-Founder, Goddard Littlefair: Travelling globally, and understanding global attitudes towards luxury is so important. We have clients that have huge misconceptions to whatever project they are developing. We still struggle when clients associate harsh golds and marbles with luxury, for example. I find it really disheartening, because for me, a non-material object like ‘time’ is a luxury. When approaching the design of any luxury hotel, it’s really important to keep in mind the attitude you are trying to create.

Hamish Brown, Partner, 1508 London: There are a few buzzwords that keep coming up in the studio. We don’t have a ‘house style’ as such, therefore we are really trying capture and create sense of place within each projects. It’s not about fashion but about style. If you look at the great Hollywood movie stars now and compare them to images of themselves 30 to 40 years ago, quite often they will look as relevant now as they did then. That is certainly to do with style over fashion. We look at ways in which classical details and proportions can manifest themselves within a design.

David Mason, Head of Hospitality, Scott Brownrigg: The definition of luxury is not the same for everyone. Some may see luxury in technology, while others believe it is in the foundations of a hotel. In our studio, we don’t necessarily design the ultra six-star luxury hotel, but many of our clients are interested in ‘luxury’, which can come from anything from the service down to the attention to detail. What is luxurious to one person is different to another.

Constantina Tsoutsikou, Creative Director, HBA London: I think luxury is also about being generous as a designer. You always give more than what is expected and make sure that the spaces are comfortable and also have longevity. Where I can, I try to avoid anything too shiny. It’s becoming more apparent that the days of clients wanting to the interiors to show off wealth are behind us. Instead, well-designed luxury interiors are more honest and truthful. That in itself is a luxury mindset.

“We have realised that clients want luxury but almost on a shoestring budget.” – Constantina Tsoutsikou, Creative Director, HBA London

Image caption: (centre) Hamish Brown, (right) Jo Littlefair

HK: When did your clients start accepting a shift in consumer demands when it comes to luxury?

HB: I think it massively goes back to what that hotel means within its location as well as the characteristics of the building. There is certainly more of an acceptance from both sides. Some clients believe that what they want is a grand, sweeping entrance, whereas to really differentiate themselves and to make their hotel work within its location and to be relevant to the building, we suggest to park pre-conceived ideas and think about what would work for that particular hotel.

CT: We have realised that clients want luxury but almost on a shoestring budget. If you compare it to a good few years ago, budget expectations are certainly getting lower. Perhaps it is a sign of the times. At the same time, palettes are becoming more concise, that’s a good thing because designs are cleaner. There’s still a layering there, but the money that was being spilled into a hotel project before the 2008 crisis is not there anymore. However, the expectation certainly is. So, as designers, we have to work out how to manage that.

JL: Also, you cannot ignore the noise and influence of social media – it has a lot to answer for. That inaccurately convinces clients and developers that design is easy and disposable, and that it doesn’t take five minutes to produce a moodboard. But in reality, especially when considering sense of place, you’re thinking about a building and a brand. Putting these elements together requires a real curation of things. Otherwise, I have seen it when people go off on tangents and throw details into the canvas. Nothing ends up gelling and it becomes a messy clash of ideas.

“Trying to get the balance between the soft, the elegant while making these spaces feel comfortable places to work, sit and socialise is a challenge.” – David Mason, Head of Hospitality, Scott Brownrigg

HK: One of the most obvious changes in hotel design, and in the demand from guests, is in the public areas. How has this changed the way in which you specify furniture?

CT: Everybody is working from everywhere. We have a beautiful resort project, which is currently on the boards. As a result of the direct demand from modern travels, we are thinking about putting USB charging sockets on the day beds next to the pool. Generally, I think this is a positive step forward for hotels, which have a life on their own. I think it’s wonderful – and a real stamp of approval from the community – when the neighbourhood becomes part of the life inside a hotel. After all, nobody likes a dead public space.

“All of our furniture is designed at a deliberate height so that each piece can gel with other elements. As opposed to creating one iconic piece, we wanted to create a design DNA.” Digby Summerhill, Director, Minotti London

DM: It’s a hard balance to strike. When our commercial interior designers get asked create these multifunctional spaces, the way in which they design is very task oriented. Trying to get the balance between the soft, the elegant while making these spaces feel comfortable places to work, sit and socialise is a challenge.

Digby Summerhill, Director, Minotti London: We’ve always had modular systems that are flexible. All of our furniture is designed at a deliberate height so that each piece can gel with other elements. As opposed to creating one iconic piece, we wanted to create a design DNA; something that runs through an interior design scene. It’s not a coincidence that no individual item stands out in our collections. One thing I think is interesting is that we didn’t design any of these pieces with hospitality necessarily in mind. Instead we very looked at consumer behaviour and understood the demands of consumers within public areas.

HB: We are often trying to design public spaces to not look like public areas. The idea of a lobby/lounge going against what people would expect in a conventional hotel, to shelter intimate spaces, private nooks where people can work, is very appealing to me. I agree that idea of the community coming in and using the hotel is huge, but perhaps this is something that London has not got right in the past. In other cities there is much more fluidity and it works beautifully. Allowing furniture to adapt to how people are using is a big part of this, and an idea that is really exciting.

Image caption: (Left) David Mason, (Right) Jo Littlefair

HK: Let’s talk about sustainability. A study recently showed that 76 per cent of guests believe that hotels could be greener. Is consciousness the new luxury, as I suggested in my recent editor’s letter?

JL: We’ve been really encouraged recently to have had two projects come to us with sustainability at their hearts. Absolutely every decision has to have a sustainability angle. What we hope is that it continues through to the final touch points, because there will be financial implications along the way. Having filter taps in the room so that hotel guests can refill water bottles is a fresh approach that I love. The design utilities recycled parts of the existing building, giving a whole new meaning of injecting life back into a hotel. We are really thinking about those elements, including timelessness. I agree that it is about style. For us, it’s not about having a hemp interiors, it’s about creating luxury that has a slight assured sense of elegance and quality that has a higher purpose.

DM: The best way to differentiate luxury when it comes to sustainability is to be clever. Having a brief like this is rare, let alone working on two. So, designers, it is our responsibility to educate our clients and specify materials and items that don’t harm the environment or the end user. Behind this, it’s therefore so important that we understand the products and materials and what sets them apart from others in the market.

“Luxury is not just about design, it is about service as well and so many other things that are intrinsically layered on top.” – Hamish Brown, Director, 1508 London

HK: To me it’s very transparent when hotels use words without actions when it comes to sustainability. Is it the designer’s responsibility to ensure clients avoid greenwashing?

CT: You have to remember, we are designing spaces that will open in three years time. It’s a long time, and things change very quickly. You have to be ahead of the game and lead in that way so that the hotel is relevant when it opens. You have to ensure that the strategy you have in place is looking ahead and avoids the need for significant last-minute changes. On the other hand, as designers, we have a responsibility to influence the clients. But I think soon, it will become a necessity across the entire industry. I predict this will happen faster than we think, and it’s already started with wider conversations with local suppliers.

HK: What are you all doing at the moment to try and differentiate your luxury projects from others?

CT: I am always asking myself, how do I position this hotel in the current market, or in a wider sense, how do I position this hotel for an international clientale? This is because the competition is no longer just the hotel’s neighbour, it’s a global arena.

DM: I suppose it is now about experience. People desire luxury experiences. A hotel group has just bought the Fort of India. How incredible would that be; to stay and experience something totally unmatched like that. Travellers want authenticity and they consider that to be luxury.

HB: Sense of place cannot be underestimated. The definition of luxury differs from place to place and demographic to demographic, and you have to respond, beneath the surface, to understand what is happening in those locations. Luxury is not just about design, it is about service as well and so many other things that are intrinsically layered on top. When those elements and concepts interlock, that’s when you have a seamless luxury experience when service and design sit side by side and are harmoniously linked.

HK: Consumer demands of public areas have spilled out into outdoor spaces. Has this changed the way in which you design these areas together?

JL: We love integrating the outdoor areas so that they becomes a seamless flow where we can. I would say this is especially the case in food and beverage sector. We have recruited designers that only specialise in those areas so that we can get the operational flow right. That connection to the outdoor is integral to our overall wellbeing. Humanity is an element of luxury that we have not touched upon, because our disassociation with human relationships is becoming more enforced by our use of technology. I feel that human touch – it can be as simple as eye contact, and/or just being understood in a different country – is really important that we deliver with hospitality. And first and foremost, design and architecture should enable this.

“Usually I will use the sustainability angle as an added value and not the primary reason why we are specifying, unless the brief has an eco-friendly thread in its core.” – Jo Littlefair, Director and Co-Founder, Goddard Littlefair.

HK: Sustainability is becoming a buzzword that some would argue is losing its meaning. What makes a piece of furniture sustainable for you?

JL: At the end of the day we, as designers, have to ensure that the furniture looks fantastic – and it meets all the needs and demands from our clients as well as regulations. But it really does come down to how we communicate this with the client. We do have to choose our words carefully, but that’s the same as when pitching any idea to the client. Usually I will use the sustainability angle as an added value and not the primary reason why we are specifying, unless the brief has an eco-friendly thread in its core.

DM: Different cultures are going to be more interested than others, that is for sure. It is all about baby steps, and we do as much as we can.

Technology and manufacturing has been a massive help. Sustainable products and materials are now at a price point that works for a client and a luxury brief. To then specify a product that is eco-friendly and longer lasting than another becomes a no-brainer. I really believe it is changing. Clients are more aware of the value of reclaimed or reupholstered furniture. Having said this, it is also a balancing act. I am working on a hotel at the moment with the aim to reupholster the casegoods and the beds, and sadly it is actually almost as expensive as buying new pieces.

“I think if you can justifiably explain how a decision adds value, then cost can sometimes be reconsidered.” – Hamish Brown, Director, 1508 London.

HK: In regards to luxury, do you believe value outweighs cost?

HB: It’s a lovely idea, and my view is that value does outweigh cost. If you look at today’s market and the economy, there is a huge sense of getting value. It’s not always about cost. I think if you can justifiably explain how a decision adds value, then cost can sometimes be reconsidered.

JL: We get closer to understanding the deal that the developer has struck and the budget that has driven the deal, which underpins the whole project. Basically, our client has a figure that they cannot deviate from. So yes, it is common sense, and I do value beautiful furniture, and we do have to be ambassadors that push for quality so that these pieces don’t end up in landfill, but there is a bottom line figure discussion. As a designer, you are the piece of magic in the middle having to constantly and consistently value engineer the project.

HB: The most successful projects that we work on are the ones where everyone involved is upfront and honest with cost and there is a real transparency there.

HK: Has the weight on where the budget is spent in the hotel changed?

DM: It’s always in the ceiling!

CT: I have seen that generally, not enough budget is left for the finishing touches.

JL: For me, it’s artwork.

Following the exclusive panel discussion, the leading designers and architects were able to browse the showroom, which showcased, in an apt setting, Minotti’s 2019 collection of timeless indoor and outdoor furniture.

Minotti London will be the venue of Hotel Designs’ Meet Up London, which will take place in Spring 2020. More details will follow.

If you are interested in hosting our next editorial roundtable, please email Katy Phillips or call +44 (0)1992 374050. 

Morgan to unveil a stripped-back sustainable furniture at Sleep & Eat 2019

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Morgan to unveil a stripped-back sustainable furniture at Sleep & Eat 2019

Morgan will unveil the Kaya lounge furniture collection next week at Sleep & Eat on stand C60…

Taking its name from sacred forests spread along 200 km of the Kenyan coast, Morgan’s new Kaya lounge collection finds its roots in the openness, honesty and purity of trees. The crafted timber frames, gentle curve and soft upholstery are designed to provide relaxed luxury.

Simplicity is further embodied in the upholstery, which features only the most essential elements, sculpted and fitted to provide enveloping comfort. Juxtaposing soft informality with timber’s clean geometry required a precise balancing act.

With an emphasis on space and light, the collection evokes an atmosphere of ‘komorebi’, the Japanese word for the sunshine filtering through leaves. As with a lush woodland, Kaya’s serene frame finds strength in numbers. Individual timber sections have been kept small with multiple lightweight supports in place of a single, larger component.

While Kaya draws inspiration from nature, technology played a crucial role in its production. The frame’s smooth, curving lines were made possible with Computer Numerical Control (CNC). Morgan uses any timber which is removed to help heat its manufacturing facility with a biomass boiler.

“Relying on trends in the design world means whatever you produce will be bound by the tastes of a certain point in time,” Katerina Zachariades, Morgan’s design director, commented. “At Morgan, we like to look to things which have stood the test of time, from artwork of various styles to elements of the natural world.

“With Kaya, we wanted to look beyond the heavy materials and density of the built environment, peeling back the surface to reveal the pure form within.”

The Kaya collection is versatile, intended for interiors from hospitality through to the workplace. While the smaller lounge chair caters to projects requiring a smaller footprint, the larger lounge and high back chairs maintain a greater presence and impact within spacious environments such as lobbies, breakout areas and gallery spaces.

Main image credit: Morgan

FIRST LOOK: Inside Riggs Washington D.C., a new level of unrivalled luxury

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
FIRST LOOK: Inside Riggs Washington D.C., a new level of unrivalled luxury

Ahead of the highly anticipated opening of the 181-key luxury hotel in Washington D.C., Hotel Designs takes a closer look inside…

Lore Group, the international hospitality company behind renowned hotels, such as Sea Containers London and Pulitzer Amsterdam, has released model images of Riggs Washington D.C.. The new luxury hotel is the latest hotel development to hit the headlines, and is the brainchild of The Brit List 2019 judge Jacu Strauss, designer, architect and Lore Group’s creative director.

In concepting and designing the property, Strauss, invoked the spirit of the former bank while preserving and restoring much of the property’s original design features to reimagine the storied building for the modern traveller. The 181-room property features playful nods to the building’s rich past, drawing on the parallels between the activities that take place in banks and at hotels to offer something personal and serendipitous around every corner.

The hotel’s development, which was first explored by Hotel Designs in a exclusive interview Strauss when he described the Washington D.C. as: “a city with a particularly strong and quirky evolving hotel and F&B market.” As such, the design of Riggs has paid particular attention to the public areas of the hotel, with the aim to add sensitive statement on the hotel design scene in the US capital. In the original barrel-valuted lobby and cafe, restored expansive ceilings, corinthian columns, classic stonework and custom furniture set the scene for an eye-catching arrival experience. A medallion of Juno Moneta, the Goddess of Money, presides over the room, while original features have been given a new lease of life and the grandeur of the building embraced to create a welcoming and inspired hotel that is deeply rooted in D.C. and its impressive history.

Image credit: Lore Group/Riggs Washington DC

Upstairs, the 181 guestrooms – including 15 bespoke-designed suites are full with flair and personality. The marble-patterned headboards and wall coverings by Vousta blend together to create a thoughtful motif in each room. The interiors, balanced to create a romantic, sophisticated and calming oasis, have been inspired no doubt by Strauss’ love for travel.

Image credit: Lore Group/Riggs Washington DC

Catering to Washington DC’s ever-evolving social scene, the hotel’s 2,500 soft rooftop will offer panoramic views over the capital, and also feature a number of meeting, dining and events space.

“Lore Group continues to explore ways to deliver inspired and approachable hospitality concepts to interesting places around the world,” said Billy Skelli-Cohen, group CEO. “With Riggs Washington D.C., we have created a hotel and F&B concepts that celebrate both the legacy of the building – and the history of the city – through unexpected details and a thoughtful approach to guest experience.”

The arrival of Riggs comes an interesting time for Penn Quarter, which has been rejuvenated over the last two years. The new hotel is expected to further raise the level of luxury, creativity and innovative hospitality in the area – and Hotel Designs is keen to follow its progress.

Main image credit: Lore Group/Riggs Washington DC

Five emerging AW/19 interior trends to keep an eye on

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Five emerging AW/19 interior trends to keep an eye on

Now that autumn has arrived, and winter is fast approaching, all eyes of the international hotel design world are focused on trends and new products as we gear up towards awards season and prepare to wind down for another year. Recommended Supplier Bisque has taken this opportunity to shine the spotlight on emerging AW trends to bookmark… 

Leading radiator supplier Bisque has taken note of a few key A/W interiors trends on the rise.

Trend: Tranquil Dawn

Dulux’s Colour of the Year has been revealed for 2020 as Tranquil Dawn. A cool and calming tone selected by a panel of experts from around the world, this lusciously soft green works for all rooms in the house, no matter how big or small.

Trend: Brown is the new black

Image credit: Bisque

Step aside black, brown is back! A versatile shade that ranges from beige to copper these brown hues – this doesn’t make sense? – it is time to bring these earthy tones back into your home to create a warm and welcoming feel.

Trend: Dusky pastels

Image credit: Bisque

Adding pops of colour into your home, not only is a great way to put a stamp of your personality on a room but adds a statement piece to the room.

Trend: Soft minimalism

Keep it simple with soft neutral colours, creating a calming tone throughout your space. Also perfect for those renting out their homes, as it’s a theme that everyone can complement with accessories and soft furnishings.

Trend: Maximalism  

Image credit: Bisque

Electric glamour and indulgent dual tones gives off a sense of power and strong personality. These bold schemes will fit in both traditional and modern homes and great for those also wanted a transitional look.

Main image credit: Bisque

Conran and Partners designs spin on flexible working spaces

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Conran and Partners designs spin on flexible working spaces

Design firm Conran and Partners has completed new flexible working spaces within the lobby that are sheltered inside Crowne Plaza Paris – République…

Conran and Partners has completed a significant redesign of the lobby spaces at Crowne Plaza Paris – République. The launch marks the first step in a wider roll-out of a new concept-design blueprint for the brand in Europe, aiming to deliver a distinctive guest experience globally.

The lobby has been reinvigorated as the brand’s exible work and meeting concept, ‘Plaza Workspace.’ This contemporary hub was developed to meet the changing needs of modern business travellers seeking more comfortable public and semi-public spaces in which to work and relax. Regarded as the largest design innovation in the brand’s history, Crowne Plaza Paris – République is the first hotel to launch the Plaza Workspace in Europe.

Throughout Plaza Workspace there is an abundance of tech savvy elements: tables feature integrated wireless phone chargers and high-speed Wi-Fi is available to address the growing trend in flexible work and life preferences and people’s desire to work from anywhere. Plaza Workspace also includes The Studio, a bookable-by-the-hour meeting space to cater for private meetings and events, complete with its own bar counter and break-out lounge seating. The studio’s design maximises the flow of guests through the spaces, allowing them to transition seamlessly between work and down time.

The former main entrance of the hotel has been relocated from the Place de la République to one side of the building, giving the arrival experience a more private feel with access via a courtyard in the style of a traditional Parisian apartment block. The signature bar is now in a more prominent position closer to the outside terrace, which runs along the hotel’s principal façade.

In contrast to a conventional arrival experience, guests are initially welcomed by a centrally-located monument wall. This wall – referencing the original Haussmann-era architecture of the area – serves to orientate the guest, dividing the space between the ‘plaza’ (the informal and relaxed bar spaces) and the ‘gallerie’ (the refined and elegant recep on and studio spaces). Among the book selection adorning the shelves of the lounge and Plaza Workspace are titles on Haussmann’s contribution to the remodelling of Paris.

Conran and Partners have also completed the design of the European adaptation of the ‘WorkLife’ concept guestroom, a design patented in the United States, which will serve as the basis for the wider redesign of rooms and other non-public facing areas of the hotel in the future.

The Place de la République is famous as the site of the statue of Marianne – the personification of the French Republic – commemorating the founding of the First Republic of France in 1792. The square is important as one of the key locations where Parisians congregate during times of national significance.

The hotel occupies an exceptionally attractive and restored Haussmann building, formerly a department store, Les Magasins Réunis. It is located at the point where three different arrondissements (3rd, 10th and 11th) of the city meet. A couple of original Haussmann features are s ll visible, including the staircase, wrought-iron balustrade and doors onto the original caged lifts at higher levels. Conran and Partners’ design also responds to the different – yet complementary – feel of each adjoining arrondissement (‘Fashionable’ (3rd), ‘Bohemian’ (10th) and ‘Modern’ (11th).

“Within the individual elements of a project there are always opportunities to work with manufacturers to create distinctive furniture commissions and bespoke materials,” said Simon Kincaid, Partner at Conran and Partners and a shortlisted finalist for The Brit List 2019. “For each new development, we study the locale and create a narrative, drawing on our experience of blurring the boundaries between work and leisure to create strong, characterful places.”

Image credit: Anna Stathaki

Conran and Partners’ approach was based on a thorough analysis of Crowne Plaza’s success in the Americas as well as among its European target market. The practice developed an architectural strategy focusing on key elements within a typical guest stay. A series of seating typologies and a hierarchy of signature elements was created which enabled key functional elements to be located, while defining specific design features and focal points. This has given hotel guests and visitors a wider variety of spaces to encourage more dwell time.

The approach has also sought to reinterpret the idea of a ‘plaza’ as a place where people can meet and relax and applied this to the various spaces within the hotel, encouraging guests to move between different types of spaces. The design also responds to changing consumer behaviour, in particular exible working and the ‘always on’ and ‘on-demand’ workplace culture. Spaces and services have been created to facilitate more business- related functions within the plaza workspace, both formal and informal, as well as helping to bring people into the hotel.

“The spaces in Place de la République are tech savvy, while acknowledging the need to embed humanity in the design to create a comfortable place to work and relax,” continues Kincaid. “The narrative we created for Crowne Plaza Paris- Republique is based on the concept of ‘New Modern’. It seeks to demonstrate that business hotels can be exciting by offering guests kind, personal touches, while introducing new, meaningful experiences for them to share and – above all – to appeal to the senses as far as possible.

“Our design narrative has informed the choice of furniture and accessories and even the rug design and the artwork selection (developed in collaboration with Double Decker Artwork Consultants), which seek to reference the various key art movements and ar sts closely associated with Paris since the mid-nineteenth century. Materiality and palette are central to our design thinking.”

Libby Escolme, Global Vice President, Crowne Plaza, commented: “I have always loved travel and staying at an inspiring hotel is o en why I am excited about a business trip. Today’s traveller wants to stay somewhere that inspires them, where innova ve design creates great spaces that work well. We have collaborated on this project with Conran and Partners, a best-in-class design rm, and I feel genuinely excited about how our new hotel spaces will enhance a guest’s stay with us.”

Main image credit: Anna Stathaki

 

 

Knightsbridge poised and ready for 80th Birthday celebrations at Sleep + Eat 2019

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Knightsbridge poised and ready for 80th Birthday celebrations at Sleep + Eat 2019

2019 marks the 80thanniversary of Knightsbridge, the award-winning British furniture manufacturer. In order to mark this landmark the company they will celebrates its extraordinary history on stand number E92 at Sleep & Eat, Olympia London (November 19 – 20, 2019)…

If you are planning on attending Sleep & Eat 2019, then make sure you head over to the Knightsbridge stand (E92) where the team will be celebrating 80 years strong as one of the leading British furniture design and manufacturing companies.

Committed to British market-led design, Knightsbridge is one of the very few British contract furniture companies to invest in an in-house design and development team – and new collections for 2019 pay homage to its history taking inspiration from archive pieces.  

Wellbeing has long been established as a benchmark in workplace design, with forward thinking companies providing biophilic, sustainable design that creates healthier environments for their employees. The properties of wellness and biophilic design are now being seen more and more in hospitality and hotel environments; indoor spaces are inspired by nature whilst furniture is designed to be ergonomic aswell as stylish. Knightsbridge will be reflecting this trend on its stand with furniture covered with beautiful fauna & flora designs.

As hotel, bar and restaurant suppliers, Knightsbridge’s hospitality collection contains furniture designed to suit a variety of styles, needs and tastes. Crafted using timber from renewable sources, the company’s portfolio embraces a collection of style-forward products that are ideal for a wide range of environments such as waiting rooms, foyers, dining rooms and lounges.

New to 2019, Knightsbridge will be exhibiting its Caravelle collection which was redeveloped to celebrate Knightsbridge’s 80thanniversary and its rich history, taking influence from a past mid-century piece of furniture. The Caravelle collection consists of an armchair, two-seater and three-seater settee that have the clean lines and organic curves that the period became renowned for. It’s deep seat cushion provides a luxurious seat whilst the beautiful clean styling allows it to be specified into workplace, hospitality and care sectors. The collection is covered with exquisite fabric featuring jungle creatures and foliage from visionary textile designers Timorous Beasties.

Hotel Designs is a long-standing proud media partner for Sleep + Eat, and will at this year’s show to identify key product launches, emerging trends while catching the engaging talks and discussions that will be sheltered in one of Europe’s leading hospitality events.

Main image credit: Knightsbridge

Top furniture looks to come out of London Design Festival

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Top furniture looks to come out of London Design Festival

Are you sitting comfortably? Here is Hamish Kilburn’s editor’s pick of the most innovative furniture pieces that were exhibited at London Design Festival 2019…

With the design world watching, London Design Festival (LDF) once again delivered a spectacular performance full of colour, shapes and thoughtful design. Full of twists and turns – and too many highlights to mention – the nine-day festival included events, talks and installations that all explored how product design is changing to cater to the evolving behaviours and demands of modern consumers.

For the purpose of this article, I have selected my top picks from four of LDF’s leading exhibitions that made the most noise – and they were: Focus19, 100% Design, designjunction and London Design Fair.

Winch Design’s Arc Collection for Summit Furniture – weaving new design directions 

Winch Design and Summit Furniture introduced Arc, their debut collaboration, at Focus19. The two companies collaborated to create “the ultimate exterior furniture range”, which is inspired by the sea and the sky.

A signature feature of the range is laminated teak, which is woven between maritime-grade brushed stainless steel rods, alternatively undulating, they arc around the back of the seats in gentle rows. The final result is reminiscent of the woven rope traditionally used on sailing yachts. Winch Design is inspired by the patterns, colours and textures of the natural world, and every design that leaves the studio is imbued with its own unique spirit, identity and story. With dedication to storytelling underpinning their fastidious attention to detail and commitment to design perfection, Arc was brought to life. The name ‘Arc’ is visually evocative and brings to mind the long arcing lines of latitude and longitude, the curve of the horizon, of a full sail, and of the shapes in the sky made by sailors when navigating by the stars using the arc of the marine sextant.

Each piece in the collection complements the other, enabling the client to enjoy a unified, contemporary exterior look. Arc by Winch Design features a lounge chair, dining chair, bar chair, low coffee style table, sun lounger, bar cart, dining table and occasional table.

The low, deep seating style encourages a laid back and relaxed atmosphere, creating the perfect environment to enjoy a drink at sunset. The curve of the woven teak contrasts with the straight, smooth edges and clean lines of the cushions, keeping the overall impression fresh and contemporary. The fabric on any of the soft furnishings is completely customisable.

Ligne Roset – adaptable by nature

Creative and pioneering by nature, Ligne Roset’s bold and contemporary stamp was imprinted on Focus19 and left a lasting impression. The brand presented its iconic ‘Prado’ settle, which adjusts freely with weighted cushions that can easily be moved from sofa to floor. The result is a comfortable, non-conformist piece of furniture that can adapt as quickly as the travel trends and guest behaviours within modern, design-led hotels around the globe.

Andrew Martin – taking a walk on the wild side

Unveiling a multi-layered theatrical approach design, Andrew Martin – in try Andrew Martin style – let the leash off his new collections in his own jungle-covered installation, which was entitled: The Lost City of Ozymandias.

The new collections that were hidden in an enclave of treasure and travel included the Evans side table and Retrospective, in collaboration with Kelly Hoppen, which is a statement collection of more than 40 designs, which includes everything from furniture to lighting.

Benchmark – architecture meets biophilic furniture design

Image credit: Benchmark

Benchmark presented a new collection of furniture by award-winning American architect David Rockwell at 100% Design. The Sage Collection, designed for office and commercial environments as well as the home, has a specific focus on human health and well-being within the built environment and meets the standards required for WELL certified buildings. The tenets of biophilic design inspired the collection, with its natural materials, colours and textures, rounded profiles and inviting ergonomic shapes. These elements are intrinsic in the work of both Benchmark and David Rockwell, which, together with an interest in transformation and mobility, have resulted in a collection that offers moments of both refuge and prospect.

sixteen3 – recycled quality

 

Image credit: sixteen3

Exhibiting at designjunction, sixteen3 unveiled a number of contract furniture pieces that stood out for their eco qualities. Claiming that the product is made from 92 per cent recycled material and is 100 per cent recyclable, the Pop stools has been designed with purpose and is ideal for contemporary urban public areas. Another product launched at the show was Reece are armchairs that have been made from 83 per cent recycled materials and are 100 per cent recyclable.

Inspired by the evolution of the workplace to a more relaxed, social and mobile interior, the brand’s product portfolio offers a softer approach to working, with an extensive collection of seating ranges, stylish cafe chairs and modular space division systems.

Kolho Series by Matthew Day Jackson

Image credit: Made by Choice

As hotel public areas become less defined by hotel branding, and more attuned with the behaviour of guests, there is a opening for suppliers to become more daring with their designs; to take a practical item, like a piece of furniture for example, and bring it to life to make a bold statement. Cue the launch of Kolho Series by designer Matthew Day Jackson. Sheltered at London Design Fair, the new range of tables and chairs take their inspiration from the Apollo landing and a small town called Kolho in Finland.

“The serpent represents temptation and chaos which supports the flat plane of reason,” said Day Jackson. “The space between reason chaos is that of play. This is the space where our human animal truly shows its greatest self.

Hotel Designs’ official LDF round-up will be published shortly.

Main image credit: Made by Choice

Carlton Tel Aviv reveals new public area interior scheme

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Carlton Tel Aviv reveals new public area interior scheme

Award-winning hotel Carlton Tel Aviv speaks to bleisure trend with infusion of new, contemporary art, stylish lightning schemes, and a circular beachfront lobby bar and beyond…

Carlton Tel Aviv, a The 268-key luxury property that was voted “Israel’s Leading Business Hotel 2019” by World Travel Awards, today officially reveals its newly designed lobby, corridors, business lounge, work spaces and lobby bar.

With the aim to offer guests an infusion of new and artistic decor, lighting schemes, public areas and workspaces, the hotel commissioned interior design studio Yaron Tal to manifest new and fresh renovations as Tel Aviv continues to excel as one of the world’s most attractive destinations for both leisure and business travel.

To make walking through the corridors a more meaningful experience, the new design exists of deep, warm and rich materials. Warm colors such as deep blue and copper are used, and rich materials such as copper and brass. Wallpaper printed with copper accents are to be found throughout the corridors. The unique and reflective, yet romantic lights, gives a sense of lightness in the historic Brutalist building.

The concept in the lobby was to make a lighter, less heavy feel to the lobby that is a blend between business and pleasure. Materials such as oak wood, rich fabrics, glass and brass, allow a more formal atmosphere to mix with young and sophisticated, and with the feeling of a luxury vacation.

In the old floor plan, the bar was somewhat hidden in the back of the lobby. By bringing the bar to the front of the lobby it becomes more inviting, and a central meeting point at the hotel. The design, with ceramic tiles of which both colour and shape complement the view, the bar is now a central area, offering a relaxing environment for breakfast, lunch, dinner and cocktails with a view over the Mediterranean Sea.

Main image credit: Carlton Tel Aviv

Mkira exhibiting at 100% Design

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Mkira exhibiting at 100% Design

Mkira has been selected as one of the UK’s emerging brands and will be showcasing its beautiful and unique collection of fabrics and furniture at Olympia from the September 18 -21…

Mkira products have been inspired by nature’s canvas and crafted using age old traditions. The collection includes; daybeds, headboards, cushions, throws, fabrics, lampshades, footstools and shelving.

All the pieces are created using raw, natural materials such as British linens and tweed from Donegal and have been sustainably sourced from around the British Isles the perfect counterbalance to the modern ‘throwaway’ culture.

Charlotte England is the designer behind Mkira, she spent time travelling around the globe, during the early part of her career, which enabled her to try her hand at a wide variety of alternative arts and crafts.

This included studying pottery in Japan with a renowned sensei; traditional paper-making in the Japanese mountains; basket weaving among the Tepuis in the Amazonian basin and life-drawing in Miami.

These wide ranges of inspiring experiences shaped her personal style and design objectives and led her to create Mkira. As part of the creative process, England teamed up with a number of small, authentic, family-run businesses all using traditional methods to expertly craft these beautiful enduring pieces.

Mkira will be exhibiting on stand number E20C.

Goa is about to welcome a 17-key luxury hotel designed to shelter holistic wellbeing

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Goa is about to welcome a 17-key luxury hotel designed to shelter holistic wellbeing

Slated to open in early 2020, Kings Mansion, Goa will combine heritage, architecture, design, Ayurvedic philosophies, state-of-the-art medical aesthetics and a global approach to holistic wellbeing…

Located in northern Goa, an area rich in tropical forests, historic Portuguese architecture, avenues of Banyan Trees, and vast, unpopulated sandy beaches, King’s Mansion will open early next year.

Recognising that today, wellness refers to a holistic state of being, where one’s mental, physical, spiritual and emotional health are in balance, the defining experience of King’s Mansion will be one of mindfulness, transformation, recovery and wellbeing.

Modern yet sympathetic architecture and interior design are key elements at the boutique hotel that not only honour Goa’s legacy and culture, but also serve as a welcoming nod to the growing international interest in India as an exciting and evolving luxury and wellness destination.

Image credit: Red Architects

The Indian entrepreneur and Bollywood star, Sachiin Joshi, bought the property in 2017. He is also the Chairman of corporate company, Viiking Ventures, a multi-faceted business working across various industries including film production, fin-tech and charter aviation; Moss Wellness, a leading spa consultancy with experience developing international five-star brands including Aman resorts and Four Seasons. Responsible for the overall design is Indian film producer and interior designer Gauri Khan and Rajiv Parekh, founder of Red Architects, who is bringing a new energy to a modern day India with his past and future projects on the boards.

The 17 luxury suites, which are set over 2,800m2, are being designed as private retreats. Each room will utilise the natural light with floor to ceiling windows, which will stretch out to views of private lush gardens. The large ensuite bathrooms will continue to balance a timeless and luxurious look and feel with the renderings showing a strong use of marble as well as statement matt-black fittings.

Covered pavilions and thickets of Frangipani Trees create pockets of rest and shade in the landscaped gardens, which are set against 50 metres of unspoiled golden coastline and the Arabian Sea.

Five dining and social areas offer guests the chance to explore India’s Ayurvedic culinary culture and international fusions. The hotel’s chefs will create daily menu plans for internal health and harmony, but with an understanding that food and satisfaction are not mutually exclusive. Continuing the theme, food will be cooked using fresh, locally sourced produce.

At the heart of the wellbeing experience will be the spa, which will open as a hidden oasis within the property. With five luxury spa suites, a large hydrotherapy pool, and indoor and outdoor relaxation areas, guests will discover a safe space to surrender, gain awareness and achieve conscious rest and peace.

Image credit: King’s Mansion

Designed to offer personalised, results-focused wellness programmes, the hotel will aim to further help travellers rejuvenate, reset and recover.

Main image credit: King’s Mansion

Roca inspires with new Escuadra brassware range

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Roca inspires with new Escuadra brassware range

Roca has added to its brassware offering with its latest collection, Escuadra. With its contemporary single lever design, Escuadra creates a stylish impression in any bathroom space…

A versatile choice, Escuadra is available in a range of brassware options, including basin, bidet, bath and shower mixer styles. “When it comes to brassware, there is now more choice than ever before. Many homeowners are moving away from the traditional mixer in favour of something more contemporary”, comments Claire Gay, Marketing Manager at Roca.

“Escuadra meets that demand, its sleek and minimalist design complements a range of basin shapes, making it a functional yet sophisticated choice for homeowners, installers, specifiers and retailers.”

Escuadra features many of Roca’s latest innovations, including the exclusive Roca EverShine® finish. The hardwearing coating ensures the tap retains its shine, along with discouraging limescale build up and preventing stains. Additionally, the ceramic disc cartridge has been thoroughly tested with over one million movements to assure customers that their brassware will continue to function for many years to come.

The basin and bidet mixers are equipped with Roca’s Cold Start technology; this prevents unnecessary energy consumption by only activating the boiler when the handle is turned to hot, this conserves energy and provides a cost-effective solution for homeowners.

To further enhance the sustainability of the range, Roca has utilised many water-saving functions. Soft Turn technology provides the highest levels of precision and puts the homeowner in complete control, with the ability to set the desired water flow and temperature. Furthermore, the integration of flow limiters restricts the water flow, which prevents wastage.

Roca is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: Roca

Hotel bathroom trends that guarantee to make a statement

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Hotel bathroom trends that guarantee to make a statement

Ahead of London Design Festival 2019, bathroom manufacturer Crosswater identifies some of the major emerging design trends in international hotel bathrooms… 

Hospitality is one of the biggest industries in the world as well as being one of the most important branches of commercial design. Acting as a fundamental factor, hotel décor can increase customer satisfaction immensely.

It also acts as a benchmark for the levels of service, quality and comfort that a guest expects. Unlike most businesses, hotels rely almost entirely on aesthetics, which only proves how difficult the design aspect actually is. While travellers often choose a hotel based on five-star dining, luxurious spas, convenient locations or even dreamy beds, the bathroom is one amenity that is often overlooked, so we have put together five of the most popular hotel bathrooms across the UK that focus on the key interior trends for creating a high-end bathroom scheme.

Timeless & Traditional

Fine finishes, elegant fittings and timeless accessories combine to create exquisite bathroom décor in London’s Laslett Hotel. Nestled into Notting Hill, The Laslett is a boutique hotel that comprises 51 guestrooms; meticulously designed by award-winning London based architecture and design studio Waldo Works. A refined palette of grey, black and white has been used to create a seamless continuation of style from hotel suite to bathroom. Although the overall design is traditional, elements of understated contemporary style have been subtly integrated into each space – the porcelain checkerboard tiles add an edgy look whilst the contemporary pendant lighting projects a flattering light across the room, adding a final modern touch. Complete with Crosswater Belgravia brassware, the Laslett hotel bathrooms are the perfect example of how to create a timeless and traditional design scheme suited today’s style-conscious, discerning hotel guest.

“With the demand for more luxurious bathrooms on the rise, hotel designers are opting for a more minimal design aesthetic.”

Refined Luxury

A sophisticated Grade II Listed building situated in the heart of Shepherds Bush, The Dorsett Hotel underwent a stunning transformation by architects Flanagan Lawrence from an old cinema into an elegant eight-storey building. With the demand for more luxurious bathrooms on the rise, hotel designers are opting for a more minimal design aesthetic when it comes to achieving a contemporary bathroom interior. The smaller amenities and touches can often be the deciding factor for a winning hotel bathroom scheme. For hotel designers, choosing the right bathroom suite and bathroom products is vital for reflecting the hotel décor. A seamless blend of luxurious surfaces and chrome detailing, the sleek, smooth edges of the brassware work effortlessly with the marble splashbacks to deliver a truly sought-after bathroom aesthetic that is the epitome of refined luxury.

Monochrome

Seen throughout many hotel interiors across the UK and Europe, monochrome is a timeless trend that continues to be favoured by designers and specifiers. Whether incorporated through subtle hints or fully embraced from floor to ceiling, there are numerous ways that monochrome can create a truly standout hotel bathroom scheme. The Ampersand Hotel is a stunning example of how to create a striking bathroom using a monochromatic palette. Designed by Dexter Moren Associates, the 111-bedroom luxury boutique hotel in the heart of London provides an exquisite Art Deco theme across all of its bathroom interiors. The classic black tiling creates a statement aesthetic and combines flawlessly with contrasting white walls and crisp white ceramics. Working closely with Crosswater, Dexter Moren Associates incorporated complementary contemporary brassware to give the bathroom suites a luxurious finishing touch.

Texture & Pattern

Working as key elements in interior décor, texture and pattern have become popular interior trends used within modern hotel design. The use of these two components has been incorporated in varied ways throughout all style spaces, keeping the concept and project brief in mind. Deep in the Hertfordshire countryside, family-run hotel Sopwell House, is a hidden sanctuary for customers looking for a natural sense of freedom. The combination of the textured wood surfaces with the eye-catching geometric patterned tiles works nicely to create a harmonious and calming aesthetic.  The lighting enhances the tiles, adding texture and creating a relaxing environment for customers. The bathrooms in the hotel guestrooms are complete with Crosswater MPRO rainfall showers and the Crosswater MPRO Brushed Brass Basin Taps, adding a high-quality finish to the overall décor.

Brutalist Glamour

Eclecticism, luxury details and refined finishes make up the bathroom interiors of the Mondrian London Hotel located on the banks of the River Thames. Decorated by award winning designer Tom Dixon, each room features a truly glamorous aesthetic. The hotel embodies the elegance of a transatlantic 1920s liner. Built with 359 guestrooms and furnished with custom designed furniture; the interior features rich colour palettes contrasted against standout metallic finishes, providing a brutalist nautical theme. The use of marble surfaces and black basins within the en-suites works seamlessly to create luxe finish, whilst the public washrooms deliver a high quality appeal featuring porthole mirrors and metallic detailing usually found on board a ship.

For hoteliers looking to achieve the perfect high-end hotel look it is essential to design spaces that offer functionality as well as a deluxe finish. Hotel bathrooms have the capacity to showcase significant design statements, they serve as a sanctuary providing the comforts of home and as such are a key factor when creating a luxurious décor scheme.

Crosswater is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email  Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: The Laslett

Editor Checks In: Home comforts in hotel design

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Editor Checks In: Home comforts in hotel design

In August 2019, editor Hamish Kilburn concludes that trends are overrated when a project close to his heart reaches its highly anticipated conclusion…

I can’t quite believe it has been almost one year since we first started following the award-winning designer Nicky Dobree on her journey to complete her debut hotel design project. Before now, her undisputed talent was recognised for designing the interiors of 007-esqe luxury mountain retreats (Kevin McCloud’s words, not mine unfortunately).

But this year, she has injected her effortless style to restore a 19thcentury building in Vejer, Spain, which is known as Plaza 18 – and Hotel Designs has been there every step of the way.

Now that the season has ramped up to reach its peak, there’s no better time to put down the measuring tape, take a step back and reward Dobree’s “labour of love” as we cut the ribbon. More than 1,300 miles from Andalucia, the team in the London office are gathered around my computer screen as they impatiently wait for the folder to download, of which contains the final images of the new boutique hotel. Until now, you see, we have had to settle for shakey behind-the-scenes, unquestionably raw, photographs taken on location, as well as renders and sketches, which merely tease the luxury home-from-home concept in the making.

You’d be wrong to assume it’s an easy task working on a project of this scale. What the hotel lacks in the number of guestrooms (six to be precise) it makes up for in personality. And if anyone could sensitively re-establish the heritage property in order to give it a new lease of life, it would be Dobree.

“All that is missing is a luxury design-led hotel,” I think to myself as I run past the colourful beach huts (place your bids).

‘Home comforts’ feels like an appropriate theme for this month’s column. Four years after capturing my first solo metropolis memory, which then drove me to chase my career in a number of cities in the UK, I’ve hit a crossroads and have decided to take the right-hand turn, which has result in me hurtling back towards my hometown of Whitstable in Kent. Nestled on the north-east tip of the Garden of England, where home comforts – think sea views that stretch over the horizon and unparalleled sunsets – are never in short supply, this feels like ‘home’ to me. “All that is missing is a luxury design-led hotel,” I think to myself as I run past the colourful beach huts (place your bids).

It seems I am not alone in chasing home comfort. Last year, a study published by Forbes showed that in the 10 cities with the largest Airbnb market share in the US, the entry of Airbnb resulted in 1.3 per cent fewer hotel nights booked and a 1.5 per cent loss in hotel revenue. But as damning as this statistic may seem, hotels are fighting back to offer more home-from-home comforts married together with one-off experiences to capture travellers’ attention.

Examples of this can be found all over the Hotel Designs website this month, from our Miniview of room2’s ‘hometel’ concept in Southampton to a new ‘private members’ bar’-styled hotel that will open in London next year – and not forgetting the exceptional Plaza 18. Perhaps subconsciously, my year-long project with Dobree has led me to positively seek comfort in timeless style as opposed to chasing the short-term thrills of seasonal trends.

Main image credit: ACT Studios

Empty room with various styles of seating

In Conversation With: Matthew Balon at Ruby Leni’s first showing

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
In Conversation With: Matthew Balon at Ruby Leni’s first showing

Ruby Hotels has re-entered the stage to take a second bow in Dusseldorf, Germany. The 170-key Ruby Leni, which takes shelter in a former 1950s theatre, is the hotel group’s seventh hotel to harness ‘lean luxury’. Editor Hamish Kilburn travels just south of the city’s fashion district to meet the group’s lead designer, Matthew Balon, the morning after the night before’s launch party to discuss design details, the significance of paper puppets and the brand’s highly anticipated 2020 arrival in London…

Empty room with various styles of seating

They say that to make any act truly memorable, the performer must enter the stage armed with a spectacular encore up his or her sleeve. In the case of Ruby Hotels in Dusseldorf, the main performance took place last year with the arrival Ruby Coco. The dynamic property is a contemporary urban hub that is nestled within the city’s main shopping district, just off Königsallee – AKA a fashionista’s heaven. The interiors inside are sharp, considered and give more than an apt nod to the fashion quarters that surround it.

[CURTAIN UP]

If Coco was used in the opening scene, engaging its captivated audience with the allure of couture costumes, then the encore is Ruby Leni, which is situated a mere 10 minutes down the road. Although the neighbourhood may feel quieter, its entrance certainly isn’t: a large marquee sign with the words ‘make it your own stay’ frames an appropriate first impression.

Exterior shot of the hotel, showing a colourful courtyard

Image credit: Ruby Leni

[PUBLIC AREAS ENTER FROM STAGE RIGHT]

With large, expansive public spaces that filter into plush private break-out areas, the hotel is designed for both locals and guests checking in. The character and soul has been channelled into the lobby/lounge, where the real story of the iconic 1900s building, which sheltered the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus theatre, comes to life. “We looked at the materials, shapes and forms that you would associate to a theatre of that era,” says Lead Designer Matthew Balon. “We then separated that into front-of-house and back-of-house. We wanted to challenge that idea by merging those areas. For example, we have included stage cases in the lobby to really create an authentic feeling of being part of the production, behind the scenes.”

[GUESTROOMS ENTER FROM STAGE LEFT]

Upstairs, the sharp and stylish guestrooms have been designed around the original peculiar structure of the building, creating an interesting layout in each. The design and general make-up of the room, though, is a reflection of the others in the entire hotel group’s portfolio: crisp white beds, refillable toiletries and eco-friendly rain showers to match. The brand calls it ‘lean luxury’, which is posh for ‘uncomplicated, laid-back comfort’ – and it works, especially for bleisure travellers.

White, bright and contemporary guestroom

Image credit: Ruby Leni

Although you would recognise the rooms as ‘Ruby Rooms’ guests with eagle eyes will notice subtle differences, like the wood panelling for example.  “It’s been designed to also reference the story of the hotel,” explains Balon. “I looked into how sets were built and was inspired by the fact that guests in the theatre only ever see the pretty side. I wanted to show the back of the sets, the flats. I was interested to know how these things stood up and how they were constructed. That provided the inspiration for the wall panelling and the reinforced corner detailing.

Another quirky touch that sensitively helps set the theatrical scene is the art above the beds. Bolan initially wanted to do something with shadow puppets, which evolved into creating an immersive and playful paper puppet stage. “I really love introducing interior design elements that are fun and interactive,” says Balon. “We like to have fun with it and make an interesting element to guests’ stay.”

[APPLAUSE]

Image caption: Editor Hamish Kilburn (left) dragged the Lead Designer for Ruby Hotels, Michael Bolan (right), out on ‘stage’ the morning after the launch party before…

Quick-fire round:

Hamish Kilburn: What can you not travel without?
Matthew Bolan: My Darth Vader suitcase. I just love it!

HK: Where’s next on your travel bucket list?
MB: Japan.

HK: What’s your biggest bugbear when checking in to a hotel?
MB: Queuing!

HK: What is the number-one tool for success?
MB: You have to create an emotional connection.

HK: What is the last thing that showed up on your credit card transactions?
MB: A round of drinks I bought last night. It’s your round at the next launch, I’m told…

Most hotel designers are working with many several brands and brand standards, and so it is interesting how Bolan, within his creative realms, can piece together many different stories with the same Ruby strand running through each. “It is all-encompassing,” he says. “What the brand stands for in regards to design is something I can really get behind. When I think about Ruby, I think of all the people who bring the brand to life.”

[CURTAIN CALL]

The brand’s design is spilling out of the seams and leaving a permanent stain on new destinations. The next hotel design hotspot to welcome the arrival of Ruby Hotels is London – to the Southbank to be more specific. “We have done a lot of research into the location, which is a really interesting corner of London,” Balon explains. “I can tell you that Ruby Lucy is going to be fun, colourful, unexpected and I am really looking forward to the opening party!”

Ruby Hotels first unveiled its unique concept with Vienna hotel Ruby Sofie in 2014, before opening two further hotels in Vienna, Ruby Marie and Ruby Lissi, as well as Ruby Lilly in Munich, Ruby Coco in Dusseldorf and most recently Ruby Lotti in Hamburg. In response to the success of these properties, the brand plans further openings including Ruby Lucy in London’s bustling Southbank in early 2020, as well as hotels in Zurich, Cologne, Frankfurt and Shanghai before the end of 2020.

[CURTAIN CLOSED]

Eco bed to be unveiled inside The Conscious Bedroom at IHS London 2019

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Eco bed to be unveiled inside The Conscious Bedroom at IHS London 2019

To launch its Spotlight On ‘beds’, Hotel Designs learns more about Naturalmat’s eco partnership with Harris & Harris for The Conscious Bedroom, which will be unveiled at Independent Hotel Show London 2019… 

Naturalmat, which is the leading supplier of eco, organic beds and mattresses to the hotel trade, is partnering with Harris & Harris on an eco showcase at the upcoming Independent Hotel Show London 2019.

The design firm was invited by the organisers of Independent Hotel Show to curate ‘The Conscious Bedroom’, a mock hotel room pieced together using products and suppliers with strong eco credentials. The centrepiece of the room will be a bespoke Superking Prideaux bed, handmade by the craftsmen at Naturalmat from sustainable materials and upholstered in teal fabric, colour matched to other elements of Harris & Harris’s room scheme. The bed will stand on cylindrical tapering feet made of FSC approved wood with a walnut stain.

“The eco sleep experience will be completed with Naturalmat’s own organic wool duvet and pillows.”

The bed will be topped with Naturalmat’s signature Lambswool mattress, made from entirely natural materials from sustainable sources. Thick coconut fibre is layered with a slightly thinner slice of natural latex, finished off with lambswool sourced from organic sheep farms in Devon and the surrounding areas. The eco sleep experience will be completed with Naturalmat’s own organic wool duvet and pillows.

“We have been attendees of the Independent Hotel Show since its inception, and have found it to be a lively and valuable place to build business relationships and introduce our organic, sustainable hotel product range to new contacts in the industry,” said  Mark Tremlett, Co-owner of Naturalmat. “When Alex Harris approached us to invite Naturalmat to contribute to The Conscious Hotel Room it seemed a natural fit! Our ethos has always been about using organic and natural materials from sustainable sources to create luxurious and long lasting beds and mattresses, so we are delighted to create the centrepiece of the room in collaboration with Harris & Harris, and bring their vision to life in a way that is completely eco friendly.”

Organic mattresses and beds, made from sustainable materials in Britain, have been Naturalmat’s business for over 20 years.

Everything is made by hand in Naturalmat’s purpose-built factory in Topsham, on the banks of the River Exe, Devon. They believe that people, not machines, make a superior, longer lasting product. The team of craftspeople ensure every stitch, every fibre, every tufting button and every cover is painstakingly created, teased and checked.

Naturalmat’s hotel clients include Six Senses Resorts, Hoxton Hotels, River Cottage, Chewton Glen, Z Hotel Group and over 50 more iconic hotels globally.

Naturalmat  is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email  Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: Naturalmat

Hotel Indigo arrives in Italy’s fashion capital – Milan

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Hotel Indigo arrives in Italy’s fashion capital – Milan

Hotel Indigo Milan – Corso Monforte becomes the hotel brand’s third hotel in Italy… 

Milan, known as the birthplace of some of the world’s most recognised high-end fashion designers including Prada, Armani and Dolce & Gabbana, has welcomed Hotel Indigo Milan – Corso Monforte to the mix of hotels in the area. The new design-led hotel is centrally located close to the notable fashion district – the perfect location for those looking to explore one of the world’s fashion capitals.

Hotel Indigo properties offer a gateway to discover some of the world’s most inspiring neighbourhoodsand locations. Each hotel brings the outside in; drawing from the local area to inspire every aspect of each hotel, from intriguing design to locally inspired menus.

Hotel Indigo® Milan – Corso Monforte takes inspiration from the surrounding neighbourhood, mixing elements from 1950’s Italian vintage fashion with contemporary cues intrinsically weaved into one seamless interior design theme of fashion through the ages. Throughout the hotel’s 75 rooms, bold prints and colour splash the walls and feature artwork and sketches from Biki, one of the most notable names of the Milan fashion scene in the 30s, 40s and 50s. Opening her first atelier (studio) in 1934 in Milan, Biki paved the way in the development of prét-a-porte fashion (ready-to wear). Her style wastypically classic Italian, specially made for the Milanese ‘vita’ – the high life. Throughout the hotel you can see nods to this through elements such as the large vintage leather-bound classic trunks embossed with the hotel’s initials.

“The hotel boasts unique design features that are recognisable to the fashion connoisseur.”

From ‘hat box’ bedside tables, bowler hat lamps and sewing machines desks, the hotel boasts unique design features that are recognisable to the fashion connoisseur whilst ensuring they blend with thebuilding’s original architecture. Throughout the historic palace, intricately detailed classically coffered ceilings and panelled walls can be seen, lending to the classical era of the hotel. Large arches dominate throughout and surround the interior courtyard, making it the perfect place for an afternoon coffee or drink.

“Set to double its portfolio over the next three to five years, Hotel Indigo continues its strong growth as one of the largest boutique brands in this fast-growing segment,” said Eric Viale, Managing Director Southern Europe, IHG. “The brand is now at home in over 100 different and vibrant neighbourhoods globally, which is an incredibly exciting milestone. We provide guests with the best of both worlds – the promise of a design-led hotel and the reassurance of a consistently upscale experience with the IHG name behind it.” 

There are more than 109 Hotel Indigo properties open globally with more than 103 in the hotel pipeline, including Japan’s first Hotel Indigo, Hotel Indigo® Hakone Gora due to open later this year. In Europe alone, there are 32 hotels open in key neighbourhoods with a further 19 due to open in the next three – five years, depending on forecasts.

Recently, IHG opened the highly anticipated Hotel Indigo® Venice – Saint’Elena, the first IHG branded property on the island of Venice and Hotel Indigo® Stratford upon Avon, in the heart of Shakespeare’s home town. 

Main image credit: IHG

In Conversation With: Unidrain’s Kenneth Waaben on modern bathrooms

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In Conversation With: Unidrain’s Kenneth Waaben on modern bathrooms

Hotel Designs exclusively sits down with innovative head designer at Unidrain, Kenneth Waaben, to understand more about the process behind the brand’s design of the modern bathroom… 

With the aim to “create aesthetic and functional designs that enhanced the company’s existing portfolio,” Kenneth Waaben started working for Unidrain in 2014. Since then, his clear methodical way of thinking when it comes to balancing practicality and good design has led to the launch of many of Unidrain’s hero products, including the dynamic Reframe Collection. 

For Waaben, who graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, design is an iterative process that is based on a specific problem, as we find out in our exclusive Q&A.

Hamish Kilburn: What made you want to take on the challenge of designing for Unidrain?

Kenneth Waaben: In my view, good design has to be durable, a design that makes a difference, both aesthetically and functionally. Unidrain wished for products that stood out and solvedproblems in amore elegant and intelligent ways than other products in the market. I was able to design these products, so it was a fine match.

As a designer it is my mission to improve what already exists. Unfortunately, these days many new products are created with no real focus and are not designed to improving anything.

In these days of eco awareness and sustainability this is neither an interesting nor effective approach to product development. As a designer I feel we have to do everything we can to make a positive difference.

“One should dare to be critical of general practice, see possibilities and be open and brave enough to try new things.” – Kenneth Waaben, Unidrain

HK: What is your motto?

KW: Improve the existing – the devil is in the detail!  One should dare to be critical of general practice, see possibilities and be open and brave enough to try new things.

HK: What is the process behind your designs?

KW: I like to look at the things we use and find out where there is room for improvement, and then generate ideas around this.  It can be a challenge to connect the aesthetic with the functional. The process requires repeated tests and adjustments, it’s important to be aware of even the smallest details, since it is often these that make all the difference.

The road towards the goal, the actual design process, is to a great extent an iterative process where inspiration, the idea, the form and function is developed in a constant interactionbetween mind and hands.

It is all collaboration between drafts in 2D and 3D on paper and drafts shaped in cardboard and foam,as well as 3D printing and CAD. Through the entire process it is extremely important to use your experience and intuition.

HK: What was your most recent project?

KW: The Reframe Collection has been taking up my thoughts most recently.  One of the designs that have been under the design microscope is the Reframe corner shelf. I wanted to give new life to an everyday product, improve on the design.

Two other products in the Reframe Collection,the toilet brush and shower wiper, were also being re-framed and re-designed.    We looked at each item; the new toilet brush has been designed with a splash collar that eliminates the accumulationof bacteria between the inner and outer containers.

There is a small, integrated handle, so that you can easily empty the container without coming into contact with any bacteria.  The actual brush head has also been designed to collect as little water and paper as possible, to reduce unwanted dripping.

The shower wiper is a difficult product to keep tidy in the shower space so we designeda way of integrating the shower wiper with the soap shelf.  It is held in place by hidden magnets, which avoids having the wiper standing on the floor or hanging on the mixer tap.

HK: Do you design your products to be long lasting?

KW: Products have to be durable, this is important, plus time has proven that well-designed, long lasting products are also often the most popular.

As a designer, it’s important not to focus on what’s popular right now, as you risk designing a product that quickly becomes irrelevant.  It’s far more interesting to take a long-term approach. Many of the design products that are now celebrated around the world were often created many years ago and not on the basis of contemporary fads and trends.

Unidrain is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email  Katy Phillips by clicking here.

CASE STUDY: Furnishing Hard Rock Hotel London

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CASE STUDY: Furnishing Hard Rock Hotel London

Curtis Furniture explains its role on the first ever Hard Rock Hotel in the UK to bring the brand back to its British London roots…

When Curtis Furniture was tasked to work on the UK’s first ever Hard Rock Hotel, we had to understand the heightened importance of accuracy in order to bring to life the designer’s vision. Key to this was our ability to clarify accurately the requirements in advance, working as partners to the architects, Unwin Jones Partnership as we developed an on-site sample room and rolled this out through the whole hotel.

Benjamin Harvey, Category Buyer at glh Hotels explains: “Shipping supplies from outside the UK carries a risk to the quality of materials and timings of deliveries. To avoid these risks, we wanted to select a British Manufacturer, and Curtis are one of the few with the capacity to supply bespoke case goods for 1,000 rooms over a 12-month project.

Our relationship with them goes back more than 20 years. We needed to choose an expert partner we could trust to turn around the room refurbishments in a timely manner and with minimal disruption, as the hotel remained fully operational throughout.”

“The newly refurbished rooms buzz with the energy associated with the Hard Rock brand.”

Ultimately the success of the project was due to the accuracy and quality of materials supplied by a responsive, client-focused team. The newly refurbished rooms buzz with the energy associated with the Hard Rock brand. Hard Rock Hotel London is no longer simply somewhere to stay while experiencing all that London has to offer, it is now part of the London experience.

Main image credit: Hard Rock Hotel London/ ROBERTO LARA PHOTOGRAPHY

Rosewood Washington D.C. reopens with new F&B and public areas

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Rosewood Washington D.C. reopens with new F&B and public areas

Rosewood Washington D.C., which is widely regarded as Georgetown’s leading luxury hotels, has reopened with new distinct dining concepts, including a new rooftop lounge, CUT Above…

With interiors led by Jacques Garcia, Rosewood Washington D.C. has reopened its doors to unveil a new public area and F&B spaces. Instilling a sense of conviviality at the very start of the guest journey, the hotel’s new public spaces include a reimagined lobby and library.

Elegant design and architectural details, such as wood paneling, antique mirrors and marble fireplaces, line the lobby and its corridors, evoking the environment of a private home. The signature residential style is further reflected in the library, where a double height ceiling, deep velvet sofas and armchairs and a stunning chandelier invite guests to visit with friends or relax on ones own.

“We are thrilled to reopen our doors and welcome back our neighbors and visiting guests alike,” said Gabor L. Vida, managing director of Rosewood Washington, D.C. “Created to complement the historic charm of the neighborhood, the new CUT D.C. is characterized by regionally sourced cuisine that celebrates the best of the area’s local farms and purveyors, marking a new chapter for the brand, hotel and local community. Combined with our new rooftop lounge, CUT Above, the restaurant reinforces Rosewood Washington, D.C. as an inviting gathering place for all of our guests.”

Destined to quickly become the most sought-after dining venue in the city, CUT D.C., debuts a new and unique take on Wolfgang Puck’s famed CUT concept through a highly evolved vegetable- and seafood-centric menu. Helmed by Executive Chef Andrew Skala, a veteran of the Wolfgang Puck brand who has spent the last 13 years working across its restaurants in Las Vegas, Los Angeles and New York City, the hotel’s restaurant features a locally inspired menu that brings a fresh flair to the district’s vibrant dining scene. The venue combines essential elements of American architecture with those of European interiors to produce a refined yet relaxed setting that invites guests to return time and time again.

Dark lit restaurant with modern interiors

Image credit: Ryan Forbes/Rosewood Hotels

“I want this CUT to be different, one that is true to the location of where it is,” said Wolfgang Puck. “It’s important to me that CUT D.C. has its own soul that reflects just how unique the Mid-Atlantic is and how diners want to eat now. While guests will still be able to order the signature steaks they have come to love at CUT, we want to showcase the bounty of the region and create a menu that encourages sharing.”

Set against the capital city’s iconic skyline, the hotel’s new rooftop bar and lounge, CUT Above, emerges as the ideal destination for al fresco entertaining.

In addition to the new dining venues, lobby and library, Rosewood Washington, D.C. is set to debut six new and one-of-a-kind townhouse suites later this year. Built at the turn of the century and situated along one of Georgetown’s picturesque, tree-lined streets, the accommodations will offer an entirely residential guest experience unavailable anywhere else in the city. Each approximately 1,100 square feet in size, the accommodations will be designed by local interior designer Thomas Pheasant and will boast private entrances, dedicated living spaces, fully equipped kitchens and a private back courtyard, in addition to custom furnishings and décor created by artisans and photographers from the surrounding metropolitan area.

Main image credit: Ryan Forbes/Rosewood Hotels

 

FEATURE: Perfection in the hotel bathroom

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FEATURE: Perfection in the hotel bathroom

Recommended Supplier UKBathrooms explains how designers and architects can strive to create the perfect hotel bathroom experience…

As one of the leading online supplier of premium bathroom brands, UK Bathrooms knows a great deal about what makes the perfect hotel bathroom. Whatever the hotel category; wellness, luxury, business, holiday, whatever the size of hotel; hoteliers today concentrate on providing a unique environment, offering the best in comfort and ease of use to their guests.

After all, what’s the first thing a guest does after checking in to their hotel room? They inspect the bathroom, and expect it to be spotlessly clean, comfortable and relaxing, and, in many cases, different and more impressive than they have at home!

However, whilst guest experience is paramount, a hotel bathroom also needs to be easily maintainable, have durability and longevity. Design should include high quality products which combine functionality with looking great. The hotel bathroom needs to be both beautiful and functional, it should be a unique, discerning space and use materials that are robust and won’t fade.

Image credit: Jack Hardy

Hotel housekeeping teams are usually under pressure to present an impeccable bathroom, so design and products should take into consideration the ease of servicing and cleaning.

Designers, architects and hoteliers should also think about whether the bathroom fits in with the hotel’s architecture, is the design sympathetic to the building? A hotel bathroom should be apt to its environment, capturing the spirit and history of its locale and ultimately take the stress out of travelling for its guests. On trend is a space with no definition between where a bedroom ends and where the bathroom begins, not open plan which is often a step too far for guests, but a space that offers continuity and allows for a complete guest experience.

And that guest experience includes being comfortable and hassle free, with everything to hand including shampoo and soaps, luxury towels that aren’t out of reach. Nothing should be too difficult to use or hard to find. Showers must be the best available with easy controls.  Lighting is key throughout the space and this is where good design comes into its own.

Modern and clean looking bathroom with gold accents of colour in furniture and under bath

Image credit: Villeroy & Boch

UK Bathrooms supplies the hospitality industry from a huge collection of designer brands, including AXOR, Villeroy & Boch and Burlington to name but a few. As one of the leading online premium brand retailers, the company has a team of experts to assist designers, architects and hoteliers.

UK Bathrooms is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email  Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: UK Bathrooms/AXOR

16th century shell transforms to open modern boutique design hotel

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
16th century shell transforms to open modern boutique design hotel

The in-house design team at IHG, construction firm Stepnell and architecture practice Hitchman Stone Partnership have together completed a £13.2 million restoration projects on a Grade II listed building, which now sheltered the boutique 93-key Hotel Indigo Stratford-Upon-Avon

Located in the heart of Shakespeare’s birthplace, a three-storey Grade II listed building, which dates back to the 16th century, now shelters Hotel Indigo Stratford-Upon-Avon.

“It is a truly unique site, our first Hotel Indigo in a town, and what a town,” says Henry Reeve, Director of Interior Design at IHG. “We could not have picked a better site.”

Hotel Indigo Stratford-upon-Avon, formerly known as The Falcon Hotel, has upgraded its internal facilities whilst preserving the heritage of its historic exterior during a comprehensive refurbishment. “It’s been amazing to work on such an interesting project, helping to preserve a piece of history that can be enjoyed by the public,” adds Paul Fish, operations manager at Stepnell. “The work was incredibly specialist from a refurbishment perspective, so we had a real sense of achievement upon completion.”

Exterior shot of hotel

Image credit: IHG

Plans were originally laid out to refurbish the roof, but the job quickly grew in size when it was found to be beyond repair and had to be removed entirely, along with the internal plastering which was reinstated by a specialist company. Measures were also taken to preserve and replace the external beams and timber flooring in a bid to protect to the hotel’s defining features.

“We used bold contemporary botanics to reflect the surrounding flora and add a punch of drama.” – Henry Reeve, Director of Interior Design at IHG

Fish added: “We faced a few challenges during the build regarding conservation and access to the site due to the historic nature of the hotel, but the team managed to push forward with the works and the outcome is truly stunning.”

The traditional timber build is now complemented by a contemporary interior and lavish decor to give guests a unique boutique hotel experience, with three style of rooms to choose from, including the Tudor room, Georgian townhouse and contemporary rooms. The hotel features 65 custom axminster rugs and 10 luxurious hand tufted rugs supplied by Brintons that are showcased in guest rooms and public areas.”Pattern and colour is reflective of the English countryside, deep rich greens and autumnal browns work together to create a space that feels instantly comfortable, familiar and welcoming,” explains Reeve. “We used bold contemporary botanics to reflect the surrounding flora and add a punch of drama and of course as it’s Hotel Indigo we have some perhaps surprising detailing hidden across the site.”

Beautiful bar area with aimless interiors

Image credit: IHG

Newly equipped with a state-of-the-art gym, a private dining room, snug lounge, cocktail bar and modern meeting rooms, the hotel also offers a luxury dining experience for its guests. The Woodsman Restaurant has been created by restaurateur and chef Mike Robinson who has the only Michelin star pub in London. The Woodsman’s focus is on sustainable, wild British food, cooked over charcoal and wood. Customers can sit and eat delicious local produce while watching the chefs work their magic.

With the aim to bring a building back to life, and to create a hotel that in Reeve’s words: “Felt truely English and reflective of the stunning surrounding Midland countryside,” Hotel Indigo Stratford-upon-Avon is showcases the tradition of a 16th century building through a timeless contemporary lens.

Main image credit: IHG

More than 70% of Brits believe hotels can be more eco-friendly

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
More than 70% of Brits believe hotels can be more eco-friendly

A survey has revealed what Brits really think when it comes to hotels’ efforts to be eco-friendly… 

76 per cent of British holidaymakers feel hotels can play a larger role than they currently are in being ‘greener’, a study has found. The survey, carried out by Taxi2Airport, also concluded that most Brits will seek to walk, bike or use public transport to explore the destination around the hotel.

Meanwhile, 71 per cent have a strong desire to pack as light as possible. In turn, this will have an indirect positive effect on their flight, because if a plane weighs less – it increases fuel-efficiency and decreases the carbon emissions it produces. 66 per cent of the 1,468 respondents stated they will make a conscious effort to turn off the TV, lights, heating and air conditioning (AC) when not in use or present in the room.

Interestingly, since toiletries such as toothpaste, shower gels and shampoos are provided on a complimentary bases in a majority of hotels – it can be easy to use them wastefully as they are ‘free’. Bearing this in mind, 54 per cent will only throw away and/or ask for new toiletries once they have finished their existing set.

Fascinatingly, 67 per cent believed hotels should take the initiative to include a recyclableas well as non-recyclable bin, so they can separate any rubbish in their room between the two. Surprisingly, a sizeable 55 per cent of travellers would be happy if their hotel bathroom had a low flow shower head and toilet – both going a long way towards reducing water consumption.

Main image credit: Zuri Zanzibar

INDUSTRY INSIGHT: Styling a hotel for design press

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INDUSTRY INSIGHT: Styling a hotel for design press

With first impressions now being made before guests have even considered checking in, making a hotel’s style, personality and character pop in photographs is fundamental in any successful launch campaign. Florence Rolfe, former senior stylist at House & Garden – and judge for The Brit List 2019 – explains some of the tricks of the trade… 

The overriding question I am often asked is: “What do I have to do in order to get my brand into a leading publication?”

As we well know, the role of the journalist is to find the next big scoop, to draw the reader in with interesting content, and ultimately: to tell a story.

When it comes to creating engaging imagery, my advice is that your visuals should also tell a story. They need to express a lifestyle, and, moreover when it comes to hotels, where there is an abundance, that story needs to be aspirational. It needs to offer access to something that you wouldn’t usually experience, and conclusively to communicate this. The image should encapsulate the incredible journey you will have. What do we enjoy most about staying at hotels? For me, I like to indulge: step into my room, kick off my shoes and slip into that soft luxurious robe. I scout out the brand of miniature toiletries carefully curated in the bathroom. Perhaps run a bubble bath, then later tuck into high-thread count, Egyptian cotton sheets freshly turned down by housekeeping, before indulging in a chocolate left on the pillow.

“Whilst emulating the comfort of a home is important, the magic of hotels is also the escapist quality.”

But how can we convey this sublime experience into a photograph? Whilst emulating the comfort of a home is important, the magic of hotels is also the escapist quality. A luxurious element and impression of pampering is key. Detail shots of gorgeous bed linen, or a beautifully presented breakfast on a balcony, or a section of the bed with a thoughtfully styled bedside table, attractive looking cocktails at a beautifully stacked bar, or a good looking dish prepared by the chef. An evocative shot could also capture a neatly rolled towel pristinely perched on a sun lounger.

Are there any quirky design details around the hotel that the stylist and photographer are able to hone in on? Perhaps an interesting art collection, extensive book collection, rooftop pool with panoramic views, or an inviting private beach? Perhaps an unusual design element like a bath tub on the balcony – think The Zetter Townhouse, Marylebone. Draw your focus onto the interior design elements in a hotel, like an oversized bedhead – Kit Kemp style – or a mega chandelier, as seen in The Corinthia London’s lobby. Focus on the materials at your disposal: the tiles, upholstery, curtains, bed linen. Do they contrast with other fittings like dramatic brass door handles? The writing desk in a hotel room. Or a big beautiful armchair. These furnishings are interesting to photograph to show guests how differently the bedroom space can be used (outside the standard realm of bed and en-suite bathroom).

Consider the different mix of materials not as typical or practical in our everyday living spaces: silk curtains, bed throws, velvet armchairs. The prevailing impact that interiors trends have for press and bloggers means that in this day and age photography and styling is really important.

Think about whether you want the pictures to look as though they are ‘guest ready’, preparing for the customers arrival or whether they should encompass a natural ‘lifestyle’ quality? Do you want to create your bedroom shots with a more ‘lived in’ feel. This could be a messy bed, for example. If your shots have been commissioned purely for website purposes, I would stick to ‘guest ready’. Lifestyle are great for video and social media content. I would also always advise having a model on hand for any lifestyle imagery as the human element not only brings things to life, also helps scale in a photograph. A mix of the two works well for website, brochure and social media content. Movement can still be created in a still life image: a running bath or shower, lit candles or a barman pouring a drink or shaking a cocktail.

If the budget allows, I would suggest hiring a stylist and good photographer to bring these elements to life. My job as a stylist is to create this ‘home from home’ environment in a photograph, achieved by sourcing props in interesting shapes and sizes that I know will always photograph well.  You can never go wrong with beautiful flowers. They bring any image to life. Not only will they provide that pop of colour if needed in the photograph, but they can hugely help image proportions.

Flowers is another element I would suggest carefully considering for your branding. Take a look at your surroundings: which flowers and/or plants are native to the country or area that your hotel is based? A hotel or resort based in South Africa might decide to stick with their native flower, which in this case is the ‘Protea’, whereas a hotel or resort in Mexico might opt for succulents in their imagery. As we are all aware, flowers can be pricey and don’t always last long. This isn’t always ideal when you’re on a long shoot, as they need to look as fresh as possible for every shot. Faux flowers might be a good option. Once renowned for having a bad reputation, these days there are some beautifully crafted, really realistic ones available. A good selection of hardback books in various sizes and colours are always useful to fill a neglected area.

To create an image that not only gets you into the press, but also hooks your target market, you need to create emotion. Put yourself in the guest’s shoes. Do not simply take a cold image of a smart room, but rather bring that room to life. Allow the reader to envisage how they would feel when they walk through the door into your hotel room and sense all the wonderful things around them, which you’ve so carefully thought out for them.

Main image credit: CitzenM Kuala Lumpar

Behind the scenes: Morgan’s Rakino Collection

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Behind the scenes: Morgan’s Rakino Collection

Post-Clerkenwell Design Week, Hotel Designs’ editor Hamish Kilburn catches up with one of the designers of the moment, Tim Rundle, in order to understand how his new collection with Morgan developed…

During this year’s Clerkenwell Design Week, Morgan launched a new furniture collection which juxtaposed soft sculpted upholstery with a strong, low line frame, the new family of lounge chairs and tables feature crisp timber detailing, emphasised by a clean linear structure.

But how did the collaboration start, and what inspired the design? We caught up with designer Tim Rundle to discover all.

Hamish Kilburn: Tell us more about the Rakino collection?
Tim Rundle: Rakino is a collection of low lounge chairs that combines soft sculpted upholstery and CNC machined timber frames with an upright, somewhat architectural, attitude. The frame is all right angles and straight lines, save for the back support rail, which is bowed slightly, as if formed by the act of leaning back in the chair. The seat, in contrast, is a soft, shell-like form with a crisp single seam running around its edge.

HK: What inspired your designs?
TR: This project started in what I believe is the ideal way; with a trip to see production, and this is what really inspired the design. In Hampshire I discovered a factory staffed by some serious experts in upholstery and timber joinery. I really wanted to make the most of these capabilities, and maybe even push them a little to see what was possible. In terms of the chairs themselves I wanted to create something that felt quiet and inviting, that could feel right in your home, while obviously being appropriate for hard working contract environments.

HK: Did you enjoy collaborating with Morgan? How was the experience/process compared to solo working?
TR: None of my projects are just me. I think that’s a misconception, maybe brought about by the fact that in our industry, designers tend to have eponymous business names. Everything I’ve ever designed have been made possible by numerous other people, from engineers to marketeers, craftspeople to logistics managers. I guess the main difference this time was geographical proximity – this is my first project with a British furniture brand! This meant we could work really closely, with numerous prototype reviews as we refined the details.

HK: Benefits of this collaboration?
TR: Working with Morgan’s dedicated prototyping team (Jonathan and Dean) was a highlight. This meant we were able to make adjustments and modifications to our prototypes, effectively on the spot – and nothing was impossible. The whole team were always keen to push the limits of timber production, and the results can be seen in a frame that perfectly blends CNC technology with expert craftsmanship, and an upholstery element that tapers to an impossibly fine edge, something not normally achievable with cut foam.

What inspired the name of the collection?
TR: As Morgan have a product code system that uses place names, it felt only right we choose a New Zealand name – being designed by a Kiwi, albeit London based. Rakino is one of a cluster of small islands in the Hauraki gulf, the body of water surrounding Aucklands East coast, where people are able to escape the busy city, a short boat ride leaving you with a pleasant sense of isolation and calm. A comfortable low lounge chair in a busy hotel or workplace could, I hope, provide the same feeling.

As Raikino is the result of a true collaboration, we asked Morgan a few questions too…

HK: How did the collaboration start? How did Tim and the Morgan team meet?
TR: We were looking to collaborate with a like-minded Designer who shares our passion for quality and integrity. Our Design Director came across some of Tim’s work and was impressed with his portfolio and the fine detail of his work. After the first meeting, it was obvious that Tim understood our brand and would be a good design partner, so we decided to give him the brief for a new product for CDW19.

HK: What makes this collection stand out?
TR: The Rakino collection stands out due to its striking timber architectural frame, with a strong, square, clean aesthetic, combined with a soft sculpted and slim line upholstered shell that is held within the frame. The frame is very open and honest and is a reflection of Tim’s eye for detail and our passion for precision CNC manufacturing and a hand-crafted finish.

Morgan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email  Katy Phillips by clicking here.

Main image credit: Morgan

Hotel Summit 2019 bridges the gap between hotel buyers and suppliers

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Hotel Summit 2019 bridges the gap between hotel buyers and suppliers

Forum Events’ premium meet-the-buyers event, Hotel Summit, put on yet another spectacular event with guest speakers including representatives from The Lanesborough, Great Hotels Of The World and Areen Design, among many others…

Settling in a new home, located in the quintessentially British surroundings in the Oxfordshire countryside, Heythrop Park welcomed hoteliers, designers and suppliers alike for this year’s hotly anticipated Hotel Summit.

More than 60 procurement professionals from leading hotels around the UK such as The Lanesborough, The Beaumont Hotel and The Gainsborough Bath Spa and 30 supplier partners attended The Summit that was sheltered within the 18thcentury hotel, which combines both elegant heritage design with contemporary areas, making it the perfect venue for one of Forum Events’ leading meet-the-buyers concept for the hotel industry.

The two-day kicked off with an opening presentation with Rita Alves Machado, VP of sales and marketing for Great Hotels Of The World who joined editor Hamish Kilburn for a live interview on the topic of blesiure. “There should be more focus on public, intelligent areas when it comes to designing for bleisure guests,” Machado said. “For me, it’s about personalization, we look for that in our members, what they can do that will differentiate from others in an authentic way.”

Andrew Linwood, Head of Hospitality Design at Areen Design, aptly followed with a presentation entitled: How Design Adds Value To A Hospitality Brand. “Branding is not only the name above the door,” he said to the audience. “It’s about good design and good service working together.”

Meanwhile, Francisco Macedo, Operations Director for Clivedon House stood up in front of the audience to explain how to create a winning team, using personal anecdotes to explain how he has curated his army of staff in order to offer a seamless service within the hotel.

After a morning of face-to-face meetings with suppliers, delegates joined to attend a speaker session with Marco Novella, Managing Director of The Lanesborough, followed by a short live interview where Kilburn delved into what it takes to be at the helm of one of London’s most prestigious luxury hotels. “It’s been important to react to the right trends,” explained Novella. “Wellness, for example, is a very important factor for The Lanesborough, and our aim with the club and spa was very much to lead wellness and wellbeing.”

Following a lavish gala dinner and entertainment, delegates and suppliers gathered for a second day of pre-scheduled face-to-face meetings.

Partners:

ADI Trading Ltd, Airwave Europe, Alchemy House of Design, Birchall Team, Brushbox, Castrads, Discover Kangen Water, Elavon, Fortune Brands, Gallant, Good Energy, HCI, Hotel Champ, iBal Designs, Landmark Specialist Solutions, Ligne Roset Contract, Matrix Fitness, Mitre Linen, Out of Edan, Parkside, Phillip Jeffries, Portable Floormaker & Barlock Bars, Project Blinds, Riskmonitor Limited, Samsung Electronics, Tevalis Ltd, Timage, Toothbuckle, Virdor, Zennio

Next year’s Hotel Summit will take place in April 27 – 28 at Five Lakes Resort, Colechester. If you are interested in exhibiting at the 2020 event, please contact Jennie Lane on 01992 374098 or j.lane@forumevents.co.uk.

BIID announces new President

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BIID announces new President

The British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) has announced that Harriet Forde from Forde design has stepped up to become the 2019 BIID President…

The British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) has announced its new president for 2019-20, Harriet Forde, founder of London-based practice Harriet Forde Design. Forde succeeds current president, Gilly Craft and officially took on the role at the BIID Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Thursday July 4, which took place at The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

Forde, who has recently been confirmed as a Judge for Hotel Designs’ The Brit List, is an experienced interior designer and a long-standing member of the BIID, having previously held the position of Chair of the Membership Committee. An active member of the Institute, Harriet regularly leads talks and discussions at industry events across the country, including participation at the most recent BIID Inside Knowledge Conference.

“As president, I will continue to support our members in providing a high-quality and professional service to their clients.” – Harriet Forde

Having begun her study of interior design at the London School of Furniture, Forde went on to graduate from the prestigious University Central St Martin’s with a degree in textiles.  Following more than 10 years’ experience in the hospitality design sector – working for the likes of Richard Daniels, Richmond International and Areen Design – Harriet eventually set up her own practice, Harriet Forde Design in 1999.

“I am delighted to be president of the BIID, to continue the fantastic work already established by our hard-working BIID council,” she said. “As president, I will continue to support our members in providing a high-quality and professional service to their clients, to educate consumers on the benefits of using a BIID registered designer and to ensure that our talented community of BIID members continues to thrive.”

The designer is influenced by an admiration for architecture, attention to detail and nature, and incorporates this within her designs through pattern and texture. She also has a keen interest in the influences of design on wellbeing and explores the way this can be developed within a space through the careful selection of materials, lighting and space planning.

Forde is experienced in the commercial, hospitality and high-end residential sector and is regularly commissioned to work on projects across the UK, continental Europe and the Middle East. This has allowed her to build a successful business and client base, with an approach centred on the understanding of space and translating it into original concepts and design. Harriet continues to personally lead every client project and it is this commitment that has allowed the practice to thrive, with the studio recently celebrating an impressive 20 years in business.

Main image credit: BIID

 

Four Seasons Hotel Singapore unveils botanical twist

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Four Seasons Hotel Singapore unveils botanical twist

Four Seasons Hotel Singapore goes botanical, unveiling reinvented interiors, including luxury suites, F&B and wellness areas…

Nestled within a city/country that is widely known as a modern metropolis that is leading the way in sustainable design and architecture, Four Seasons Hotel Singapore has lifted the lid on its newly completed interior design renovation, celebrating the natural, verdant flora that the island is unmistakeably known for.

Somewhat becoming a major source of inspiration for the design team, the hotel is situated amidst lush foliage on the fringe of one of the world’s largest shopping street, Orchard Road, a mere five minutes away from the a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Singapore Botanic Gardens. With the creative direction of celebrity Floral Art Director Nicolai Bergmann since April 2019, guests are greeted fresh florals in the Grand Lobby at arrival.

“Replacing deep, rich palettes are now contemporary interiors that feature a natural colour palette of dusty cool blue tones and lime green accents.”

The guestrooms and luxury themed suites alike were revamped in the last six to twelve months in preparation for the hotel’s Silver Anniversary. Replacing deep, rich palettes are now contemporary interiors that feature a natural colour palette of dusty cool blue tones and lime green accents, inspired by the water and tropical lotus leaves of the Singapore Botanic Garden’s Swan Lake. Each room also features a mural wall composition of traditional Peranakan tiles, adding an artistic touch and reminiscent of Singapore’s rich and multicultural heritage. Peranakan culture represents the union between two or more major ethnicities of the Straits Peninsula – a result of Singapore’s historical significance as a major trading port. Large floor-to-ceiling windows provide sweeping views of the city and surrounding greenery, while white-colonial style doors and windows with plantation shutters, reminiscent of Singapore’s once-agricultural history, allowing for the natural light to brighten the rooms.

Comprising four distinctive residences – the Royal Suite, Governor Suite, Ambassador Suite and the Presidential Suite – the quartet of luxury suites unfurl Singapore’s legacy through subtle design motifs, natural textures and serene palettes of subtle sophistication that portrays and acknowledges the Garden City’s dynamic, cosmopolitan storied history.

The passion for a nature-enlivened, tropical ambiance continues from the private areas to the restaurants and bar at the Four Seasons Hotel Singapore.

Relaunched in March 2019 after a month-long revamp, One-Ninety, the breezy, botanical modern Asian brasserie teases with its Asian twist on wholesome Provençal cuisine. The adjourning resort-style alfresco Terraza is perfect for unwinding with a classic in hand and weekend tete-a-tete over a tri-terraced Floral Afternoon Tea that intrigues with flora-infused treats, launched in end-May 2019. Embodying the concept of “Xiang Le Zhu Yi,” or the principle of enjoyment and happiness, newly minted Michelin-starred restaurant Jiang-Nan Chun is not only evocative of the pastoral lifestyle of Jiang Nan region’s traditional river villages through its rustic décor, but also through its authentic Cantonese cuisine.

Main image credit: Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts

Morgan launches lounge chair and table collection designed by Tim Rundle

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Morgan launches lounge chair and table collection designed by Tim Rundle

Contract furniture designer and manufacturer Morgan has launched Rakino, a collection of lounge chairs and tables, designed by Tim Rundle…

During Clerkenwell Design Week 2019, Morgan launched a new furniture collection, Rakino, designed by Tim Rundle.

Juxtaposing soft sculpted upholstery with a strong, low line frame, the new family of lounge chairs and tables feature crisp timber detailing, emphasised by a clean linear structure.

“It’s been a pleasure working with Tim, who brings an international perspective to Rakino,” says Katerina Zachariades, design director at Morgan. “His experience in furniture, lighting and interior design enables him to develop new product ideas with an understanding of commercial demands. We have enjoyed developing this chair and refining our production methods to achieve the light, simple structure that defines it.”

Describing his approach to the project, Rundle says, “I wanted to create something that felt quiet and inviting, that could feel right in your home, while being appropriate for hard working contract environments.” 

Morgan has a tradition of naming its collections after places, which Tim embraced. He explains: “It only felt right we choose a New Zealand name, being designed by a Kiwi, albeit London based. Rakino is one of a cluster of small islands in the Hauraki Gulf, the body of water surrounding Auckland’s east coast. There people are able to escape the busy city, a short boat ride leaving you with a pleasant sense of isolation and calm. A comfortable low lounge chair in a busy hotel or workplace could, I hope, provide the same feeling.”

Morgan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, please email Zoe Guerrier by clicking here.

INTERACTIVE REVIEW: Oddfellows On The Park

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
INTERACTIVE REVIEW: Oddfellows On The Park

Located on the fringes of Manchester, Oddfellows On The Park is quirky, timeless and in its own admission ‘a little bit odd’. Editor Hamish Kilburn writes about the hotel that was designed to be disobedient…

By the looks of Manchester’s hotel development pipeline, creativity in British interior design and architecture is not limited to London. Despite Brexit uncertainty, this year alone, 835 new guestrooms will be introduced into the industrial city – with a further 11 more hotels slated to open between 2020 and 2021.

The booming hotel design scene in the northern metropolis has resulted in more interest around the outskirts of the city, and it is here – less than 10 miles from the Manchester’s Piccadilly – where Oddfellows Hotels’ latest property is situated.

A lamp shining from the head of a life-sized model of a horse and a chandelier made from bicycle chains hanging above the check-in desk is the first indication that Oddfellows On The Park doesn’t like to play by the rules. Tasked with the aim to stylishly go against the grain was design firm SpaceInvader, which is dedicated to creating spaces which fulfill their true potential, while unlocking the power to enhance human behaviour.

Opened in 2017, the hotel is sheltered within an 1861 traditional Victorian Gothic building, which was named Bruntwood Hall. The shell of the now 22-key boutique hotel was designed originally by an industrialist, John Douglas, who was inspired by a Scottish home; the original ceilings in The Stud Room Bar are testimony to this with subtle thistle design. Today, the iconic structure stands in plain sight, nestled within endless playing parks which feature archery, a golf course, and even a BMX cycling track – hence the cycling chain chandelier in the lobby.

In its history, Bruntwood Hall has served many purposes – from being a town hall during the war to becoming home to a film company and fashion designer. Now, though, for the first time in its winding narrative, the building has been redecorated, reconfigured and reborn to welcome guests into a luxury boutique hotel like no other.

Katie Edgar who heads up hospitality at SpaceInvaders led the design throughout the project. She and her design team conducted thorough research into the history of the building, the location and the inhabitants of Bruntwood Hall, in order to understand how to thoughtfully reference the building’s past. “The approach focused on respecting the character and beautiful features of Bruntwood Hall,” explains Edger. “We were inspired by them, and wanted to enhance them to design a romantic scheme that celebrates the history of the building and its unique position.”

Image credit: ACT Studios

In addition to sympathetically restoring the building’s original features, the design firm worked with architect Tim Groom, in order to incorporate elements of innovative and playful design that has become a signature of Oddfellows Hotels. “The aim was to create a space that allows guests to lose themselves in their surroundings and feel that the Hall is theirs for the weekend,” adds Edgar.

“Original 1860s encaustic floor tiles were uncovered in the reception area and revived to their former glory.”

The public areas arguably give the most significant nod to the building’s heritage. While Edgar and her team were restoring the building as part of its transformation, original 1860s encaustic floor tiles were uncovered in the reception area and revived to their former glory.

The Stud Bar, which is sheltered adjacent to the lobby area, is a small and intimate space dominated by the original statement ceiling complete with beautiful Jacobean-style decorative plasterwork. “The furniture here has been based around complementing, rather than competing with the overhead design,” said Edger. Comfortable high back chairs with fabrics supplied by Skopos and a soft approach to seating encourage guests to enjoy both the view out to the parkland and the historical building features.

Meanwhile, the corridors that are staggered over three levels feature an array of abstract art, creating fun and creative moments throughout guests’ journey to their rooms and suites. Just like the corridors, the guestrooms and suites are layered with texture and each have their own personality. The Tower Suite, for example, is a two-tiered design gem that adorns contemporary finishes such as playful wallcoverings and portraits hung with human bodies and animal heads.

The bathrooms in all 22 rooms and suites have been designed by Utopia Projects, which specified all of the sanitaryware for seven different room types and the spa facilities for the hotel. “Having worked with these designers before, and therefore having an idea of what they like, made this hotel a dream to spec,” said project consultant, Stuart Adamson. ” It’s truly genius how the designers have maintained the buildings country style but modernised it with complimentary elements like the hexagonal mirrors and tiles, although our favourite piece has to be the roll-topped, freestanding baths we supplied completely in white.”

Image credit: ACT Studio

On the top floor, the suites compliment the natural architecture of the building, featuring wooden beams and, with high ceilings, compliment natural arch shape of the roofing. The guestrooms feature over-scaled carpet designs, which are a stylish riff on the decorative plasterwork.

In a nod to the building’s Scottish heritage, the design team included thoughtful elements throughout, including new tartan upholstery, wools and tweeds, and original decorative thistles that are on display. “Heritage colours were specifically chosen to accent walls throughout the bedrooms and public spaces,” explains Edger. “Muted shades of greens, blues, purples and blacks were considered room by room and provide a back drop to conversational artwork and decorative lighting.”

The use of taxidermy would have been expected in the interior of the building’s previous iterations. And so to layer this sensitively within interior scheme was important, but as with everything in the hotel’s design, the use of taxidermy was anything by ordinary. “In a twist on this concept, we included elements such as bike handlebars mounted on elaborate wall plates,” explains Edger. “These have been utilised to provide another link to the activities that can be enjoyed within the building’s surrounding 100 acres of parkland.”

The Pigsty is the hotel’s premium spa that sits in a separate building adjacent to the rest of the hotel. Fittingly, the intimate salon features its own mudroom as well as two treatment rooms and has an engaging atmosphere within the social salon quarter.

Now managed by Bespoke Hotels, the UK’s largest independent hotel group that also owns Hotel Gotham, checking in to Oddfellows On The Park is a journey that celebrates oddities in spectacular fashion. With the combination of amplifying a unique style and through clever marketing to promote it, the Oddfellows Brand is taking its place in the northern hotel charts and it continues to push the boundaries of modern hotel design.

Main image credit: ACT Studios

Global awards launches to challenge industry standards around accessible design

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Global awards launches to challenge industry standards around accessible design

The Blue Badge Access Awards launches and questions why accessible design is not as large a talking point as sustainability currently is. Editor Hamish Kilburn attended the launch event in London and writes…

Blue Badge Access Awards has launched raising some much-needed debates around the current industry standards around accessible design.

The launch of Blue Badge Access Awards – a combining of two major design competitions – the Bespoke Access Awards and the Blue Badge Style Awards – took place at Home Grown Club in Marylebone. The occasion explained the purpose of the new global competition, which is to celebrate thoughtful and stylish inclusive design worldwide. It aims to inspire designers, architects, operators and developers to work together in order to build exceptional business and venues that make everyone feel like a “first-class citizen.”

“No one would have dreamed that sustainability would be so high on the agenda as it is now and we want access to be high on the priority list.” – Robin Sheppard.

Speaking at the event was Robin Sheppard, Chairman of Bespoke Hotels, Hotel Sector Champion for Disabled People and in turn the winner of The Brit List 2018’s Outstanding Contribution to the Hospitality Industry. “It is important to make access a permanent addition to the agenda,” he said during a thought-provoking speech. “No one would have dreamed that sustainability would be so high on the agenda as it is now and we want access to be high on the priority list.”

With the support of charity Leonard Cheshire, the Blue Badge Access Awards aims to accelerate much-needed progress. This follows studies that show inclusive design gives businesses and venues access to a market of more than one billion people across the world, a group of more than 13 million people in the UK along with spending power of more than £250 billion.

Inclusive design has a history of inspiring great innovation, from the invention of the first typewriter, which was built to help a blind Italian countess write legibly, to the remote control, which was created to make life easier for people with limited mobility.

Categories include:

  • Arnold Fewell Award – The Most Inclusive Building/Interior Design
  • Best Hotel x 2 (Upmarket and Boutique, Bespoke Award)
  • Best Bar x 2 (Upmarket and Budget)
  • Best Restaurant x 2 (Upmarket – Conran award – and Budget)
  • Best Accessible Toilet
  • Ludicrous Loo
  • Above & Beyond (Includes Hospitality & Corporates)
  • Euan’s Guide Award
  • Best Venue in a Listed Building
  • Inclusive Employment Award (Leonard Cheshire)
  • Employee of the Year

“Nowhere can be 100 per cent accessible, but everyone can start somewhere,” said Fiona Jarvis, founder of Blue Badge Style. “There is a tremendous public interest in the area of accessible design, with a strong desire to honour and recognise businesses that go the extra mile for their customers.”

With categories ranging from Best Hotel and Best Bar, to the Leonard Cheshire Inclusive Employment Award, the Blue Badge Access Awards recognises the variety of ways that businesses can become more inclusive. The prize that nobody wants to win, ‘Ludicrous Loo’ demonstrates the challenges faced in a light-hearted manner, revealing bathrooms where accessibility is an afterthought.

Nominations of the Blue Badge Access Awards, which are open to anyone, anywhere in the world, are now open and close on June 30. Visit to website to cast your vote.

Winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on October 7.

Main image credit: Blue Badge Access Award/Bespoke Access Awards

In Conversation With: Designer Mark McClure ahead of Clerkenwell Design Week

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
In Conversation With: Designer Mark McClure ahead of Clerkenwell Design Week

Ahead of Clerkenwell Design Week 2019, Morgan shares an insight into the mind of one of its latest interior design collaborators. Mark McClure discusses how the Goodwood table came to be… 

Furniture brand Morgan is preparing to once again wow visitors who are attending Clerkenwell Design Week later this month.

As well as inviting artist David Shillinglaw to redecorate the showroom with a vibrant feature wall, the company will also unveil two new interior design collaborations – one of which is with designer Mark McClure. Ahead of CDW 2019, Hotel Designs turned the tables, asking its recommended supplier Morgan to carry out an interview with its new design collaborator.

Morgan Furniture: Why did you choose to collaborate with us specifically?
Mark McClure: I worked with you in 2017 – when you invited me to create an installation and exhibition of artworks in their showroom and I found their whole approach to creativity and crossing over of disciplines very much aligned with my own. That, coupled with the beautiful quality and style of their existing collections, made them the obvious people to approach when I was looking to collaborate on some furniture.

MF: How was the experience/process compared to solo working?
MM: The whole process has been so very much smoother than I imagined. Collaborating in general – and especially with the folk at Morgan – brings the benefit of working with experts in their own field. Their knowledge of materials and processes added a whole new thought angle to my own thought process – and Katerina’s creative ideas overlapped nicely with my own even though we were coming to it from different directions.

Image of Goodwood side table in two sizes

Image credit: Goodwood by Morgan

MF: : What sparked your interest in furniture and combining art with a contract piece of furniture?
MM: I’ve always been drawn to the blurred lines between function and creativity. I’m lucky in that my work can be applied all kinds of disciplines and mediums – whether that be a mural on the side of a building, a sculpture in a gallery, or a mosaic for a table surface. I love that change of context and the change of audience and perception that goes with it.

MF: What inspired your design?
MM: A lot of my work is originally inspired by structural and architectural forms – but I’m increasingly contrasting these shapes with more rounded forms which lend the softer, more organic feel to the designs. This addition of more natural forms definitely feels more in tune with the natural grain and colours of the wood.

MF: What was your starting point for this project?
MM: We looked at a selection of existing Morgan pieces – with a view to combining the Morgan shapes with my design – so it all started with the choice of table shape. We opted for quite an understated Goodwood base in two nested sizes. This understated shape avoids a clashing of styles but also lends a complementing elegance to my work, which can be quite bold. Once that decision was made – I had a literal and metaphorical framework to work within.

MF: What is the collection’s USP?
MM: Bold, dynamic, abstract shapes – held together by the modernist elegance of the framework. The contrasting styles balance really well together.

MF: What was the main goal for the collection?
MM: To create something contemporary but classic – a meeting of styles.

MF: What were the challenges?
MM: The biggest challenge was showing restraint. It’s hard not to get carried away with exciting materials and details. But the saying ‘less is more’ exists with good reason – and after exploring a much broader range of materials and colours – we naturally returned to this palette. Even this restrained version still feels dynamic and exciting.

MF: What materials were used for the project?
MM: A mosaic was made up of Beech & Walnut – both painted and untreated – finished with brass details.  This was then integrated into a walnut table framework.

MF: Where do you foresee the collection being specified? (i.e. hotels, restaurants, etc.)
MM: I’d like to think the tables would sit comfortably in hotels, receptions and workplaces. The elegance of the table shapes make them adaptable – while the tabletop design – although distinct and dynamic – isn’t overbearing.

MF: Generally, where do you find your inspiration?
MM: I like to think of my work as a landscape. I’ve always seen beauty in the architectural shapes and structure of the city and these shapes are a constant, but increasingly sparks comes from everywhere and anything – with more organic, rounder elements coming into play. So whilst the structural shapes often form the base for a work – there’s other contrasting elements creeping in that might be inspired by plants, fabrics, music, lighting. The melting pot of disciplines and styles is what makes things interesting – it all makes up the landscape that surrounds us.

MF: What’s the key to a successful collaboration?
MM: I think the key is to collaborate with people you admire and respect. Everyone comes to a solution from their own direction – depending on their background and experience. That’s the beauty of collaboration – and appreciating those different backgrounds and routes is key.

MF: What’s the most interesting trend you’re seeing for 2019?
MM: Playful, geometric tabletops combined with modernist elegance. You saw it here first.

MF: What technology has made the biggest difference to the way you work?
MM: I’m about 20 years late to the CAD party – but I’ve only just started using it as my work has become more engineered and three dimensional. I created a bar with a drinks brand last year and taking what is quite a painterly approach – and drawing it up in CAD was a challenging – but exciting next step. To become loose and instinctive within that realm of 3D CAD is pretty exciting.

Morgan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Hotel Designs is a proud media partner for CDW 2019. In order to arrange a meeting with the team, please tweet us @HotelDesigns

Concept to Completion: Nicky Dobree creating Plaza 18 (part three)

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Concept to Completion: Nicky Dobree creating Plaza 18 (part three)

While Hotel Designs is exclusively following Plaza 18’s creation, editor Hamish Kilburn checks in on designer Nicky Dobree as the project is just weeks from completing…

With her sleeves rolled up, designer Nicky Dobree is on the home straight in the race to design her first hotel project. The finish line, which is getting closer and closer by the day, is nestled within Vejer, which is one of the many white towns of Andalucia.

The new six-key boutique hotel will shelter a home from home, adjacent to the palm-filled Plaza de Espana landmark. Inspired, in part, by Dobree’s travels, the authentic surrounding landscape and even the smell of orange blossom, the boutique jewel will shelter an unmatched luxury setting.

While the full details of the project are heavily under wraps (for now at least), part three of Plaza 18’s concept to completion feature focuses on the final preparations to create an unmatched home-from-home boutique hotel.

Hamish Kilburn: How does travel influence your interpretation on design? 
Nicky Dobree: Travel hugely influences my design and expands my creative perspective. I am fortunate to have travelled extensively and to have lived abroad for many years. I therefore find that I regularly draw on my love of travel to add to the layers of my design. Inspiration can come from anything and everything, be it the local smell of the orange blossom in Vejer to its moorish architectural roots.

HK: How far in the process are you with Plaza 18? 
ND: The end is in sight and we are receiving bookings for the summer.

HK: What can go wrong and what are the major challenges at this stage in the project?
ND: Hopefully not a lot can go wrong at this stage that we are not able to resolve. Timing is key. We’ve just had Easter, which the Spanish take very seriously so the team will break for a couple of weeks. On the positive, the team have returned with a fresh eye to complete the finishes ready for us to install and open.

HK:Do you ever find it difficult to leave a project behind once it’s completed? 
ND: I always find it difficult leaving a project behind and handing it over. It’s like giving birth and handing over your baby. With Plaza 18, I hope that many get to enjoy it and look after it as if were their own.

Various images of bedrooms, door fittings and art

Image caption: Moodboard for Plaza 18

HK: This is your first hotel that you have designed, will there be others? 
ND: I very much hope so. I have really enjoyed the new challenges this project has given me. I really love the art of creating a space and above all an atmosphere that will hopefully make people want to return.

Hotel Designs has been following Dobree on the completion of her first ever hotel. Click here to read part one. Click here to read part two.

BESPOKE DESIGN: Italian boutique hotel inspired by natural elements

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
BESPOKE DESIGN: Italian boutique hotel inspired by natural elements

Design studio Boxx Creative has completed the interior design of Miramonti, a 21-key boutique hotel in the Italian mountains. Editor Hamish Kilburn writes…

Inspired by its natural surroundings, Miramonti, meaning mountain view, draws its name and design from nature. A deep terracotta facade, which dates back to 1958, evokes the changing seasons and rich natural Italian colour palette.

When it first opened just over a decade after the second world war, the five-storey Albergo Miramonti was the first building in town to feature hot water in every room and it quickly gained in popularity among tourists as well as locals as a place for ultimate relaxation. The new guestrooms, which are divided into five categories over three storeys, feature – in true Miramonti spirit – calming green and blue colour schemes, punctuated with deeper accents.

Design firm Boxx Creative’s first step in its transformation was to maximise every square foot to increase guestroom numbers, providing flexibility of room use and creating defined room types for couples and families. The Deluxe Doubles provide an appealing space for couples to relax in comfort inside the room or outside on the balcony. The spacious Family Suites meanwhile have the option to connect through to en-suite bunk-bed rooms, which comfortably accommodate a family of six.

“Materials were selected for their authentic properties and link to the surrounding environment.”

The firm redesigned each floor of the hotel and created the interior schemes; drawing on the elements of: earth, fire, air, water, wood and metal. Materials were selected for their authentic properties and link to the surrounding environment and feature in the natural stone wash basins, carved wooden bedframes, solid trunk coffee tables, round metal bedside tables and soft natural fabrics.

“We always focus on quality and environmental impact in our work,” said Nicola Keenan, interior designer and Co-founder of Boxx Creative. “All design details have been fully considered across the hotel. Carpet made from recycled fibres line the corridors and is inlaid within the sustainable, hand-crafted wooden flooring. Locally sourced and sustainable materials were used wherever possible and the build contractor was chosen for his energy saving principles and employment of workers within the area.”

Understated living area of the guestroom

Image credit: Mariell Lind Hansen

The majority of the furnishings were made completely bespoke by a talented artisan in his local workshop. The bedrooms feature wooden headboard panelling, metal framed open cabinetry storage and sturdy desks, each thoughtfully hand-crafted. The unique hand-made wooden flooring with individually controlled underfloor heating system, adds warmth and grounding to each room. Beautiful reeded glass panelled doors with curved frame detailing provide privacy to each en-suite and rippled wooden under-sink cabinets hang beneath attractive natural stone basins.

“Lighting was incredibly important to the client,” added Nicola Lindsell, also an interior designer and Co-founder of Boxx Creative. “We chose Italian designed, Flos feature pendants in each of the en-suites and Scandinavian inspired adjustable wall lights to create an appealing focal point in the bedrooms.”

Soft, minalist lobby area. Natural materials, such a stone, used in the casegoods and furniture

Image credit: Mariell Lind Hansen

“When we decided to redesign the hotel we were conscious of finding a suitable partner that matched our values and design style,” said the owner of the hotel. “We loved working with Boxx Creative as they had a great knowledge of suppliers and longterm sustainable options. Throughout the redesign they presented options which reflected our sustainability goals as well as our overall artistic vision for the hotel.”

The hotel has always been within the family and today the management has passed on to the third generation, with strong hope to continue and build upon that original idea, creating an authentic escape for locals and travellers alike.

Main image credit: Mariell Lind Hansen

Leading designers and architects spoke at the inaugural IDAS

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Leading designers and architects spoke at the inaugural IDAS

Taking place yesterday at Hilton London Tower Bridge, the Interior Design & Architecture Summit sheltered some interesting debates for designers and architects – all of which looped back to the elephant-in-the-room topic, sustainability in our hotels and cities…

The sold-out inaugural Interior Design & Architecture Summit (IDAS) took place yesterday at the Hilton London Tower Bridge.

The event, which allowed visionary designers and architects the ability to meet face-to-face with key-industry suppliers, included a speakership programme curated with the aim to put relevant topics under the spotlight.

IDAS 2019 started with an engaging presentation by Constantina Tsoutsikou, the Creative Director at HBA London, who discussed ‘Playfullness & Personality in Hospitality Design’. In addition to referencing key projects to exemplify her points, Tsoutsikou made reference to creative boundaries of modern designers. “Many designers have forgotten how to sketch by hand,” she told the audience. “If we rely on computers then we have forgotten a skill that is very valuable.”

“The reality is that the brief from hotels, investors and operators is never – or very rarely – to build a sustainable hotel.” – Constantina Tsoutsikou, the Creative Director at HBA London

Joining the visionary on the sofa, editor Hamish Kilburn followed the presentation with a live Q&A and it became clear that sustainability was to be a dominating topic to be explored throughout the day. “The reality is that the brief from hotels, investors and operators is never – or very rarely – to build a sustainable hotel,” Tsoutsikou explained. “When consumers start choosing hotels on this credential then developers will follow, and this is happening slowly.”

The designer explained how an ‘open window’ approach during projects – ensuring that the hotels on the boards evolve with ideas and themes throughout from concept to completion – has allowed her and her team to really inject each property they touch with ample personality and, of course, apt sense of place. “Take Hilton Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, for example. It has a dutch soul,” she explained. We enriched the level of comfort in the atrium by creating ‘islands’, each providing a distinct experience within the Axis Lobby: reception, lounge library, tech lounge and cocktail bar. Each area is defined by a carpet with a design inspired by the sediment-laden islands and waterways between coastal dunes on the southern coast of the Netherlands.

From one inspirational creative to another, Yasmine Mahmoudieh was invited to take the second speaker session of the day, exploring Hotels of the Future. Following extensive research into the changing behavior of modern hotel guests, Mahmoudieh explained how she has seen – from both a design and an architecture point of view – a large demand in creating intelligent flexible spaces. Mahmoudieh explained that the hotels of the future will house all facilities – for working, living and socialising – under one roof. “New ways of living and working are being developed all over the world,” she said. “Therefore, the need for social interaction has never been as prevalent. It is partly due to social media and the alienation and the loneliness, especially young people feel.”

Returning back to the theme of responsible design, Mahmoudieh, when joined on the sofa by Kilburn, started to highlight the importance of sustainability in architecture and explained the value of finding new eco-friendly materials. “I-MESH, for example, is an innovative material invented to assume a leading position in the field of solar protection indoors/outdoors,” she said. “Its physical, technological, formal characteristics together with its high aesthetical potential makes it eligible as a proper architectural material. It outclasses metallic grids for its design versatility and sustainability; it’s an easily custom made mesh in line with the architectural thought, with the story of the commissioning client, with the brand.”

Following an afternoon of face-to-face meetings with suppliers from the likes of Marco Corona, Hamilton Litestat (recommended supplier), Mitre Linen (recommended supplier), Gessi (recommended supplier), Cole & Sons and many more, the audience gathered for the final session of the day. In the panel discussion entitled ‘The Rising Ceiling of Creativity’, Kilburn was joined on the sofa by Moritz Waldemeyer (lighting designer and recommended supplier), Charles Leon (architect and Past-President, BIID), Gilly Craft (interior designer and President, BIID), Yasmine Mahmoudieh (interior designer/architect) and Robin Sheppard (CEO of Bespoke Hotels). Looking at the creative boundaries faced currently by the industry as well as ‘futuregazing’ towards the hotel room of the future, the panel debated consumer behavior, sustainability in design and how to create authentic installations within hotel design.

Following the success of yesterday’s event, details around next year’s IDAS will be announced shortly.

Media Partner: Future Constructor & Architect

Media Partner: Treniq

Former Metropolitan Police headquarters transformed into luxury hotel

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Former Metropolitan Police headquarters transformed into luxury hotel

The historic landmark building, which was developed by Galliard Construction, has been transformed into The Great Scotland Yard Hotel, a 153-key luxury lifestyle hotel…

The former Metropolitan Police headquarters in London’s Whitehall has been converted into the 153-key The Great Scotland Yard Hotel, which is operated by Hyatt under the group’s Unbound Collection brand and was developed by Galliard Construction.

Working in association with Galliard’s in-house team along with HBA, and EPR Architects, The Deluxe Group was appointed to manufacture and fit all front of house areas, for the high-end hotel, including double height vestibule, grand entrance lounge, concierge, main cocktail bar, palm court style lounge, whiskey bar/clubroom, signature restaurant, library, gymnasium, 120-seater main conference room/ballroom, meeting rooms and function/private dining rooms. The firm also produced the luxury hotel’s sample bedroom, as part of the multi-million-pound development, which is expected to open later this year.

The bespoke joinery project, which was worth £5.5 million was completed in just six months, with all work completed on schedule and within budget.“We are delighted to have been part of the team which has sympathetically developed this building to give a classic period interpretation, reflecting the immense history of such a landmark site,” Commented Colm Connolly, Director of The Deluxe Group. “We used the highest quality, detailed joinery and luxury finishes throughout all front of house and public areas, with individually themed areas providing a stylish homage  to the crime and policing history of the building.”

“Our commitment to delivering the best in bespoke joinery with the greatest attention to detail and client servicing, ensured the finished project was a true reflection of the client’s vision.”

Luxury public area

Image credit: Great Scotland Yard Hotel

Constructed in 1910, the iconic Edwardian building served as the Royal Military Police headquarters and the British Army Recruitment Office. It later became the Ministry of Defence Library until 2004.

The famed landmark is known for its rich history, providing guests the opportunity to stay in the location where Metropolitan police pursued some of the country’s most notorious criminals, including Jack the Ripper and the 40 Elephants all-female crime syndicate. Reflecting on this, the distinct historical character of the building has been preserved throughout the renovation, including maintenance of its original façade.

Main image credit: The Great Scotland Yard Hotel

Clerkenwell Design Week 2019 launches and new designs to bookmark

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Clerkenwell Design Week 2019 launches and new designs to bookmark

Ahead of Clerkenwell Design Week, which takes place from May 21 – 23, Hotel Designs takes a closer look at some of the major product launches and new designs to look forward to… 

Now that the sun has set on Italy’s capital following yet another successful Milan Design Week, Hotel Designs is looking ahead to identify many of the major product launches and new designs that are expected to be unveiled during Clerkenwell Design Week.

Set across seven exhibition spaces, CDW venues include Fabric, The House of Detention, St James Church and Spa Fields. Each venue reflects the unique nature of the culturally rich area, with leading UK and international companies exhibiting and launching new products between May 21 – 23. From luxury interiors to innovative lighting, emerging talent and the best of British brands, the exhibition spaces at CDW encompass every facet of design.

British Collection

British Collection is located in the Crypt of St James’s Church and showcases designers from all over the UK. For the fourth year, quality materials, design excellence and craft techniques will be championed in the striking setting. Iconic British furniture brand, ercol will exhibit its new VON collection by Icelandic designer based in New York, Hlynur V. Atlason which caters for three areas – work, home and play. Following an evident rise in apart hotels, Kitchen designers Pluck will launch Spoke, a new modular shelving unit inspired by Victorian bamboo furniture available in 11 laminate colours including a new palette of fresh yellow laminate with intense fumed oak.

Benchmark, the powerhouse of British craft will be presenting new upholstered versions of the OVO collection designed by Foster + Partners in an ebony finish. Hand & Eye Studio, meanwhilewill present the O-Beam, a highly versatile light that suits a myriad of spaces with a unique texture inspired by ceramics. Other renowned names in the British furniture industry exhibiting include Brixton-based cabinet makers West & Reid, Forest & Maker and Nathan Furniture.

Image credit: Adam Dale

Design Fields

Situated at the northern end of Clerkenwell, Design Fields in partnership with Kitchen Architecture showcases leading furniture, lighting and product design from around the world. Kitchen Architecture’s new outdoor kitchen range by Roshult’s is a unique interpretation of cooking and socialising outdoors. Italian furniture brand Tacchini has chosen to showcase PASTILLES in collaboration with Studiopepe at CDW for the UK launch. The collection comprises of small armchairs, ottomans and coffee tables, with soft, enveloping shapes that bring back childhood memories of sweets. This year sees Bauhaus taking centre stage for its 100 year anniversary and Thonet will celebrate all things Bauhaus at CDW. The company will present new interpretations of the side table series MR 515 by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and a new colour concept for the iconic Coffee House Chair 214, both by Studio Besau Marguerre. Other exhibiting companies include Danish company True North Designs, La Cividina and Ondarreta from Spain and SilentLab, all displaying innovation and clever use of technology in their designs.

Light

The former cold-store turned nightclub, Fabric aptly hosts Light, an exhibition dedicated to top international lighting brands within its cavernous brick vaults showcasing spectacular stand-alone installations. Exhibitors include NOVE lighting, which specialises in contemporary products using only natural, sustainable materials including cork from Portugal. Award-winning British brand Bert Frank will also present new lighting designs.

Swedish company ateljé Lyktan will present new lighting for both outdoor and indoor use, whilst Austrian based company XAL will present its revolutionary MOVE IT SYSTEM. Other exhibitors include Graypants, John Hollington Design, Lomas Furniture, Syska and ARKKI by Lovi.

Two women looking at lighting stand at exhibition

Image credit: Sophie Mutevelian

Elements

Design is in the detail – and details are showcased at Elements which brings together a leading selection of ironmongery, hardware, switch plates and architectural accessories within a street-market style pavilion on St John’s Square, becoming a go-to destination for designers looking for the perfect finish.

This year, Australian brand TIRAR will showcase beautifully tactile solid timber door furniture designed and made in Sydney, whilst Harbrine will launch Geo hardware, inspired by geometric forms in classical architecture. Designer Doorware will present the multi award-winning Monte Timber Collection. English ironmongers The Beardmore Collection will showcase contemporary products, whilst their master pattern maker will demonstrate the lost-wax casting process for visitors to witness one of the oldest forms of metal working. Aston Matthews will be exhibiting for the first time, showcasing a diverse range of taps and shower fittings including the Acme collection in scuffed brass and Alto in bronze. Other exhibitors confirmed for Elements include Dowsing & Reynolds, Hamilton Litestat (Hotel Designs’ Recommended Supplier)and Carrson International among others.

Detail

For fine craftsmanship and high glamour, Detail at The Order of St. John celebrates the most prestigious names in luxury interiors. The venues crypt, cloister garden and church are the perfect setting for the finest designs. This year at Detail, Sinclair Till will present Swedish company Kasthall’s latest rugs and carpets. Bespoke wallcovering company, Muraspec will present new products including the Eternity textile and Everglades grasscloth collection. Arte have created the Vanguard collection, inspired by abstract art from the 1950s. The company has also collaborated with Moooi to create a luxurious wallcovering collection, Extinct Animals, which first launched at Maison & Objet earlier this year. Each pattern is inspired by characteristics of one extinct animal from Moooi’s Museum of Extinct Animals. Anna Hayman Designs will present maximalist, luxury homeware inspired by the Bloomsbury movement and the Biba era of the swinging sixties. Other exhibitors include Danish furniture brand Cane-Line, Samuel Heath, Artwood and Altfield.

Platform

Platform showcases new design talent in the infamous surroundings of The House of Detention, a former remand prison which opens for the public during CDW. Junction Fifteen  will make its first appearance at CDW to showcase their new Morf Collection, a contemporary furniture collection made using sustainable materials and local craftsmanship. Trouping Colour’s latest exhibtion will showcase uncovered design talent chosen by a guest curator. Gwendoline Porte Design will present a modular concept RAILS, inspired by the form of railway tracks and the concept of ‘journey’. These limited edition functional sculptures are playful, graphic and ergonomic. They can be stacked on top of one another to form a column, multiplied to form a hexagonal, or separated to become a stool, chair, coffee table or side table. INTARC Design will showcase a modular furniture solution which allows for individual or collaborative working environments within a flexible working space, whilst Takumi Woodwork takes inspiration from Japan to create  handcrafted wooden furniture. Monkey Puzzle Tree will also be presenting a selection of unique designs in collaboration with fine artists. The business has a strong social conscience, paying the artists a generous royalty and supporting British manufacturing. Other exhibitors include Arte&Stili, Olenka, Pete Hill Designs, Decimal Design and Glas Design.

Image of colourful door on a church with the numbers 66 written

Image credit: Alistair Ramage

Project

Set within the beautiful grounds of St James Church, Project brings together a leading selection of contract furniture and surface brands from around the globe.  Project’s first outing was so successful it was extended to cover two linked pavilions and will be even bigger for 2019. AllSfär, a brand dedicated to improving workplace wellbeing will showcase a new range of acoustic products including Muffle and DIFFUSE, an innovative range of modular acoustic furniture. Sixteen3 will present a carefully curated collection of upholstered seating, both new and established. Flooring company Modulyss will present a range of carpet tiles for the contract market, whilst Hawk Furniture will exhibit at CDW for the first time, launching two new products perfectly suited to modern workspace interiors. Other exhibitors include Guialmi, Burgess Furniture, aeris, Amtico and Rigg.

In addition to the pop-up appearances, there are also, as ever, an abundance of new showrooms that are expected to arrive in Clerkenwell including Optelma, Vescom, Fredericia, Workstories, Duravit, Abstracta, Piemme Industrie Ceramiche S.P.A, Haiken Ltd, Savile Row Projects, Parkside and JPMA Global. New Clerkenwell resident, Fredericia will officially launch new pieces by the Danish American designer Jens Risom, in the UK for the first time during CDW. Luxury lighting brand Bert Frank will also open its first showroom in EC1 during CDW.

Hotel Designs is a proud media partner for Clerkenwell Design Week 2019. The team will be on the ground during the event – and if you would like to arrange a meeting, please tweet us @HotelDesigns.

Main image credit: Sophie Mutevelian

Morgan’s latest art installation portrays colourful ‘confusion of the world’

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Morgan’s latest art installation portrays colourful ‘confusion of the world’

Ahead of Clerkenwell Design Week 2019, Morgan unveiled ‘Alive in the Human Hive’, an art installation in its London showroom created in collaboration with artist David Shillinglaw… 

Last week, contract furniture design studio and manufacturer Morgan welcomed artists, interior designers, visionaries and the press to an exclusive viewing of its new art installation by David Shillinglaw at its Clerkenwell showroom.

Celebrating the spirit of collaboration and imagination, Morgan has been sharing its showroom with artists since opening in 2014, transforming the interior’s blank walls into thought provoking galleries and colourful canvasses.

Entitled ‘Alive in the Human Hive’, the new installation is a dynamic, large scale mural alongside a selection of Shillinglaw’s recent artworks.

Image credit: Morgan

“We all suffer and celebrate: appetites and desires, fears and misfortunes,” he said when describing his work. “How can I paint a picture of the world? The local and global landscape. Planet Earth is a place so strange, so full of beauty and wonder, mistakes and confusion. This confusion is very important to me, it feeds me and my work.”

The artist brings his energetic imagery to the Clerkenwell showroom for a second time, ever growing his relationship with Morgan. Since graduating from Central Saint Martins 17 years ago, he has been commissioned by Converse, The Dulwich Picture House and agnès b.

Beyond the UK, he has exhibited in galleries from Japan and China to The Gambia and Turkey. Evading categorisation, Shillinglaw’s work includes small handmade books, paintings, album covers and set design.

The installation will be on display throughout Clerkenwell Design Week, providing an eye-catching backdrop to an exciting series of events and product launches.

Morgan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Morgan

LIVE FROM MILAN: Pedrali unveils new collection

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
LIVE FROM MILAN: Pedrali unveils new collection

Pedrali has presented its latest collection at Salone del Mobile during Milan Design Week… 

Ten new products are currently being presented by Pedrali at the Salone del Mobile during Milan Design Week. The pieces are being unveiled alongside some of Pedrali’s more iconic collections, giving character to the Palace of Wonders.

Soul Outdoor – pure creativity
Design: Eugeni Quitllet

Soul Outdoor is a new, special evolution of the original version made in bent wood and launched by Eugeni Quitllet last year. The inspiration is the same that the Catalan designer defines as “a link between the concrete and the abstract, between the real world and that of dreams, between past and future… the unspoiled state of creation”. An armchair able to express an idea of uncontaminated and pure creativity, defined by its soul.
A curved aluminium tubular frame, with classical shapes but solid proportions, clasps an ergonomic seat in shaped teak slats, almost like an embrace. The contrast between the two outdoor materials and the aesthetic result of the aluminium shininess make this armchair innovative and original. The lines of Soul Outdoor are accentuated by the fluidity of aluminium, which ensures strength and lightness, while presenting a strong visual impact.
The Soul original version, suitable for furnishing elegant and refined indoor spaces, has a solid ash frame combined with an ergonomic polycarbonate seat, which appears suspended.

In January, Soul received the Special Mention of the German Design Award 2019 in the Excellent Product Design Furniture category.
Materials: Soul Outdoor with aluminium tube frame Ø30 mm and seat with teak slats. Soul with solid ash frame and polycarbonate seat.
Finishes: Soul Outdoor with polished, anodized or powder coated aluminium combined with teak seat with water-based oil treatment. Soul in bleached ash with a transparent or white seat; black ash with a transparent smoky grey or black seat; walnut stained ash with a transparent or white seat.

Colourful scene with chairs

Image credit: Pedrali Soul Outdoor

HÉRA – fluidity of shapes
Design: Patrick Jouin

Wood – the ultimate natural raw material – is the inspiration behind Héra, the new armchair designed by Patrick Jouin for Pedrali. In true respect for the material Jouin chose to preserve it by purifying this design and presenting an extremely refined, fluid form.
Available in ash or American walnut, this armchair embodies the concept of lightness, fusing it with comfort: the backrest, in three-dimensional bent plywood of 6mm thickness, has a remarkably elegant and ergonomic design, while its upholstered seat in polyurethane foam supported by elastic belts gives great cosiness.
The rectangular-section legs with round edge display an attention to detail that makes this item particularly suited for use in some of the world’s leading hotels and restaurants.

This armchair blends the Italian company’s know-how with the finest handcrafted joinery techniques; it is the result of years of interaction, research and close collaboration between the French designer and Pedrali.
The wooden elements of the ash version of Héra are FSC-certified and finished with organic water-based paints. The use of raw materials sourced from certified forests and of water-based paints made principally from plant-derived resins is a guarantee of the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
Materials: frame in solid ash or American walnut; three-dimensional bent plywood backrest of 6mm thickness; seat upholstered in flexible expanded polyurethane foam, with elastic belts.
Finishes: bleached ash or American walnut; upholstery in fabric or leather.

FOLK – now traditional chair
Design: CMP Design

Folk collection accentuates the quest for simplicity. Its friendly character, the warmth of ash wood, the soft and compact dimensions, human lines seamlessly convey the concept of a chair that speaks a universal language. The power of proportions is clearly evident in the time-tested forms, re-elaborated with the new possibilities offered by technology. A light, durable die-casted aluminium ring, becomes the structural and distinctive element which enables the piece to be easily disassembled for recycling purposes or to replace its components. The solid ash frame snugly embraces the aluminium ring that holds the seat, which is available in ash plywood, upholstery, or cane seat. This last version guarantees visual lightness and maximum durability thanks to the nylon yarn woven into the wicker material. The bent plywood backrest ensures total comfort and cosiness.

The collection includes a chair and a barstool in two heights (650 and 750 mm) with a footrest.
The wooden elements of Folk are FSC-certified and finished with organic water-based paints. The use of raw materials sourced from certified forests and of water-based paints made principally from plant-derived resins is a guarantee of the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
Materials: frame in ash, ring in die-casted aluminium. Seat in ash plywood, upholstery or natural cane seat, with grey nylon yarn woven into the wicker.
Finishes: bleached or black lacquered ash; aluminium, polished or powder coated in various colours. Fabric, leather or simil leather upholstery.

Jamaica – Italian bohème
Design CMP Design

Designed by CMP Design, the name of this collection was inspired by Bar Jamaica in Milan’s Via Brera, a legendary hub for intellectuals and artists in the twentieth century. The elegance of this chair speaks of an age in which art,
technology and the imagination came together to give a human face to the aesthetics of machines, reimagining a peaceful world with creative sociability.
The result is a modernist collection which reworks the classic forms of the past with a contemporary edge by changing the ways in which traditional materials of bent plywood and tubular metal are used. In Jamaica, the warmth of the ash plywood used on the legs, with a variable tickness, and the shell, featuring a central lumbar support, is masterfully paired with the tubular steel backrest, which adds a subtle chromatic element and is more curved in the armchair version. The shell can be fully padded and upholstered in fabric, optimising the comfort of the seat and allowing numerous customised options. The wooden elements of Folk are FSC-certified and finished with bio water-based paints. The use of raw materials sourced from certified forests and of water-based paints made principally from plant-derived resins is a guarantee of our company’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
Materials: legs and shell in ash plywood; steel tube Ø16 mm.
Finishes: bleached or black lacquered ash; powder-coated steel, antique brass, black nickel. Fabric or leather upholstery.

Image credit: Pedrali Jamaica

ELINOR TABLE – a classy hug
Design: Claudio Bellini

The Elinor collection is the result of the collaboration inaugurated last year with Claudio Bellini, leader designer of the office furniture contemporary scene. Elinor table springs from a new perception of space; the concept brings to mind the soft, curving lines of the namesake executive chair, conveying a refined yet contemporary image. The result is a product with premium aesthetic credentials that meets the needs of a constantly-changing market. Designed to furnish contemporary office spaces and domestic settings, the Elinor table has a simple yet distinctive design, with carefully refined details. The base is formed of two moulded elements of fixed dimensions, made from rigid polyurethane foam and upholstered in genuine leather; they support a table top in ultra-thin 6mm solid laminate, with rounded lacquered MDF support beneath it which conceals the steel structure. The Elinor tables can be adapted; the two elements of the base can be positioned in several ways to create different geometric arrangements, allowing a variety of aesthetic results. These moulded elements, when arranged in an asymmetric way, donates lightness to the setting thanks to the space between them, by ensuring great stability. The table tops can be square (1500 x 1500mm) or rectangular (1100 x 2000mm, 1100 x 2600mm, 1100 x 3000mm), always feature soft edges.
Also available with a central cable management for office environments.
Materials: top in solid laminate; support in MDF, structure in steel; base in rigid polyurethane foam upholstered in genuine leather.
Finishes: genuine or simil leather upholstery; tops in black, arabescato white or black marble Fenix, or in white compact full colour solid laminate.

BUDDY SOFA – friendly spirit
Design: Busetti Garuti Redaelli
The successful Buddy collection expands its horizons, enriched with a new furniture solution: a two- and three-seater sofa designed for the living room at home, but equally suitable for waiting rooms, informal office meetings, or lounge areas in the contract and hospitality sector.
While it still reflects the collection’s friendly, reassuring design, this sofa adds further comfort to the seat, thanks to a combination of four different densities of polyurethane foam supported by elastic belts, offering greater softness for a domestic environment in which one feels truly pampered.
The sofa is incredibly versatile: not only is it available with or without armrests, but several seating modules can be positioned together. Available in two sizes: 2480 x 900 x 735 mm and 1800 x 900 x 735 mm.
Version with removable covers available on request.
Materials: fireproof polyurethane foam in four different densities, upholstered in fabric, leather or simil leather; steel frame, aluminium legs Ø25 mm.
Finishes: powder coated aluminium or antique brass.

TRIBECA LOUNGE – Fasten your seatbelt!
Design CMP Design

Tribeca collection gains new elements, highlighting its fresh, dynamic, colourful and playful side. A lounge chair and a two-seater sofa which, like the chair, armchair and stool, evoke the comforting echoes of the past, offering a modern reinterpretation of the classic Sixties patio chairs made from steel and woven cord.
An outdoor icon, revisited through new materials: a webbing in vertically-woven extruded PVC with a nylon core that is truly durable, easy to clean and colourful, is combined with the solid tubular frame. Handcrafted with the highest attention to detail, this chair is incredibly soft and comfortable, and puts a contemporary twist on tradition with cutting-edge design and quality.
Materials: steel tube frame Ø20mm powder coated for outdoor use, back and seat in woven extruded PVC with nylon core, UV resistant.
Finishes: white, pink, red, terracotta, brown, blue, sage green.

REMIND – between mind & heart
Design Eugeni Quitllet

“Remind, or call back to mind – a concept rendered in Latin by the word ‘re-cordis’, meaning ‘to pass through the heart”. (Eugeni Quitllet)
Mind and heart have been both essential to create Remind: the heart in its creation and the mind in its production. While evoking the soft sinuous curves of wooden chairs from the late nineteenth century, Remind’s organic silhouette recalls “something never seen before”, a universal shape able to fit into any space and style of decor. The result is an innovative polypropylene armchair, in which each element is conceived to ensure total comfort and cosiness. The breathable texture makes it airy and even lighter. Made from injection-moulded polypropylene, the armchair is functional and versatile, perfect for both outdoor and indoor spaces.
REMIND PIXEL: It’s time for creative flair and personalisation. Now, the perforated backrest of Remind can be decorated with tiny colourful pixels made from polypropylene, so anyone can become an artist by creating infinite patterns: a number, a letter of the alphabet, an object, or simply a dash of contrasting colour.
Pedrali’s plastic furniture is made using premium raw materials and is recyclable and eco-compatible. Our polypropylene products are 100% recyclable, demonstrating the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
Materials: single-material chair in polypropylene charged with glass fiber; polyopropylene pixels.
Finishes: beige, sand, green, red, grey, black. Pink, red and black pixels.

TAMARA – roaring Twenties
Design Basaglia Rota Nodari

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of its lighting collection, coinciding with the thirtieth edition of Euroluce, Pedrali presents Tamara, a lamp that successfully blends style and elegance. This new suspension light takes inspiration from the shape of the headlights of early twentieth-century automobiles, paying homage to Tamara de Lempicka, modernist painter, icon of elegance and charm, who in her famous self-portrait is behind the wheel of a green Bugatti. Made from aluminium powder coated in various colours, Tamara stands out for its soft form, in which fleeting, rounded yet angular lines combine to make a versatile product. The light produced provides direct illumination of the surface beneath; however, an opening in the upper section of the shade, and the convex profile of the closer in opaline polycarbonate, allows a delicate band of light to shine onto the ceiling.

Tamara offers interesting compositions for geometric effects that give a unique look to any room.
Materials: aluminium diffuser Ø180 mm; opaline polycarbonate closer.
Finishes: powder coated aluminium with matte paint in various colours, or in satin brass or satin copper finishes; cable and ceiling rose available in black or white.

ARKI-TABLE adjustable – a perfect balance
Design Pedrali R&D

Arki-Table optimises its ability to meet the needs of flexibility and functionality of most modern working spaces, with a new version with the height-adjustable top. Suitable for meeting rooms and work stations, this table is able to adapt to his users and their needs, making real the concept of smart and dynamic office.
Two electric actuators, connected to a control unit and activated by two buttons placed under the top, move as one and allow to choose the ideal height of the top, from 740 to 1140 mm, to have maximum comfort during the workday.
Available in white or black full colour versions, Arki-Table adjustable has an ultra-thin 6mm solid laminate top with central cable management with a cover (150 x 600mm), steel trestle legs and an extruded aluminium support.

Top in solid laminate 6 mm in three dimensions: 1000 x 2000mm; 1000 x 2400mm; 1000 x 3000mm white, black or grey.
Materials: solid laminate top 6 mm; steel legs; extruded aluminium support.
Finishes: top in white full colour, black, in three different grey or in black Fenix.

LIVE FROM MILAN: First images of Swedish Design Moves’ exhibition

726 565 Hamish Kilburn
LIVE FROM MILAN: First images of Swedish Design Moves’ exhibition

The first images of Swedish Design Moves’ returning exhibition at Milan Design Week have been released…

Inspired by sustainable materials and the complex relationship between nature and technology, Swedish Design Moves’ HEMMA gone wild has launched during Milan Design Week. The exhibition, which takes place until April 14 in the Brera Design District, is a sequel to the 2018 exhibition, HEMMA – Stories of Home.

Curated and designed by Joyn Studio, HEMMA gone wild invites visitors to experience an abstract and playful vision of home, from hallway to living room and onwards through an unfolding scenography that showcases the best of Swedish design, drawn by curiosity and a mood of mystery. Home is a place of refuge and security – but it can also be a place from which to escape.

“Swedish landscape represents where we are from but it is only one element of our story. It was important to us that this dynamic flow of influence be reflected throughout HEMMA gone wild”, said Joyn Studio.

Image credit: Swedish Design Moves

The exhibition explores the complex relationship that we have with home and the influences of both nature and technology as they shape our experience of living and our connectedness with the changing world around us.

Just as a home is a reflection of a personality, all of the pieces within the exhibition have been selected for what they have to tell us and positioned with careful consideration to how they speak to each other. Among them are a number of the 82 new objects created for the Nationalmuseum’s NM& Collection – a unique collaboration between 32 Swedish designers and 20 manufacturers, unveiled late last year. These include the Curve lamp for the museum’s library designed by Front and produced by Zero, Sand dinnerware designed by Carina Seth Andersson in collaboration with Design House Stockholm, the Ateljé dining table designed by Matti Klenell (artistic director of the NM& project) and produced by Gärsnäs, and the Botero chair, also designed by Matti Klenell in collaboration with Peter Andersson and produced by Källemo.

Other featured designers include Monica Förster, one of Sweden’s most acclaimed designers who is represented with her Retreat sofa for Fogia, which also brings pieces by TAF Studio and fashion designer Lars Nilsson who has collaborated with Vandra Rugs on a number of projects including Snö & Kol which brings Vandra Rugs to exhibit at Milan Design Week this year for the first time.

“Swedish design finds its unique expression in deeply felt values of equality and accessibility paired with innovation and creativity – all reflected by the multitude of talented designers and brands invited to participate in this year’s exhibition in Milan“, said Michael Persson Gripkow, Brand & Strategic Marketing Officer at Visit Sweden and project manager for Swedish Design Moves.

Sustainability is a driving influence for Sweden’s designers and manufacturers. Two leading design brands to highlight in this regard are Bolon, which launched in 1949 with rugs produced from textile waste and today uses 33 per cent recycled materials in its flooring products, and acoustic product producer Baux, which was founded on the belief that building materials should be sustainable, surprisingly functional and remarkably beautiful.

In addition to these designers and brands, the breadth of design talent across furniture and lighting will be represented by established design brands Asplund, Blå Station, Gemla, and Tre Sekel and some of the country’s newest studios and brands: Massproductions, Myltha, Pholc and Studio Mia Cullin. Bringing Swedish design to every element of the home, other brands exhibited include Electrolux, office design brands EFG and Ogeborg, bathroom specialists Westerbergs, urban design company Nola and wood-fired bathtub manufacturer Hikki.

Emerging talents throughout HEMMA gone wild will be accentuated by the inclusion of the work of students of Beckmans College of Design and HDK Academy of Design and Crafts and the winners of the Swedish national award for young designers (Ung Svensk Form), many of whom will show graduation and prototype projects.

HEMMA gone wild is an exhibition of contrasting colour, light, material and sound as well as of feeling.

Main image credit: Swedish Design Moves

IN THE FACTORY with Knightsbridge Furniture

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
IN THE FACTORY with Knightsbridge Furniture

To stitch together how Knightsbridge makes its contract furniture, editor Hamish Kilburn travels up to Bradford in West Yorkshire to step inside the modern factory that chooses to do things the traditional way…

Priding itself on being 100 per cent British-made is something that has become somewhat of a unique selling point for contract furniture company Knightsbridge.

Giving ‘in-house’ a whole new meaning, every item that has a Knightsbridge logo on it was conceptualised, sketched, prototyped and produced in the hearty West Yorkshire town of Bradford – and has been for 80 years.

In an average week, around 700 items of furniture are made in the Victorian factory – and all pieces start as nothing more than a stacked load of timber or Birch plywood, which is imported from Russia and Europe. While many factories internationally have chosen to use automated machinery to carve their frames, Knightsbridge is among the minority that still, to this day, cuts its materials by the hands of skilled workers. “Many of our employees come through the apprenticeship scheme, which is something we are very proud of,” said Craig Weston, Operations Manager at Knightsbridge. “Because everything at Knightsbridge is handmade and hand-cut, the role in the factory therefore requires a very specific set of skills, which isn’t easy to teach just anyone.”

Stack of timber

Image credit: Knightsbridge Furniture

As we walk from process to process, I notice that an arm of a chair starting to take form. “This is one of the most difficult pieces we make,” says Weston who points to the worker on the cutter who is meticulously carving out detailed incisions. “As a strategy, we ensure that we always have a higher stock of the items that are more complex to produce.” With high demand for Knightsbridge products and limited facilities, this is a resourceful method that reduces the possibility of delays in the manufacturing process.

Contract chair in the process of being upholstered

Image credit: Knightsbridge Furniture

Once each frame is cut, sanded, assembled, tinted, polished and dried, it is then ready for the upholstery process. On average, it takes the team at Knightsbridge approximately one hour to upholster a typical sofa. As the demand in hotel interior design renovations increases, the company also offers a reupholstery service whereby it will reupholster any piece of furniture (even if it’s not a Knightsbridge product). The cluster of seamstresses working is impressive and the decision to keep a cap on fabric stock is reassuring. “To reduce waste and save space, we only stock as much material as we need in this area,” Weston explains. “What’s more, although we have colour and fabric options, we will match any colour the client wants.”

Seamstress working

Image credit: Knightsbridge Furniture

Elsewhere in the factory, away from the main production line, is the design and development team. Led by Director Jason Brown, who lives and breathes by the ethos that you can’t turn down the volume on creativity, the soul of the factory is my home-from-from during my visit. “I have every furniture designers’ dream job, right?” laughs Brown. “It’s such a privilege being able to have all the tools, kit and skills to be able to prototype products in-house.” Brown is a man after my own heart who seems to wear many hats in his role. “The most obvious element to my role is that I sketch and design the future collections,” he explains. “But what most people perhaps don’t know is that my team, which is magic by the way, also have to provide the factory workers with all the technical drawings when we start producing a new product. As you can imagine, there is no margin for error in this department. We are always looking for new ways to be innovative, while being mindful of time, quality and cost for the overall business.” For Brown, like all great designers, thinking creatively and thinking commercially are difficult plates to spin at the same time. “It’s a challenge, but that’s why I love it,” he adds.

Despite Knightsbridge having the ultimate in-house design dream team, led by a visionary who clearly leads within the pack, the company is also proud to work with outside influences when designing future products. The latest collaborations to come out the factory include the likes of John Coleman, Sean Dare, Jim Hamilton and David Fox.

Knightsbridge is a modern company like no other. Proud of its heritage and confident to push boundaries, it seems as if this British-born company has all the materials, workforce and ideas – all stored under one roof – to lead the contract furniture market into another 80 successful years of business.

Milan Design Week 2019: What’s on

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Milan Design Week 2019: What’s on

This week, hundreds of designers from all corners of the world will descend onto Europe’s soulful design hub that is Milan for the Salone del Mobile furniture fair, the Euroluce lighting show and other events happening within the city walls. Editor Hamish Kilburn cuts through the noise to identify what to bookmark over in Milan…

Design lovers are arriving in Milan today to attend what is arguably the most significant event in the design calendar.

From April 8 – 14, the Italian city  centre transforms into a creative hub that witnesses product launches, emerging trends, which this year are expected to be themed around health and wellbeing, bringing the outdoors indoors and creating closer human interaction.

Salone del Mobile, which is arguably the main event of the week, will be split into three categories this year there are: Classic – Tradition in the Future, drawing on the values of tradition, craftsmanship and skill in the art of making furniture and objects; Design – products that transmit functionality, innovation and a great sense of style and finally xLux – the section you’ll want to spend most of your time at – the luxury section devoted to timeless objects in a contemporary key.

Meanwhile, Euroluce the International Lighting Exhibition. The show, which has run every two years since 1976, presents the most innovative solutions in the field of light for interiors and exteriors.

As the shows open their doors, here are a few events to bookmark:

Sebastian Herker – Milan man of the moment

Image credit: Sebastian Herkner/Freifrau

Hot off the heels of becoming Maison Objet’s Designer of the Year, Sebastian Herkner is moments away from launching new products in Milan. On the both upcoming shows Salone del Mobile and Euroluce in Milan, the studio will showcase new products for brands like Ames, Dedon, Emu, Freifrau, Gloster, Pulpo and Thonet as well as designs for our new partner Vibia.  The studio will also present collections for Schönbuch, Wittmann and Zanotta.

Turri – architectural furniture

Image credit: Turri

The furniture company has confirmed that it will launch a new collaboration with architect Daniel Libeskind who will be on the company’s stand at Salone del Mobile on Wednesday April 10 to discuss the new project with the company. Until then, the furniture company thats motto is ‘The Italian way to Beauty’ is keeping extremely tight-lipped about what we can expect.

Swedish Design Moves – HEMMA goes wild

Image credit: Swedish Design Moves

Swedish Design Moves returns to Milan this year with HEMMA gone wild – a sequel to the 2018 exhibition, HEMMA – Stories of Home.

Curated and designed by Joyn Studio, HEMMA gone wild invites visitors to experience an abstract and playful vision of home, from hallway to living room and onwards through an unfolding scenography that showcases the best of Swedish design, drawn by curiosity and a mood of mystery.

Humanscale – Human touch

Todd Bracher, long-time collaborator with Ergonomic leaders Humanscale, and Studio TheGreenEyl have designed an immersive, interactive experience. Bodies in Motion will invite visitors in to explore human movement, as represented through dramatic beams of light. The display can be seen in the historic vaults located under Milano Central Station, as part of the third edition of Ventura Centrale.

USM

The Swiss furniture innovator USM will be returning with their mega-structure at the Fair in collaboration with UNStudio. Visit their stand (A07/B06) in hall 20. If you’re visiting on Tuesday, CEO & Great-Grandson of USM’s founder Alex Schaerer will be on the stand, as will Ben van Berkel, UNStudio founder and Ren Yee, Head of Design/Strategies, UNStudio. If you would like an interview with Alex, Ben or Ren let us know and we will help make arrangements.

Minotti 

Returning to the fair, the Italian furniture company in familiar surroundings will launch its 2019 Collection of luxury and timeless pieces. The premium furniture brand, which was Hotel Designs’ Exclsuive Style Partner for Meet Up London, will unveil all on its stand. Minotti will premiew the new collection, coordinated entirely by Rodolfo Dordoni, which also includes some products designed by Christophe Delcourt. The collection is a return to its roots, but with a vision of the future, to innovate while staying true to our style and our traditions. The inspiration for a collection marked by an intriguing layering of influences and styles, for a timeless elegance that is nonetheless strikingly unexpected.

Brodie Neill – Plastic in the ocean

Image credit: Brodie Neill

Following the sustainable Gyro table – a circular table featuring a top made from inlaid fragments of recycled ocean plastic, designer Brodie Neill will launch yet another public statement to highlight climate change. He will unveil a contemporary hourglass filled with microplastic instead of sand during Milan Design Week in order to highlight the issue of ocean plastic pollution.

Nendo – Breeze of Light

The Japanese studio Nendo will present a new lighting display entitled Breeze of Light. This installation, in collaboration with Daikin, evokes the sensation of a comfortable breeze by the movement of light and shadows, not actual air. A virtual flower garden is illuminated using 115 individually-controlled spotlights directing light on 17,000 flower-shaped polarising films. Changes in shadow intensity of the flowers produce the effect of a breeze passing through the garden.

Tom Dixon

Going against the grain, Tom Dixon took the decision not be showcasing products at Salone del Mobile. Instead, he’s opening his own restaurant and his furniture, lighting and accessories will feature throughout the restaurant’s dynamic mise en scene.

Salone Satellite 

Exhibition hall

Image credit: Salone del Mobile

As Hotel Designs continues to support young emerging designers, the Salone Satellite is to place to be if you want to discover new talent. Back for its 22nd edition, this year’s theme ‘Food as Design Objects is aimed to challenge designers to debate climate change and

Ahead of the event, Claudio Luti, President of the Salone del Mobile, had this to say: “At this particular time of great success for Milan, it is important to consolidate the Salone del Mobile’s powersof attraction, offering its visitors not just a wide range of products, but, especially, opportunities for international interface and for reflection on the relationship between creativity and business.”

Milan, the moral capital of a thriving design hub, has opened its doors as designers, architects flood in. The small city with a large personality is ready to witness many moments that are about to written and no-doubt go down in design history.

Main image credit: Salone del Mobile

BRITISH STYLE: Questioning design like Ilse Crawford

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BRITISH STYLE: Questioning design like Ilse Crawford

To launch the new chapter of Hotel Designs, Hamish Kilburn investigates how one woman, her editorship and her questions over convention helped to change modern international hotel design by challenging the very foundations it sits on…

Every now and then, the world is introduced to a design icon who, through making their visions into reality, helps to shift attitudes by challenging conventional forms.

For Ilse Crawford, the founding Editor-In-Chief of British Elle Decoration, the design world was somewhat lacking reference of everyday movement when she decided to step into the shoes of her designer readers.

In 1997, a decade on from founding British Elle Decoration, Crawford asked the world to “liberate your senses and change your life” when she published her first book, Sensual Home, which mapped out how the living environment can engage us sensually as well as visually from the perspective of sight, sound, taste, touch and smell. And was, for Crawford, the start of a new journey.  “Writing the book was the ‘ah-hah’ moment, because it wasn’t the current understanding of design,” she explained in the Netflix documentary, Abstract: The Art of Design. “The days of being a two-dimensional person were over.”

The defiant leap from narrator to creator came one year later after she signed off as Editor-In-Chief. Having completed her mission to launch a contemporary magazine for a wide audience, Crawford worked for Donna Karan and getting her hands dirty, she became a maker. Crawford’s first hotel interior design brief was presented to her immediately after she left Elle Decoration when she was asked to convert a stately home for Nick Jones of Soho House into what we now know of as Babington House. “Nick originally wanted this place to look and feel like a stately home, but I was very clear that that’s the last thing it should be,” Crawford explained in Abstract: The Art of Design. “My proposal was that it should be a very informal place where you could just treat as if it was your own, like a family house of a friend where the parents had gone away and left the key the drinks cabinet.” Breaking the rules of the time, Crawford’s design stole the headlines and her journey as an interior design began.

“The project saw the transformation of a former industrial building in the Meatpacking district into a 27-key design hotel.”

From the rural British countryside to the bustling scene of Manhattan, Crawford’s skillful and sensitive approach was called upon to create the first outpost of Soho House outside the UK. The project saw the transformation of a former industrial building in the Meatpacking district into a 27-key design hotel, including bars, a restaurant, cinema and rooftop pool. Soho House New York opened to become the definitive third space for the transatlantic media crowd.

Her aim as an interior designer is to put human needs and desires at the centre of all that she does. Working in commercial and residential design, and blurring the lines between both, Crawford has changed many environments for the better of those who use them. Ett Hem Hotel was a conversion project of a former arts and crafts building. The 12-key guesthouse is described by Crawford as “a place to stay for the modern traveller, a home-from-home, where flexibility of space and function is central to the hotel’s operation,” she says. “There is no division between front and back of house – anything can happen anywhere at any time.”

Residential style in the hotel

Image caption/credit: Ett Hem Hotel. Interiors by Ilse Crawford

As someone who truly lives and breathes the industry in which she used to curate on the pages of Elle Decoration, Crawford wears many hats as a modern designer. In her own admission to Interior Design magazine, she confessed that “the line between my work and life is thin to non-existent.”  Working from her London studio, which is directly below her home, Crawford’s knowledge in interiors has allowed her to extend her portfolio to include product design. The Sinnerlig Collection for IKEA includes 30 pieces of of furniture, lighting and tabletop collection. “They explore natural materials and are simple,” Crawford explains on her website. “They are helpful, background pieces, not showstoppers.” Tactile materials such as cork, ceramic, glass, seagrass and bamboo appealed in the design concept because they felt as good as they looked.

“Maison&Objet awarded Crawford the prestigious title of Designer of the Year 2016.”

The Together Table was another design that challenged existing products on the market. Confronting the design of conventional four-cornered tables, Crawford simply rounded the edges of the table, which as a result naturally invited people to move around it more freely.  The Ilse Sofa was the result of a collaboration with British furniture brand George Smith. The height and depth of the product’s arms and back were calculated and tested to ensure that the sofa supports as many sedentary habits of modern life. “We like to think of it as a room within a room,” Crawford explains when describing the tactile experience.

Beige modern, long, thin table

Image caption/credit: The Together Table by Ilse Crawford

Two years after she was awarded an MBE in recognition for her work in design, Maison&Objet awarded Crawford the prestigious title of Designer of the Year 2016. Since then, the modest designer has continued to evolve the hospitality landscape with completing projects such as The Lounge Plaza 66, Cathy Pacific’s iconic airport lounge in Hong Kong and the warm and inviting home-from-home that is Bukowskis.

Crawford’s philosophical visions to challenge the norm leaves a clear path for young designers who aspire, like her, to make a difference through design. As the founder of the department of Man and Wellbeing at the Design Academy Eindhoven, Crawford’s mission as a visionary is explained on her website as “nurturing a new generation of students to always question why and how their work improves the reality of life.” Her philosophy to improve the future through considered design is what makes her the leader she undoubtably is today. Her work – and her working style – is a simple, effortless reflection of the questions she asks of the designs of today and the possibilities that are garnered by second guessing what the future should look and feel like.

Crawford, an ever-evolving icon of British and international design, has metaphorically cut the ribbon to launch Hotel Designs’ new website by being the subject of the first editorial feature of the title’s new era. The newly launched slogan “defining the point of international design” is a pledge from the editorial team to its readers to cut through the noise to publish conversation starters that will filter into many debates on the hotel design scene that we all know and love. That conversation starts here, with a question that Crawford asks herself when confronted with a new project: “How can design strategically make things better?”

Main image credit: Ilse Crawford/StudioIlse

FEATURE: “Industrial bathrooms are here to stay,” say bathroom experts

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FEATURE: “Industrial bathrooms are here to stay,” say bathroom experts

Following ISH this month, PR and marketing firm Esprit breaks down why industrial bathrooms are not going anywhere soon in international hotel design…

Historically a 20th Century style, the industrial trend has a new look and feel.

No longer relegated to offices or loft style apartments, industrial design elements can be seen all over the home even in the bathroom.

“This somewhat harsh, gritty, uniquely urban, style has evolved.”

The original industrial trend has been around for years; but this somewhat harsh, gritty, uniquely urban, style has evolved.  The most obvious aspects such as rough textures, weathered surfaces, concrete, exposed brick and pipe work can look a little harsh in the home.  The use of muted and matt colours, such cool greys, blacks and anthracite work well, helping to achieve a “softer” Industrial look.

The use of metals including steel and aluminium, in both product design and construction, sets the scene, whilst dim lighting and brushed metal drains with matching bathroom accessories completes the industrial vibe.

Image credit: Kaldewei

The versatile, Nexsys Shower Solution is an innovative, award-winning four-in-one system which can be installed immediately, there are 17 different surface colour options including Cantania Grey Matt and City-Anthracite Matt, these can then be combined with five different waste channels variants.

The delicate filigree design of the free standing Miena washbasin made from a single layer of Kaldewei’s superior steel enamel perfectly complements an industrial style bathroom, due to its simplistic form and shape.

The industrial look in the bathroom can be further enhanced with a radiator from VASCO.  Providing a combination of energy efficiency and warmth VASCO radiators are available in variety of contemporary colours and textures; including Metallic Grey, Grey Aluminium, Anthracite Grey and Slate Grey.

Select from edgier, textured radiators such as the Bryce or the Carre which can be supplied as a curved radiator and further endorses this trend with its narrow bar design.

Image caption: Happy D2 from Duravit

Dark, industrial colour accents never fail to impress. By adding a contemporary, monochrome element, AQATA’s Matte Black Collection is a new addition to their successful Design Solutions range, available on DS400 shower screens and DS440 double entry shower screens. As well as matte black profiles and steady bars, there are also three glass patterns; grid, horizontal and border designs available.

In collaboration with sieger design, Duravit’s latest Happy D.2 Plus series reflects current industrial trends in colours, design and finishes. The above-counter washbasins striking individuality comes from the new striking two-tone colour variants of Anthracite Matt and glossy White. The colour concept of Happy D.2 Plus extends to toilets and bidets, with the interior of the toilets finished in glossy Anthracite for optimum hygiene.

Duravit’s Stonetto shower tray is designed to give the appearance of stripped back, water–worn stone, available in lighter shades, when used in anthracite or concrete gives the bathroom an edgier industrial feel.

Image of various industrial products from the range

Image credit: Unidrain

Finally, for maximum impact, Unidrain’s award-winning Reframe Collection brings together the finishing touches to an urban bathroom with their Scandinavian inspired designer accessories including; soap shelf, towel bar, toilet brush. The Reframe Collection mixes sleek design with metallic tones, available in five different colours including; Black, Copper, Brass and Brushed and Polished Stainless Steel.

Hotel Designs will be focusing the spotlight on the bathrooms this May and is currently acccepting editorial ideas. To submit your news/feature ideas, please email the editorial desk.

Main image credit: Aqata

Interior Design & Architecture summit welcomes Domkapa as event partner

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The contract upholstery company Domkapa has been confirmed as a partner for Interior Design & Architecture Summit, which takes place next month, April 29, at Hilton London Town Bridge…

With just more than one month until the event debuts, Interior Design & Architecture Summit (IDAS) has confirmed Domkapa as a partner.

IDAS is a one-day event that is designed to connect senior executives working within the sector with product and service suppliers for face-to-face meetings and business networking.

The Summit aims to support the design and architecture sector with a unique platform to help create long-lasting and mutually beneficial business connections.

As part of its partnership with the event, Domkapa will provide the furniture for the seminars and panel discussion. “As a leading upholstery supplier, we are thrilled to come on board as a partner for Interior Design and Architecture Summit,” said Barbara Neto, International Markets Manager at Domkapa. “We look forward to all the debates at The Summit and showing designers and architects our latest products.”

To view the full speaker programme for IDAS, click here.

How to attend IDAS

If you are an architect or interior designer and would like to attend the Summit, there are very limited spaces available. Please contact Kerry Naumburger on k.naumburger@forumevents.co.uk – or click here to book your place.

If you are a supplier to the hospitality industry looking to meet the top architects and interior designers, contact Victoria Petch on v.petch@forumevents.co.uk – or click here to book your place.

Click here for more information about IDAS.

Media partner: Future Contractor & Architect

CDW 19 PREVIEW: Morgan to launch new collaborative projects

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CDW 19 PREVIEW: Morgan to launch new collaborative projects

Morgan, contract furniture designer and manufacturer, will showcase two new collaborative projects at its London showroom (1 Dallington Street, EC1V 0BH) during Clerkenwell Design Week from May 21 – 23, 2019…

Morgan is gearing up for Clerkenwell Design Week where it will unveil the result of two authentic collaborations with outside designers.

The architectural Rakino lounge collection, by designer Tim Rundle, juxtaposes soft sculpted upholstery with a strong, low line frame. The clean linear structure emphasises crisp timber detailing born from a dialogue between the precision of CNC manufacturing and a handcrafted finish. The collection will offer two lounge chairs and a selection of coffee tables.

Following Mark McClure’s bold and dynamic installation at the company’s showroom two years ago, Morgan has collaborated for a second time with the artist to create a selection of new feature coffee tables for the Goodwood collection. Pushing the boundaries between furniture and art, the tables are characterised by strong geometric inlay tops with splashes of brass.

Also on display will be the recent additions to the Rio table collection. Combining skills and expertise with architect Mehran Gharleghi of studio INTEGRATE, the expanded collection of tables includes geometric 3D printed components. The first of its kind within the sector to include this cutting edge technology with a commercially viable price point, the sophisticated and singular collection is not to be missed.

The new products will sit alongside a complete showroom transformation, following the theme ‘Plant a Seed’. Morgan has invited artist David Shillinglaw back to its showroom, following the company’s first collaboration in 2015.

“Flowing across the front of the showroom will be an organic lighting installation by Tom Raffield”

‘Alive in the Human Hive’ promises to be an energetic and colourful large-scale art installation that will fill the double height main wall. The piece will be a representation of the human landscape, informed by both local and global environments and the ways we experience the planet. Recent smaller canvases by David will also be up for grabs.

Flowing across the front of the showroom will be an organic lighting installation by Tom Raffield, made up of Aram and Quill pendant and wall lights as well as a spectacular Flock chandelier, inspired by the organic shapes, movements and sequential patterns that surround us.

Launch party, live music and more

Join Morgan at its buzzing Clerkenwell showroom for a number of social and thought-provoking events throughout the week.

Tuesday will include a panel talk by Double Decker curators Wilhelm Finger and Melita Skamnaki, entitled ‘Redefining Hotel Art’, on how they challenge stereotypes in hospitality. The talk will lead into Morgan’s annual product launch party with tasty canapés and live music.

On the Wednesday, Tom Raffield himself will be giving a talk entitled ‘Taking Inspiration from Nature’. During the talk, Tom will share his passion for the organic forms and structures found in the natural world, and why they play such an important role in the brand’s designs, materials and signature curved aesthetic.

Morgan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Orangebox refocusing hotel smartworking at CDW 19

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Leading workplace furniture brand Orangebox is preparing to exhibit new smart workplace solutions ideal for the modern hotel at Clerkenwell Design Week 2019…

With the aim to refocus smartworking, while identifying and examining disruptive technologies, furniture brand Orangebox is using innovation to design the workplace of the future. Demand has never been higher  for flexible and adaptable public areas within the modern hotel, and Orangebox has year after year offered freshly designed furniture for the workplace that is productive, innovative – and above all, flexible.

For Clerkenwell Design Week 2019, Orangebox will present an updated smartworking landscape designed to address the challenges and opportunities of disruptive technologies in order to meet the needs of 2020 and beyond.

birdseye view of workplace

Image credit: Orangebox

During the three-day festival of design and innovation in London, the company will showcase several new products framed by a clever smartworking narrative. As expected from previous years, it will also share its latest research and insight, with Jim Taylour, Head of Design & Wellbeing, and Nathan Hurley, key member and research & insight team, presenting their latest projects in a series of talks. These talks will be entitled:

The Magical Wellbeing Mystery Tour – Jim Taylour and James Pack will present an immersive session that explores some facts and myths that surround the largest revolution in office real estate.

SmartLearning: How iGen’s educational experience will impact the new workplace
– Nathan Hurley will lead a presentation on the changing world of higher education and the impact that iGen students will have on the contemporary workplace.

If you are interested in attending either of these presentations and/or would like some more information, please email events@orangebox.com to reserve your place.

Orangebox is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Orangebox

MEET UP LONDON: 3 weeks to go

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Calling all designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers: Meet Up London takes place on March 28 at Minotti London… 

Designers, architects and hoteliers can purchase tickets here.
Suppliers can purchase tickets here.

There are just three weeks to go until the industry will gather together for Hotel Designs’ Q1 networking event, Meet Up London.

Taking place on March 28 at Minotti London, the evening event is designed to bridge the gap between designers, architects, hoteliers and key-industry suppliers.

Meet Up London will be attended by more than 200 hospitality professionals. As well as providing the perfect networking stage for professionals who are working on the hotel design scene, the event will also pay special attention to young designers as it will unveil Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30 (the shortlist can be accessed here).

The latest names to the guest list include designers, directors and 30 Under 30 shortlisted finalists from the likes of B3 Designers, Yasmine Mahmoudieh Design Studio, Scott Brownrigg and M Studio.

They will join designers and directors from leading studios such as Richmond InternationalHBA LondonGenslerJestico + WhilesGoddard LittlefairProject Orange and WATG who are among the names that are also confirmed to attend.

Agenda for Meet Up London: 

 

How to attend Meet Up London 

If you are an interior designer, architect, operator or hotelier and would like to attend Meet Up London, click here to book your place.

If you are a supplier to the hospitality industry looking to attend the event, contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or on z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk – or click here to book your place.

For more information about becoming a Hotel Designs Meet Up sponsor, contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or email z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk.

Naumi Hotel Singapore launches Gen-Z design initiative

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With the aim to work with young designers in order to achieve a fresh perspective design, Naumi Hotel Singapore is partnering with local businesses on a new student design initiative to unveil at Singapore Design Week 2019

Naumi Hotel has partnered with local design businesses to nurture the next generation of creatives. The project is a satellite programme partner of Singapore Design Week 2019. Inviting students from local design institutions to compete, the Singaporean owned hotel has tasked interior design students to create a brand-new concept for one of their hotel rooms every quarter. Named Project #210, after the room number, the up and coming talents will have a blank canvas to create their vision. Supported by Goodrich Global, XTRA, Guerilla X and Matsushita, the esteemed local businesses will work closely with the students during the process and provide all the materials required for this project. Set to be the next ‘Instagram-worthy’ space in Singapore, the pop-up room will be in addition to the current inventory of four designer-themed rooms available at the hotel.

Speaking about the project Founder and Managing Director, Naumi Hotels, Surya Jhunijhnuwala said “At Naumi Hotels we have always had an ethos of creating unique experiences through art and design so I am delighted to launch this initiative. We are honoured to give the next generation of aspiring designers the opportunity to transform our hotel. Each design will transport us into the imagination of its creator, offering their own fresh take. Education and giving back to the community are key pillars for all of our hotels, and I can’t wait to see this project come to life.”

As the main partner of Project #210, Chief Operating Officer of Goodrich Global, Yasushi Furukawa said: “As Asia’s leading supplier of interior furnishings, we are delighted to be part of this initiative with Naumi Hotels. Our company philosophy is to be positive agents of change whether it’s supporting education programmes or helping the next generation of designers realise their dreams. With this in mind we are proud to partner on such a fantastic project, which hopes to give nurture Singapore’s newest design talents.”

The first team to win the coveted opportunity is Nurul Hanis, Nia Astira, Nuri Khairiyyah and Tracy Lim, who are final-year Retail & Hospitality Design students from Temasek Polytechnic. The opening concept for Project 210, which will launch during Singapore Design Week (March 4 – 17 2019) and is inspired by Tyler The Creator, a creative personality in music, TV and fashion.

The concept hopes to catch the attention of the next generation of travellers with its bold style using colour-blocking, lightings and designer furnishing from Muuto. Much of Tyler The Creator’s work is taken from 1970s street style, hip hop and skate culture, and a result the designers are looking to create a vibrant, and above all, playful space.

Naumi Hotels was founded and established in Singapore by Surya Jhunjhnuwala and to date, still remains a family business and a brand synonymous with modern luxury and prime locality. The hotels’ USP is in design, focusing on a non- cookie cutter style that reflects each vibrant city. Every hotel from Auckland to Singapore features artwork from local and international talents, creating a living gallery for guests within the hotel.

Hotel Designs will also be bridging the age gap in international hotel design by unveiling its 30 Under 30 at Meet Up London on March 28 at Minotti London. There are limited tickets available and can be purchased here.  

Sustainable design transforms London boutique hotel

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Each guestroom of the newly renovated Fuller’s Fox & Goose has been consciously designed to allow for the highest degree of sustainable and ethical sourcing…

Interior architects Sibley Grove has completed work on a collection of hotel guestrooms for the brewery, Fuller, Smith & Turner at The Fox & Goose business hotel in Ealing, London.

All products and materials used in the project have been assessed on five fundamental principles: aesthetic quality, build quality, value, environmental impact and social impact. The bespoke joinery has been designed for disassembly making it easier to reuse the materials in the future. Meanwhile, the upholstery and dressing items have been created using fabric with recycled content from mills in the UK or mainland Europe. Cradle to Cradle CertifiedTM products have been used throughout, including suspended ceilings from Armstrong, Tiles from Mosa and carpets from Ege Carpets.

Sibley Grove strongly believes that design should be a vehicle for positive change – both environmentally and socially. “A chair that looks great, is affordable and well made, but achieves this through being manufactured in a factory with poor employment rights and a lack of safety equipment is a failed product,” says Sibley Grove director, Jeremy Grove. “Likewise, a product from a great factory using sustainable materials that is poorly made and overpriced is an equally failed product.”

“We’re making a continuous effort to tackle some of the issues that are rife in the design industry.

“In today’s world, regardless of budget, it’s unacceptable to knowingly create stuff that is harmful to the environment or reliant on an exploited labour market. Cradle to Cradle is a great system for designers to measure and manage the impact of the products they specify as it takes into consideration material health, renewable energy, water stewardship and social fairness.”

Image credit: Sibley Grove

Key materials used in the project:

Major suppliers include Castlebrook (furniture), Mosa, Ege, Hansgrohe, Armstrong and recommended supplier Chelsom Lighting.

Reading lighting on side of headboard

Image caption: Chelsom Lighting were used as a sustainable lighting product for the project

The project uses materials, fixtures and fittings that are considerate of the environmental and social impact, with no additional cost to the client. The guestrooms are light, bright and open space with contemporary detailing. In addition, the space is functional and practical, perfect for business customers.

 

Sibley Grove is an interior design studio founded by Kate Sibley and Jeremy Grove, based in Totnes, Devon. The company has a deliberately open and collaborative approach to design, bringing together local suppliers with global companies and clients who share our commitment and ambition to design things better.

 

CASE STUDY: Furnishing Grand Central, Belfast

800 450 Hamish Kilburn

Hastings Grand Central is more than a hotel, it’s an ode to a spectacular city. Recommended Supplier Style Library Contract explains how it helped to style the hotel in Belfast that everyone is talking about… 

Standing tall in Bedford Street, the 22-storey Hastings Grand Central, which opened in June last year, fuses glamour and grandeur with a uniquely Belfast spirit. Comprising of 300 luxurious guestrooms and suites, restaurant, bar, conferencing facilities and retail space, it is a jewel that sits at the heart of Belfast’s Linen Quarter.

RPP Architects was involved in the design of every aspect of the hotel, from the external envelope which involved the design of prominent and distinct signage, a bespoke cladding system to the different bedroom, suites and all of the public spaces. Meanwhile, the interior design was developed with Grahams construction and the Hastings Hotel group during a series of design workshops.

Situated on the ground floor, the Grand Café will catch your eye as you walk by but when you step inside you’ll want to stay. An everyday place with an easygoing elegance, it reflects the whole ambience of being “beautifully simple and simply beautiful”.

Sumptuous suite

Image credit: Hasting Hotels

Quality exudes from every angle of the bar and restaurant space; from the phenomenal cuisine and cocktails to the lavish fabrics and fittings. The art deco nods, high ceilings and sense of space add a distinctive drama and the vibe inside shifts as the day rolls in and the sun rolls round. Located on the 23rd floor, the Observatory is an aweinspiring cocktail lounge with spectacular, unique views of Belfast and beyond. The decadent décor combined with the stunning vistas make the inside feel intimate, and the outside infinite. Each of the 300 guestrooms and suites are designed for absolute comfort and relaxation. Each room has been lovingly created as an oasis of calm; a thoughtfully crafted cityscape sanctuary teeming with touchable, tactile fabrics and state of-the-art finishes.

entrance lobby

Image credit: Hasting Hotels

Mark Higgins, Associate at RPP Architects explains how they selected the materials and craftsmen for this project: “The interior design utilised local craftsmanship where possible sourcing marble and quartz from Ballymoney, specialist joinery and bedroom casegoods from Ballymena, bespoke upholstery and front of house furniture was manufactured in Carrickfergus and bespoke carpet from Portadown.

“We chose to work with Style Library Contract because of the wide selection and high specification of their fabrics and wallcoverings. Being able to specify products from across their brands enabled us to create the look we wanted for each distinct space. Products include: Zoffany curzon belvoir, Zoffany elswick paisley, Anthology veda, Harlequin mesh and sgraffito, Scion toma, Harlequin momentum aves paprika, William Morris snakeshead paper in the bar and various Anthology papers in the suites.”

Carolyn Mitchell, Group Contracts Sales Director at Style Library Contract adds, “We are delighted to have worked with RPP Architects and Hastings on this exquisite project. Our job is to provide clients with the means to create beautiful, design-led interiors. In house manufacturing and design expertise in contract specification fabrics, wallcoverings and paint, means we can be relied on for a complete project solution.”

Style Library is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Hasting Hotels

Morgan makes a colourful splash

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New commissions from Morgan Furniture showcase appetite for bold and bright colours ahead of SS19…

With the 1970’s vibe in full swing, designers are looking to colours and patterns that arouse and inspire the imagination. Morgan, contract furniture and manufacture, shares two recent commissions that perfectly encapsulate the current taste for vivid, post-Scandinavian palettes.

A family of Chevy dining and meeting chairs brings the seventies into the 21st century with rich gemstone colours. While the collection itself owes its inspiration to the styling and elegance of an earlier era, its timeless silhouette can adapt to any aesthetic sensibility and contract environment. Turned timber legs and a fully wrapped seat detail combine to create a picture of comfort and simplicity.

The Chevy collection brings together five chairs and seven modish coffee tables, available in three heights.

Image caption: Chevy by Morgan Furniture

A pattern reminiscent of the 1980’s Memphis Group’s abstract geometry and Keith Haring’s pop stylings gives these Goodwood lounge chairs punch. Here the collection piece uses upholstery to showcase the graphic motif from fabric designer GP & J Baker.

With customisable arms and an optional high or low back, the Goodwood range invites guests to sit back and relax. The collection has ten chairs and four tables, available in two heights, three top sizes and a choice of glass, timber or marble inset.

Commenting on the two collections, Morgan’s Design Director Katerina Zachariades said: “When we’re developing the concept for a chair design, we look for inspiration in fashion, nature and architecture. This encourages us to use shapes that are enduring, as opposed to transient styling.

“All Morgan furniture is made to order for clients. Upholstery choices help designers’ visions to be brought to life while scale and base options allow for the chair design to be suitable for a variety of uses.”

Morgan is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Image caption: Goodwood range by Morgan Furniture

 

Top stories of the week: design love from Bangkok, hide and seek architecture and a new hotel chapter

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With architecture and construction firmly in the spotlight, Hotel Designs has witnessed another jam-packed week full of interesting stories that highlights our love in design and architecture. Breaking down these headlines is editor Hamish Kilburn… 

New York, New York! Is there anywhere else on the planet quite like it? In the original metropolis where possibilities soar high above the bustling streets below, the hotel scene is staggering. It’s latest luxury neighbour is situated on 701 Seventh Avenue on the corner of 47th Street, Times Square, and features 452 guestrooms. With four levels of public space, the hotel is, much like the area it surrounds has already done over many decades, evolving with the trends to cater to the modern man and woman.

Changing perceptions has been a theme that has stitched together this week’s headlines – and I have been fortunate enough to be the first to tell many of this week’s main features. From spending quality time in the company of interior designer Celia Chu as she prepares to complete Rosewood Bangkok, to continuing to follow Nicky Dobree on her quest to open her first hotel; it’s been a great week to be part of the industry. To top it off, we are hours away from closing the applications/nominations process for our 30 Under 30 initiative. As a young editor (26 years old), I am personally proud to support this scheme – to support young talent in our industry – with every fibre of my body.

Here are the top stories of the week:

1) EDITION arrives in New York’s Times Square

black armchair infront of black wallcoverings

Image credit: EDITION Hotels

“The Times Square EDITION is an entirely new lens on Times Square. From an aerie above the hubbub below, you can engage, observe or withdraw. The hotel is an oasis of sophistication brought to you through the insight of the incomparable Ian Schrager, my friend and partner. There is simply nothing like it,” said Arne Sorenson, President and CEO, Marriott International.

> Click here to read the full story

2) The interior designer behind Rosewood Bangkok

open and airy suite with peculiar angular architecture

Image credit: Rosewood Hotels

As its highly anticipated opening is imminently on the horizon, the Rosewood Bangkok’s interior design story is one yet to be unveiled in detail. We caught up with interior designer Celia Chu to establish the narrative told within the walls of the soon-to-open 159-key luxury hotel.

> Click here to read the feature

3) Six Senses joins IHG

Aerial shot of a Six Senses hotel in the ocean

Image credit: Six Senses

The milestone moment, where IHG aquired Six Senses happened on Wednesday. As part of the IHG family, Six Senses is expected to expand to 60 properties within the next 10 years. This includes incredible new Six Senses hotels and resorts from a restored 14th-century fort in Rajasthan, to villas on a private island in Cambodia, and the brand’s first hotel in North America – a contemporary duo of twisting towers designed by Bjarke Ingles near the High Line in Manhattan’s West Chelsea.

> Click here to read the full story

4) Camouflaged hotel architecture of the 21st century

glass structure in the woods

Image credit: treehotel

As we continue putting architecture and construction in the spotlight, Hotel Designs reveals some of the world’s most spectacular hidden architectural gems.

> Click here to read the full story

5) From Concept to Completion: Restoring a 19th-century house to create Plaza 18 (part two)

Moodboard of ideas

Image credit: Nicky Dobree

In part two of our From Concept to Completion series, where we are closely following the design story of Plaza 18, Dobree’s first hotel project is beginning to take form. The building’s design is approaching the final stages before the grand reveal this Easter. Meanwhile, interior designer Nicky Dobree is able to step away from the project for five minutes – something I believe the designer is not accustomed to – in order to explain more about her relationship with the soon-to-be hotel.

> Click here to read the feature

Main image credit: Rosewood Hotels

 

Kobe’s is pretty in pink

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It’s confirmed, the hottest shade of the year is officially pink!

The global authority on colour, Pantone has announced its ‘Colour of the Year’ 2019 as Living Coral, a vibrant pink alternative, while paint manufacturer, Farrow & Ball has released its must-have shades for 2019, one being the moodily-named Sulking Room Pink.

Luxury fabric specialist Kobe is focusing its attention on the wide variety of fabrics in the must-have hue.

“Pink is a great colour for brightening up a décor and Pantone’s Colour of the Year has always been an interior trend setter,” said David Harris, md at luxury fabric specialist Kobe. “Living Coral and Farrow & Ball’s Sulking Room Pink, a dusky variation of the colour, is the ideal shade for decorative accessories and soft furnishings and complements a whole host of other colours such as grey, cream and the popular ‘spiced honey’ spectrum.”

Kobe’s Shantung curtain fabric features an extensive selection of 50 shades, three of which meet the Living Coral and Sulking Room Pink criteria.

Kobe’s most established collection, Scala, boasts 205 fabric shades, including a whole section dedicated to Pantone’s colour of the year. Suitable for curtain use, Scala is a cotton, polyester and viscose mix featuring a beautiful drape, guaranteed to zest up a tired looking interior.

Suitable for upholstery and soft furnishings, Volterra is Kobe’s matte-look velvet and will add a serious sense of luxury to a drab space. With 54 shades to choose from, there are also several Living Coral variations in hues 42, 43 and 44.

The pictured sofa is upholstered in Kobe’s Real fabric.

Kobe’s UK operation is based in Crowthorne, Berkshire. The company has been supplying UK interior design and soft furnishing customers for 20 years and has a reputation for outstanding quality, innovative design and excellent customer service.

Kobe is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image caption: Kobe

EDITION arrives in New York’s Times Square

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The Times Square EDITION is the brand’s second hotel to open in New York…

There simply has never been anything like it before in New York City’s famed cultural and entertainment mecca. Ian Schrager, in partnership with Marriott International, has introduced the sophisticated The EDITION Times Square, which will shelter the first Michelin-starred chef ever to grace the neighborhood, along with the creation of a new form of Cabaret theatre and a complete reinvention of billboard art.

Throughout the decades, Times Square has seen myriad changes and has taken on many iterations. By World War I, it was the center of culture, nightlife and entertainment. By the 40’s and 50’s, the Latin Quarter Nightclub presented festive floor shows that featured chorus girls and can-can dancers, Frank Sinatra, Frankie Laine and the Andrew Sisters. There was Tin Pan Alley, the Copacabana and the Theater District. There was Roseland, Birdland, Ella Fitzgerald, marathon dancing, hot jazz, Doo-Wop and the pop rock of the Brill building as well as the invention of the now gossip columns. It was a democratic “meeting place” and nothing exemplified the disorder of the city or the dichotomy of high and low art than Times Square. Sadly, however, the Great Depression and World War II took its toll on the area and Times Square began its decline. From the 60’s onward, the area was riddled with adult entertainment, prostitution, drugs, and crime. It wasn’t until the mid-80’s when the Marriott Marquis opened its doors and Disney debuted The Lion King at The New Amsterdam Theatre that the clean-up began with the redevelopment of new theaters, retail, hotels and eateries.

Despite Times Square’s notorious reputation, it has managed to maintain itself as a symbolic global, geographic and cultural icon. It had long been home to media giants as well as the center for theater, music, culture and entertainment. This adventurous mold-breaking, however, has disappeared. Today, Times Square and its overindulgent commercialisation that lacks the substance and sex-appeal that once distinguished its streets. It is hungry for a Renaissance and The Times Square EDITION will usher in a new era. The hotel and all of its unique offerings seek to preserve the essence of the area during its Golden Age when it was the microcosm of the best New York City had to offer.

“The Golden Age of Times Square elicited the feeling that anything was possible. New York was the City of Dreams, Times Square at its heart, where everyone came together with a common purpose,” said Schrager. “The Times Square EDITION is the embodiment of this storied past, resurrected for the present, providing hope for the future of this most beloved neighborhood.”

black armchair infront of black wallcoverings

Image credit: EDITION Hotels

From the moment you enter the hotel’s doors on 20 Times Square at West 47th Street, guests are transported to another world—a decompression zone. A long ivory hall with venetian plastered walls and ceiling and a floating custom green mirrored stainless sphere inspired by Anish Kapoor and the colors of Jeff Koons await you. Once gusts arrive at the Lobby and Lobby Bar, a series of black and white spaces, which is worlds away from technicolour scenes located on the streets. Each of these two extremes serves the other yet each stands on its own. But together, something new, original, and even stronger is created. Indeed, with this alchemic symbiosis, a new reality and a virtual fourth dimension is created. As guests move in and out continuously, the space becomes boundaryless. This clash of worlds, this surreal sense of space and time is best experienced on the outdoor terraces, appropriately named the Bladerunner Terraces, that frame the various public space floors. On the terrace off the Lobby Bar, guests can choose to be in your own private oasis escaping in a cocoon-like area or face the brilliance of flashing light and color of Times Square for the best light show in the world.

“The hotel is an oasis of sophistication brought to you through the insight of the incomparable Ian Schrager, my friend and partner.” – Arne Sorenson, President and CEO, Marriott International.

Off the Terrace Restaurant, a similar feeling awaits on expansive terraces that were inspired by the L’Orangerie at Jardin des Tuileries in Paris. The outdoor space in totality with thousands of plants, trees and ivy is perhaps the biggest indoor landscaping effort in the country was designed by Madison Cox and is literally, multi-level gardens in the sky. The public space interiors with their rich woods, lush velvets, waxed leathers, polished marbles and smooth metals are combined to create a chic, simple, hip, serene and luxurious setting, an antidote to the hectic life just outside the hotel’s doors.

“The Times Square EDITION is an entirely new lens on Times Square. From an aerie above the hubbub below, you can engage, observe or withdraw. The hotel is an oasis of sophistication brought to you through the insight of the incomparable Ian Schrager, my friend and partner. There is simply nothing like it.” Arne Sorenson, President and CEO, Marriott International.

The first Michelin-starred chef ever in Times Square, John Fraser, is spearheading the food and beverage at the hotel to create a cacophony of dining experiences. The fine dining restaurant named 701 West is a gastronomic gem in a jewel box-like setting that is an explosion of color.

The Terrace Restaurant and Outdoor Gardens is an original take on a four meal, 18 hour-a-day restaurant inspired by traditional French brasseries and American chophouses but taken in a completely new direction by Chef Fraser.

The entrance to the Terrace restaurant will host the debut exhibit of specially curated candid portrayals of “the real New York City”, the one not seen by visitors, capturing energetic, gritty and poetic street and neighborhood scenes by renowned photographers Helen Levitt, Elliott Erwitt, Bruce Davidson, Ruth Orkin, Arthur Leipzig and Cornell Capa to name a few. The following exhibit will shift to more current street scenes illustrating the culture and diversity that pervades the city today. The space will continue to house rotating photography and art exhibits by various well-known photographers and artists.

The Paradise Club is an inventive, chaotic, high production spectacle perfectly suited for Times Square. The brainchild of Anya Sapozhnikova, Justin Conte, Matthew Dailey and Kae Burke of House of Yes in Bushwick, Brooklyn, this edgy and provocative modern-day Cabaret manifests the disorder of the City and adds a whole new dimension to the hotel and to Times Square.

The shows will be part theatre, part performance art with talent across many disciplines including dance, voice, aerial acrobatics, choreography, costume design and magic. There will be a regular ongoing performance based on William Blake’s The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. With no formulas, rules or any specific structure, but not for shock value, each performance at Paradise Club will be different from the previous one and different from the next. For a new twist on dining and entertainment, the menu will be original and creative from hot dogs to caviar and everything in between.

“Paradise Club is a place of aspiration… Invention and reinvention… A refuge to enjoy life and forget life and the perfect place to escape into fantasy,” said Schrager.

This one-of-a-kind cultural entertainment space also features the most sensational, immersive, colorful and kinetic lighting effects designed by Tony and Academy Award-winning Fisher Marantz of Studio 54 fame and inspired by a Lenny Kravitz video, as well as bespoke hand painted murals inspired by Bosch and Dali–a modern successor to the world famous Maxfield Parrish’s King Cole mural on Fifth Avenue. Perhaps the most spectacular element of the space is the full-blown production studio and control center that allows for live simulcasts and broadcasts around the world, as well as locally to a “Best in Class” 17,000 sf-8K-8mm Jumbotron outside of the building and a high definition digital screen on the stage. The exterior Jumbotron will also display rotating art by current video artists, cinematographers and animators.

Main image credit: EDITION Hotels

Top 5 stories of the week: Lighting the mood, surface trends and Meet Up developments

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Concluding January and looking ahead to the future of lighting, surfaces and hotel development, Hamish Kilburn writes the top five stories of the week…

As January turns to February, there is much anticipation in the air around developing trends. The must-watch lists of hues, textures and materials that landed in my inbox on January 1 have filtered subtly into the designs of new hotel spaces. Designers working outside the box establish how they can create a timeless statement scan the floors of the trade shows. The next in the calendar is the Surface Design Show in London (February 5 – 7). Ahead of the show, this week we took a closer look at the trends on the walls, floors and ceilings. Closer to home, Hotel Designs had some developments of its own to announce. Here are the top five stories of the week.

1) 6 trends to look out for at Surface Design Show 2019

dark bathroom design

Image credit: SIBU

Taking place next week in London’s Business Design Centre, Surface Design Show will showcase the latest products and technology in surface design. Ahead of the event, as Hotel Designs is a media partner of #SDS19, here are top surface trends to be mindful of.

> Read more about the trends here

2) Meet Up London: 30 Under 30 Announces Early Bird Tickets

Until February 7, designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers will be able to purchase early bird tickets for Hotel Designs‘ highly anticipated Q1 networking evening, Meet Up London: 30 Under 30.

Exclusive style partner: Minotti London

Exclusive headline partner: Hamilton Litestat

> To book your tickets, click here

3) One-third of consumers believe lighting helps to eliminate January Blues

A study has revealed that one in three people believe that lighting is important to creating a relaxed and calm atmosphere before bed.

As the January blues well and truly set in for some, new research has revealed how lighting can have direct impact on mood and wellbeing in the hotel environment.

> To read more about the study, click here

4) SUSD gains planning consent for hotel and members club on the River Thames

render of the exterior of a manor-like building

Image credit: SUSD

SUSD, the developer behind two of London’s most successful hybrid destinations, The Curtain Hotel & Members Club and Devonshire Club, has just won planning consent, subject to finalising the S106 Agreement, for a third development, this time on the banks of the Thames near Pangbourne, Berkshire.

> To read more about the plans, click here

5) Editor Checks In: January ’19

To round up January – and to help understand the crossroads many designers are at – it felt appropriate to use the metaphor of two worlds colliding. I am, of course, referring to the opportunities that result from authentic collaborations.

> To read my editor’s letter, click here

If you would like to be kept up to date with the latest happenings and news in international hotel design, subscribe to receiving our newsletter here.

Main image credit: ITC Natural Luxury Flooring

Top stories of the week: Trending interiors, suites at sea and anti-social hotel rooms

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Following a bustling Maison&Objet and Deco Off, interior trends have been trending throughout this week’s headlines. Hamish Kilburn breaks down the top stories of the week…

Whoever thought that January was a soft landing was seriously mistaken – or didn’t work in the hotel design arena. My inbox over the last 25 days has been inundated with press releases from hotel groups announcing their vast expansion plans. This week alone, Melia Hotels International, Nobu Hospitality and Kimpton Hotels all announced dramatic plans to open new luxury properties in new destinations. Suggesting a serious change in travellers’ behaviour, the hotel industry is not the other luxury market that is adapting its strategy to cater towards the modern traveller. Concluding our series, Hotels at New Heights, I spoke to the hotel designers that have turned their heads towards the cruise industry.

Here are the top stories of the week.

1) Nobu Hotels announces plans to arrives in Poland

Exterior shot of the hotel. a new building located at Wilcza Street, designed by the Polish architectural firm, Medusa Group,

Image credit: Nobu Hospitality

Nobu Hospitality, a global luxury lifestyle brand founded by Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper, has announced its continued global expansion into Warsaw, Poland…

On track to have 20 hotels within its portfolio globally by 2020, Nobu Hotels has announced plans to open Nobu Hotel Warsaw.

2) Inside the world’s first hotel room that determines room rate based on social media addiction

Light glowing red next to the bed of a hotel

Image credit: The Check Out Suite, Hotel

That’s right, a hotel in Gothenburg, Sweden, has launched a new policy where the room rate is determined by how much time guests spend surfing on social media…

With the number of social media users worldwide in 2018 reaching a staggering 3.196 billion, up 13 per cent year-on-year according to Smart Insights, it was only a matter of time before hotels would launch schemes in order to help guests reconnect with the world around their screens. With the aim to take this initiative further, a hotel in Gothenburg, Sweden, has actually launched a hotel room where its rates will be determined by how much the guest spends on social media platforms.

3) Top 14 most tagged interior design trends on Instagram

With so many interior design trends, it can be difficult to choose a style that fits a particular space best. While most of these trends intertwine, some are undoubtedly more popular than others.

4) Hotels at New Heights: suites on the high seas

Render from Richmond International of Balcony Cabin

Image caption: Render from Richmond International of Balcony Cabin

To conclude our series, Hotels at New Heights, I investigate why more and more hotel designers are taking to the seas to design the luxury cruise vessels’ suites of the future.

5) Meet Up London: 30 Under 30 launches early bird tickets

Until February 7, designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers will be able to purchase early bird tickets for Hotel Designs‘ highly anticipated Q1 networking evening, Meet Up London: 30 Under 30.

Main image credit: Image credit: Seabourn Ovation/Adam Tihany Studio

Duravit launches solution for cluttered bathrooms

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Duravit launches new furniture range specifically designed with small hotel bathrooms in mind… 

A comfortable bathroom doesn’t need to be spacious. Creativity and the right products can ensure additional storage space and create a hotel for everyday bathroom items.

Vanity units are true classics and can be found in almost every bathroom. These handy pieces of furniture mean that bathroom utensils of all shapes and sizes can be stored in drawers or practical compartments. Organiser systems inside drawers not only keep things tidy, they look great.

Bathroom furniture from Duravit

Image credit: Duravit

Mirror cabinets are a real eye-catcher. Even shelves can work miracles when it comes to storage. Not only do they have the effect of creating space, they enable apparently unusable areas to become useful. Wall areas are frequently overlooked or unused. Yet, wall-mounted shelves can create practical space for bottles, tubes or towels and also be used for decorative purposes.

Mirror cabinets offer an additional light source and give the visual impression of a larger, more open room. They are also the perfect place for storing all manner of essential beauty accessories without dominating the room and as such are the ultimate all-rounder in the bathroom.

Duravit is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Duravit

 

In Conversation With: Sebastian Herkner, designer of the year

730 565 Hamish Kilburn

HD

In Conversation With: Sebastian Herkner, designer of the year

At just 37 years old, designer Sebastian Herkner who is known for straddling the boundaries between modernity and tradition, becomes  designer of the year at Maison & Objet. In between Herkner’s press calls and panel discussions, editor Hamish Kilburn caught up with the man of the moment discuss the evolution of his pieces…

What makes Sebastian Herkner a name to remember in the congested industry of interior design is his ability to effortlessly fuse together tradition with creativity.

His approach to design first became commercialised in 2006, after completing his studies at the University of Art and Design at Offenback, when he set up his own studio. His first landmark design, the Bell Table, took no less than three years to find the right manufacturer because of Herkner’s design being ‘ahead of its time’, the double-edge sword of being a leader with creative vision. The table consists of a steel and brass platter that nestles on a hand-blown glass base that was produced in a centuries-old Bavarian glass factory.

The bell table by Sebastian Herkner

Image caption: The Bell Table

His appetite for a challenge and his desire to explore unchartered territories has not only led him to design glasses, bicycles and perfume bottles or make forays into the world of interior design, but also to embark on an internship with fashion designer Stella McCartney during the course of his studies. “I was interested in the manufacturing processes used in fashion, and understanding how colours are put together” he explains. The flair for combining colours he honed whilst there now underpins his signature style. “Colour is often the very last thing designers think about. For me, it’s always the starting point for the whole design process”. He does admit, nonetheless, that “it can take years to find that perfect colour combination”.

“I want my products to become companions, which I believe is very important these days in order to create timeless pieces.”

Fast-forward 15 years from when he opened his first studio, and more than 120 product launches later, Herkner is today centre stage at one of the world’s most reputable design fairs, Maison & Objet, being dubbed the ‘designer of the year’, a title that feels not only thoroughly deserved but also one that feels totally appropriate for the man who never looks back. “My designs are not driven by target groups, they are more driven by quality and functionality, while mixing new technologies and materials with craftsmanship and colours,” Herkner explains. “I want my products to become companions, which I believe is very important these days in order to create timeless pieces.” These ‘companions’ sit in harmony at the show, exhibiting the designer’s journey.

Clip Chair for De Vorm

Image caption: Sebastian Herkner’s Clip Chair for De Vorm

Be it in his studio, surrounded by a six -strong team that herald from all four corners of the world, or during his frequent trips to China, Colombia, Thailand, Senegal and Canada visiting local manufacturers , design houses and craftsmen, Herkner has a longstanding habit of quenching his thirst for ideas elsewhere. “Different cultures, skills and lifestyles all fuel my inspiration” he explains . He also finds his inspiration in traditional materials, such as ceramics, leather, marble and also in art. Another of his iconic pieces, the “Oda” floor lamp (Pulpo , 2014), bears testament to that . Resembling a reservoir of light, the design was directly inspired by photographic images of water towers captured by Bernd and Hilla Becher. Every single source of inspiration is perfectly in tune with his quest for authenticity, his desire to use sustainable materials , and his sense of respect for the time it takes to create a truly stunning piece.

Bulbous glass light on floor

Image credit: “Oda” floor lamp (Pulpo , 2014)

Quick-fire round

Hamish Kilburn: What colour are you finding interesting at the moment? 
Sebastian Herkner: Salmon pink (in Matt)

HK: What is the one item you cannot travel without:
SH: My phone. I am addicted! 

HK: Where is next on your travel bucket list? 
SH: I would love to go to Peru. Big cities, unfortunately, look all the same. 

HK: Is there a trend that you hate? 
SH: When people choose to infuse ‘soft Skandi’ in their interiors. I love the Scandinavian look and feel, but I feel as if people should use it with more courage and strength. 

HK: Would you change anything in the last ten years?
SH: No, nothing. 

For a designer who is known for being ahead of his time when it comes to his ability to combine functionality with technology, I am somewhat taken aback when Herkner suggests that the industry has to some extent gone too far. “Smart homes is one thing, but i believe that furniture will remain still because they are designed for human beings,” he explains. “We need somewhere to sit, and I do not believe there is any need for charging sockets in the sofa – in the table, perhaps, but not the sofa.

Herkner’s recent accolade gives him a platform to unveil some of his latest creations whilst simultaneously showcasing the manufacturing processes that have always been so close to his heart.

Main image credit: Sebastian Herkner/Gany Gerster 

Protocol’s Airwave furniture balances style, comfort and versatility

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Montreal-based designer Charles Godbout has partnered with furniture Recommended Supplier Protocol to create Airwave for hotel communal areas…

As a sector that is always having to be ahead of the hotel consumer curve – sometimes as much as five years ahead – the contract furniture market continues to push design boundaries in order to balance ergonomic design with style.

Meanwhile, designers look towards the leading suppliers in this sector to establish which products and models will suit the modern hotel lobby.

Image credit: Protocol

Cue the launch of Airwave by Protocol, which is an exciting new modular seating solution that has been designed in collaboration with award-winning interior designer Charles Godbout. AirWave’s design embraces the balance between style, comfort and versatility and can be configured for use in all contract environments including hotel lobbies, corporate offices, universities and even airport lounges.

“The backs and sides of the high and low models combine to create various patterns of sinusoidal curves.”

The seating range starts with simple ottomans and benches that can be arranged in a linear or curved series, followed by endless possible configurations of single and double seats. The backs and sides of the high and low models combine to create various patterns of sinusoidal curves, allowing you to optimise the floor space, creating either communal or private environments.

The option to include wireless mobile charging, USB-A, USB-C and UKF sockets brings this solution to the forefront of power-enabled seating.

The AirWave models can be customised in several different fabric options and it can be upholstered in co-ordinating or contrasting colours to suit each designer’s scheme.

Protocol is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Main image credit: Protocol

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Spotlight On: A Year in Review – top products launched in 2018 (Part 2)

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Continuing this month’s Spotlight On feature on ‘A Year In Review’ (Products of the year 2018), we have highlighted what we believed to have been the game-changing product launches of 2018. Here is part two of our ultimate throwback…

Following popular demand of our first article that we published on the top products that have launched in 2018, we have decided to revisit the archive to dig out the many other game-changing product launches of the year.

1) Grohe: Is this the future of hotel toilets? (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Grohe

Since launching, GROHE Sensia Arena with its app-control features and three different spray patterns is becoming a popular choice among designers and hoteliers. Defined by GROHE as ‘new standard of personal hygiene’, The Sensia Arena (showcased at SLEEP + EAT) is a shower toilet, fast-becoming increasingly popular in international hotels thanks to its many unique features.

2) Skopos: Mau Loa 

Image credit: Skopos

Mau Loa adds to the Skopos print portfolio and was seen on exhibition stands throughout Autumn and Winter.

Inspired by the relaxing pace of Hawaiian life, Mau Loa (meaning ‘forever’) conveys a tranquil, exotic paradise through exquisite illustration, hand painting and mixed media.

3) Meystyle LED wallpaper (WINNER: The Brit List 2018)

Image credit: Meystyle

Wallpaper specialist Meystyle launched the Conductivity collection with the mission to rescue walls from the background. The company has done this by integrating bold patterns with LED lights and crystals to create deep visual experiences that totally transform walls and wallpaper into works of art. The sister duo went on to win Inspiration in Design – Innovative use of Technology at The Brit List 2018.

4) Interface go carbon neutral on all products

Image credit: Interface

We love a juicy eco story here at Hotel Designs, so when we heard that contract carpet manufacturer Interface was going 100 per cent carbon neutral we hit the keyboard fast to amplify to our readers. Considering there is a major focus at the moment on manufacturing eco-friendly materials, this story has to land on our list of the top product launches and announcements in 2018.

5) Morgan: Rio 2 collection (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Morgan

Contract furniture designer and manufacturer Morgan Furniture launched its new Rio 2 collection, created in collaboration with studio Integrate, at Sleep + Eat this year. Ahead of its launch, we had exclusive access to interview the architect behind the futuristic product, Mehran Gharleghi.

6) Wilton Carpets: Kinetic Collection (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Wilton Carpet

Full of energy and design, Kinetic from Wilton Carpets features striking modern patterns made for forward-thinking leisure and hospitality spaces. Using colourways drawn from the manufacturer’s new Creations colour palette, Kinetic is bursting with dynamic shades of grey, blue and green.

7) Kaldewei: Steel Enamal (Recommended Supplier)

Image credit: Kaldewei

Bathroom specialist Kaldewei fuses robust steel and exquisite glass together to create superior Kaldewei steel enamel. Bringing 100 years of experience to bear, the company today produces premium bathroom solutions made of a single material to a consistently high standard of quality that are appreciated all over the world.

To read part one of our ultimate throwback, click here

Main image credit: Meystyle

Smart tables for charging tables

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Contract Furniture Store investigates technology in our furniture and how charger-friendly tables will soon become uniform in all hotel public space – or at least they should be… 

With Smartphone usage at an all-time high, battery anxiety is becoming the new norm, as the panoply of Apps we use to run our lives or businesses, becomes ever greater and more sophisticated.

Carrying some sort of Charger has become a daily necessity never mind the constant battle to find a point to plug them in!

Like complementary Wi-Fi which is now widely established and considered a given across many sectors, wireless charging is an extra service you can offer to your customers or employees to enhance their daily experience.

Universal wireless charging solutions are the next step forwards with mainstream adoption of this built-in capability using the Qi standard looking set to increase and include 50 per cent of all handsets by 2022.

Aircharge is a pioneer in bringing this wireless charging technology to public venues including office space, where it’s deployment can help brands enhance their services and connect with customers or employees in innovative and rewarding ways with it’s cloud-based IoT platform, utilising integrated Bluetooth beacon technology, giving Operators or Managers the chance to manage at differing levels.

Technology meets Design

Aircharge is one of the most progressive designers of technology-driven interiors products in the UK. Through collaboration with office and furniture designers and architects, Aircharge enables wireless charging wherever it is needed the most. All seamlessly and beautifully integrated to create a premium feel and enhanced experience, leaving access to power outlets and cables a thing of the past.

Aircharge can be installed into any of the Contract Furniture Store’s table tops or desks, with a surface or subsurface integration, delivering a seamless finish and enhanced experience.

Smart Tables for Smart Phones!

Non-QI Device? Don’t worry! Through their range of receivers and accessories, we can enable non-Qi devices to enjoy the freedom of wireless charging.

Whenever, wherever & whatever

Aircharge leads the deployment of wireless charging on a global scale and is rapidly creating the widest eco-system for Qi wireless charging, enabling you to top up your battery throughout the course of the day, no matter where you are and what you do.

For further details, please view here or contact the Contract Furniture Store.

Contract Furniture Store is one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

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Spotlight On: A Year In Review (products)

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Throughout December, Hotel Design’ Spotlight On will be throwing it back to the major products that have launched over the last 12 months… 

Next month, as the industry starts wrapping up the year, Hotel Designs will be giving you the ultimate throwback, highlighting the major products that dropped in the hotel industry this year.

By revisiting this year’s international trade shows – including Milan Design Week, Clerkenwell Design Week, Decorex, 100 % Design, designjunction and SLEEP + EAT – we will bring you all the hottest product launches.

We will cover everything from the idea of personalised lighting to new bathroom furniture, impressive carpet collaborations to apps that allow consumers to purchase items in the hotel (and everything in between). Hotel Designs will be celebrating the products that have launched to become gamechangers in 2019 and the international hotel design.

If you wish to find out more, or know of a product that we should be talking about, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk

Main image credit: Deadgood, Brintons, Grohe, Hansgrohe, Hamilton Litestat, Bang Olufsen, Chelsom Lighting

Design, print, launch: Morgan’s Rio 2 collection unveiled

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Hotel Designs Recommended Supplier Morgan Furniture will showcase new design, Rio 2 collection, at SLEEP +EAT…

Contract furniture designer and manufacturer Morgan Furniture will launch its new Rio 2 collection, created in collaboration with studio Integrate, at Sleep + Eat 2018 (November 20-21, Olympia London) on stand C60.

Through its Clerkenwell showroom art installations and furniture designs, Morgan is always seeking out new ways to celebrate the art of collaboration – and the Rio 2 table collection will be its most recent collaborative project.

Combining skills and expertise with architect Mehran Gharleghi of studio INTEGRATE, Morgan will introduce a new collection of tables for the contract market that include 3D printed components. The first of its kind within the sector to include this cutting edge technology with a commercially viable price point, the sophisticated and luxurious collection is not to be missed.

“Rio 1 was a new collection to be exposed to the mass market, and contract furniture industry. We experimented a lot and learnt so much from it. We listened to our customers and took their feedback into account,” said Gharleghi. “We ultimately decided to add new variation to the existing collections which was a super exciting journey. In Rio 2 we carefully designed a collection that maintains the iconic look and the unique experience that we aimed to provide to our audience, and yet add a distinctly different look and materials to our existing collection. One of the Rio 02 variations is still on its way and we cant wait to show it to people. Overall we believe we have been successful in maintaining the original ethos of the Rio 01 collection and move one step forward in almost every aspect of design.”

The first Rio collection was launched in 2016, combining the skills and expertise of the Morgan team with Mehran Gharleghi’s knowledge of new technologies to explore the relationship between the craft of yesterday and the craft of tomorrow.

The second generation sees two new table designs. With this version, a greater understanding of the technology provided the designers with increased creative scope, resulting in a more geometric and regular aesthetic, as opposed to the organic feel of the first generation. The use of materials was also reduced and refined, adding further options to the entirety of the collection. On the edge of design and technology, the tables are an iconic piece at an affordable price.

The collection uses a polyamide 3D printed component as the main structure with which to attach a glass or timber top and timber turned legs. This joining element was designed using a mathematical algorithm to create a unique framework that could not have been made via any other process. The technique is an additive process and therefore not only offers design freedom, but also a sustainable manufacturing solution.

Both Mehran and Katerina Zachariades, Morgan’s design director, approach design in different ways; Katerina sketches and draws to scale with a pen, whilst Mehran designs digitally through modelling. Initially this resulted in a series of miniature 3D printed resin prototypes from Mehran and then full-scale models from Morgan. These two processes allowed the team to review the design both aesthetically and in terms of scale and proportions giving an immediate sense of reality.

Q&A with the architect

Hamish Kilburn: What’s your favourite colour?

Mehran Gharleghi: My favourite colour from the existing collection is walnut with the black basket. I personally prefer the higher tables as I find them more elegant. However, a lot of our customers have preferred shorter versions. We are currently in the process of creating a back table with black legs, with clear glass. We haven’t done this before and I haven’t seen the outcome yet. But I think it’ll look very sharp and I can’t wait to see it.

HK: Where do you find your inspiration?

MG: I find inspirations in nature, history and culture. Seemingly they are very different, however they all have one thing in common. They all evolve gradually, over a long and extended period of time in a step by step manner. I believe we have followed the same principal in designing the Rio Collection. We haven’t looked at emerging technologies, such as 3D printing as an element that disrupt traditional craftsmanship. We considered it as an addition to the existing methods of making. We have maintained the traditional and careful craftmanship of Morgan furniture and added a new dimension and experience to it. Using the new technologies enabled us to go one step further and provide a new experience for our audience.

HK: What’s the key to a successful collaboration?

MG: Understanding and respecting different skill set, vision and expertise that collaborators are able to bring on the table is the most important element to a successful collaboration. Establishing a design method where all contributors are able to freely share their input in an iterative process leads to very successful outcomes.  My relationship with Morgan team began very positively few years ago. It got better and better over time and now we consider each other as one extended team and have established a seamless collaboration method. Our working process is very enjoyable which I believe is crucial in creating ambitious and high risk projects and products.

HK: What’s the most interesting trend you are seeing for 2019?

MG: I can’t follow trends. I know what I’m interested and am focused on getting better at my own passion every day. I have a fascination with design and technology. I believe both of these areas can significantly improve our quality of lives and have dedicated my life and practice to it.

Through the design process, Morgan and Mehran managed to bring down the production cost significantly and increase the factor of strength three fold. This was done by introducing geometric differentiation in various parts of the table according to the structural analysis conducted by Morgan Studio. Digital analyses were informed by previous Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA) testing and guidelines. By establishing an iterative feedback loop between design and analysis, the team perfectly balanced the cost, strength and aesthetic of the collection.

Morgan Furniture are one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Blue is the new black confirms Timothy Oulton

Hamish Kilburn
Timothy Oulton Launches Three Exclusive Designs to Commemorate the Opening of its Flagship at Bluebird…

British furniture and interiors company Timothy Oulton has marked the opening of its flagship at Bluebird in unique fashion, by launching three special edition designs in celebration of the colour of Bluebird, and of Chelsea, available exclusively at the new gallery.

With 40 galleries across the globe, Timothy Oulton launched its global flagship and largest ever showroom at the historic Bluebird building last month. Known for its creative designs and authentic handcraftsmanship, the brand is particularly renowned for its signature hand-finished leather collection. New Ronin Indigo leather is its latest innovation, launched specially for Bluebird, and features on the limited edition Westminster Button Sofa, complete with a commemorative plaque of the opening, as well as a special edition Union Jack Flag Cushion and Thomas Sleeve personal accessory.

The distinctive blue finish is achieved using indigo, a natural dye extracted from plant leaves that has been used for thousands of years. The complex dyeing process takes a staggering 30 days to complete; the hide is first tanned with bark and nut shells, with natural oils and waxes applied for a slightly aged look, and the indigo is then applied. Once the leather has been upholstered onto the finished piece, it is hand- finished for a second time using wet sandpaper to achieve a stonewashed look, and finally polished with lamb’s wool.

Exclusively available at the Bluebird gallery:

Westminster Button Sofa (Limited Edition)


Embodying the heart and soul of the Timothy Oulton brand, the Westminster Button brings together timeless design in the shape of a hand-tufted Chesterfield with 100 per cent natural indigo-dyed leather. A limited edition of 50 pieces, each sofa is emblazoned with a special plaque commemorating the Bluebird opening, and features shiny steel legs and 1550 hand-applied silver studs for a more contemporary take on the classic Chesterfield silhouette.

Union Jack Flag Cushion


A vibrant Union Jack graphic fashioned from Ronin Indigo, Vintage Bianco and Vagabond Red leathers gives this beautiful cushion a playful feel, complete with a smart silver zipper and car zip pull inspired by the Aston Martin DBR1. Bold, British, and a little James Bond-esque.

Thomas Sleeve


This simple leather pouch coordinates with any personal or business bag, creating a sophisticated and polished look. Large enough to hold a laptop, tablet or documents. Hand-finished in Ronin Indigo blue leather, complemented by a striking silver zipper and car zip pull, and a small embossed bowler hat in the bottom corner.

Exhibition of contemporary British bespoke furniture to launch in London

Hamish Kilburn

The new exhibition will take place at Design Centre Chelsea Harbour from October 2 – 5, 2018…

Ahead of The Brit List 2018, a new exhibition of contemporary bespoke furniture, designed by some of the UK’s most distinguished craftspeople, will launch this autumn at Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour from 2 until 5 October 2018.

The ‘Evolution of Tradition’ represents an exciting collaboration between The Furniture Makers’ Company, a City of London livery company and Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour, the world’s premier design destination. These two design bastions will come together for the first time to host a selling exhibition of luxury furniture designed and made purely by Bespoke Guild Mark holders.

The Bespoke Guild Mark, awarded by The Furniture Makers’ Company, is the ultimate accolade for designer-makers, recognising excellence in design, materials, craftsmanship and function for exquisite pieces of furniture.

“Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour believes in the importance of investing in future talent and specialist skills,” said Claire German, managing director, Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour. “We support creative expression across the design agenda and we’re delighted to host ‘Evolution of Tradition’ showcasing the work of bespoke British furniture makers, in association with The Furniture Makers’ Company.”

Transforming an idea into reality takes passion, invention and vision; from seeing the potential of materials and respect for artisan processes to an openness to innovation. This curated exhibition will present a range of work of astonishing breadth, scope and artistic merit; with simple forms and strong silhouettes, many have a more modern pulse.

Chelsea-Harbour Ethereal desk Marc Fish

Image caption: Chelsea-Harbour Design Centre Ethereal desk Marc Fish

Richard Williams, Bespoke Guild Mark chairman, The Furniture Makers’ Company, said: “With its strong roster of designer-makers, all brilliant, renowned names, ‘Evolution of Tradition’ will undoubtedly be an unmissable event for buyers that demonstrates the world-class mastery of Bespoke Guild Mark holders.

“Every piece put forward for a Bespoke Guild Mark is stringently vetted and examined to ensure every aspect of the piece is well considered and represents the absolute pinnacle of British craftsmanship. Buyers will be hard-pushed to find another exhibition of designs from a collective of so many accomplished designer-makers.”

An impressive rollcall of established designer-makers and new talent from the vibrant British craft scene include Matthew Burt, Byron & Gómez, Jonathan Field, Marc Fish, Tim Gosling, Alun Heslop, Edward Johnson, John Makepeace OBE, Rupert McBain, Laurent Peacock, Jake Phipps, Angus Ross, Rupert Senior, Katie Walker and Waywood.

Attracting top designers, architects, international collectors and style-seekers, the ‘Evolution of Tradition’ curated exhibition will be an opportunity for visitors to gain a greater understanding of how one-of-a-kind designs are conceived and made, as well as acquire unique work. In an increasingly fast-paced world, experience the beauty and creativity of time-honoured skills from masters of their craft.

Generating a deeper understanding of design is at the heart of a specially curated events programme, from talks to workshops, demonstrations and discovery tours.

Main image credit: DCCH

 

Talking furniture trends with Rock Galpin

Hamish Kilburn

From designing celeb hot spots in London to creating award-winning contract furniture collections, Rock Galpin is a fountain of knowledge when it comes to cutting-edge product design, interiors and understanding the trends as editor of Hotel Designs Hamish Kilburn learns after meeting the designer at London Design Festival…

It was at the beginning of London Design Festival (LDF), at an after-party in The Curtain to be precise, when and where I first had the pleasure of meeting the award-winning furniture designer Rock Galpin. Having just flown in that evening following a trip to the sun-trapped island of Rhodes, Galpin was in London to assess the trends while also using the week as a fine opportunity to catch up with old and new clients and friends, two categories are separated only by what I can describe as a faint line in the sand. Among them was Galpin with a friendly and approachable demeanour that draws me in to want to understand the man behind the designer.

One week later, as the dust starts to settle on the Capital, Galpin and I are meeting for coffee to discuss trends, industry success and innovation in design. “So this is what I’m working on at the moment and what I wanted to show you,” he says as he opens the laptop to reveal his ‘top secret’ design renders and plans, which, without giving too much away, inspire me to realise that the future of contract furniture is turning a page to an exciting chapter. “As a designer that is working in the commercial sector, I’m often looking up to 10 years ahead of the now,” he explains. Galpin’s logic is that you have to allow two-to-four years before your design, once commissioned, will even enter the production phase. “In addition, you want to design a product that has a minimum shelf life of at least five years,” he explains. For Galpin, who to my eyes has the patience of a saint being able to sit on designs for that long, the contract furniture product of the future will operate in a tech-driven scene, allowing for a seamless experience. He explains: “I want to ideally create an environment whereby technology is completely invisible.” His vision comes as, somehow, despite the growing demand in tech-driven experiences, certain technologies have not evolved and personalisation continues to be a really interesting topic. “Maybe the chair will physically mold to fit the user, or maybe the table will organically allow the user to be sat in the best state physically as mentally,” he adds. “I have a few ideas on how we can do this.”

Image caption: Render of Matrix 6 collection by Rock Galpin

Working so far ahead is a challenge for any creative, and getting the balance right between being creative and being commercially appealing is key, as Galpin explains: “I have come to realise that people will accept incremental changes in design and not large leaps. Of course, there are exceptions to that, just take the Google’s offices as an example. However, I do believe that clients and consumers prefer to see a more gradual progression in product design as we move forward.”

“I have noticed that colour seems to come in when we are experiencing a repressed or depressing economic time.”

With this year’s Brit List around the corner, and LDF continuing to prove that it is at the centre of the design world, Galpin is quite obviously proud to be a British designer. “Britain always seems to have this breath and eclectic, inventive population that, I suppose, being an island as well, can incubate ideas. Other countries can’t do that as well,” says Galpin as we start discussing London as a major international design hub. “We’re going softer and softer as an aesthetic when it comes to shapes and forms. Interestingly, though, colours have become really powerful this season,” he says. “We’re seeing a lot of vibrant colours and citrus accents; blues and pinks are very much around. I have noticed that bold colours seem to creep in and actually the integrity of design evolves when we are experiencing a repressed or depressing economic period because designers need to work harder in order to tick certain boxes. I have noticed that in the most demanding times come some of the best designs. The ’80s were a great example of this. But immediately after, of course, we experience the complete opposite. They called it ‘green’ design which was a way of becoming more sustainable, raw and eco-friendly.”

Galpin’s ability to work the room at any event was evident at LDF and is the direct result of years of hard work in order to establish himself in the industry as a rightful leader. His first major break, though, came when he was asked to design a furniture line for ARAM, which, along with Terence Conran, was one of the most significant – and most important – furniture brands at the time. “It was a really nice journey, and allowed me to work closely with Zeev Aram,” he says smiling. “I did a sofa and table collection for them right at the beginning of my career. It took two and half years, and it was a truly lovely process.” The modular sofa system and range of tables made fame in 1993. Aimed at the design savvy contract market, the Kama sofas and Sutra Tables also appealed to the clean-living domestic market.

“As a result of the collaboration, in 2005, Galpin won the Laurent-Perrier Design Award.”

Image caption: Sketch sofa by Designers Guild, designed by Rock Galpin

Other milestones in Galpin’s full career include designing The Bombay Sapphire Experience and London’s Punk Nightclub, which became a favourite for the likes of Kate Moss and her entourage. However, one of the most impressive moments, from where I am sitting at least, is Galpin’s collaboration with Designers Guild. Applying for a competition in order to collaborate with the brand, he pitched his designs along with 30 other designers and won. The project enabled him to work with Tricia Guild OBE and the manufacturers B-Design in southern Italy, which produces furniture for the likes of Minotti, Cappellini and Thonet. As a result of the collaboration, in 2005, Galpin won the Laurent-Perrier Design Award for the Sketch Sofa and Easy Lounger. “The whole journey was fantastic from drawing and designing right through to production,” Galpin adds. One year later, Galpin continued to be at the forefront of the international design scene by unveiling the Mark 1, which was awarded runner up for the same award.

Quick-fire round:

Hamish Kilburn: Where’s next on your travel bucket list?
Rock Galpin: I haven’t been abroad to anywhere really different from the UK for a while now. Anywhere with a relaxing beach. I’m in the mood for Thailand or Cambodia!
HK: What’s your number-one item you cannot travel without?
RG: Music!
HK: What’s your favourite colour?
RG: At the moment, black, green (I particularly like a colour I call ‘drab green’, which has a tinge of black in it – but it’s quite lively). Other than that I like mustard and orange, but it has to be the right shade. Instead of a washed orange, I love the more rusty tone.
HK: What inspires you?
RG: My inspiration comes from things as well as people. The automotive world and nature is a great example. I love sci-fi and the styling of what futuristic objects can be. In regards to people, Ross Lovegrove, Mark Newson, Ron Arad were all people that inspire me when I was developing my career.
HK: What’s your biggest bugbear?
RG: The biggest frustration is the amount of ideas I have and how many of them I can’t find the people to get them realised. If there’s one thing that we need to develop in this industry are intermediaries who can find that talent and make ideas a reality.

“It was by far the largest sofa I have ever designed.”

As well as designing much of his work for the commercial sector, there are the occasional exception, and when record producer Nellee Hooper approached Galpin to ask him to design a sofa for his studio, he could not refuse. “It was four metres long and made from six different parts,” Galpin explains. “It was by far the largest sofa I have ever designed.” I can’t help but ask what Galpin’s house is like. “The furniture in my house is by no means something I have put together from a blank canvas,” he says chuckling. “A large number of pieces in my place are my own prototypes. It really is a collection of products that don’t necessarily sit well together, but they do represent my journey that I’ve been on. I also have collected a number of Charles & Ray Eames furniture pieces and I am a big fan of the artists Alan Fletcher and Ewan Eason among others. You will also find a lot of Artemide lighting around my place. Other than that, there are a few Habitiat items lying around too.”

As designers go, Galpin strikes me as someone who I believe is keeping the hotel design industry fresh with innovative ideas and the ability to always look ahead. His success has certainly not gone to his head, nor has he reached the peek in his career. I am impressed that a designer can leave such an impression in such a short space of time. But here I am feeling as if I have met another friendly face who I look forward to following as his latest ideas become reality.

SPOTLIGHT ON: Handmade British furniture range launches to add statement

Hamish Kilburn

AS HOTEL DESIGNS CONTINUES TO FOCUS ITS LENS ON FURNITURE THIS MONTH, ONE COMPANY’S HANDMADE BRITISH PRODUCTS ARE MAKING A STATEMENT IN THE PUBLIC AREAS, GUESTROOMS AND HOTEL CORRIDORS…

Following the recent feature on how to add statement to your boutique hotel, furniture brand Sofas & Stuff has recently launched a new handmade British range of furniture called Occasional Chairs.

Known as the Thistle and Port Isaac Chairs, each have been handmade in Britain and are available in any fabric to complement existing seating, or to create an occasional statement piece in any room.

The classic design of the Port Isaac features elegant button back detailing with a wide plump base, meanwhile the Thistle is more contemporary in its design, making it ideal for accenting an interior scheme.

Both the Thistle and Port Isaac are available in any fabric, and can be fully tailored to any requirements with a choice of sizes, cushion fillings and legs.

The chairs are available to purchase in 12 nationwide and London stores, with a designated team of design experts all on hand to help.

Spotlight On: Furniture line made from forgotten traditional material

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As combining materials seemed to be a major theme of this year’s London Design Festival, editor Hamish Kilburn went beyond the show to investigate how one furniture company decided to use an often forgotten material from the 20th century for its latest collection of contract seating…

British design brand Deadgood launched a brand new collection of furniture at this year’s designjunction at London Design Festival 2018.

‘Hug Chair’ utilises Lloyd Loom, a traditional yet somewhat forgotten 20th century material, manipulated over a plywood shell and sat atop a recycled steel frame. The new dining and lounge chair version of the ‘Hug Chair’ was on the stand along with a number of other new designs in Oak and Upholstered finishes.

“After much experimentation we were able to manipulate the shape of this well loved material by applying it directly to a plywood shell,” said Vicki Leach, Deadgood Design Director. “By contrasting Lloyd Loom with a powder coated steel frame the aesthetic is somewhat refreshed for a modern interior, hopefully giving this tried and tested material a new lease of life.

Machine-woven Lloyd Loom is manufactured out of Kraft paper twisted round fine aluminium wire. The material is smooth to the touch, impervious and remarkably strong and durable. Deadgood adopted to use Lloyd Loom in order to create a thoroughly modern range of products with a distinctive yet altogether familiar aesthetic. “The result is subtle and not overwhelming, lending itself to gently merging in with the current workplace and hospitality trends,” concluded Leach.

As all this month Hotel Designs is focusing the spotlight on furniture, we are on the hunt for interesting furniture pieces that have recently launched. Tweet our editorial team on Twitter @hoteldesigns.

 

 

 

 

 

Live from LDF: New design furniture store arrives in London’s Shoreditch

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Premium designer furniture brand KENT & LONDON, which opened its London showroom this week, has launched #WellMadeLDF18, a design challenge for members of the public and designers during London Design Festival…

For the first time KENT & LONDON, a sharp designer furniture brand, has opened its doors during London Design Festival.

The official launch on Tuesday evening welcomed press, international designers and friends of the brand as the store announced its London presence following popular demand among London designers in both the residential and contract market.

Visitors of the store are now invited to explore high quality custom-made furniture and kitchens, alongside its showroom collaborations with FLOOR_STORY – East London’s friendliest rug dealer, Swedish encaustic tile company Marrakech Design, Studio Ore – handcrafted and hand finished brass taps and Caesarstone – which recently launched its Metropolitan collection, marking a new era in durable quartz surfaces. The Shoreditch showroom also features designed products from Vitamin Living, Kast Concrete basins and Armac Martin.

As part of the Shoreditch Design Triangle and throughout the duration of the Festival, KENT & LONDON hosts a unique design challenge titled #WellMadeLDF18. Both professionals and design savvy public are invited to book into a session to create their own piece of furniture using selected materials within the showroom. They will see their ideas come to life through a live design consultation with KENT & LONDON partners Luke Ellis (Creative Director) and George Couyas (Interior Designer).

#WellMadeLDF18 aims to engage with people from all backgrounds and skill level, inspiring creativity and providing an insight into the design process. KENT & LONDON will use their specialism of designing and making custom-made furniture to digitally sketch each design.

During each session the design development will be projected for showroom visitors to view. Each concept will be posted to Instagram for a public vote using the hashtag #WellMadeLDF18 and a shortlist will be judged by a panel of industry experts. The winning design will be refined and produced by KENT & LONDON and gifted to the winner.

LIVE FROM LDF: Furniture designed around raw emotions

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Portuguese furniture company exhibits furniture at Decorex inspired by emotions as it attempts to challenge conventional hotel furniture…

A Portuguese furniture company has exhibited new furniture that is inspired by human emotion at this year’s Decorex during London Design Festival. There’s a thin line between a functional object and artwork. Emotional Objects aren’t just objects, they are almost art pieces. Unique and perfectly crafted by passionate Portuguese designers and artisans, in Portugal.

True to ensuring that each product is bespoke, all of its objects are handcrafted or handpainted with love. “We treat furniture as art and when they leave, a part of us goes with them,” said owner and architect Joao Faria on his stand at Decorex. Faria does not believe his product is in the category of a being a ‘luxury product. “Luxury brands spend a lot of time and money creating a sense of… Luxury. Selling a lifestyle instead of their products and making you believe that buying their product makes you hip,” he explained.

“The company tries to take its objects a little bit further than its function”

Emotional Objects are designed and manufactured with the sole purpose to make a connection with us as people. The company tries to take its objects a little bit further than its function, bushing the boundaries of design. “Our objects aren’t transparent; they make us smile every time we use them. That is an Emotional Object,” explained Faria. “An object that relates to us, with our life and taste.”

Roots Console and Mirror

“Roots” is a line of furniture inspired in the Sacred Ceiba tree in Havana. A line goes around the volume of the pieces and changes its expression just like a root. “After all nature is the mother of all forms,” said Faria. “It is only necessary to go a little bit further…” In 2016, the coffee table won an “A’ Design Award” in “Furniture, Decorative Items and Homeware Design” category.

Emotional Objects is one of many Portuguese design companies exhibiting at Decorex, a show which Hotel Designs is a proud media partner of.

 

Lobby of St Ermin's Hotel

Spotlight On: The hotel lobby and Furniture

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Throughout September, Hotel Designs will be shining the spotlight on two areas that together help the other evolve. Namely: the hotel lobby and furniture…

Next month, Hotel Designs will be examining first impressions in the hotel lobby and how what is constantly referred to as the ‘beating heart of the hotel, home of the energetic pulse, has evolved over the years to cater towards modern travellers. In addition to this, the publication will also stitch together the best furniture pieces and evolving trends in international hotel design.

The hotel lobby 

Hotel lobby

Image credit: Hotel ICON, Hong Kong

The lobby can make or break a hotel concept. The challenge for international interior designers continues to be merging functionality with personality. With hotels being more than just a bed for the night, the hotel lobby as we know it is now transforming into community spaces as opposed to a seating area pre or post check in. The editorial team will take a look at the best examples and suggest where the future of the lobby will sit.

Furniture

Image credit: Corinthia London

Luxury with an edge is the theme of 2018 when it comes to furniture. In May, Milan saw the first glimpse of this year’s major trends. These showed a definite move towards comfort and a nod to 1950s design. How are designers incorporating this into their work? As show seasons begins, the editorial team take a deeper look at this sector.

If you’re a supplier in either of these categories and want your products to reach more than 41,000 hoteliers, interior designers and architects per month, there are plenty of ways you can get involved with these features next month, from supplying an opinion piece to working with us on a targeted mini-series.

If you wish to find out more, please contact Phoebe Kasapi on 01992 374059 or p.kasapi@forumevents.co.uk

Main image credit: St Ermin’s Hotel, London

Top 5 stories of the week: Furniture in the fast lane, VR insights and flawless flooring trends

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As Hotel Designs continues to focus on Hotel Concepts and Flooring & Carpets, Editor Hamish Kilburn breaks down this week’s top news stories…

Throughout this week, we have had a bit of everything – from flooring trends to Lamborghini sofas, from VR insights to hotels inspired by nature. This is somewhat not surprising considering the two vast topics that we’re shining the spotlight on this month. Here are this week’s top five stories.

1) Virtual Reality is changing the game in hospitality

Hotel Tech Spa & Live

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

Hotel Spa Tech Live describes how Virtual Reality is changing the face of international hotel design and service…

2) 7 flooring trends that are leaving clear footprints in 2018

This month, as we focus our lens on hotel flooring, Hotel Designs is going all out to give you an accurate take on how the flooring trends are shaping up for the back end of this year. From what our editorial team can see, rules have been broken – and rightly so. Here are a few top trends to keep an eye on for the rest of the year.

3) Nature-inspired villa suites open at Son Brull, Mallorca

With a noticeable nod to nature, Son Brull in Mallorca has completed the design of two brand-new villa suites. The two-bedroom villa suites are situated in the hotel’s idyllic gardens and offer the ideal combination of space and privacy while remaining fully serviced. Located in the northern Mallorca near Pollensa, the family owned and managed hotel is housed in a former monastery that dates back to the 12th century, in a peaceful rural setting for guests looking to disconnect and spend some quality time surrounded by nature.

4) Chic bungalow-style, luxury-chic hotel to open in the City of Angels

Home-from-home cosy guestroom

Image credit: 850

A new chic 23-key boutique hotel created by Jeff Klein’s JK Hotel Group and designed by Rita Konig is slated to open Autumn 2018…

5) SPOTLIGHT ON: Bentley Hotel rooms and Lamborghini furniture in the fast lane

With this month’s focus being on weird and wonderful Hotel Concepts around the globe, Hotel Designs stitched the lining of these very quirky – and slightly ‘out there’ automotive designs and Lamborghini sofas…

Morgan Furniture’s growing footprints

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Recommended Supplier Morgan Furniture has further expanded its lobbyesque Pimlico collection…

Morgan’s Pimlico collection began as a side chair with a small footprint, and has since developed to include a variety of size options and high-backs. With smooth curved lines and a unique oval seat pad, the expanded collection offers further possibilities and interior solutions; creating a cohesive collection suited to both workplace and hospitality interiors.

 The dramatic high back booth sofa and lounge chairs act as a statement piece

Morgan Pimlico 142 High-back Lounge Chairs. Fully upholstered for maximum comport, Pimlico succeeds in offering a look, which is youthful as well as being timeless and elegant. The dramatic high back booth sofa and lounge chairs act as a statement piece, whilst also offering a practical acoustic solution for private working and relaxation.

Alongside these products, the collection includes a number of low back options including a luxuriously deep sofa, a higher sit banquette sofa, lounge chairs and dining/meeting chairs.

To view these new collections please visit the Morgan showroom at 1 Dallington Street, ECV1 0BH.

Morgan Furniture are one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

SPOTLIGHT ON: Bentley Hotel rooms and Lamborghini furniture in the fast lane

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With this month’s focus being on weird and wonderful Hotel Concepts around the globe, Hotel Designs stitched the lining of these very quirky – and slightly ‘out there’ automotive designs and Lamborghini sofas…

Fast cars and flash hotel rooms are nothing new. In 2014, St Regis Istanbul famously unveiled the Bentley Suite, which played on the concept of automotive luxury design. A sofa lounge, with signature Bentley diamond upholstery in Bentley linen leather, brought Bentley’s distinctive motoring luxury to life. From the curved veneered walls, in Bentley smoked fiddleback eucalyptus, to the elegant upholstery, the suite’s shapely architecture skillfully reflected the Continental GT’s seductive lines.

Bentley Suite, Istanbul

St Regis Istanbul

In June this year, Hotel Designs reported on the hotel bathroom that was inspired by the design of a supercar. Working predominately in carbon fibre and taking design cues from the world of the supercar, award-winning designer Charles Wan was developing a number of unique automotive bathroom styles.

Now, with much hype around creating moments within a hotel experience, the Lamborghini sofa could be coming to a hotel guestroom near you.

The racing sofas, designed and manufactured by Design Epicentrum,  are a unique combination of realistic sport cars and comfortable seats with elegant leather upholstery. Next to such furniture is not a way to pass indifferently – they are created to play a main role in the space arrangement.

With Lamborghini sofas now on the market – albeit limited edition – the question over how far hotel concepts can go continues to be asked.

 

Sekers Fabrics unveils Piazza collection

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Sekers Fabrics has launched Piazza, a versatile upholstery with a small textured weave combining multi-colour twist yarns with luxurious chenille yarns…

Available in a range of 20 colours, from rich, stylish neutrals and browns to vibrant blues, reds and oranges, Sekers new fabrics collection Piazza offers a diverse choice of colour.

Incorporating Aquaclean, an advanced nano technology finish that helps protect the fabric against spills and stains without having to resort to specialist cleaning, Piazza resists the toughest of stains, including red wine and permanent marker.

Supplied with crib 5 backing and with an outstanding abrasion performance of 45,000 rubs, Piazza is an ideal upholstery choice for the contract market, from pubs and hotels to cruise ships, meeting all relevant UK and IMO standards for upholstery.

Sekers are one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Pimlico sofa

Creating the Pimlico Collection from Morgan Furniture

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This year’s Clerkenwell Design Week saw the expansion of Morgan’s Pimlico collection to include two new sofas, the dramatic 148 high back booth sofa, and low back 147 two seat sofa to accompany the 140 lounge chair.

The Pimlico collection, designed by Morgan Studio, began as a bedroom chair with a small footprint and has developed to include a variety of size options and high-backs.

Valencia collection

With smooth curved lines and a unique oval seat pad, the expanded collection offers further possibilities and interior solutions; Creating a cohesive collection suited to both workplace and hospitality interiors.

At Clerkenwell Design Week, Morgan also showcased its recent Valencia collection of modular seating, statement asymmetric daybeds and tables. Launching new additions to the table collection, including variations in size and finish.

To view these new collections please visit the Morgan showroom at 1 Dallington Street, ECV1 0BH.

Morgan Furniture are one of our recommended suppliers. To keep up to date with their news, click here. And, if you are interested in becoming one of our recommended suppliers, click here.

Modern bathroom featuring Duravit

Duravit launches new bathroom furniture range, Brioso

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The Brioso bathroom furniture range is a refreshingly contemporary approach to bathroom design, offering varied individual design options and excellent value for money…

Working with designer Christian Werner, Duravit has launched a range of furniture that does justice to the notion of “Brioso” – representing relaxation, freshness, and joie de vivre in a contemporary bathroom interior.

The range’s distinctive features include precise, finely nuanced geometry produced by slender cabinet frames that form the edges of the furniture, mirrors and mirror cabinets. A further distinctive feature are handles and feet that can be supplied in the same cabinet colour if required, offering functionality without impacting on the overall design. For a more striking look, handles and even the legs can be chosen in chrome and potentially combined with real wood finishes. These varied and customised design options offer excellent value for money.

The range has presence whilst also being reserved and can be easily combined with a wide range of design series such as Vero Air, P3 Comforts, ME by Starck, Starck 3, and D-Code.

The washbasin vanity units are available in up to five different widths (400-1300 mm). This also enables practically asymmetric, half-open furniture to be created that further emphasises the fresh look of the range.

The Brioso furniture range is part of the universal console programme providing even greater design freedom. The furniture consoles are available in two different thicknesses (30 and 45 mm, each with a variable width) and two depths. They can be combined with vanity units in widths of 30 to 80 cm and console washbasin vanity units of 62 to 100 cm. All furniture comes with the option of one or two drawers. The tall cabinet and semi-tall cabinet in widths of 420 or 520 mm offer yet more storage space.

Modern bathroom featuring the new rangeThe Brioso vanity unit in White High Gloss is 420 mm wide and is small enough to fit any guest bathroom. Shown with ME by Starck handrinse basin and C.1 single lever basin mixer.

The open shelves on the 820 mm wide asymmetric vanity unit can be located left or right. To match: the washbasin from the ME by Starck series with an asymmetrically positioned tap fitting from the C.1 series. console washbasin vanity units of 62 to 100 cm. All furniture comes with the option of one or two drawers. The tall cabinet and semi-tall cabinet in widths of 420 or 520 mm offer yet more storage space.

A total of 15 finishes are available in various decors, real wood veneers or lacquers (matt and gloss), including new, on-trend tones such as matt light blue and matt concrete grey as well as a linen-look decor finish.

Floor-standing variants underline Brioso’s balanced proportions. Like the handles, the furniture feet are available in chrome or the lacquer furniture colours.

The matching mirrors and mirror cabinets have a 60 mm-wide, 300 lux-strong LED edging light at the top. Wash area lighting, dimmer function, and mirror heating have a contact-free control. The cabinet trims fitted to the sides can be ordered to match the colour of the finish and round off the fresh overall effect of the series.

In addition, Brioso sports a further design feature to appeal to the sense of touch: As a stylish solution for the wash area – the Vero Air washbasin is also available as a c-bonded version in conjunction with the Brioso vanity unit. In a complex and patented process, the furniture washbasin is connected almost seamlessly to the vanity unit.

 

Calligaris to showcase latest products at Clerkenwell Design Week

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In celebration of its 95th anniversary this year, family-run Italian furniture company Calligaris will showcase a series of its latest contract pieces at Clerkenwell Design Week.

Clerkenwell Design Week display includes the decadently glamorous Coco Chair, inspired by 1950s design with its elegant silhouette and simple metal structure, luxuriously upholstered with padded fabrics or leathers. The Love Seating Range is another nod to the fifties era in a rich earthy colour palette of charcoals and terracottas. The bodies of the pieces are ‘suspended’, sitting neatly within the unique metal frame’s extended legs.

Also on display will be the bestselling Fifties and Igloo that are synonymous with the customisable element of Calligaris’ furniture, giving the customer the freedom to mix and match shapes, textures and materials to create individual looks for commercial spaces.

With a similar retro style, the Gala Chair pairs a chic metallic frame with luxurious velvet upholstery in a series of vintage shades including blush pink and dusky blue.

The Calligaris Contract range was founded in 2008, developing furniture for hotels and restaurants. Its customisable element is key, giving the freedom to mix and match shapes textures and materials to create individual pieces designed to bring the luxuries of the home to the contract market.

Hotel Designs editor Hamish Kilburn will be at Clerkenwell Design Week on the 24 May. Please tweet us if you would like to book in a meeting.

Northern Lighting debuts lifestyle brand, Norther

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Design studio, Northern Lighting, has unveiled a new lifestyle concept that has been designed to bridge the gap between statement making products and practical designs.

Dubbed Northern, the brand will boast a holistic range of furniture, lighting and interior accessories.

The brand was established with input from design duo Morten and Jonas, which will also launch with items from famous designers, as well as up-and-coming creators.

The entire team is made up of 16 designers from seven countries, who have inspired a line of seating, tables, lighting and interior accessories.

Products from creators such as Rudi Wulff, Gridy, Cecilia Xinyu Zhang, Kyla McCallum, Vera & Kyte, Elina Ulvio, Mattias Stenberg, Ann Kristin Einarsen, Johan Lindsten, Johanna Forsberg, Sami Kallio and Morten and Jonas complete the range of this season’s line-up.

Northern will make its debut on February 6th, 2018 at the Stockholm Furniture Fair.

Winter Colour Trends

Decorative Accessories: 2017 Winter colour trends in design

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Creating furniture with the right colour palette is extremely important if you are aiming to astonish with your project.

Natural tendencies are foreseen, earthy shades, sandy hues. Specifically keep an eye on smokey grey, tending to go a bit in the direction of blue hues like navy blue. In general, the key colours are based on neutral tones, many of them having a beautiful ambivalence – especially in the case of colours like khaki olive or the blue navy.

To inspire you, Covet House has selected a series of pieces that will make you surrender to the new Winter colours…

Piccadilly Mirror – Boca do Lobo: Piccadilly Mirror is a result of new concepts that featured impossible constructions, explorations of the infinity, architecture and tessellations. With a convex mirror, its frame is made in highly handcrafted poplar. The mirror is a perfect reflection of the masters at work here at Boca do Lobo Design Studio. This piece is perfect for exteriors, with neutral tones.

Miles Floor Lamp – Delightfull: “For me, music and life are all about style” said Miles Davis. Miles standing lamp brings back the atmosphere of sophistication inspired by the 1950s. With a complexity not visible at first sight, like the eye catcher gold plated frame, black marble base and the gold pendant switch, it casts a smooth light that will surely make you feel in a “Kind of Blue” mood.

Journey Armchair – Brabbu: Journey armchair is the way to live calm and introspective moments. Made in synthetic leather, it’s texture takes you to a place where time does not go by and good moments are carved into eternity. Journey is a strong yet peaceful piece ideal for a modern decor.

Ambar Rug – The Rug Society: Although neutral tones are the focus of next winter it’s possible to highlight tones, earthy sienna, browns that have grey tones and to top everything we have olive green, pale pink, aquamarine and mustard yellow. Having this in mind, Rug’s Society presents its Ambar Rug. With a bold graphic design and a creation without limits; a 100% handmade product that transforms the comfort and beauty of your project.

Mimi Bar Chair – Koket: Navy blue is probably the most peculiar colour to look forward to this winter. Because of that, Koket brings this wonderful bar chair. Mimi is the sophisticated and flirty girl-next-door of barstools. This simple but sweet cozy design hugs your body in cozy upholstery fabric. Its attractive body with modern curves is accented by long metal legs.

Guggenheim Chandelier – Luxxu: The Guggenheim Museum is considered to be the “temple of the spirit”. Furthermore, it is the most important structure of its time. As a result of the leading-edge architecture, the Guggenheim chandelier was designed. Another piece in black, classic and chic, it will definitely satisfy your desire for refinement and fit perfect in your winter décor.

Agata Lotus Panel – Maison Valentina: This art panel inspired by the Agatha’s mineral stone has a gathering of layers resembling the shape of the Lotus Flower, a plant that has a symbolism of purity, rebirth and divinity in the Buddhism and Hinduism religions. This art panel is based on the use of acrylic colours assortment and resin materials which blended with digital art and handmade techniques allows the creation of distinctive elements and repeated patterns. The art panels can be customised through graphic and handmade artistic touches and created in different sizes to create unique ambiences. A jewel for the most royal bathrooms.

Kelly Bar Chair – Essential Home: Continuing in the neutral tones, Essential Home presents a mid-century bar chair. Remember Casablanca barstools? Now bring it to the present time, add a modern touch and an explosion of colour. The whole shape and golden base of Kelly Chair can make you feel that you just walked into a 1950 luxurious bar. The shape of the back support is made to endure and be comfortable, that could be translated into hours spent at the bar, enjoying a cocktail or two.

Feel comfortable and warm this winter, with these eccentric pieces that Covet House has selected and celebrates the design in the best way possible.

www.covethouse.eu

MOGG - Contract Furniture Store

Be inspired with MOGG at the Contract Furniture Store

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MOGG was born from the desire of its founder, the architect Nicola Galbiati. With a long experience in the world of furniture and design, Galbiati has said his intention is to move away from a world saturated with commercial furniture and is proud to describe many of Mogg’s products as pieces that won’t blend in.

In essence that is MOGG! MObili (furniture) OGGetti (objects)…

Mogg is a relatively new Italian company which was set up by Nicola, who wanted to work with a team of other architects, designers and architects. He calls them his “partners with vision – crazy dreamers” and together they want to create pieces that cross the boundary between art and design.

MOGG has a soul and a well-defined identity; fresh and curious that wants to surprise you, looking for people that with their visions, with their enthusiasm, their work and their perceptions to love the new and modern concept of living.

Browse the latest brochure split into three parts from Mogg, Furniture Objects, where each product has it’s own history.

For further details, please contact the Contract Furniture Store

Marston House, 29c, Marston Road
Stafford
ST16 3BS
United Kingdom

T: +44 (0)1785 594378
E: sales@contractfurniturestore.co.uk
W: www.contractfurniturestore.co.uk

Scanal - Contract Furniture Store - Enigma Collection

New Enigma collection decoded at the Contract Furniture Store

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Sancal presented six new products and one concept set, against enthralling scenography, specially devised for this year’s Salone del Mobile Milano.

Deep, Isla, Magnum, Beetle, Tortuga Mini, Pion Petra and Estante comprise the Enigma Collection; the firm’s most theatrical to date.

And of course, the visual impact wouldn’t be the same without the bizarre collages of Sammy Slabbinck!

Decode Enigma and more here

T: +44 (0)1785 594378
E: sales@contractfurniturestore.co.uk
W: www.contractfurniturestore.co.uk

No Rock Even-stable table technology from Contract Furniture Store

Product Spotlight: No-Rock – self-stabilising even table bases from Contract Furniture Store

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Contract Furniture StoreContract Furniture Store, a leading online specialist supplier of luxury hotel, office and restaurant furniture. With more than 100 different European brands and more than 4,000 products they are dedicated to delivering the highest quality modern affordable furniture for their clients.

Their team of dedicated designers ensure that their modern furniture is unique, bespoke and highly comfortable. Their meticulous attention to detail and experienced craftsmanship combined with the latest cutting edge technology makes them an industry-leading provider of modern and affordable commercial furniture.

One of their latest creations, No-Rock, provides an unrivalled Even-solution to table instability. Meeting the everyday needs of cafes and restaurants, No-Rock Even table bases self-stabilise on uneven indoor and al fresco surfaces, while exhibiting an innovative and contemporary design aesthetic.

No wedges, no wobbles, no worries. Explore our No-Rock Even range available for quick shipment now

T: +44 (0)1785 594378
E: sales@contractfurniturestore.co.uk
W: www.contractfurniturestore.co.uk

Chelsom are very pleased to announce the launch of the stunning new Furniture Collection 2017

Chelsom launches new furniture collection, website

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Chelsom are very pleased to announce the launch of the stunning new Furniture Collection 2017.

Chelsom’s in-house design team has worked hard to create trend setting styles, whilst maintaining high quality standards and commercial appeal. New finishes and materials create a big impact ensuring the collection is Chelsom’s most innovative and striking to date.

INTRODUCING THE NEW WEBSITE
Not only does the website enhance the catalogue aesthetically, it has also been designed with navigability and functionality at the forefront. Every product is shown online and the whole catalogue can be downloaded in pdf format.

For further information or to request a catalogue please contact the dedicated furniture team at furniture@chelsom.co.uk or call +44 (0) 1253 831450.

New lighting and faux flora - Gallery Direct

February Lighting Focus: New range from Gallery Direct

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Gallery Direct’s new Spring/Summer 2017 Collection includes a fantastic selection of new lighting to add to their existing range.

One of the new products is the Watson which is available as a floor and a table lamp; both offer style and practicality and are available in three colours: bronze and black; brushe