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    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. 

    Checking in to Inhabit Hotel, sheltering a new level of eco design

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Checking in to Inhabit Hotel, sheltering a new level of eco design

    During the London hotel’s soft launch period, editor Hamish Kilburn checks in to discover Inhabit’s debut property, which in the process earns his eco stamp of approval…

    Last year, an insightful study revealed that the city of London had the eighth highest level of pollution in the world, making the sky 67 times brighter than it would be without the contribution of humans. In the same study, it was highlighted that a staggering 84 per cent of Brits spend less than 10 minutes a day enjoying peace and quiet.

    Armed with these statistics, it came with great delight reading about a new hospitality concept of a fresh urban hotel perspective, where wellbeing and sustainable design was at the core of everything. Where the aim is for guests to leave feeling lighter, more free and inspired by taking the pace of life down a gear or two. Where time is luxury. Where Inhabit Hotel becomes a home-from-home.

    After a chaotic experience navigating the London Underground, which I politely consider to be ‘the pits’ of all public transport with it being the most polluted place in the city, I arrived at Paddington’s new boutique hotel in the same state of mind as I imagine most guests do; slightly stressed showing early symptoms of rush-hour rage. Juxtaposing the hustle and bustle of the city’s zone 1, the hotel’s understated is guests’ first indication of a new kind of hotel.

    The sixth-floor urban sanctuary is the brainchild of Nadira and Rihim Lalji, and is the cousins’ first hotel within the portfolio. Created by architecture firm Holland Harvey Architects and Caitlin Henderson Design, the 90-key hotel is designed with busy travellers in mind. My arrival experience feels more as if I am staying with warm hosts rather than a hotel. The lobby sits in perfect harmony between the F&B area, named Yeotown, and book-filled library.

    The check-in desk is down-played, and marries nicely into the laid-back luxury design concept. While checking in, my eyes are drawn to a timetable that I am not familiar with; a yoga and mediation schedule, which I am told launched only this week but was very much part of the core plan for the hotel. “Wellness is at the heart of our brand,” says Nadira Lalji. “Every aspect of our hotel is aligned with what being well means to us. We think of wellness as more than a physical state, but a way of being. Our brand pillars, which stand for social connectedness, intellectual expansion and environmental responsibility, reinforce this belief.”

    The ground-floor library is Inhabit’s answer to the rise in demand for public areas designed with bleisure in mind. The space encourages residents and members of the public to unwind, work and be inspired. The noise-free corner is complete with LED bulbs, which are 80 per cent more efficient in terms of energy used than traditional lighting. Occupancy sensors ensure that no energy is lost and guests are seen in their best light when they require it.

    Image credit: Inhabit Hotel

    Yeotown, is an innovative and thoughtful F&B area, perfect for guests on the move or as a venue for casual meetings. By partnering with food-wastage apps Karma and Too Good to Go, the area allows non-guests to pick up perfectly edible bargains which would otherwise be put into waste. The tables and chairs, made also by Holland and Harvey, have been created using materials honestly and in their natural state. “At Inhabit, we have specified oak flooring and joinery, all finished with a natural sealant to show off their natural colouring and tones,” said architect Richard Holland. “The floor is a natural stone from Fired Earth, which has beautiful variations and tonal differences.”

    Upstairs, the sustainability story continues, which is most impressive when considering that the hotel is sheltered within a Grade II listed building. From Casper eco-friendly mattresses to the REN amenities that are made from recycled plastic – even the soft toilet paper is 100 per cent recycled – the guestrooms and bathrooms are quite obviously designed with conscious guests in mind. But on close inspection, it becomes apparent just how high up on the agenda sustainability is for the hotel. Taking the concept of ‘escapism’, one step further, each room comes complete with Studio ND phone charge and stowaway boxes, made from scrap materials, so that guests can break away from their devices.

    Perhaps it was my perfectly timed stay to sit in-between speaking about this very topic on stage at the Independent Hotel Show – more likely it’s simply the sheer statement of an urban hotel having such an eco-focused message – that has put on a smile on my face when checking out following one of the best night’s sleep I have had in London for a while. I can’t help but feel totally relaxed and reassured that the bottom line of profit is not the only value when it comes to successfully operating a hotel. And it was this that inspired my latest Editor Checks In online column, where I argue that consciousness could very well become the new luxury.

    Main image credit: InHabit London

    Design studio twenty2degrees creates social flexible pop-up for Sleep & Eat 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Design studio twenty2degrees creates social flexible pop-up for Sleep & Eat 2019

    twenty2degrees is one of six studios creating a concept guestroom pop-up ‘Sleep Set’ for this year’s Sleep & Eat 2019…

    London-based hotel design practice twenty2degrees has designed a concept guestroom in a response to Sleep & Eat 2019′s theme of “Social FlexAbility”, which explores hospitality’s power to stimulate human interaction in our age of digital dislocation.

    “We are not suggesting that human beings should return to a world without digital devices – far from it – but it’s a question of balance and making non-digital elements more fun so they can compete with smart phone obsession,” says Nick Stoupas, Founder and Partner of twenty2degrees. “We’ll be incorporating a music playlist and dynamic lighting as well as using a lot of bold colour, and materiality will be important. Then we are shaking it all up. Think neon illumination and timber, an industrial style black floor with a richly designed rug depicting fantastical flying creatures.”

    “We followed certain paths of thought, then found new sources of inspiration and were able to flip the aesthetic.” – Joe Stella, Creative Director and Partner of twenty2degrees

    twenty2degrees has worked closely with Ulster Carpets in the creation of the rug. Other supplier partners are: Hansgrohe (Brassware), Contardi Lighting, Tarkett (flooring), Solus Ceramics (stone marble), Hamilton (sockets & switches) and Altrock Surfaces (vanity unit). Peter Millard and Partners is supplying artwork, Bang & Olufsen the sound system and the build partner is Viriato Hotel Concept.

    “The process of designing the concept guestroom has been fascinating,” says Joe Stella, Creative Director and Partner of twenty2degrees. “Essentially, we were our own client freed from the usual constraints of commercial hotel design. We followed certain paths of thought, then found new sources of inspiration and were able to flip the aesthetic. We hope that the result of this creative license will be ideas that operators, owners and other visitors to our pop-up will want to take away with them and adapt for real-life projects.”

    twenty2degrees’ concept room, one of six Sleep & Eat Sets, will be located on the gallery level of Olympia London’s Main Hall.

    Main image credit: twenty2degrees/Sleep & Eat 2019

    ‘Must see’ brands at Sleep & Eat 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    ‘Must see’ brands at Sleep & Eat 2019

    With less than three weeks until Sleep & Eat 2019, here are just a few brands and products to look out for… 

    More 160 design-led suppliers are now confirmed to be exhibiting at Sleep & Eat 2019, which takes place on November 19 – 20 at Olympia London. For many years now, the exhibition has been the place where both established and up-and-coming manufacturers not only choose to launch their collections, but where business is done and opportunities to network and socialise are numerous.

    Reflecting the growing convergence between hotel, restaurant and bar design, the exhibitor line-up includes many international companies which supply all three sectors, as well as cruise ships and spas.

    Following our sneak peek inside the doors of the company’s new UK headquarters, Laufen will launch The New Classic collection by Dutch designer Marcel Wanders. Utilising Laufen’s innovative SaphirKeramikmaterial, the designer created a collection combining gentle, feminine curves with angular, masculine elements. “For the first time, the ultra-modern SaphirKeramik has been moulded into a classic and iconic form,” commented Wanders. “This lightweight yet resilient material gave us the unique opportunity to celebrate the beauty of ceramics with our elegant, soft lines.”

    Dramatic view of the full The New Classic collection

    Image credit: Laufen/Marcel Wanders

    Morgan, the British designer and manufacturer of contemporary furniture, will be introducing its new Kaya lounge collection. Taking its name from sacred forests spread along the Kenyan coast, Kaya finds its roots in the openness, honesty and purity of trees. Morgan will also exhibit The Rakino collection of lounge chairs and tables designed by Tim Rundle, and The Goodwood collection designed by Katerina Zachariades in collaboration with artist Mark CcClure.

    A Sleep & Eat newcomer, Prestigious Textiles, will be debuting with a range of prints, jacquards and velvets alongside a rich diversity of plains, semi-plains and sheers. The company will also present its new bespoke service, giving customers the freedom to take their design of choice and translate it onto any print ground using the latest digital printing technology.

    Also new to Sleep & Eat, Marie Martin, the range of exclusive lighting by the Dutch company Lumière, will present its most popular lighting fixtures. Stemming from a passion for interiors, this collection arose from the desire to unite the love for antiques, for Paris, for colour and fully decorated spaces. Marie Martin’s range will feature lush materials – bronze, silk, brocade, and velvet – as well as abundant attention to detail and extravagant colour schemes.

    Spanish architectural and design surfaces producer and distributor Cosentino will be showing a range of its brands. These include Dekton ultra-compact surfaces, Silestonequartz and Sensa by Cosentino natural protected stone.

    German bathroom manufacturer, Bette, will exhibit its award-winning glazed titanium-steel baths, shower floors and washbasins, all of which come with a 30 year warranty. Available in an extensive range of sizes and colours, they are finished in BetteGlaze;  a durable, non-porous, scratch-resistant and easy to clean surface.

    Muted coloured washbasins

    Image credit: Bette

    AHK, the Turkish supplier of joinery and fit-out contractor, will feature its indoor and outdoor loose furniture range and latest case goods collection. AHK will also reveal the AW Simulator – the game-changing meeting room pod that immerses users in a unique experience. Its advanced technologies include a panoramic digital view, exclusively designed expanding table, state-of-the-art AV system, and unparalleled acoustics and soundproofing.

    Chelsom will showcase some of the dynamic and trend-driven designs within its extensive Edition 26 collection. Among the products are The Orb, The Icicle and Roma.

    GROHE will be returning to Sleep & Eat for its 14th year. This year, the brand will showcase its most eclectic and diverse product offering yet. This will include its ground-breaking Icon 3D metal-printed taps, taking pride of place on the stand for its first official showcasing in the UK. “Sleep & Eat is a key event for us, one which has helped us to build very strong industry contacts over the years and where we continue to push the boundaries of innovation,” said Raj Mistry, Marketing Director of GROHE UK.

    Image credit: Grohe

    Terratinta – manufacturer of high-end Italian porcelain stoneware, inspired by Scandinavian design enriched with fresh and unusual aesthetic effects – will display its newest ranges of ceramic tiles, including Sartoria Artigiana, Sartoria Romanza, Hexa Mosaics, and Ceppo.

    The Exhibition will also see the event debut of family-owned Irish manufacturer and fit-out specialist, Abbey Upholsterers, which works with numerous luxury hospitality brands as well as in luxury residential. At Sleep & Eat, the brand will be highlighting its hotel guestroom furniture collections.

    Omexco – the Belgian manufacturer of high-end wallcoverings, specializing in sophisticated printing and embossing techniques – will feature its latest designs, Arubaand Portfolio. Aruba collection, inspired by the exotic Caribbean isle, recognises craftsmen who respect natural materials such as weaves of waterlily and raffia with a range of linen yarns and ecological non-woven wallcoverings, whereas Portfolio collection pays tribute to Omexco’s heritage and features a variety of natural yarns including pure linen, multi-coloured silky cotton and viscose.

    Other familiar names exhibiting at Sleep & Eat will include Astro Lighting, Arte, Camira, Knightsbridge Furniture, Quasar, Roca and VitrA. An array of newcomers this year will include Absolute Lifestyle, Article London, Eichholtz, ELG Solutions, Iconic Images, ILIV Contract Textiles, Kaufmann Ceramics, Sahrai, Tarkett, and VICALVI Contract.

    The event also encompasses a complimentary Conference, Development Roundtables and nine specially designed pop-ups including concept guestrooms, restaurant and bar Sets, The Hub – a co-working space, the VIP Lounge and the Sleeper Bar.

    Sleep & Eat, November 19 – 20 in the National Hall, Olympia London. The show will be open from 10am on Tuesday 19 with an evening drinks reception until 8.30 pm, and from 10am-6pm on Wednesday 20. Click here to register.

    Main image credit/caption: Sleep & Eat/Abstract forms, texture and objects study

    The Mandrake welcomes new artist in residence

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    The Mandrake welcomes new artist in residence

    London’s Mandrake Hotel will welcome celebrated photographer Haris Nukem from November 2 – 11 as he takes up residency in Studio 5 as part of the hotel’s Artist in Residence programme…

    The Mandrake, known for its exquisitely designed spaces, provocative and thought invoking art, designed the Artist in Residence programme to celebrate both emerging and established artists and performers.

    The hotel extends guests’ artistic interaction from merely viewing the artwork by providing a unique opportunity to interact with artists and witness the creative process. Guest are often part of the work itself, whether that be paintings, photography, tattoo or mural. By involving guests in this unique process, the hotel truly honours its ‘stay beyond yourself’ philosophy.

    The programme, designed to allow guests and visitors an up close and personal account of the creative process of creating art, has hosted big names including Mark Mahoney, Azzi Glasser, Danny Minnick, Peter John De Villiers, Zoobs and Thomas Hooper.

    Image caption/credit: Dopamine and Leadership Qualities by Haris Nukem

    During his residency, Nukem will be creating one photoshoot per day within The Mandrake, where guests are able to interact and engage with Nukem and the creative process. The hotel’s dedicated art space, Studio 5, will showcase a selection of Nukem’s art for guests to view.

    For an insight into Nukem’s residency, follow @mandrake_air to get behind the scenes access.

    Main image caption/credit: We Need Heroes by Haris Nukem

    Permission submitted to integrate 400,000 plants within façade of new London hotel

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Permission submitted to integrate 400,000 plants within façade of new London hotel

    Set to radically change the city’s landscape and add to its eco hotel offering, hotel developer Dominvs Group and architecture firm Sheppard Robson have submitted permission for a living wall to be the façade of a new London hotel, with the aim to absorb more than eight tonnes of the city’s gaseous pollution each year… 

    Following Hotel Designs publishing the results of a new study that showed that 76 per cent of guests believed that hotels could be greener, the architecture firm of a new development in London has submitted planning permission to include 40,000ft² as part of its exterior shell.

    The hospitality-led, mixed-use project designed by Sheppard Robson for Dominvs Group is characterised by one of the largest green walls in the world, creating a distinctive architectural addition to a gateway City site, while absorbing eight tonnes of pollution annually and setting the standard for urban greening in London.

    Radical plans have been submitted to the City of London to create a 382-key five-star hotel, featuring the vertical landscaping, as well as 40,000ft2 of workspace, a sky-bar on the tenth floor, meeting and events space, spa and ground level restaurant and co-working space. Situated on a prominent site on Holborn Viaduct at the gateway of what will be the City’s “Cultural Mile,” the proposed building creates an opportunity to broadcast fresh ideas about how the built environment can address pertinent issues such as air quality, climate change and air pollution.

    “Dominvs Group is incredibly proud of our proposals for 61-65 Holborn Viaduct which aim to play a major role in the regeneration of the Smithfield area,” said Jay Ahluwalia, Director of Dominvs Group. “With the City of London’s vision for the area and the creation of the Culture Mile, we feel this project will support and enhance the overall ambition for this exciting, new cultural destination as the creative heart of the Square Mile.”

    “The wall will also significantly contribute towards improving local air quality, by trapping approximately 500kg of particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10) per year.”

    Coming after our successful opening of The Dixon at Tower Bridge and the recent breaking of ground at Creed Court, St Pauls we hope our proposals demonstrate our ongoing commitment to providing developments of the highest quality in Central London. We also believe the building’s proposed Living Green Wall, the largest in Europe, could be an exciting, innovative and celebrated addition to London for years to come.”

    By integrating 40,000 square feet of living wall within the façade, the building is projected to annually capture more than eight tonnes of carbon, produce six tonnes of oxygen, and lower the local temperature by three to five degrees Celsius. The wall will also significantly contribute towards improving local air quality, by trapping approximately 500kg of particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10) per year.

    The project engages with the Urban Greening Policy set out in the GLA’s draft New London Plan, incorporating strategies to encourage more and better urban greening, while adopting measures for an ‘Urban Greening Factor.’ The projected Urban Greening Factor score of 1.37 exceeds requirements by 45 times and has the highest greening score in Greater London.

    The development also includes new public green space, with the roof-top viewing gallery on the eleventh floor open to the public and featuring incredible views overlooking St. Paul’s Cathedral, the Grade I listed Holy Sepulchre, and over the city beyond. At roof level, the greenery continues to wrap around the building, with spaces designed for threatened native wildflower species to flourish.

    Dan Burr, Partner at Sheppard Robson, said: “On a site that is so prominent, there was a real drive to inject some fresh perspectives on how to grapple with some on London’s most urgent environmental issues, including air quality and noise and dust pollution. Rather than having an isolated patch of greenery, we felt that an immersive and integrated approach would have the biggest impact on the local environmental conditions and making a better and more liveable city, as well as articulating a clear architectural statement.”

    Hotel Designs will be exploring the topic of sustainability all next month. If you have story for the editorial team, please email editor Hamish Kilburn. 

    Main image credit: Sheppard Robson

    One month until The Brit List Awards 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    One month until The Brit List Awards 2019

    Calling all hotel designers, architects, hoteliers, developers and suppliers: Tickets are selling out fast for The Brit List Awards 2019, which is just one month away… 

    There is just one month to go until Hotel Designs announces the winners of The Brit List 2019. The awards, which will be sheltered at Patch East London on November 21, is the climax of the publication’s nationwide search to find the UK’s top interior designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers.

    Supplier tickets (£150 + VAT) can be purchased here.
    Delegate tickets (£20 + VAT) can be purchased here.

    Among the leading designers who have already confirmed are design directors and principals from Richmond International, Project Orange, Sibley Grove, Harriet Forde Design, Harris + Harris, RPW Design, Scott Brownrigg, David Collins Studio and IHG.

    In regards to architects attending The Brit List Awards 2019, Hotel Designs will welcome associates and directors from the likes of Zaha Hadid Architects, WATG, Jestico + Whiles, Holland Harvey Architects, EPR Architects and Dexter Moren Associates.

    Hoteliers confirmed to attend the annual awards ceremony include, among others, Heckfield Place, Good Hotel London, Limewood Group and Homegrown Hotels, Rosewood London, Cliveden House, The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences London, The Dixon, Bespoke Hotels, Great Scotland Yard Hotel, Eccleston Square, Inhabit London and Hotel Gotham.

    The nationwide search to find the most influential designers, architects and hoteliers operating in Britain began months ago when Hotel Designs opened up nominations and applications to readers.

    Since then, an independent panel of expert judges have gathered to select this year’s individual award winners and also to confirm the 75 individuals who have made it into The Brit List 2019.

    How to attend

    Suppliers:
    Click here if you are a supplier to the industry to secure your ticket for £150 + VAT.

    Designers, architects, hoteliers and developers:
    Click here if you are either a designer, hotelier, developer or architect to secure your ticket for £20 + VAT.

    If you would like to discuss various sponsorship packages available, please contact Katy Phillips via email, or call 01992 374050.

    #TheBritListAwards2019

    Headline Partner: Crosswater

    Event Partner: Hamilton Litestat

    2019 Industry Partner: BIID

    In Conversation With: Britain’s design legend Martin Brudnizki

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    In Conversation With: Britain’s design legend Martin Brudnizki

    Last year’s crowned Interior Designer of The Year at The Brit List Awards, Martin Brudnizki, invites editor Hamish Kilburn to his Chelsea London studio to explain some of the major milestones in his career as well as how he logistically manages his time in a truly international market…

    Design gems are not hard to come by on the British hotel design scene. You have only to open the pages of last year’s edition of The Brit List – and this year’s shortlist for that matter – to find the top 75 influential designers, architects and hoteliers.

    However, design legends are less common. It’s not a question of talent or ability, but more a reflection of style, class, personality and being about to really set oneself aside from others in the heavily congested international hotel design market.

    There is only – and will only ever be – one Martin Brudnizki, for example. Last year, Hotel Designs’ The Brit List crowned the acclaimed visionary as its Interior Designer of the Year – and for good reason. “Brudnizki is an international leader, standing as an icon as well as inspiration to so many young aspiring designers,” commented last year’s expert judging panel. “His recent work in University Arms Cambridge is a credit to his studio’s ability to give a building a new lease of life in the most sensitive and creative way.”

    Image caption/credit: The Library designed by MBDS/University Arms Cambridge

    Almost one year later, while the editorial team at Hotel Designs are gearing up for yet another spectacular awards ceremony, I aptly caught up with the Brudnizki in his Chelsea studio in London to find out more about our ‘poster boy’s’ journey to become one of the world’s most celebrated interior designers of the moment.

    “I grew up in Stockholm; my mother was a stylist and my father an engineer and I think this blend of approaches to living and design, in particular, rubbed off on me,” Brudnizki explains. “My mother is incredibly stylish and filled our home with beautiful colours, patterns and objet. My father on the other hand, worked in a very precise and thought-through way. Both aspects of their personality has certainly informed the way I work today.”

    Brudnizki’s early career in design saw him working at the likes of David Gill Gallery and David Collins Studio before branching off and putting his own practice in 2000, Martin Brudnizki Design Studio (MBDS) in 2000. “I learned a lot during my time in other places,” he adds, “which has served me well when establishing my own studio.”

    “We have a number of up-coming projects that I also hope shape our studio’s story. It’s an exciting time.” – Martin Brudnizki

    Since then, MBDS has become one of the leading international design studios, with bases in London and New York and projects including The Beekman, University Arms and Four Seasons Athens. But, like all designers, Brudnizki remembers the milestone moments; the hotels and buildings that captured his and his team’s incredible imagination, usually sheltered in iconic shells. “All the projects we work on are exciting and help shape the future of the studio however, there are a few that really stick out as being pivotal,” the designer explains. “Scott’s in Mayfair presented us with the opportunity to design our first fine dining restaurant, it also cemented our relationship with Caprice Holdings, who have since become important clients of ours. Working with Nick Jones on Soho Beach House Miami was exciting as this saw us introduce the successful Soho House brand to a new region. The Beekman in New York opened in 2016 and helped stamp our mark on New York. It’s located in a beautiful building and we were lucky to garner a lot of attention from it. Finally, Annabel’s in London has proved incredibly popular for us. It’s such an iconic club so we felt very honoured to be asked to redesign its incarnation. We have a number of up-coming projects that I also hope shape our studio’s story. It’s an exciting time.”

    Dividing his time between both London and New York has given Brudnizki the unique freedom to position himself in two of the world’s most respected design hubs. “Both cities have very unique identities,” Brudnizki explains. “They are both are melting pots of culture and excitement and whilst very different, they both present wonderful opportunities to mark your mark.”

    “Luxury travel to me is being able to combine a sense of curated experience with spontaneity; finding new places but also the having the flexibility to be adventurous and go off piste.” – Martin Brudnizki

    From the outside looking in, the luxury market in hotel design may look like a desirable place to start when setting out to build a reputation as being a leading designer, but it also comes with risk to cater to the ever-changing demand of the modern luxury traveller. For Brudniki, the true art of luxury travel is a reflection of his own experience and personality. “Luxury travel to me is being able to combine a sense of curated experience with spontaneity; finding new places but also the having the flexibility to be adventurous and go off piste,” he defines.

    Since winning at The Brit List 2018, Brudnizki’s vision on a new hotel brand has come to life in the shape of Mr C Hotels, which opened in Miami earlier this year – and has, as a result, put him in the running for the second consecutive year for this year’s awards. “Mr C is situated in a modern new build in the green surroundings of Coconut Grove,” he explains. “New builds have many benefits, including up-to-date technology and no listed statuses to content with however, new builds often lack the characterful details of older properties. With this in mind, we often have to dig deeper to find a strong narrative to wrap the hotel’s design in. For Mr. C we looked to the landscape of the region and the glamorous boating heritage and incorporated elements of this into our scheme.”

    As well as technology, another area that has peaked recently in popularity among developers as well as designers and architects is the value of sustainability and designing consciously. “I think it depends on the project and the client, Brudnizki admits. “We are working with Six Senses on their new hotel and resort in Kitzbuehel Alps and the whole design is focused on sustainability and using organic and local materials. This is to mirror the brand’s values so we’ve had an interesting time researching new materiality and local artisans who can help reduce the hotel’s carbon footprint and up their sustainability accreditation.”

    Quick-fire round

    Hamish Kilburn: Where is next on your travel bucket list?
    Martin Brudnizki: Portugal.

    HK: What is the number one item you simply cannot travel without?
    MB: A silk eye mask.

    HK: What is the last item that will show up on your bank statement?
    MB: Probably food from Bayley & Sage.

    HK: What is your favourite place to unwind in London?
    MB: My home in Parsons Green. As a travel so much, it’s nice to just come home and relax in the peace and quiet.

    HK: What trend do you hope will never return?
    MB: International Beige.

    HK: Where are you travelling to next?
    MB: My New York Studio next week.

    Before I leave the designer in peace to create with his team the hotel interiors of the future, which include hotels in London, Austria, LA and Cape Town (among others), I am interested to explore, on the surface at least, new materials that have emerged on the designer’s radar. “I am really interested in straw marquetry at the moment; it’s such a beautiful natural fibre that can be used in the most unusual of places, such as walls and furniture,” Brudnizki says.

    MBDS itself is incubating a strong network of talented designers that will further position Britain as a globally regarded leading design hotspot. With his name on the door of two dynamic studios – and also in the minds of I would argue all aspiring interior designers – Brudnizki is leading the ever-evolving industry into new territory.

    The shortlisted finalists this year’s The Brit List have been invited to The Brit List Awards 2019, which takes on November 21 at Patch East London (Aldgate). To purchase limited tickets, click here

    Main image credit: Luca Marziale

    Editor’s round-up of London Design Festival 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Editor’s round-up of London Design Festival 2019

    Strap yourself in for editor Hamish Kilburn’s annual round-up of London Design Festival (LDF). The 2019 edition was a thought-provoking insight into how the bare bones of the industry, led by innovative manufacturers working with open-minded designers and architects, are taking it upon themselves to design a better future of international hotels from the foundations upwards…  

    “Most cities are experts in one or two disciplines,” said Ben Evans, Director of London Design Festival. “But the breadth and depth of London’s expertise is unparalleled.”

    For the 11th year, LDF was the epicentre of the design universe, publically displaying in full the ingredients to make the capital an incubator of ideas, creativity and something different.

    Initially established in 2003 by Sir John Sorrell and Evans, the festival has grown to encompass a broad range of activities, and attracts visitors from around the world: last year welcomed a record-breaking 588,000 direct visitors from more than 75 countries, generating almost one million visits.

    Despite Brexit call-to-actions being plastered across the front of the city’s major newspapers, the festival’s spotlight this year was thankfully not on the political landscape (or landslide) of whether or not this is really happening, but instead the lenses were focused on conscious change for good. With designers being now more aware than ever before on the need for design responsibly, sustainable products, materials and initiatives were evident in all corners of the metropolis, at all of the four Design Destinations. “LDF celebrates and promotes London’s design excellence in a period when showcasing creativity is even more important, adds Evans. And installations around the city from the likes of Matthew McCormack, Sony Design and Paul Cocksedge were a visual reminder of how design can influence change and educate wide-spread audiences of all demographics.

    Focus 19

    Neatly kicking things off after Hotel Designs led an exclusive roundtable at Arte Wallcovering at Design Centre Chelsea Harbour, Focus19 extended its luxurious arm to welcome a select number of pop-up stands. Whether green is or isn’t this year’s colour is irrelevant. What’s more important for hotel creatives is following how suppliers are turning up the volume on how they are designing with purpose and further bringing the outdoors in using sustainable methods. One area where this is very apparent is in fabrics and large prints – both of which are never in short supply at DCCH. Arte arguably stole the show with the launch of four new collections. Following last year’s collaboration with Moooi, any collection to launch after would be a tough act to follow, but the wallcovering experts delivered and the results are extraordinary.

    While fabrics were strong, so too was lighting. Pookey Lighitng’s installation designed by The Brit List 2019 judge Florence Rolfe was a vibrant LED light show. Meanwhile, David Hunt Lighting cut the ribbon on its new permanent hub within the DCCH, showcasing its bespoke service as well as its intricate lamps. As well as hosting a captivating talk with the lighting company’s founder, Vaughan, unveiled a new collection of simple, yet extremely chic sculptured lamps as well as a new range of Tribal Collection shades, that were first unveiled at last year’s show.

    Elsewhere, collaborations from the likes of Barnaby Gates, Kit Kemp and others were on display under what will soon become the Design Centre Avenue, but during Focus was a pop-up exhibition of pure, untouched talent.

    100% Design

    Making its bold, colourful entrance, 100% Design celebrated its 25thbirthday with a bold line-up of speakers, including David Rockwell, Marcel Wonders and Daniel Shofield among others.

    Following last year’s move to London’s Olympia, the show found its feet in historic halls as visitors flocked to see the plethora of interactive installations, cutting edge collections and plenty of products. The Two Lovely Gays unveiled an piece entitled Insta-interiors, which featured a playful mix of pastels. “Social media can has brought design to everyone in a way that we love,” the studio explained on its stand. But it can also be a confusing arena, with so many images and ideas vying for attention. Our hope is that it opens up a new freedom in design, promoting diversity and confidence.”

    With a noticeable shift in behaviours, especially in public areas of the hotel, it is no surprise that there was a significant focus on furniture. Taking centre stage directly opposite the show’s doors was Benchmark with its latest collaboration with design legend David Rockwell. The Sage Collection has a specific focus on human health and wellbeing. Made with natural, sustainable and non-toxic materials, it meets the standards required for well-certified buildings. The collection includes slick sit-stand desks and tables, dining and meeting tables, high-low sofas, benches, occasional tables and storage.

    Hamilton Litestat also exhibited its impressive answer to personalising the hotel experience, by being able to colour-match its products to suit any hotel design brief – something that I saw in person recently when visiting the studio’s Bristol-based hub.

    Image credit: Paul Cocksedge’s Please Be Seated

    designjunction

    In the midst of LDF, just as the feet of the design community start to tire, the VIP party for designjunction comes alive. Offering exclusive access into the show 24 hours before it opens to the public, the event is typically a great opportunity to network as well as catching new products on the market. This year’s event unveiled its catwalk for trends alongside the exclusive Tom Dixon party. Taking place in what I can only describe as LDF’s most interesting design districts, Coals Drop Yard, the event arrived fabulously fashionably late (as ever) to the week-long party.

    While the talent sheltered inside was fresh, the narrative of designing responsibly was solid and synonymous among many if not all brands exhibiting at the show. Furniture brands and lighting manufactures put an equally significant emphasis on utilising recyclable materials. Sixteen3, for example, showcased a dynamic range of contemporary furniture pieces that were made from 99 per cent recycled material, while over in the light tunnel, designer Huw Evans unveiled The CONCERTINA COLLECTION, which comprised of both furniture and lighting. Using natural timbers, English Ash and Cherry, the designer accentuated the drama of the product’s raw form by with carefully positioned up-lighting. Meanwhile, Qiang Huang used inspirations from dissembled bike parts to design an equally precise lighting piece. The product follows research that suggests that by 2020, it is estimated that there will be 10 million shared bikes reaching their scrap age, which equates to a staggering 1.6 million tons of solid waste, which Hauang believes can be reduced by designers looking more outwardly when it comes to recycling products and materials.

    Whether or not designjunction created a larger mid-week statement than last year’s show on The Southbank is down to interpretation. There was, however, no denying that it sheltered something for everyone, including a number of engaging talks. For that reason alone, it is certainly not an event that should be skipped over when navigating around LDF in future.

    London Design Fair

    Keeping an understated mantra in the heart of Shoreditch, London Design Fair was this years’ stand-out show for Hotel Designs, because of its ability to allow the products and exhibitors to do the talking. The show, which took place on the iconic Brick Lane, featured meaningful themes, such as biophilic materials and design as well as showcasing the only bathroom pavilion during London Design Festival – highlights of which included Roca’s new collection with Armani and West One Bathrooms’ eco-themed stand.

    In addition, the show included its worldwide theme, allowing regions in all pockets of the world to exhibit a little bit of their own personalities and creativity.

    As a result, London Design Fair focused on form, function and looking forward, past tomorrow’s trends, to globally identify pieces that will really help to change and shape the landscape of international hotel design.

    While the installations, projects and districts differed in style, the thread between each was very much about confronting convention and offering something different, an abstract reality, if you like, of London through the eyes of the creatives.

    LDF provides a platform like no other that time and time again harbours creative talent and fascinating stories of product design in action. And with variety being the spice of the life, as so many wise bodies have announced before, this year’s exhibitions were in heavy supply of something different, something new and something fresh for everyone.

    Main image credit: designjunction

    INTERACTIVE HOTEL REVIEW: Monkey Island Estate, Bray-on-Thames

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    INTERACTIVE HOTEL REVIEW: Monkey Island Estate, Bray-on-Thames

    Unearthing eight centuries of history, editor Hamish Kilburn checks in to Bray-on-Thames’ Monkey Island Estate to interactively review a new kind of private countryside luxury…

    Travel upstream from London and you eventually arrive in the quintessentially British surroundings of Bray-on-Thames, a quiet suburban village that is arguably most for harbouring two of the UK’s five restaurants that hold three Michelin stars.

    But before the existence of award-winning gourmet F&B establishment, some 800 years prior, there quietly sat an empty island, which went on to soak up interesting eras. It was firstly an ideal setting for monks seeking peace on the banks of the river. It is said that after the Great Fire of London in 1666, materials from Oxfordshire, such as stone and brick, were transported down the river for rebuilding the city. On the vessels’ return, rubble would be spread around some of the Thames islands, which greatly reduced erosion and helped to strengthen the foundations.

    A few decades later, in 1738, the land was purchased by Charles Spencer, 3rdDuke of Marlborough, who was rumoured to have paid palladian architect Robert Morris £2,277 to erect the first two buildings on the island in order to indulge his hobby of fishing. It took Morri three years to complete, but his work marks an important milestone in the property and island’s history – and it is arguably here where the narrative of what is now known as Monkey Island Estate really begins. But it was only recently when the story took on a new narrative, complete with the introduction of new characters, to become a completely unique boutique hotel.

    In 2016, YTL Hotels acquired the land, and work began to restore the property into a modern and relaxed countryside abode. Inspired by the haunts of monks, monarchs, aristocrats and writers alike, New York-based Champalimaud Design was responsible to sensitively orchestrate the interior design of the hotel. Having completed the interior design of YTL’s debut UK property, The Gainsborough Bath and Spa, and more recently The Academy in London, the studio, while also sensitively restoring Raffles Singapore, was well-poised to develop the relationship further.

    Unlike any hotel project that lead designer Jon Kastl has faced before, the geography of Monkey Island Estate presented its own unique set of challenges. “You have no idea how difficult it is to work on a island that has no direct car access,” he explains. “Everything had to be carried over the footbridge onto the island. And then, the other challenge was the age of the buildings, and dealing with the neglect of the building. They were in pretty rough shape, almost falling into disrepair.”

    Guests’ first impression of the hotel is an understated – almost camouflaged – lobby area in a cosy ‘boathouse’ – the feeling of being taken away from the daily grind does not get much stronger than this so close to the centre of London. “The hotel is relatively small,” adds “

    The short walk over the footbridge from the unassuming lobby to the public areas is one of wonder. Architectural landscape designer AV Design has created a majestic garden that compliments the various buildings.

    Framing what should be in my opinion the postcard picturesque views of the River Thames, the pavilion building, which shelters the majority of the public areas, sets a relaxing setting – and echoes, on a balmy summer afternoon at least, the same peaceful scene that I imagine was once enjoyed by monks centuries ago.

    Caption: The Restaurant | Image credit: ACT Studios

    Although the bar and restaurant is, on the surface, seemingly conventional, the building has a few hidden gems. The Monkey Room, for example, stands true to its original form and structure – and even design. “The only thing we changed was the purple paint colours on the ceiling and add the furnishings,” says Kastl. The eye-catching murals on the panelling is all original which has been there from since when the building was first built.

    Caption: The Monkey Room | Image credit: ACT Studios

    Up the spiral staircase, The Whiskey Room is the latest area that has opened. Designed with the winter months in mind, the cosy and home-from-home atmosphere, complete with tactile wallcoverings, is an expected treat.

    It is because of the fact that the 41 guestrooms and one originally restored suite are sheltered in a grade I-listed building that makes the design story even more fascinating. The design of each and every one of the guestrooms utilises the entire space, with some stretching out onto terraces which look over the river, while carefully blending in a modern style that becomes timeless.  “We just had to accept the smallness of the rooms when designing them,” Kastl explains. “We did things like designing miniature shelves and additional service space. We designed rails that lined the rolls for guests to hang items from. Because there is such a limited closet space, we had to rely on these rails.” The furniture is scaled appropriately so that it fits in the limited space neatly. Meanwhile, the blinds and curtains, supplied by Concept Contract Furnishings are deliberately not heavy, and instead naturally flood the rooms with light to make them look and feel more expansive.

    INTERACTIVE tour of The Wedgwood Suite | Image credit: ACT Studios

    Despite the guestrooms being impressive – and adding to the overall interior design story (and challenges) – the masterpiece of the hotel is perhaps sheltered upstairs in the Wedgewood Suite. “The room, from the panelling to the ceiling, was very much intact,” explains Kastl. “One of the challenges was that it has windows on three sides, so from a layout point of view it created a few headaches.” The ensuite bathroom has been re-gutted and given a fresh and modern look. “ The suite is the coming together of old heritage design and the new.

    Moored on the river bank, the hotel’s spa is unlike any other in or around London. The facilities have been curated by Melissa Mettler who took inspiration from its riverine surrounds, past inhabitants in the form of royalty, liturgy and literary stars, as well as elegant architecture. The floating spa, which features two treatment rooms that are uniquely sheltered within a renovated barge, is a celebration of the power of water blended together with natural wellbeing and wellness.

    Image credit: ACT Studios

    I’m sure, for the designers as much as the operators, that the thought of completing Monkey Island Estate and opening again to the public was a distant day dream. But, considering the drastic rise in demand for wellbeing as well as wellness, the timing of YTL hotel’s countryside retreat could not have been more perfect. Checking out of Monkey Island feeling fully restored in mind, body and spirit myself, following a short by sweet trip to the floating spa before departure, the hotel locks in so many unique and thoughtful moments – and exceeds expectations to become one of the UK’s premium countryside retreats.

    Main image credit: ACT Studios

    Sleep & Eat unveils design details of this year’s VIP Lounge

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Sleep & Eat unveils design details of this year’s VIP Lounge

    ‘Gather’ in the enigmatically designed VIP Lounge. Sleep & Eat announces collaboration with Megre Interiors to create a new design-led experience…

    Sleep & Eat, one of Europe’s leading design and innovation event for the hospitality sector, has revealed an enticing glimpse of its new-look VIP Lounge. Created for the first time this year by an international design firm, the lounge will be brought to life by Moscow-based interior design studio Megre Interiors. With this year’s theme of ‘Social FlexAbility’, VIP Lounge guests are promised an experience like never before.

    Named ‘Gather’ by the designers, the original oak panelled Olympia Club Room will be transformed into a whimsical flora and fauna-inspired space. Drapes, upholstery and even the flooring will be in a fabric depicting exotic flowers, specially designed for Sleep & Eat by Megre Interiors, cascades of fabric flowers will loop through the space and, in the epicentre, a large-scale light installation will flicker like a fire. This will be surrounded by orbicular seating –referencing the circular gathering places of human history and drawing a parallel to the primeval pleasure of coming together around a firepit.

    “In an age marked by the impersonal, it’s vital to trust people over brands.” – Yuna Megre, Founder and Principal of Megre Interiors

    Arriving in the entrance reception, guests will find themselves enticed into the space by a single thread of light. Inside, lighting remains low, shapes and forms are obscured and audacious texture and colour prevail. Collections of poufs as well as the circular seating will be underlit to glow like beacons. Vastly adaptable, this will be a room that gives its users the power to interact with it and alter as they wish, moving the seating around to suit their needs. It will be about the opportunity is to meet, talk, learn and relax, and to emerge better connected than before.

    “The human soul blossoms fully only when we meaningfully connect with one another,” says Yuna Megre, Founder and Principal of Megre Interiors. “In an age marked by the impersonal, it’s vital to trust people over brands. To meet, to see, to know each other and embark on the adventure of creation together.”

    The VIP Lounge will not be the only space at Sleep & Eat to be specially designed by an international design firm. Plans for this year also include the introduction of The Hub – yet to be revealed – as well as the much-loved Sleeper Bar which will host the late evening networking on day one and is this year being designed by Michaelis Boyd.

    Sleep & Eat, November 19 – 20 in the National Hall, Olympia London. The show will be open from 10am on Tuesday 19 with an evening drinks reception until 8.30 pm, and from 10am-6pm on Wednesday 20. To register for a complimentary pass, visit registration.

    Main image credit: Merge Interiors/Sleep & Eat

    The Standard London, Camden’s new kid on the block

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    The Standard London, Camden’s new kid on the block

    In search of a new standard in design, creativity and urban hotels, editor Hamish Kilburn checks in to London’s most talked-about hotels this year to explore another world. The Standard London has opened, making a bold statement on the capital’s new hospitality scene… 

    Something significant is happening in London’s King’s Cross area. It’s been brewing for some time now, but it has only recently erupted.

    During London Design Festival and London Fashion Week, the area was the backdrop of a scene of celebrities, models and the odd design editor or two falling out of parties and onto pavements. Soho and Shoreditch were desolate deserts in comparison. It’s the power of real estate like you have never seen before. Selecting its opening date carefully, The Standard has disrupted everything – and it’s about time too!

    Although, for years, the district has evolved with the time, it was the expansions to King’s Cross and the new St Pancras International stations adjacent to each other that started the catalyst for change. Strangely enough, my father worked on the construction of both. I remember the odd non-official ‘bring your son to work’ day, the oversized hard hat specifically, as we meandered around the expansive building site unable to imagine the finished picture. “Soon, you will be able to travel from London to Paris in just two hours, imagine that” I remember my father saying overexcitedly. “Right here, where you are standing, is going to become London’s major international train station!”

    Whether or not my pops really was one of the first to envision the area’s potential is irrelevant. The station opened and almost instantly the cool, quirky neighbourhood of Camden became even more of a hotspot for the mainstream, without much – if any – loss of its bold and bohemian personality. As a result, the capital’s hotel scene – quick to follow major travel trends – moved outward to put a roof over the raw and rustic scenes that its locals had created.

    And here we are, welcoming the city’s new arrival, The Standard, which has been patiently waiting in the wings for some time now. And while all hotels have a story (some more worth sharing than others), The Standards’ narrative is as unique as the interior design scheme locked within; a perfect meeting of American soul and London’s ostentatious quirk.

    Housed in the former Camden Town Hall Annex in London’s thriving King’s Cross neighbourhood, the 1974 Brutalist building has been meticulously restored by the legendary ORMS Architects in collaboration, in part, with Archer Humphryes Architects.

    The 266-key hotel, which shelters 42 suites, sets the perfect stage for the brand’s first arrival outside America. Uniquely overlooking the iconic St Pancras Station, from street level it’s juxtaposition of architecture that shouldn’t but does work. On the north side is the traditional 19th-century iconic neo-gothic architecture, which has stood the test of time, and two world wars for that matter, unscathed. On the south side is the ultra-modern non-conventional structure, symbolising loudly that times are changing.

    “Three new storeys have been added to the top of the building,” explains Simon Whitaker from ORMS Architects. “The form of which has been derived from the host building below, and clad in new stainless steel and glass panels. Two of these floors provide hotel bedrooms, whilst the top floor is dedicated to the new restaurant and bar, with a roof terrace above.”

    Image credit: The Standard Hotels

    Upon entering, the lobby lounge sets the scene, with a carefully curated library that pays homage to the building’s original use. Further in, sound studio booths host weekly live music and talks. Executive Chef Adam Rawson’s street facing bar, Double Standard, designed by Shawn Hausman, the neighbourhood’s street-facing anchor for lunch, casual drinking and dining throughout the evening.

    Although the colour scheme in the guestrooms and suites may not be to everyone’s taste, it is very much so mine. Not so much because of the tones used, but more so because they have been intertwined together with purpose – and unapologetically so for that matter. Complete with bespoke curved sofas and the King’s rooms featuring outdoor terrace bathtubs, the idiosyncratic charm of the hotel is certainly not limited to the public areas.

    Image credit: The Standard Hotels

    Before it opened, the hotel’s street level, red exterior lift was the ultimate teaser campaign. Now fully open, it shoots guests up directly to the 10th-floor where Chef Peter Sanchez-Iglesias’ restaurant showcases his live-fire cooking and where guests and visitors alike can enjoy the building’s 360-degree views of the city below all-year round thanks to the retractable awning.

    No longer do party-hard followers of the brand have to travel stateside to experience The Standard’s retro maximalism. First launched in the late 90s with its debut hotel in Hollywood, which for the record remains to this day a go-to destination on the Sunset Strip, the hotel’s urban cool influence is London’s answer to keeping the Camden’s hospitality scene fresh, authentic and designed with purpose.

    It’s next stop? The Maldives, next month in fact, which will be an interesting page to turn in what is an unmistakably climatic chapter for the now international hotel brand.

    Main image credit: The Standard Hotels

    Huw Evans wins Rado Star Prize UK 2019 at designjunction 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Huw Evans wins Rado Star Prize UK 2019 at designjunction 2019

    At an exclusive event held in the Light Tunnel, King’s Cross on September 19, Rado and designjunction announced the winner of the third edition of the Rado Star Prize UK…

    The Judges’ Winner of the Rado Star Prize UK has been announced at designjunction 2019. Huw Evans, who impressed the judges with his entry Concertina collection, received £5,000 and a Rado True Thinline watch as a prize for the winning project.

    “What an honour to win such an award,” Evans said following the announcement. “The Rado Star Prize will allow me a foot in the door of the industry and I’m very excited about what the future will bring.”

    Evans is a 3D Design student from Plymouth University. Concertina was selected from a shortlist of ten designs, with each entry responding to the theme ‘Re:Imagine’. The theme explores the different ways in which design can enrich and enhance life: by evolving existing product forms through materials, function, technology, end use or even re-use.

    Rado CEO Matthias Breschan said: “It’s the third time we’ve run the Rado Star Prize UK with designjunction and the standard of entries has been consistently high. This year, from a very strong field, the judges selected Huw’s Concertina Collection because of its original, sophisticated and innovative design. ”

    The judging panel of high profile industry voices who selected the winner included top British designer Steuart Padwick; Editor at Elle Decoration, Ben Spriggs; Editor-in-Chief at Clippings, Rose Etherington; Vice President Product Development at Rado, Hakim El Kadiri and designjunction Event Director, Mark Gordon.

    Main image credit: designjunction

     

    London Design Festival medal winners announced

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    London Design Festival medal winners announced

    London Design Festival has announced the four winners of the 2019 London Design Medals…

    Launched with the aim to recognise the contribution made by the leading design figures and emerging talents in London and the industry, London Design Festival historically kicks-off the week-long design event by presenting four London Design Medals awarded.

    The 2019 medals were presented yesterday at The House of Commons, Westminster, while the capital came to life for the start of this year’s design spectacular.

    And the winners are…

    London Design Medal: Tom Dixon OBE
    Design Innovation Medal: Daniel Charny
    Emerging Design Medal: Ross Atkin
    Lifetime Achievement Medal: Dame Vivienne Westwood

    A panel of established designers, industry commentators and previous winners met to debate and judge the possible recipients of the four medals. This year’s jury members were: Ozwald Boateng OBE, Ian Callum CBE, Sheridan Coakley, Njusja de Gier, Es Devlin OBE, Sarah Douglas, Ben Evans CBE, Dr Tristram Hunt, Domenic Lippa, Jay Osgerby OBE, Raoul Shah, Joff Sharpe, Justine Simons OBE, Sir John Sorrell CBE, Dr Paul Thompson and Jane Withers.

    “Each year the jury selects four eminent people who have made a major contribution to design in the UK,” said Ben Evans CBE, London Design Festival Director. “This year the winners are as interesting and deserving as ever.”

    Tom Dixon OBE

    The London Design Medal, supported by British Airways London City, is the highest accolade bestowed upon an individual who has distinguished themselves within the industry and demonstrated consistent design excellence.

    This year’s winner, Tom Dixon, rose to prominence in the mid 1980s as a self-taught British designer. He set up the creative think-tank space, which acted as a shop front for himself and other young designers. By the late 1980s, he was working for Cappellini, for which he designed the iconic S chair. In the late 1990s, Dixon became Creative Director at Habitat and was responsible for rejuvenating the brand while maintaining Terence Conran’s vision of enriching everyday life through simple, modern design.

    His works have been acquired by museums across the globe, including the V&A, MoMA and the Pompidou Centre. In 2002 Dixon established his own eponymous brand with own stores in New York, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Milan and Tokyo. More than 600 products are created by the company, ranging from lighting to furniture, from tableware through to fragrance, and are distributed to over 90 countries.

    In 2007 Dixon launched Design Research Studio, an interior and architectural design studio. High‑profile projects include the Restaurant at the Royal Academy, Shoreditch House, le Drugstore in Paris and Alto in Hong Kong. In 2018, Dixon opened the Coal Office, his new London Headquarters, in King’s Cross. Created by Design Research Studio, the Coal Office functions as a multi-displinary hub, including an office, restaurant, design studio and shop all under one roof.

    “I’m still confused as to why I won’t be getting the ‘Emerging Design Medal’,” said Dixon on the news of his win, “as it still feels very much like I have only just started – I’ve so much left to design! But I’m very touched to be noticed by this super Jury, thank you very much.”

    Daniel Charny

    Design Innovation Medal, supported by SAP, celebrates entrepreneurship in all its forms, both locally and internationally. It honours an individual for whom design lies at the core of their development and success.

    Daniel Charny is a creative director, curator and educator with an inquiring mind and an entrepreneurial streak. He is co-founder of the creative consultancy From Now On, where clients include Dartington Hall, the Design Museum, Google, Heatherwick Studio, Nesta and U+I. His most recent initiative is the creative education think-and-do-tank FixEd.

    Charny is best known as curator of the influential exhibition Power of Making at the V&A, which drove him to found the award-winning learning programme Fixperts, now taught in universities and schools worldwide. Other projects include the Aram Gallery, the British Council’s Maker Library Network and the Central Research Laboratory accelerator. As Professor of Design at Kingston University he is interested in the roles of design and making for social benefit.

    Charny is active internationally as a speaker and expert advisor, advocating his vision of design, creativity and making as essential tools to unlock a better future.

    “Engagement, education and access to design are all critical to assuring the creative responses to a changing world that we all need,” said Daniel Charny. “I’m proud to represent this idea and delighted to be recognised for it in London, a city of unparalleled creativity.”

    Ross Atkin

    Emerging Design Medal supported by Storey, recognises an impact made on the design scene within five or so years of graduation.

    Ross Atkin is a designer and engineer based in east London. His work focuses on two areas: helping disabled people to live more independently, and introducing design and engineering to children.

    He maintains his own design and development practice, creating assistive technology and accessibility-focused products that span the digital-physical divide. These include: Sight Line, a system for improving the accessibility of roadworks developed in partnership with The Royal Society for Blind Children and Transport for London; MSE Genie, an app and connected hardware that allows a sensory room to be tailored around the needs and capabilities of the person using it; Responsive Street Furniture, a system created in partnership with Marshalls that enables pieces of urban infrastructure to provide assistance automatically, such as by making street lighting brighter, or by lengthening the duration of road-crossing signals; Smartibot, the world’s first A.I. enabled carboard robot; and LiftCheck, a system that allows lift users to see if the lifts they need to complete their journey are operational before they set off.

    Atkin’s design practice is heavily informed by observational research. He regularly conducts participatory shadowing of disabled people as they make journeys around cities.

    “I never thought the kind of work that I do would be recognised, so I feel doubly honoured,” said Ross Atkin. “It’s beyond my imagination to be in the company of true legends of design, and it also is an amazing privilege to be representing the world of inclusive design on such a prominent platform as London Design Festival. I look forward to more designers from that world being recognised in the future”.

    Dame Vivienne Westwood

    Lifetime Achievement Medal Winner supported by Fortnum & Mason, honours a significant and fundamental contribution to the design industry over the course of a career.

    Vivienne Westwood was born in 1941 and moved to London 17 years later. She began designing in 1971 along with her then partner, Malcolm McLaren. In 1984, she launched her own fashion line and in 2004 the V&A hosted a Vivienne Westwood retrospective to celebrate her 34 years in fashion – the largest exhibition ever devoted to a living British fashion designer.

    Westwood has always used her collections and catwalk shows as a platform for activism. She has personally spent many years speaking out about the effects of climate change and over‑consumption – and inaugurated the ‘Climate Revolution’ at the 2012 London Paralympics closing ceremony.

    Along with husband and design partner Andreas Kronthaler, Westwood actively supports the charity Cool Earth in its efforts to halt rainforest destruction. She has also campaigned for a number of NGOs and charities including the Environmental Justice Foundation and Friends of the Earth, and is an ambassador for Greenpeace: in 2013 she designed their official ‘Save the Arctic’ logo.

    Since 2011 Westwood has worked with the International Trade Centre – a joint body of the UN – to produce accessories through their Ethical Fashion Initiative. The programme currently supports the work of thousands of women from marginalised African communities. Westwood has written her ideas in a manifesto called ‘Active Resistance to Propaganda’, rooted in culture as a stimulus to save the planet, and more recently designed a set of playing cards to set out a global economic strategy to stop climate change.

    Main image credit: LDF 2019

    London Design Festival opens 17th edition in the capital

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    London Design Festival opens 17th edition in the capital

    London Design Festival launches its annual celebration of design with an inspiring programme of more than 300 events, including Landmark Projects, Festival Commissions, Projects at the V&A and Special Projects. The highly anticipated festival comprises 11 Design Districts, four Design Destinations and one Design Route

    London’s most iconic locations have transformed by a series of commissions and installations by internationally-renowned designers, as London Design Festival 2019 opens once more.

    London’s most iconic locations have transformed by a series of commissions and installations by internationally-renowned designers, as London Design Festival 2019 opens. Each intervention will add an exciting new dimension to the city’s streets, exploring the power of design to shape our world and demonstrating the role it plays in how we live, feel and solve problems.

    The V&A will once again be the official Festival hub and play host to a series of specially-commissioned projects and curated collection of displays. The Museum will also play host to London Design Festival’s thought leadership programme, Global Design Forum, which celebrates design with an inspirational line-up of talks, debates, daily tours and workshops.

    “Over the past 17 years, the London Design Festival has continued to evolve and we are excited to launch this year programme, which will be our most ambitious to date,” said London Design Festival Director, Ben Evans CBE. “We hope audiences from the UK and further afield will discover something thought provoking and inspiring and celebrate our city’s diverse creative talent.”

    The festival was established in 2003 by Evans and Sir John Sorrell CBE. 17 years later, London Design Festival has arrived to celebrate and promote London as the design capital of the world – an ethos shared by Hotel Designs with the upcoming The Brit List.

    London Design Festival has since earned the reputation as a key calendar moment of London’s autumn creative season, alongside London Fashion Week, Frieze Art Fair and the London Film Festival, attracting the greatest thinkers, practitioners, retailers and educators to the capital, in a citywide celebration.

    Main image credit: Please Be Seated/Paul Cocksedge

    Michaelis Boyd unveils plans for ‘Social FlexAbility’ bar scene at Sleep & Eat

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Michaelis Boyd unveils plans for ‘Social FlexAbility’ bar scene at Sleep & Eat

    Award-winning architecture and design studio, Michaelis Boyd, has revealed a glimpse into its vision for this year’s pop-up bar at Sleep & Eat 2019…

    Sleep & Eat has unveiled the first teaser of Michaelis Boyd’s Sleeper Bar, which will be unveiled at this year’s event that takes place on November 19 – 20 at Olympia London. With the area at the show designed anew each year to embody the show’s theme, this year the challenge for Michaelis Boyd is to interpret ‘Social FlexAbility’.

    “Our Sleeper Bar has drawn inspiration from The Man Who Planted Trees, a short story by Jean Giono which celebrates the power of the natural environment,” said Tim Boyd and Alex Michaelis ahead of the show. “The tale describes a shepherd’s long and successful effort to single-handedly reforest a desolate valley in the foothills of the Alps in the first half of the 20th Century. Working primarily in timber, our bar is a study in sustainability; investigating the afterlife of the materials through scale, layering, adaptability and recycling. This has led us to create a space that will cater to all walks of life, adjusting to the needs of each individual, and making the bar a rich experience for each visitor.”

    This year’s bar follows in the memorable footsteps of Sleeper Bars which have explored such diverse topics as tales of wonder, social tribes and guest loyalty. The theme for 2019 is intended to explore hospitality’s unique place in balancing our desire for human interaction with our need for privacy, an issue made all-the-more pressing by our digital age. Visitors to Sleep & Eat can expect to find a bar buzzing with people doing business, catching up with friends, quietly checking emails, or simply resting weary feet, especially during the late evening networking on day one.

    As you might expect of an event recognised worldwide for nudging the hospitality design and development conversation forward, The Sleeper Bar will not be the only space at Sleep & Eat to be specially designed by an international design firm. Plans for this year also include the introduction of a Social Hub together with a new-look VIP Lounge.

    Hotel Designs is a proud media partner of the show. This year, the exhibition will be open from 10am on November 19 with an evening drinks reception until 20:30pm, and from 10:00am-18:00pm on November 20.  To register for a complimentary pass, visit registration.

    Main image credit: Michaelis Boyd

    INDUSTRY INSIGHT: The changing colour of hotel bathrooms – going greener

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    INDUSTRY INSIGHT: The changing colour of hotel bathrooms – going greener

    In the second part of our colour series (click here for part one), Recommended Supplier UKBathrooms explain how and why designers should opt for greener designs in bathrooms…

    Bathrooms make up a huge proportion of a hotel’s water and energy usage, which on average is 84 to 173 gallons per room per day, far higher than the average daily household usage of 66 gallons per day.

    This explains why they’ve become the focus for many hoteliers looking not only to save money, but also to minimise their impact on the environment.

    However, any environmental worries have to be balanced with the needs of guests. The seamless blend of sustainability and luxury, with little compromise to guest experience is the aim for hotel owners and trends show that this will be the case in the years to come. And ‘green’ considerations go way beyond the bathroom space, with materials used in bathroom products, transportation, waste produced during manufacture and subsequent biodegradable components all being important.

    UK Bathrooms, is the leading, independent supplier of designer bathroom products and as such is seeing a change in trends of sales to hoteliers in the UK and internationally. “We’re seeing a trend to natural materials, as well as reclaimed and recycled, such as timber from sustainable forests and stone,” said Graeme Borchard, director of UKBathrooms. “We’re a leading supplier of premium brands. As a company they are ‘a champion of the value of water’, pioneers in environmentally friendly, luxury, bathroom products. Their ongoing research, and development in technology and design, means that hansgrohe produces superb products which are beautifully designed, highly efficient and sustainable.”

    A great example of this is EcoSmart. Hansgrohe showers and taps equipped with EcoSmart technology use up to 60 per cent less water than traditional products, not only using less water, but also needing less energy to heat the water.  The Hansgrohe Raindance EcoSmart overhead shower provides guests with a relaxing and therapeutic experience whilst being eco-friendly.

    By implementing greener practices, and ensuring guests are aware of these, hotels can make being eco-friendly even more attractive. Hotel bathrooms have a certain ‘luxury’ which people then like to emulate in their own homes, the choices that hotels make end up being reflected in homes around the world.

    UKBathrooms 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.

    Vibrant lobby design

    7 unconventional hotel lobby designs

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    7 unconventional hotel lobby designs

    To launch this month’s spotlight on Lobby Design, Hotel Designs’ editorial team has scoured the globe to identify some of the world’s most unconventional – and most fascinating – hotel lobbies… 

    A first impression is a lasting impression, especially when it comes to checking in to the modern-day hotel. And considering it takes the average person just seven seconds for their opinion to be anchored, ultimately right up until they cast their feedback after checking out, designing a hotel lobby is a balancing act worth getting right.

    Vibrant lobby design

    Regardless of a hotel’s theme, style and to a certain extent target audience, a well-designed lobby is an effortlessly functioning space – and in most cases considered to be the most vital working organ in the hotel’s body that is most relied.

    Today’s modern traveller demands for the lobby to be an all-encompassing flexible portal; a home-from-home meeting place, which shelters a social atmosphere. And yet it must also include private break-out areas and accents of personality and sense of place in its design – just enough for something to catch their eye and be included in their first impression. While it is important to ensure that the lobby is multifunctional, ensuring that its design stays in its lane regarding its style is fundamental.

    Here are some hotels that have gone further to challenge the conventional lobby design – and as a result designed their own lane.

    1) Rosewood Bangkok

    Earlier this year, Hotel Designs exclusively unveiled the design story of Rosewood Bangkok. Designed by Celia Chu, her task to design the 159-key hotel was made that much more daunting when having to create a hotel lobby that creates as large of an impression as the exterior does. Instead of competing with the architecture to be bold, Chu looked inwards to sensitively tell the story of Thailand in the words of locals. “The reception space is relatively small,” explains Chu, “but in this area we layer different eras from a timeline that represents Thai culture, with antique craftsmanship, modern polished luxury and artistic contemporary elements all piled up into one cohesive and welcoming space.”

    2) Hard Rock Hotel London

    Hotel lobby with memorabilia hanging on the wall

    Image credit: Philip Durrant

    Designed by Scott Brownrigg, The hotel lobby’s walls are plastered with memorabilia that reference the legacy of legends who stayed in Hard Rock Hotels in decades past, including Jimi Hendrix, Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, Bob Dylan, Diana Ross and Madonna. Balancing the history and heritage of the brand in a timeless style to avoid cliché moments was the first task for the design firm when confronting the motifs that will be sheltered in the new hotel. “We knew we had to represent the Hard Rock brand in an innovative way for the contemporary London market,” Senior Designer Kate Jarrett explains. “The hotel scene here is competitive so we knew we had to create something that tied into London and Hard Rock’s music heritage, while still being completely contemporary.”

    3) Matetsi Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

    soft lobby area, which is open to the elements - and full of natural materials

    Image credit: Matetsi Victoria Falls

    There are two entrances at Matetsi Victoria Falls, East Camp and West Camp. Both are framed by three traditional Mokoro (dug-out) canoes, which hang from wooden beams and sway in harmony with the soft Zambezi breeze. With no need for a traditional lobby, guests are immediately welcomed into the indoor-outdoor public areas complete with a copper bar and durable outdoor sofas and chairs scattered in a home-from-home setting that has been designed around nature, and not the other way round. “We didn’t take out a single tree when designing these camps, because we wanted these areas to remain as close to nature as we could,” said interior designer Kerry van Leenhoff , a previous graduate from Cape Town University of Technology who was hand-selected by Gardiner and totally supported in all her decisions. Using the striking vista of the Zambezi River, which flows towards the tremendous Victoria Falls, dining tables are placed in such a way to make every meal one to remember. “The lobby areas have been designed in order to encourage guests to connect with people and nature,” adds van Leenhoff.

    4) Plaza 18, Vejer, Spain

    Almost one year after Hotel Designs started following designer Nicky Dobree’s journey to complete her first ever hotel design, Plaza 18 is now open. With a distinct residential style, the lobby sheltered inside the six-key boutique hotel is unlike any other in the world. “This entrance challenges the conventional ‘hotel lobby’ because there is no check-in at Plaza 18,” Dobree explains. “Instead, check in is done at the adjoining Hotel Casa del Califa enabling guests at Plaza 18 to enjoy the space as if it were their own home, which was my aim.”

    5) 1K Paris

    Strong vibrant colours and plants in modern and quirky hotel lobby

    Image credit: 1K Paris

    Bringing the lush forests of South America’s Andes Mountains to Paris, 1K Paris has a hotel lobby that will take guests into a new world. Complete with vibrant walls, ceilings, floors and furniture – and finished with tropical plants and timeless Peruvian artefacts – the area is cleverly also flooded with natural light. The lobby’s strong blue backdrop sets the ultimate tone for the abundance of colours that await guest’s unique journey ahead.

    6) Raffles Singapore

    Light and bright grand lobby

    Image credit: Raffles Singapore

    Reminiscent of extravagant parties that were once held there, The Grand Lobby inside Raffles Singapore, which has been sensitively designed by the New York-based Champalimaud Design, is a truly a legend reborn. The lobby includes floor-to-ceiling Victorian pillars and is bathed in soft daylight streaming through the skylight.

    7) Ruby Leni, Dusseldorf

    Darkly lit modern public areas

    Image credit: Ruby Hotels

    Taking inspiration from the theatre that 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.”

    Hotel Designs is spending this month with Lobby Design and Furniture in the spotlight. If you have a story, or would like to submit a comment, please contact the editorial team. 

    Main image credit: 1K Paris

    SPOTLIGHT ON: September’s features announced

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    SPOTLIGHT ON: September’s features announced

    Hotel Designs has officially dropped its September editorial features, which are Lobby Design and Furniture… 

    Inspired largely by the upcoming London Design Festival (LDF), Hotel Designs’ September features will delve into two areas are arguably mostly influenced by the social changes and trends in hotel design. In addition to attending the capital’s celebration of design, the editorial team will also lead an exclusive roundtable, in collaboration with Arte Wallcoverings, to public areas and the hotel lobby firmly under the spotlight.

    Lobby Design 

    In addition to publishing a series of editorial around the changing face of the hotel lobby, Hotel Designs has collaborated with Arte Wallcoverings to host an exclusive editorial roundtable ahead of the company unveiling its latest collection at Focus 19. The session entitled: Adding personality in public areas will be attended by leading designers and architects from the likes of Richmond International, 1508 London, IHG, Scott Brownrigg, RPW Design and GA Design among others to be confirmed.

    Image credit: Image credit: Virgile Simon Bertrand

    Furniture

    As well as covering the latest news from its relevant Recommended Suppliers, such as Curtis Furniture, Knightsbridge, Style Library, Roundwood of Mayfield and Morgan, Hotel Designs will also be on the ground at LDF ’19 in order to publish, live and direct, the latest furniture product launches on the international hotel design scene.

    If you wish to find out more about Recommended Supplier packages, or know of a product that we should be talking about, please email Katy Phillips

    Main image credit: Rosewood Bangkok

    The BIID announces LDF ’19 movements

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    The BIID announces LDF ’19 movements

    As part of London Design Festival (LDF) 2019, The British Institute of Interior Design (BIID), which is an industry partner for The Brit List 2019, will be participating in a range of exciting talks and events across the capital…

    Taking place from September 14 – 22, London Design Festival (LDF) brings together trade professionals and design enthusiasts from all over the world. The BIID is supporting some of the key trade shows that are taking place, with BIID members taking part in thought-provoking and informative discussions throughout the week.

    “It’s a pleasure to be involved in London Design Festival again this year,” comments BIID President Harriet Forde. We are so excited to see our members participating in discussions, workshops and events throughout the week. This allows us not only to support our talented BIID Members, but the wider community of industry professionals and creatives working in the city.”

    Focus/19 at Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour

    September 15 – 20, 2019

    Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour is once again hosting Focus/19. The annual event has a packed programme of engaging talks, meet the designer sessions, discovery tours and workshops.

    On Friday September 20 at 4pm, BIID Member Anna Burles of Run For The Hills will be hosting a design workshop titled, ‘Designers of the World Unite’at the Espresso Design showroom. Anna will be speaking on the importance of eco-sensibility within the design sector and encouraging fellow designers to do their bit for planet earth, offering a range of practical tips and insider insight into things big and small that we can all do to make a difference, whilst still delivering exciting, unexpected and original schemes for clients.

    100% Design at Olympia London

    September 18 – 21, 2019

    Returning to Olympia for its 25thedition, 100% Design is renowned for showcasing emerging talent in the capital, featuring a number of new projects and collaborations that celebrate the best in design and innovation.

    As part of 100% Design’s four-day seminar programme, Talks with 100% Design, BIID Past President Daniel Hopwood will be chairing a panel discussion titled, ‘20 ways to achieve #DesignGoals’. Taking place on Saturday September 21 from 12:00pm – 12:45pm in the auditorium, Daniel will be joined by BIID Registered Interior Designers; Anna Burles of Run For The Hills, Dee Gibson of Velvet Orangeand Mathew Freeman of Goddard Littlefair.

    The lively discussion will see panellists share their tops tips to help you achieve your #designgoals. Panellists will draw on their own personal experiences to provide design insights and advice to inspire their audience.

    designjunction at London’s Kings Cross

    September 19 – 22, 2019

    Designjunction presents the breakthrough brands having a direct impact on the future of design. Hosted in London’s Kings Cross, the four-day event includes an exciting talks programme and over 200 exhibitors.

    On Friday September 20, BIID President Harriet Forde will be hosting a BIID Members’ breakfast at Blueprint Café from 9:00 – 11:00am. The breakfast will provide members with an informal tour of the event highlights and the opportunity to network with fellow designers.

    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

    LDF 2019 announces further festival commissions, projects and speakers

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    LDF 2019 announces further festival commissions, projects and speakers

    With weeks to go until the city comes alive for London Design Festival, new details have emerged of even more commissions, projects and speakers…

    The hotly anticipated London Design Festival (LDF) has revealed the finer details around a number of holistic design experiences, installations and insightful talks in order to make this year’s event an international destination of all things design.

    The week-long festival will welcome two new Special Projects: Idiosyncratic by Martino Gamper at Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross, coinciding with Festival commission Disco Carbonara; and a playful immersive installation, Take the Plunge, by Volume Creative at OXO Tower Wharf; as well as new keynote speakers Dame Vivienne Westwood, Claire Bergkamp, Fabio Novembre and Astrid Stavro for Global Design Forum, the Festival’s thought leadership programme.

    Idiosyncratic by Martino Gamper (supported by Samsung) at Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross

    To coincide with Martino Gamper’s London Design Festival Commission– Disco Carbonara at Coal Drops Yard – Samsung presents Idiosincratico: an exposition of the designer’s creative practice.

    The Samsung space will offer a unique vantage point on Gamper’s installation below. As well as viewing the exhibit, visitors can also interact with the latest technology, and take part in an ongoing series of events, workshops and performances.

    Image credit: Idiosyncratic by Martino Gamper at Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross

    Presenting three significant projects, Idiosincratico gives insight into Gamper’s creative process – exploring his distinctive and playful approach to dissembling and reinventing familiar domestic objects. At the heart of each of Gamper’s projects is the notion of thinking through making and examining how process informs the physical outcome.

    For Hookaloti, Gamper takes a single typology – the wall hook – and riffs on it, improvising with the form, material and expressive possibilities of a simple everyday object. In Metamorfosi, a project to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Italian furniture company Moroso, Gamper takes pieces from their catalogue and cuts and splices them to create a design mash-up. By contrast, Arnold Circus Stool is a project for the public realm initiated to support the regeneration of the landmark site on Shoreditch’s Boundary Estate, London’s first social housing project.

    Take The Plunge by Volume Creative (in collaboration with Virgin Voyages The Bargehouse) at OXO Tower Wharf

    Volume Creative, in collaboration with Virgin Voyages, invites visitors to Take the Plunge: a playful installation at The Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf. The interactive project shows the power of design to evoke curiosity, in a stand-alone immersive experience created for London Design Festival.

    Image credit: Take The Plunge by Volume Creative at OXO Tower Wharf

    Visitors are invited on a journey of discovery and asked to dive into a new experience. The minimalist exterior juxtaposes with the warmth that awaits within. Visitors step into an endless horizon, giving way to an extraordinary secondary space that depicts a sunset under the sea.

    The concept is inspired by a love of the sea – the great unknown with the promise of epic discoveries. Take the Plunge hints at this spirit of adventure and celebrates the endless possibilities of great design, using multi-sensory techniques to capture the joyful elements of an oceanic journey.

    Global Design Forum

    Global Design Forum is the Festival’s curated thought leadership programme, celebrating design and the minds shaping its future. The full 2019 programme has been announced and will explore the issues affecting the design industry itself but more importantly, how design can pave the way for workable solutions to some of the modern world’s most demanding challenges.

    The keynote sessions will include, British fashion designer and activist Dame Vivienne Westwood, discussing the role of activism in designing a sustainable future and how to take action; Claire Bergkamp, Worldwide Director of Sustainability and Innovation at Stella McCartney, on engineering a balance between innovation and sustainability in luxury fashion; and Astrid Stavro graphic designer and partner at Pentagram, speaking about the dynamic world of typography. They will join previously announced keynote speakers; Kengo Kuma, Yves Behar and Deborah Riley.

    Global Design Forum takes place at the V&A, the official London Design Festival hub, from Saturday 14 – Sunday 22 September 2019. Further information about the full programme and tickets can be found here.

    This year, there will also be an offsite keynote in Stratford at the future site of the new V&A East. Supported by INTERNATIONAL QUARTER LONDON and hosted at new shared workspace, Workable, Fabio Novembre, Director, Fabio Novembre Studio and Scientific Director, Domus Academy, will speak from his own experience followed by a panel discussion with industry experts on the importance of nurturing new talent in design.

    Main image credit: Disco Carbonara by Martino Gamper at Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross

    CitizenM has announced fourth arrival in London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    CitizenM has announced fourth arrival in London

    Global hotel group, citizenM, announces the acquisition of a Victoria property for its fourth London hotel, opening in 2021…

    citizenM has announced that construction will commence in May 2020 for a new hotel in London, following the demolition of the existing Denison House. The 226-room hotel, designed by concrete with architecture by ICA, will comprise basement and ground floor levels, with ten upper floors and will be built using citizenM’s innovative modular construction method.

    Each of the rooms will be built and furnished one-by-one in an offsite factory and then moved to the site where they will be assembled to make up the hotel. Prefabrication enables faster construction and easier quality control, and also guides the architectural aesthetic of all citizenM locations. No matter how they’re assembled, citizenM buildings are recognisable in their surroundings for their identifiably square units, clean lines, and artwork on the facades.

    citizenM’s hybrid hotels offer travellers luxury accommodation at affordable prices in hyper-busy urban centres. This latest addition, situated in the heart of London, will be close to major London tourist attractions such as Buckingham Palace and Tate Britain, and offer great transport links within Greater London and Gatwick Airport – perfect for all mobile citizens.

    “We are excited to have completed this transaction after securing planning consent in a prime location in Westminster. With three hotels already operating successfully in London, this new property will offer a fantastic addition to our existing portfolio and confirms our commitment to expand further in London’s most desirable neighbourhoods,” said Klaas van Lookeren Campagne, CEO of citizenM hotels.

    The hotel’s interiors will be designed by citizenM’s Amsterdam-based partner Concrete, and will feature furniture from long-term collaborator Vitra. The guestrooms will include citizenM’s famous XL king-sized beds, powerful rain showers and large flat screen TVs. Guests will be able to enjoy the same creative technology that has marked citizenM as an innovative force in hospitality, from online check in to in-room mood pads.

    The new Victoria-based hotel will be located at 292 Vauxhall Bridge Road and will be the fourth stand post of citizenM in London, following openings in Bankside (2012), Tower of London (2016) and Shoreditch (2016).

    In Europe, the key target cities for new sites are London, Paris, Milan, Rome, Dublin, Munich, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Zurich, Geneva, and Barcelona.

    Main image credit: citizenM

    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

    designjunction’s speaker programme set to challenge, provoke and engage

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    designjunction’s speaker programme set to challenge, provoke and engage

    designjunction, which is preparing to showcase more than 200 world-class international brands during London Design Festival, has just announced its speakership programme for 2019 which will be sheltered at Everyman Cinema in King’s Cross… 

    This year designjunction will launch a brand new talks programme at the Everyman Cinema in King’s Cross, in association with Clippings.

    Set against the millennial-pink backdrop of the cinema and curated by design and architecture writer and commentator Grant Gibson, the two-day platform (Thursday 19 – Friday 20 September) is set to challenge, provoke and engage with an eclectic range of topical issues that include: sustainability and the circular economy; the relationship between dyslexia and design; the need for increased diversity in design; and the importance of wellbeing at work.

    In responding to this year’s theme Re(act), the two-day programme breaks the mould and opens up a discussion about what truly matters through a series of lively discussions. The diverse and considered programme includes debates and book clubs with a slew of the industry’s leading thinkers and expert voices including: renowned architect Nigel Coates, designer Sevil Peach, leading designers Sam Hecht and Kim Colin of London design studio Industrial Facility, Founder of 1882 Emily Johnson, product designer Matthew Hilton and University of Cambridge researcher, Helen Taylor.

    “By clicking here and using the code DJ700, readers of Hotel Designs are entitled a 50 per cent discount off tickets to designjunction, which takes place from September 19-22 in London”

    Thursday 19 September

    Title: Wellness in the Workplace – Is It Anything More Than A Passing Fad?
    Time: 10.00am – 10.45am

    Speakers: Interior Architect Sevil Peach; Rosamund Pomeroy, workplace Scientist and Co-founder of brainybirdz; Fabienne O’Neil, Co-founder and Director of Cuckooz and Mark Eltringham, Founder of Workplace Insight. A panel of workplace experts – includingdesigners, journalists and workplace scientists – will unpick our current obsession with wellbeing and ask if it’s simply feng-shui for the new Millennium.

    Title: Sheep to Seat, Fleece to Floor: Ella Doran and the Circular Economy
    Time: 11.00 – 11.45

    The award-winning designer Ella Doran discusses her latest project with the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Sheep to Seat, Fleece to Floor, where she took fleeces from the sheep grazing in the park’s grounds and turned them into a variety of products that were then sold in the park’s shop. The project involved a host of manufacturing companies including Camira, Coakley & Cox and Alternative Flooring. The talk promises to touch on subjects such as sustainability and the importance of the circular economy.

    Title: Lunchtime Book Club | Brinkworth: So Far So Good
    Time: 12.00 – 12.45

    Speakers: Adam Brinkworth, Founder of Brinkworth and Kevin Brennan, Co-CEO at Brinkworth
    Chaired by Riya Patel, Curator at The Aram Gallery and Contributing Editor at ICON

    To celebrate the launch of their new monograph – written by Graeme Brookerand with a foreword from Michael Marriott and Peter Higgins – Adam Brinkworth and Kevin Brennan discuss the award-winning practice ‘Brinkworth’ and chart how it has grown from a small workshop in East London into a globally renowned design and architecture studio, with clients ranging from Converse to All Saints.

    Title: Dyslexia and Design
    Time: 14.00 – 14.45

    A high powered panel including designer Ab Rogers of ARD, product designer James Rokos, metal artist Simone ten Hompel and Cambridge University Educational researcherHelen Taylor will be discussing their dyslexia, looking at the impact it has had on their lives, their experience of the education system, and, ultimately, how it has enabled – rather than hindered – their careers.

    Title: The Standard London: How the Capital Got its Hottest New Hotel
    Time: 16.00 – 16.45

    Housed in the former Camden Town Hall Annex a mere stone’s throw from the Everyman Cinema, The Standard London is the brand’s first hotel outside the US. It contains 266 rooms in 42 unique styles and has been described as ‘London’s hottest hotel open for 2019’. In a warm up to the Sleep & Eat show in November, Sleeper magazine’s editor Matthew Turner talks to some of the people that made it happen.

    Friday 20 September

    Title: Britain Can (Still) Make It
    Time: 10.00 – 10.45

    Speakers: Emily Johnson, Founder of high end ceramics company 1882; Joni Steiner, Founder of hi-tech furniture firm Open Desk; Furniture and Product Designer, Matthew Hilton and Richard Blackwell, Executive Director at Bisley

    A panel discussion that looks at the future of British manufacturing, seeking to unpick the problems and the benefits of making things in this country and asking what role design can play, as well as pondering how technology is likely to disrupt the traditional model. Expect Brexit to be mentioned on at least one occasion.

    Title: New Voices in Design
    Time: 11.00 – 11.45

    Organised in conjunction with Living Etc, this panel talk seeks to discover how new voices from diverse backgrounds can be encouraged into the design industry. It will include a combination of personal stories and policy ideas.

    The panel promises to feature industrial ceramic designer and creative director ofThomas Goode, Peter Ting, as well as textile designer Eva Sonaike, Kevin Greenco-founder of STORE STORE and Ella Ritchie, director of Intoart, an art and design studio that works inclusively with people with learning difficulties.

    Title: The Future: Design in Turbulent Times
    Time: 12.00 – 12.45

    Speakers: Central Saint Martins Graduates including Mael Henaff, Elissa Brunato, Benjamin Benmoyal and Graysha Audren.

    A session of rapid fire presentations from recent graduates of Central Saint Martins, tying in with its show at the nearby Lethaby Gallery. What will the future of design look like? And what materials will we be using? Can design help society become both more sustainable and equitable?

    This talk will be introduced by Carole Collet, Director at CSM LVMH Sustainable Innovation, and hosted by William Knight, former Deputy Director of the London Design Festival.

    Title: Queer Culture and the City
    Time: 14.00 – 14.45 

    Renowned architect, designer and educator Nigel Coates discusses how LGBTQ culture has fundamentally changed – and will continue to transform – the shape of our cities. With Isabel Allen, editor-in-chief of the new architecture magazine, Citizen.

    Title: Aperitif Book Club: Industrial Facility
    Time: 16.00 – 16.45

    To celebrate their recent Phaidon monograph, leading designers Sam Hecht and Kim Colin of Industrial Facility discuss the studio’s history, which has encompassed an array of projects from office furniture forHerman Miller to a spray watering can for Muji via lights for Wastberg and, of course the brilliant Branca chair for Mattiazzi.

    This year’s talks programme has been curated by design, craft and architecture writer Grant Gibson.

    Grant has been published in The Observer, New Statesman, The Guardian, Daily Telegraph, FRAME, Dwell, House & Garden amongst others.

    During a long career in magazines, Grant has been editor of Blueprint, deputy editor of FX, and acting executive editor of the RIBA Journal. More recently he has been editor of Crafts and a contributing editor of the Dutch architecture title MARK. He was also the launch editor of the London Design Festival Guide and co-founded Real to Reel, the UK’s first film festival devoted to making and in 2019 he launched the critically acclaimed new podcast series Material Matters.

    Hotel Designs is a proud media partner of designjunction. By using the code DJ700, readers of Hotel Designs are entitled a 50 per cent discount off tickets to designjunction, which takes place from September 19-22 in London… 

    Main image credit: designjunction

    What to expect at the Hospitality Design Show 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    What to expect at the Hospitality Design Show 2019

    The Hospitality Design Show, the UK’s ultimate event for the designs behind business growth, is hitting London’s ExCeL on September 18 – 19, and here’s what you can expect to find…

    We’re excited to be partnering with the show this year! Uniting passionate hospitality professionals with the industry’s leading creatives, the Hospitality Design Show is the hub of the of the solutions that’ll revolutionise the look and feel of hotels.

    At the show, you’ll find 320 seminars by an unparalleled speaker line-up, boasting the likes of:

    • Gonzalo Carpintero – Radisson Hotel Group
    • Colin Minto – Marriott International
    • Adelle Chilinski – Premier Inn
    • Jon Sharp – Hilton EMEA
    • Alexandra Tollman – Red Carnation Hotels
    • Tiago Venancio – Choice Hotels International

    What’s more, you’ll be able to shop from 500 state-of-the-art suppliers, get involved panel debates that’ll provide you with all the design tips, tricks and techniques you could possible need, take advance exclusive show offers available to visitors only, and much more!

    And don’t forget, your ticket is not only free, but also gives you unprecedented access to the Hotel360, UK’s leading hospitality event, running directly alongside. So, secure your free ticket today by clicking here and let the world’s leading innovators guide you to success!

    EXCLUSIVE: Pre-show interview with designer of The Conscious Bedroom

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    EXCLUSIVE: Pre-show interview with designer of The Conscious Bedroom

    The Founder and Creative Director of Harris & Harris London, Alex Harris, gives Hotel Designs‘ editor, Hamish Kilburn, a sneak peek of The Conscious Bedroom that he and his team are designing for The Independent Hotel Show London 2019… 

    It was at the beginning of 2019 when Harris & Harris, the London based multidisciplinary design studio, were first approached by the organisers of Independent Hotel Show to work on this year’s concept room set.

    The brief was simple (and came in after the show had viewed the studio’s interior design portfolio online): to design The Conscious Hotel Room for the Independent Hotel Show 2019. The design studio leaped at the opportunity to design the concept room. “It was a seamless fit for the studio and their ethos of looking at the most environmentally and socially conscious way of producing luxury interiors and products,” Alex Harris, the studio’s Founder and Creative Director, explains. Arguably most importantly, though, the space at the show would give Harris & Harris the opportunity to showcase this mentality through the design and curation of brand partners who have similar ethics.

    When designing the skeleton of the room, Harris was keen to explore creating a heritage feel. “We wanted it to feel as if the room was located within a historic building instead of a new build,” he explains. “This was to prove that sustainable design practices can also be applied to older buildings, which are more prominent in the UK. This was achieved through introducing Georgian style wall panelling throughout the bedroom and including some historic design references in the interior design but with a modern twist.” 

    Parallel to curating sustainable focussed products and brands in the concept room – including factoring in elements like using local suppliers to reduce milage – the studio was also focussed on ensuring the overall design felt fresh, inviting and luxurious, all of which could be achieved whilst minimising the impact on the environment.

    Ahead of the official unveiling of the finished room on October 15, we caught up with Harris to understand more about the concept and his drive to design with purpose.

    Hamish Kilburn: What sparked your passion for sustainability, both at university and beyond?
    Alex Harris: I had the opportunity to gain work experience in 2005, prior to graduating from Bournemouth University, with the award winning furniture designer Russell Pinch (we grew up in the same tiny village in Gloucestershire). One day we traveled down to Benchmark Furniture in Berkshire as Russell was working on a new collection with them and I had the chance to see Benchmark’s incredible workshops, showroom and design office.

    They are very focused on sustainability throughout their manufacturing process and the products themselves. Together with their passion for craftsmanship, this definitely resonated with me as a student and I knew that my final year project must represent this ethos that I witnessed with Pinch and Benchmark’s work.

    I designed a (fully functioning) wooden wind-up LED lamp for my final year project, which I won an award for sustainability from my university. At the same time I approached the eco-design collective [RE] Design and had the opportunity to exhibit my lamp with them at the London Design Festival in 2006. Then in 2009 (after a stint living and working in Melbourne, Australia) I joined the Benchmark design team, four years after I had previously visited with Russell Pinch, so I had come full circle!

    I then went to work for several interior designers in London who were focussed on luxury and not really concerned about sustainability, which was always difficult for me. I vowed that whenever I start my own design studio that we must bring together both ‘luxury’ and ‘sustainability’  to prove that they can work harmoniously.

    HK: How will your concept The Conscious Hotel Room showcase environmental and social factors?
    AH: We have thought about the design in terms of impact on the environment from floor to ceiling. It was very important to us that every element was considered, so we researched and approached companies that we knew could help us with this vision.

    So we have organic and natural wool and linen fabrics, FSC certified timber flooring from Domus, bespoke 100 per cent recycled cardboard and plastic joinery pieces, many products that are made in the UK (to reduce ‘mileage’) such as our Harris & Harris furniture & lighting and the beautifully natural bed from Naturalmat, 100 per cent wool carpets from Axminster with their recycled car-tyres underlay (both also made in the UK). Handmade natural terracotta tiles, also from Domus, feature in the bathroom with Crosswater WC, basin mixers and showers with low water use. Edward Bulmer paint features on the bedroom walls that only uses natural ingredients. We have a boiling and chilled water tap from Quooker together with reusable water bottles at the mini bar, omitting the need for a kettle (as you only use the exact boiling water you need for a cup of tea) and of course no need for single-use plastic water bottles. Even the artwork we have curated with the art consultants ARTIQ has been chosen to minimise impact on the environment, with artists that use recycled materials and natural materials & processes.

    “Natural materials are used wherever possible but in particular with the Naturalmat bed and linens from The Fine Cotton Company.” – Alex Harris, Founder and Creative Director, Harris & Harris

    The social factors that we have considered include making the space as wheelchair friendly as we can, with clear space around the bed, sofa, desk and bathroom vanity and a wide doorless opening into the bathroom with no change in floor level into the shower. Plants throughout provide better air quality and general well being. Natural materials are used wherever possible but in particular with the Naturalmat bed and linens from The Fine Cotton Company, to provide the best night’s sleep possible. Snacks and beverages will be sourced as locally as possible and that contain healthy ingredients.

    HK: What are the challenges of creating a heritage feel from scratch?
    AH: Our first approach was to introduce wall panelling and decorative mouldings throughout, this gave the feeling of a Georgian style property which also helped it feel warm, welcoming and luxurious. Materials, colours and patterns were also chosen to be simple and classic throughout and the furniture and joinery designs are pared back to give a timeless feel.

    Image caption: Independent Hotel Show Conscious Hotel Room sketch

    HK: What are the historic design references that are mentioned in the brief?
    AH: As discussed above, the wall panelling and decorative mouldings, gave the feeling of a Georgian style interior. Our Harris & Harris furniture we have specified for the project; ‘Totterdown’ sofa, ‘Orchard’ Bench and ‘Clarke’ dining chair all have subtle references in their designs to 1920s/1930s Art Deco era and our Harris & Harris ‘Wharf’ lights (both table and pendants will be showcased) feature classic reeded glass. Cole & Son’s wallpaper ‘Flamingos’ that feature in the bathroom are a take on their archived designs from the 1960s as do the ‘Palm Jungle’ fabric on the scatter cushions. The herringbone pattern in the Axminster carpet is another classic design feature and the recycled cardboard tubing, used in the joinery and bed backdrop, gives a feeling of fluted columns that were used in Greek and Roman architecture.

    “There are so many ways in which hotels can embrace the three ‘R’s (reduce, recycle and reuse).” – Alex Harris, Founder and Creative Director, Harris & Harris

    HK: Can a hotel be 100 per cent fully sustainable?
    AH: Unfortunately I don’t believe we as human beings can ever be 100 per cent fully sustainable unless we go back to living in a cave! We can all do our bit to help minimise our impact, but we all consume and we all produce waste. There are so many ways in which hotels can embrace the three ‘R’s (reduce, recycle and reuse) and we are excited to showcase just a selection of examples of how this can be employed in the design of The Conscious Hotel Bedroom which we hope will inspire hoteliers for their current and future projects.

    HK: Let’s talk about water consumption. So many hotel groups are pledging to reduce their water consumption by ‘X’ amount.. Which suppliers would you say are allowing this to be a reality?
    AH: We are working closely with the British bathroom brand Crosswater who are supplying The Conscious Hotel Bedroom with their M Pro range which have WRAS and TMV2 certification. The WC has two flush types to encourage water management and the mixer tap features a Neoperl aerator that has a flow rate of only five litres per minute.

    When I lived in Australia we received an egg timer from the local water company to encourage showers of under four minutes. This was such simple idea and gave a fun challenge to try and ‘beat the clock’ whilst saving water. We will be featuring an egg timer in the bathroom of The Conscious Hotel Bedroom.

    “There will be many UK produced products that will feature in The Conscious Hotel Bedroom and will be noted in our literature at the show.” – Alex Harris, Founder and Creative Director, Harris & Harris

    HK: What is the value of products that have been manufactured in the UK?
    AH: We have many great craftsmanship skills and traditions that are hard to find abroad. Harris & Harris are passionate about producing the UK whenever possible and keeping these skills alive. There will be many UK produced products that will feature in The Conscious Hotel Bedroom and will be noted in our literature at the show.

    HK: What can designers do to ensure an eco-hotel is still a trendy and fresh hotel?
    AH: I think there is no reason why an eco-hotel cannot not still be trendy and fresh. Curating the products and materials specifically for The Conscious Hotel Bedroom galvanised this idea for us. Many brands now offer products which have less impact on the environment but still look fab. It is up to the designer to track these down and encourage their client to use in place of products that could be damaging to the environment.

    HK: Can you explain the benefits of Smile Plastics?
    AH: Smile plastics have kindly donated their ‘Dapple’ plastic sheets to us for the joinery pieces at The Conscious Hotel Bedroom. Dapple is made from recycled chopping boards and plastic packaging and with all of their ranges, Smile Plastics are produced from waste which would otherwise end up in land fill. With Dapple we felt it had the look of a natural material such as marble, to give a touch of luxury, particularly important in the bathroom where it features on the vanity joinery. Dapple is hard, dense and rigid, 100 per cent waterproof, rot-proof and strong weather resistance. It is solid and consistent, allowing for a decorative edge. It is also UV resistance and is food-grade and can be used for preparation of wet foods.

    Harris & Harris will showcase The Conscious Hotel Room at the Independent Hotel Show 2019. In addition to this, Harris will also join editor Hamish Kilburn on stage to discuss this year’s major topic in a live talk entitled The Conscious Bedroom Report, which takes place at 11:30am on October 15, 2019.

    Brand Partners (as of August 2019)
    ARTIQ– art consultants and rental agency, Axminster- carpets, Cole & Son– wallpaper and fabrics, Crosswater- bathroom items including shower, basin, toilet and tapsCurran Packaging– recycled cardboard tubing, Domus – bathroom floor and wall tiles, timber flooring, Edward Bulmer – paint, The Fine Cotton Company – towels, gowns, slippers and bed linens, Harris & Harris London– furniture and decorative lighting, Naturalmat – bed, mattress and bed linens, Plant Plan – plants and moss/living wall, Quooker – boiling, filtered & chilled water mixer tap, Samsung– television and soundbarSmile Plastics– recycled plastic sheet material, Wandsworth Group – power, lighting sockets and faceplates

    SNEAK PEEK: B3 Designers lifts the lid on The Prince Akatoki Hotel London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    SNEAK PEEK: B3 Designers lifts the lid on The Prince Akatoki Hotel London

    London-based hospitality interior design specialist B3 Designers is heading towards the finish line of completing the interiors for The Prince Akatoki London, a new hotel located on Great Cumberland Place near Marble Arch…

    Opening mid-September, The Prince Akatoki London’s newly designed spaces include 82 guestrooms and suites, a reception and sanctuary, a communal workspace for hotel guests, a Japanese restaurant featuring a sushi counter and robata grill, as well as a lounge and bar offering a tea ceremony room by day and a whiskey bar by night.

    The Japanese-owned Prince Akatoki London, the first of its kind, will bring Japanese luxury design and hospitality to the heart of the West End, and this will be reflected in the design throughout the entire hotel. The brief to B3 Designers was to create spaces that encourage guests to relax and recharge in a light, tranquil, mindful and minimalist environment that champions Japanese craftsmanship and unparalleled attention to detail.

    B3 Designers has fused quintessentially Japanese touchpoints into its minimalist and modern design to enhance and complete a luxury Japanese experience. The team has drawn inspiration from well-crafted simple joinery details, and has applied a strong use of natural materials, muted and light yet durable fabrics, crafted but modern seating, sleek metallic lighting, modern ceramics with rustic touches, and abundant use of stone and slate.

    Image credit: B3 Designers/The Prince Akatoki London

    The look and feel of the bedrooms, hotel reception and sanctuary (located adjacent to the reception) evoke a sense of calm through the use of lighter-coloured, fresh and tranquil materials. The use of decorative panels featuring Japanese landscapes, whether dark or light, help guests enjoy a unique, refined incarnation of Japanese hospitality and culture in the heart on London.

    The destinational public spaces including the restaurant and a tea ceremony room that transforms into a whiskey bar for evening guests, flaunt a darker colour palette yet still boast natural, well-crafted materials.

    The hotel is currently gearing up for its official unveiling, which is slated to take place next month.

    Main image credit: B3 Designers/The Prince Akatoki London

    CASE STUDY: Furnishing Hard Rock Hotel London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    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

    Franklite is the only UK company that is equipped to offer complete photometric files – and here’s why

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Franklite is the only UK company that is equipped to offer complete photometric files – and here’s why

    Franklite, which believes it has the product to fit any lighting requirement, also one of the very few decorative and soft commercial lighting companies that has their own photometer and spectrometer and the only UK company which owns a Rigo 801-1500 near-field Goniophotometer – a cutting edge device used for measurement of light emitted from an object at different angles.

    This investment now enables the company to offer complete photometric files compatible with designer’ssoftware in ELUMDAT .(ltd) and IESNA (.ies) formats.

    Wojciech Miller, Franklites Technical Specialist states: ‘The Photometer allows us to gather information about the quality and quantity of light being produced by our luminaires. By utilizing this information, we are able to design and produce quality lighting products which also offer excellent energy saving credentials. In recent years lighting technology has evolved at a tremendous pace and with this investment it enablesFranklite to lead the field.”

    Franklite 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.

    FINAL CALL: Applications for The Brit List 2019 close this week

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    FINAL CALL: Applications for The Brit List 2019 close this week

    FREE TO APPLY, nominations for The Brit List 2019 close on Friday August 9… 

    Calling all interior designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers who operate in Britain, you have until Friday to submit your free entries for The Brit List 2019. Once all nominations/applications have been gathered, the expert judging panel will decide who will from this year’s The Brit List. All will be unveiled – including the individual award winners – on November 21 at an exclusive awards ceremony and evening drinks reception.

    APPLY/NOMINATE SOMEONE FOR THE BRIT LIST 2019 BY CLICKING HERE

    The concept of The Brit List, which launched in 2017, results in 75 names, split into three categories (designers, architects and hoteliers), being listed as true movers and shakers. The list will be created around the nominations (applications close on August 9) from the following awards that are up for grabs:

    • Interior Designer of the Year
    • Architect of the Year
    • Hotelier of the Year
    • Best in Tech
    • The Eco Award 
    • Best in British Product Design – NEW CATEGORY FOR 2019
    • Outstanding Contribution to the Hospitality Industry

    Suppliers: £150 + VAT (Please click here if you are a supplier to the industry to secure your ticket)
    Designers, hoteliers, developers and architects: £20 + VAT (Please click here if you are either a designer, hotelier, developer or architect and secure your ticket)

    In addition to attending The Brit List 2019 Awards, there are also various sponsorship opportunities for suppliers. If you would like to know more about these, please contact Katy Phillips on email or by calling 01992 474050.

    Headline Partner: Crosswater

    Event Partner: Hamilton Litestat

    2019 Industry Partner: BIID

    London to welcome ‘private members’ club’ hotel in 2020

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    London to welcome ‘private members’ club’ hotel in 2020

    Slated to open in Q1 of 2020, The Guardsman is a purpose-built luxury London boutique hotel that is expected to offer the atmosphere, discretion and personal service usually associated with a private members’ club…

    Presenting guests with what is being described as “a true home away from home experience”, the 53-key The Guardsman, which will sit on Buckingham Gate, London, and is being designed by architects Dexter Moren Associates and multi-disciplinary design practice Tonik Associates.

    The hotel will be sheltered in an intimate property said to cut the same style and atmosphere as that of a private members’ club. The top three floors will encompass six exclusive residences. Designed as the perfect London pied-a-terre, they comprise a selection of one, two and three bedrooms, along with sumptuous living spaces, dining areas and fully fitted kitchens. The Penthouse has a wraparound terrace, whilst two other residences feature a more expansive outdoor space with planting and seating.

    The hotel is set amongst some of London’s most historic and prestigiouslandmarks. The Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace are both a short walk away, while the neighbourhood has been the seat of government for a thousand years. The hotel extends down the quieter, more hidden, Vandon Street, giving the impression of a sanctuary.

    Image credit: Shiva Hotels

    From the moment guests arrive, they will instantly be made to feel at home by the discrete yet attentive service. Along with their choice of rooms or residences, they can request their preferred brand of drinks, menu items or bathroom products, all of which will be prepared ready for their arrival. The hotel has an unmistakably British feel that befits such a prestigious address. Interiors are contemporary and relaxed, complemented by a few carefully chosen, classic and sometimes quirky embellishments.

    Meanwhile, bespoke furniture will fill the intimate public spaces and curated art adorns the walls. The individually styled bedrooms are exceptionally comfortable. Meticulously considered interior design and clever use of space ensure each room feels spacious, whilst flourishes such as custom-made furnishings and free-standing baths combine with more classic features like herringbone parquet flooring to continue the unmistakably British feel. State-of-the-art integrated televisions and speakers with Chromecast ensure all travellers’ technological needs are met.

    Plush snug area

    Image credit: Shiva Hotels

    The spaces for dining and socialising are set over two levels, perfect for relaxing, reading, small gatherings or enjoying the carefully selected whiskeys and spirits as well as a sommelier curated wine list.

    At the core of the hotel’s personality is the exquisite restaurant, open to residents and their guests only. Although a few select dishes will always be available, menus are developed daily from seasonal produce sourced from carefully selected purveyors, London markets and organic farms. The kitchen will be open all day, and room service will be available around the clock.

    The Guardsman is owned and operated by Shiva Hotels and represents a new direction in this market for the group. “The Guardsman is designed for those who want the tailored, personal experience offered by a club, the flexibility and luxury of a hotel and the comfort and familiarity of a home,” said Rishi Sachdev, Managing Director, Shiva Hotels. “It will also have a conscience, wherever possible putting both its people and the environment at the centre of its decisions.”

    Main image credit: Shiva Hotels

     

    Looking for innovative signage for a project? Look no further

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Looking for innovative signage for a project? Look no further

    Forum Events’ Digital Signage & Interactive Solutions Summit takes place on September 23 – 24, 2019 at Radisson Blu, Stansted… 

    Connecting senior executives working within the sector with product and service suppliers for two days of one-to-one meetings and business networking, Digital Signage & Interactive Solutions Summit, is the go-to networking event for designers looking to create immersive and interactive experiences via signage.

    Forum Events understands that designers’ time is precious, valuable and limited. The event’s unique and highly focused concept has been created in such away that allows delegates to inform who they would like to meet prior to attending. The Summit’s dedicated staff then arranges all meetings in advance based on delegates’ preferences, by providing them with details on solution providers, products and services. 98 per cent of those how have attended our events say that they are a better way to find new suppliers than a traditional trade show.

    “98 per cent of those how have attended our events say that they are a better way to find new suppliers than a traditional trade show.”

    Why attend?

    • Pre-arranged meetings with solution providers of your choice
    • 25 minute meeting slots will be relaxed and civilised, with no hard sell
    • Attend a tailored programme of inspiring seminars
    • Easily compare and benchmark potential products, services and solutions
    • You will be one of just 60 VIPs at the event, ensuring that you get personal attention
    • Attendance is entirely free of charge, which includes entry to our seminars
    • Attendance to our networking dinner
    • Accommodation at our luxury hotel venue

    What’s included?

    • A full pre-arranged itinerary of one-to-one meetings
    • Complimentary seminars hosted by some of the industry’s most dynamic minds
    • Meals and refreshments throughout
    • Access to all presentation material
    • Wi-Fi Access

    If you would like to attend the event, or would like to request more information, please contact Katie Bullot on k.bullot@forumevents.co.uk or call 01992 374093. 

    In Conversation With: Fashion designer Jack Irving

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    In Conversation With: Fashion designer Jack Irving

    Having previously designed statement outfits for many international music and fashion icons, Jack Irving’s alternative style has recently spilled out onto the hotel design scene. Editor Hamish Kilburn joins the fashion designer, in between photoshoots, to understand how two worlds have recently collided…

    The brand ‘Jack Irving Studio’ and the creative man behind the logo are two very different things. One is bold, disobedient and you would expect – almost encourage – to cause an outrageous impression in almost any social scenario.

    The other orders a lemonade on a hazy Thursday afternoon at a media interview as he catches his breath between work engagements. Opposites do attract, after all.

    Made famous by creating outlandish outfits for the likes of Lady Gaga and The Spice Girls for their come-back tour, the talented story-telling designer, Jack Irving, made his mark on the fashion industry by producing items that infused glamour and engineered technology.

    His innovative work recently emerged on my radar when he unveiled the result of a collaboration with W London Leicester Square, which has been the designer’s first interior design project to date. “The idea of working with W Hotels was mentioned to us at Pride London last year,” says Irving. “But it wasn’t until November, following my first show at the V&A, when we met the team to really discuss what we could do together.”

    Fashion shoot of models on bed with cushion

    Image credit: Charlotte Rutherford

    Presented by a loose brief to bring a flavour of ‘Jack Irving’ into the hotel, it became clear that that the W brand was willing to give the designer the creative reins in order to produce a statement piece for their newly designed guestrooms and suites. “They wanted a replacement for the current cushions and bed throw that met brand standards,” he explains. “The bed, for us, became the canvas.”

    One month after the brief was given, Irving pitched what he explained at the time to the client as a ‘crazy tech idea’ for the concept of new cushions. He wanted the items to be inspired his signature sea urchin style, which became famous by his work with Lady Gaga. Irving then wanted to make the interiors more instagrammable. The spiked pillows’ fabric would appear muted to the naked eye until they are brought to life through the click of a camera flash. Through the lens, the smart fabric would transform into an iridescent masterpiece. “To be honest, we were hesitant as to whether or not the client would see our vision,” explains the designer. “What we pitched was as far away from convention as we could have gone.”

    Irving and his partner (in life as well as well as in business), Rhys Beynon, received a call from the client while they were on a yoga retreat in Goa over Christmas 2018. “They wanted to see prototypes the first week of January,” Irving explains. “At this point, the pressure for us was on to meet the deadline.”

    QUICK-FIRE ROUND

    Hamish Kilburn: What would a Jack Irving guestroom look like if you were to design it?
    Jack Irving: It would be ridiculous – think sea urchin chairs and UFO beds. I also have the idea to design a Chesterfield sofa in the rainbow smart material.

    HK: What’s been the most challenging part going from fashion to interiors?
    JI: It hasn’t actually been that challenging because W Hotels were so on board with our idea.

    HK: Where’s next on your travel bucket list?
    JI: New Zealand and LA!

    HK: How do you switch off from work?
    JI: Both Rhys and I are really into techno. Oddly, it’s become our sanctuary.

    HK: What’s your biggest bugbear when checking in to a conventional hotel?
    JI: When hotels don’t stay in their lane.

    HK: What materials are really inspiring you at the moment?
    JI: For me, smart fabrics and metallic fabrics are really fun to play around with. I want to experiment more with the manufacturing of the material we have been using. That being said, you can’t rely on the fabric. The shape and structure is just as important.

    Models on bed with cushion

    Image credit: Charlotte Rutherford

    With time depleting by the day, and with fabric supplies on order to be delivered when they returned home from India, the next challenge was to secure a manufacturer. “The word ‘impossible’ landed in our inbox a few times,” explains Irving. “We did receive a lot of kickback at this stage from manufacturers, mainly because of the demand and the order size.” Undeterred, Irving and Beynon’s ‘when there’s a will there’s a way’ approach led them both to source the materials themselves to prove that it could be done. “I remember sitting on the beach with Rhys making a cardboard model of the cushion,” says Irving. “It’s one thing drawing the design, but it becomes very real when designing a 3D model.”

    As well as the shape of the accessory being unconventional, so too was the material that designer decided to work with. “We call it rainbow smart fabric,” he explains. “We were worried that it would look to synthentic when not lit up, but in reality it was the perfect material to use for creating that contrast.”

    As with all creative projects at pitch stage, there is an air of uncertainty, especially when it comes to unveiling to clients a prototype as futuristic as this one. “I was terrified when it came to pitching because you just don’t know how it’s going to go,” admits Irving. “We hadn’t seen the new rooms that our statement accessories would sit in, so it could have gone either way, as these things often do. But they loved it, and the second prototype we made on the beach in Goa over Christmas became the product that’s in the W London today.”

    Irving’s interior design work for W Hotels may be just a dip in the ocean for now, but the designer’s ability to disrupt convention through the use of innovative materials and shapes unquestionably makes him a true innovator on the international hotel design scene.

    Main image credit: Jack Irving Studio

    Hotel Designs becomes media partner for Hospitality Design Show

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Hotel Designs becomes media partner for Hospitality Design Show

    Hospitality Design Show takes place on September 18 – 19 at ExCel London… 

    Exciting news – We’re partnering with the Hospitality Design Show, the UK’s ultimate event for the designs behind business growth, taking place on the 18th & 19th of Septemberat London’s ExCeL!

    Connecting passionate hospitality professionals with the industry’s leading creatives, the show is free to attend and will feature an unmissable line-up from across the globe, whilst also showcasing the design solutions, tips and techniques that are transforming the world of hospitality!

    What’s more, at this year’s unbelievable event, you’ll have the chance to tune in and listen to hundreds of influential speakers, engage in industry-altering panel sessions and get personalised one-to-one advice from the sector’s greatest minds, all whilst you cultivate invaluable new business contacts! With all this and more, you’re sure to return to your business armed with ambition and brimming with ideas and inspiration on how you can take it to the next level!

    The amazing features don’t stop there! Running directly alongside the Hospitality Design Show, for the first time ever, is Hotel360, the UK’s leading event fully dedicated to improving all aspects of hotels and increasing their profitability. And the best part? Your free ticket gives you access to both events, with a combined line-up of 500 cutting-edge suppliers, 320 thought-provoking seminars, unmissable innovation awards and much more!

    Visit hospitalitydesignshow.co.uk to secure your free ticket, enter the ultimate marketplace for hospitality design and let the world’s leading innovators guide you to success!

    The Brit List 2019: Free to apply before August 9

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    The Brit List 2019: Free to apply before August 9

    CALLING ALL DESIGNERS, ARCHITECTS, HOTELIERS AND SUPPLIERS: Applications for The Brit List 2019, which are free to apply for, close on August 9… 

    Time is running out to apply for The Brit List 2019, Hotel Designs’ annual awards, which as well as recognising individual winners also lists the top 75 influencers who are operating in Britain on the hotel design and hospitality scene.  The deadline for applications and nominations expire on August 9!

    In an aim to ensure that Hotel Designs’ nationwide search to find the best interior designers, architects, hoteliers and suppliers operating in Britain, The Brit List remains completely free to apply for.

    Simply click here to apply/nominate.

    The concept of The Brit List, which launched in 2017, results in 75 names, split into three categories (designers, architects and hoteliers), being listed as true movers and shakers. The list will be created around the nominations from the following awards that are up for grabs:

    • Interior Designer of the Year
    • Architect of the Year
    • Hotelier of the Year
    • Best in Tech
    • The Eco Award 
    • Best in British Product Design – NEW CATEGORY FOR 2019
    • Outstanding Contribution to the Hospitality Industry

    “Now with suppliers able to participate in the awards element, The Brit List has allowed us to physically bridge the gap between industry leaders,” said Hamish Kilburn, editor of Hotel Designs.

    On November 21, the shortlisted finalists of designers, hoteliers, architects as well as key suppliers to the industry will gather at Patch East, London where The Brit List 2019 will be unveiled along with the individual winners . “We have, yet again, deliberately kept nominations for The Brit List 2019 free for all to apply in order to maintain a fair opportunity for all designers, hoteliers, architects and suppliers who believe they deserve to be profiled in The Brit List 2019,” explains Hamish Kilburn, editor of Hotel Designs. “As a judge, I am personally looking forward to leading another nationwide search in order to find and platform exceptional creative thinkers who are operating or manufacturing in Britain today.” Patch East, London is a fabulous venue for our non-traditional awards ceremony, and we look forward to welcoming the industry’s finest for a night of celebration and high-profile networking.”

    Read more about the judges by clicking here.

    Early-bird tickets for the award ceremony are now available to purchase: 

    Suppliers: £99 + VAT (£150 + VAT after early bird offer expires after August 4)
    Designers, hoteliers, developers and architects: £10 + VAT (£20 + VAT after early bird offer expires after August 4)

    Please click here if you are a supplier to the industry to secure your ticket NOW!

    Please click here if you are either a designer, hotelier, developer or architect and secure your ticket NOW!

    Soft and loose luxury interiors

    Aparthotels Adagio announces to quadruple UK portfolio

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Aparthotels Adagio announces to quadruple UK portfolio

    Aparthotels Adagio has announced major plans for UK expansion, with plans to quadruple its UK portfolio over the next four years…

    Aparthotels Adagio will strengthen its presence in central locations across the UK, with a new opening planned in Leicester by the end of 2019. Other openings in the planning stages include a complex of 136 apartments in Stratford, London scheduled to open in 2020 and a 162 apartment premise in Saint Enoch, Glasgow in 2021.

    Soft and loose luxury interiors

    The brands latest signing will be located in Whitechapel, London in the heart of the historic East End and will open its doors in 2021.

    Adagio Whitechapel will have 147 apartments; made up of 112 studios and 35 apartments comprised of two connecting rooms, all featuring a modern and innovative design. For optimal comfort, the new communal areas will benefit from one of the latest Adagio concept “The Circle”, which transforms the public spaces based on customer desire and usage.

    “The market for aparthotels in the UK and Ireland is booming, both from an investor and a customer perspective,” said Karim Malak, CEO of Adagio. “Consolidating Adagio Aparthotel’s growing position in the region is key in our ambitious global development strategy. To achieve our goal of quadrupling the number of aparthotels by 2023, we have hired new talent locally.”

    The planned expansion reflects the strengthening of Aparthotels Adagio’s presence in Europe and worldwide. By the end of 2019 the brand will have 115 aparthotels worldwide, representing more than 13,000 apartments in 13 countries. By 2023, the brand plans to manage a total of 220 assets, consolidating its leading position in the aparthotels sector.

    Main image credit: Adagio

    EDITOR CHECKS IN: Proud of diversity in British design

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    EDITOR CHECKS IN: Proud of diversity in British design

    As the world focuses its attention on amplifying equality in all forms, editor Hamish Kilburn believes now is the time to break down why diversity in British design is something the industry should celebrate and be proud of…

    We’ve come a long way, and although the journey hasn’t exactly been a seamless one, here we are in Britain in 2019 where we are free to love whoever we want. The next mission is now to work towards a society that campaigns for equal opportunities for all.

    Our colourful industry, which is full to the brim of creative people, can be at the best of times a forceful catalyst for good and I believe, together, we can significantly do more than our bit in order for that dream to become a reality – and it starts here.

    For a little more than a year now, since proudly joining the Hotel Designs editorial desk, I have tried perilously to understand what it is about the UK that makes it one of the major design destinations around the world. Despite its scale, Britain, the tiny little speck of land in the northern hemisphere, attracts the majority of the leading designers, hoteliers, architects and suppliers to train, flourish and go on to lead the industry forward into an innovative direction.

    What Britain lacks in size it certainly makes up for in style, creativity and diversity. It’s no coincidence, therefore, that a large handful of the world’s most premium international design fairs, such as Sleep + Eat, 100% Design, Independent Hotel Show and London Design Festival, among many others, take place here.

    Today, just two weeks after we officially opened nominations for The Brit List 2019, I’m seeing London from a completely unrivalled perspective – and it is a beautiful moment to witness. Peering over the edge of a rooftop bar, every colour of the rainbow is being amplified loudly on the streets below. As many as 1.5 million people have attended Pride London 2019, which is now being hailed the UK’s largest and most diverse Pride parade to date.

    “By celebrating and supporting the concept of diversity – and by not oppressing original ideas that challenge convention – we can allow new thoughts to emerge.”

    There’s an Albert Einstein quote that hangs on our office wall. It reads: “Creativity is intelligence having fun.” For some, it may signify the balance of designers, hoteliers, architects and suppliers thinking outside the box while also designing with purpose.  For me, though, it encourages one to take on a challenge and make it fun! That way, with the ability of adding your stamp to your work, you will not only throw intelligence at the problem, but also personality and individual ideas too.

    This, I believe, is where the UK flourishes on the international design scene. By celebrating and supporting the concept of diversity – and by not oppressing original ideas that challenge convention – we can allow new thoughts to emerge and evolve, which, as a result, gives original concepts a nudge forward in the right direction. Jack Irving is the perfect example. The fashion designer who has worked with the likes of Lady Gaga and The Spice Girls has just completed his first interior design project. Irving’s commissioned work for W London has resulted in introducing our industry to new, unconventional materials. On the other hand there’s Zaha Hadid Architects, with its firm footprint as an industry leader, that is turning new architecture chapters, with the likes of Morpheus, that create new elegant dimensions.

    The Brit List 2019, our annual awards event, is all about championing the most influential and inspirational designers, hoteliers, architects and suppliers. In order to keep the whole process as open as possible, we have ensured that applying for our nationwide search is completely free.

    It’s been a varied and colorful month at the helm of Hotel Designs and I for one am proud of our fabulous team. We started our mini July tour in Manchester for Meet Up North, where more 150 of us celebrated creativity outside of the capital. One week later, we further bridged the gap between suppliers and procurement specialists with our highly engaging meet-the-buyers event, Hotel Summit, which allowed me the great honour of interviewing Marco Novello, the Managing Director of The Lanesborough, on stage in front of our live audience. A quick 24 hours in Dusseldorf, Germany, opened up the opportunity for us to speak to Michael Struck, the CEO of Ruby Hotels, as well as Matthew Bolan, the brand’s lead designer, in order to understand more about Ruby Hotels’ aggressive expansion, which includes its highly anticipated debut hotel in London next year.

    In an industry full of leaders and visionaries, who are designing the cities of our future, it makes sense for us to also carve the path for others when it comes to celebrating diversity. Here are Hotel Designs, we are determined to continue to praise and offer a platform to people, projects, and plans on the boards that further challenge convention.

    Be proud and apply for The Brit List 2019 for free today!

    During August, Hotel Designs will be putting Hotel Concepts and Beds under the spotlight. If you would like to contribute to these topics, please do not hesitate to email me.

    Editor, Hotel Designs

    Main image credit: ACT Studios

    Trends forecast ahead of Independent Hotel Show London 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Trends forecast ahead of Independent Hotel Show London 2019

    Ahead of the Independent Hotel Show London 2019, which takes place on October 15 – 16 at Olympia London, design partners and exhibitors identify four key areas predicted to be hot in hotel design… 

    Now that registration is officially open for the Independent Hotel Show London 2019 – and following the announcement that Hotel Designs has once again come on board as a media partner for the show – here are a few trends that visitors should expect to see emerging during the two-day event.

    Bold and bright décor

    Soft, muted shades have been the preferred palette for hotel bedrooms and lobbies for many years, but it’s now time to ‘banish the beige’ and embrace bold and bright colours, says Gemma Tate, director of House of Sloane. “Gone are the days where all the rooms are filled with beige upon beige and look exactly the same,” explains Tate. “Boutique hotels are becoming more confident in their use of bold and colourful decor, mixing eclectic elements when styling individual rooms and giving the guest a captivating experience.”

    As design partner to the Innovation Stage, House of Sloane is planning to fulfil the brief of ‘modern eclecticism meets maximalist glamour’ by kitting the stage out with bold hues, luxurious velvets, a dash of animal print and eclectic accessories.

    Susi Bellamy, founder of her eponymous agency and wallpaper partner to the Independent Hotel Show, says the ‘trend for a more eclectic approach to interiors seems to be here to stay’ and notes a ‘growing appetite’ for brighter colours. “Jewel tones, acid brights and candy colours are omnipresent in hospitality interiors and add a joyful tone to spaces,” Bellamy says as she explains the three striking wallpaper designs – Grey Stucco, Grey Stucco Pebbles and Pietra Grigia – she has selected to hang on walls at this year’s show. “The palette of these designs means they work in harmony with one another and provide a versatile backdrop for a range of hotel settings,” Bellamy adds. “Grey Stucco and Grey Stucco Pebbles inject a pop of colour into a setting and feel very bohemian. Grey Stucco Pebbles layers some collage over the top of the design and is a slightly more eccentric choice for interiors that truly stand out. Pietra Grigia combines tones of pale greyish greens and works well alongside cream and neutrals. These designs are some of our bestsellers, owing to their adaptable colour scheme and understated elegance.”

    Image caption: Shot from last year’s Independent Hotel Show London

    Make a statement

    If there’s no budget or time for a full re-design, investing in one eye-catching piece of furniture per room, or to place in a communal area is one way to refresh a hotel’s look and help your business seem on-trend. A similar impact can be found by painting or wallpapering a single feature wall or ceiling.

    “Invest in a statement sofa or chair,” advises Tate. “This is potentially one of the first things your guests will see on arrival and actually says a lot of about a hotel. Be brave with your choice of colour and shape. This should be about what works for your brand and should be a part of your overall room design. We would highly recommend this is one of those high-ticket items that you don’t cheap out on. Eclectic pieces, hand built with quality craftsmanship that are sturdy and made to last is a winning combination. Anything else is a false economy.”

    Felicity Randolph, of Cheeky Chairs, an exhibitor at this year’s Independent Hotel Show, agrees and believes that unique statement pieces lend themselves particularly well to boutique independent hotels. “With the ever-increasing influence of Instagram and Pinterest, consumers are seeking a more esoteric individual style of hotel,” Randolph says. “Independent hotels are perfectly placed to capitalise on this trend and offer something truly unique and unexpected.”

    The company’s boutique collection of crafted designer chairs and bar stools feature naturally soft seats upholstered in striking designer fabric.

    “Our approach has been very much along the lines of a fashion collection on the runway,” Randolph adds. “Our models are carefully chosen for a specific feature of their shape; perhaps it’s the subtle curve of their leg, the length of their back, their enveloping seat or the flick of their ankle. Each finished product is a unique combination of model, designer fabric and colour to create a truly unique statement piece.”

    “If you are unsure of how to incorporate more colour and pattern into your interiors, consider having a single feature wall or using wallpaper in the back of a bookcase to provide a hint of colour and print,” says Bellamy.

    Shot from last year's Independent Hotel Show London

    Image credit: Shot from last year’s Independent Hotel Show London

    Create a home-from-home

    The way guests use hotels is changing and interiors need to accommodate these shifts in behaviour if they want to survive. Starchy, formal and defined areas are no longer in vogue. Instead, guests want to be able to access services wherever and whenever they want within a hotel, so designing multi-purpose, flexible spaces that can cater for these changing needs is key. “A home-from-home approach is where hotels are moving towards, expanding the lobby into a living room space, almost a common room area where guests can find intimate places to relax,” says Tate.

    “Décor can also help hotels provide a more homely feel to spaces,” includes Bellamy. “Carefully selected ‘objets’ on mantelpieces, and soft furnishings like luxurious throws or plush cushions are an ideal finishing touch that transform a space to feel more homely and cosy.”

    The home from home feel can also be achieved on a more practical level by making it easy for guests to settle in quickly by providing them with the tools to do so. “We also see a connection between home and life through technology which is here now and working, so an easy transition from home to hotel is essential,” says Nick Sunderland of Two’s Company, design partner for The Suite who recommends swapping light sockets to include USB chargers so guests can easily charge electronic devices during their stay.

    A conscious approach

    There is no doubt about it, sustainability is a hot topic. With everyone showing increasing concern for their carbon footprint, and investigating ways they can reduce it, it’s a topic that will be under the spotlight throughout the show. Hotels are no exception and forward-thinking hoteliers are keen to lessen their business’s impact on the environment in all areas, including design.

    The Independent Hotel Show’s live installation this year is The Conscious Hotel Room where sustainability has been considered across “every inch of the room” according to Alex Harris, director of Harris & Harris, the multidisciplinary design studio in charge of creating it.

    Brand partners, which include Axminster, Cole & Son and Naturalmat, will provide furnishings that include recycled, organic, natural or sustainably-sourced materials while others, like Crosswater, will showcase energy-efficient bathroom items.

    “It was also felt important that the ‘mileage’ of each product was kept to a minimum by sourcing items that have been produced in the UK, an ethos which also helps support local businesses and communities,” adds Harris.

    Sunderland of Two’s Company also regards sustainability as a key trend and will integrate this ethos into the design of The Suite. The area will feature tables from Nature Squared, which uses sustainable natural resources such as feathers, egg shells and seashells to create unusual surfaces.

    “Conscious design doesn’t simply mean using sustainable furnishings and products, however. It also encompasses areas such as accessibility, so The Conscious Hotel Room has been designed in a way that is mindful of the needs of guests with mobility issues,” says Harris.

    “Generous space was allowed around the bed, desk, and joinery as well as omitting the door to the dressing room and bathroom. Space was allowed below the vanity unit and a large wet-room style shower, with no change in the floor heights, making the bathroom wheelchair accessible,” Harris concludes. “Through articles in the media and better education, travellers are becoming more eco-savvy and are now demanding that hotels provide a more sustainable stay for them. Hoteliers need to keep up with this trend, which won’t be a passing fad but a new and better way of living. Hotels have the opportunity to be the best expression of sustainable living which can then inspire guests to live in a more conscious way when they return home,” he concludes.

    Hotel Designs’ editor Hamish Kilburn will be on stage to host the opening session on October 15. More details on who will be joining him – and the topic he will be presenting – will emerge shortly. Register your place by clicking here.

    Main image credit: House of Sloane

    The Brit List 2019 Awards: Meet the judges

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    The Brit List 2019 Awards: Meet the judges

    Now that nominations have opened for The Brit List 2019 Awards, we would like you to meet our fabulous judges, handpicked in order to make this year’s process to find the most influential British designers, hoteliers, architects and suppliers the biggest and best yet… 

    The Brit List 2019 is back, once again launching its nationwide search to find Britain’s leading interior designers, hoteliers and architects. Nominations are now open (until August 9) and, what’s more, the process in which to apply remains completely free.

    This year’s judges, who have all individually been hand-selected, each come from a different sectors of design, architecture and hospitality in order to keep the process fair, creative and open to all.

    The judges for The Brit List 2019 Awards are:

    Harriet Forde, British Institute of Interior Design President (Industry Partner)

    Harriet Forde, BIID President

    Harriet Forde, who was recently interviewed by Hotel Designs,  is the founder and director of Harriet Forde Design, which provides a comprehensive range of interior design services predominantly based in the commercial property and hotel industries, as well as the high-end residential housing market. “The BIID are the UK’s leading professional body for interior designers and we are delighted to partner with the Brit List for 2019,” said Forde. “Our past president Gilly Craft had only good things to say about the process of judging the event and I am excited to participate this year.”

    Hamish Kilburn, editor of Hotel Designs

    Hamish Kilburn, who will also be hosting The Brit List 2019 Awards on November 21, is the editor of Hotel Designs, which is the leading international hotel design website.

    In 2014, Kilburn started his career in the industry when, as features editor, he helped launch a new international hotel design publication into the market.

    Since then, he has traveled the globe and has reviewed some of the world’s most impressive hotels. In his day-to-day role, Kilburn is responsible for curating the content for Hotel Designs, bringing his readers the latest happenings, reviews, and features in the world of international hotel design.

    Jacu Strauss, founder and creative director of LORE Studio

    Jacu Strauss, Founder of Lore Studio | Image credit: Emily Andrews

    Jacu Strauss, who was recently interviewed by Hotel Designs, is the creative director at LORE group and founder of LORE studio.

    A qualified architect with a demonstrated history of working in the design industry, Strauss’ portfolio of projects includes The Pulitzer Amsterdam and Sea Containers London among many others. The architect and designer is now dipping his toe into the world of hospitality and will soon be opening his first hotel in Washington D.C.

    Florence Rolfe, Former Deputy Decoration Editor, House & Garden

    Florence Rolfe, Former Deputy Decoration Editor, House & Garden

    Florence Rolfe, who is a regular contributor to Hotel Designs, is an interior stylist and art director based in London. Her career began with Condé Nast on House & Garden Magazine where she spent several years producing their monthly features, leaving after seven years as Deputy Decoration Editor. Since then she has worked with some of the most renowned interior photographers, producing & directing imagery for some of the biggest luxury brands including The One & Only Resorts, Nobu Restaurants, Heal’s, Habitat, Marks & Spencer, And So To Bed, Ballymore Homes, TH2 amongst others, and has had her work published in various national magazines including Vogue, GQ & Brides. With a background in publishing, Florence knows exactly how to style an image to make it appealing to editors and consumers alike.

    Edward Webb, Director of Development Management, Nuveen Real Estate

    Edward Webb, Director of Development Management, Nuveen Real Estate

    Edward Webb is the director of development management at Nuveen Real Estate, which is a premier global investment manager that has been helping clients meet their goals for more than 100 years, making the world a better place along the way.

    Mel Yates, Photographer 

    Mel Yates, Photographer

    Starting out as a portrait photographer working with a long list of subjects such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Javier Bardem, Jude Law, Keira Knightley, Tom Hanks, Mel Yates began to change direction and reconnect with his design background (originally trained as a product designer at Central St Martins) and now works internationally both as a stills photographer and video maker for numerous design related clients. In addition to photographing or filming designers such as Sir David Adjaye, Philip Treacy, Philippe Starck, Ron Arad, Tom Dixon, Yates shoots environments, people and objects for advertising, books, brochures, editorial and hotel clients, as well as interior and architectural projects. Hotel clients include The Four Seasons, ME and One & Only Resorts.

    The judges will select the final 75 most inspirational and influential people in British design, hotels and architecture, as well as selecting this year’s individual winners of the following awards:

    • Interior Designer of the Year
    • Architect of the Year
    • Hotelier of the Year
    • Best in Tech
    • The Eco Award 
    • Best in British Product Design – NEW CATEGORY FOR 2019
    • Outstanding Contribution to the Hospitality Industry

    On November 21, the shortlisted finalists of designers, hoteliers, architects as well as key suppliers to the industry will gather at Patch East, London where The Brit List 2019 will be unveiled along with the individual winners.

    Early-bird tickets for the award ceremony are now available to purchase: 

    Suppliers: £99 + VAT (£150 + VAT after early bird offer expires after August 4)
    Designers, hoteliers, developers and architects: £10 + VAT (£20 + VAT after early bird offer expires after August 4)

    Please click here if you are a supplier to the industry to secure your ticket NOW!

    Please click here if you are either a designer, hotelier, developer or architect and secure your ticket NOW!

    Headline Partner: Crosswater

    Event Partner: Hamilton Litestat:

    Industry Partner: BIID:

    Ruby Hotels opens second hotel in Dusseldorf

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Ruby Hotels opens second hotel in Dusseldorf

    Last night, Hotel Designs was invited to Dusseldorf for the official opening party of Ruby Leni, the disruptive brand’s seventh property. Ahead of the theatrical opening scene, editor Hamish Kilburn lifts the curtain to get a closer look backstage…

    Following the hotel group unveiling its aggressive expansion plans last year, Ruby Hotels has officially opened its seventh hotel. Ruby Leni, the group’s second property in Dusseldorf’s central district for the disruptive Munich-based brand.

    Shelted within a former 19th century hotel which later housed the iconic Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus theatre, the 170-key Ruby Leni enjoys a prime position not far from Dusseldorf’s famous Königsallee shopping boulevard and canal.

    An expansive bar and rooftop terrace offers a stylish watering hole for guests and locals alike, while an on-property work space and library provide ample space for both work and relaxation. All guest rooms, which range in size from cosy ‘Nest’ rooms (13-15m²) to expansive ‘Loft’ rooms (23-38m²), showcase Ruby Hotels’ sleep-scientist-approved formula for an ideal night’s sleep, with full soundproofing, blackout curtains, high-quality linen and extra-long and wide custom mattresses.

    Dressing room style design

    Image credit: Ruby Hotels

    For guests in search of a longer stay, Ruby Leni offers RESIDENT rooms, which are more spacious and are equipped with a larger wardrobe, a small fridge and a coffee machine. Residents also get access to the residents’ kitchen and lounge. For longer visits, the hotel offers a special extended-stay rate, with significant price discounts for bookings of seven nights or more.

    Drawing on both the surrounding area and the building’s creative past life, the design of the hotel is themed around the theatre world of the early 1950s, with antique furniture and artefacts providing a sense of place and history. Ruby Leni is in fact named after Helena from Goethe’s Faust; Gustav Gründgens’ groundbreaking production of the play premiered at the Schauspielhaus in the 1950s before it became a film classic.

    As with all Ruby Hotels, a musical theme runs throughout the property with quirky touches such as the inclusion of a Marshall guitar amp in each room, which guests can use both with their own guitar or one borrowed from reception. By night, regular live music events at the bar provide a stage for local musical talent, while by day the space serves as a relaxed space for guests to enjoy an organic breakfast as they listen to the sound of the hotel’s very own ‘Ruby Radio’.

    Cutting-edge technology is displayed throughout the property; in each room guests can find a personal tablet PC and smartphone pre-loaded with Ruby Hotels’ carefully-curated Dusseldorf city guide, social media apps and unlimited data and calls to use throughout their stay. A state-of-the-art self-check-in system makes use of tablet computers to reduce check-in time to under one minute, leaving guests free to make the most of their time in Dusseldorf.

    Just like the group’s other houses, the new hotel follows Ruby Hotels’ ‘Lean Luxury’ philosophy: a top location, high-quality fittings, and outstanding design. All of this is offered at an affordable price by rigorously cutting out the superfluous and focusing on the essential.

    For example, a trendy communal space serves an organic, locally-produced breakfast without the need for a kitchen or chef, and instead of overpriced minibars and room service, galley kitchens, vending machines and ironing stations supply guests with all of their needs. Likewise, a modular design sees Ruby hotels occupying mixed-use and former office buildings in the heart of the city, rather than the traditional, prestigious addresses with sky high rents typically favoured by hoteliers.

    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.

    Main image credit: Ruby Hotels

    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.

    LBTQ+ artists and allies come out in force for charity art exhibition

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    LBTQ+ artists and allies come out in force for charity art exhibition

    Pop-up art exhibition ‘Queer Frontiers’, displaying LBTQ+ artists, takes place this weekend during London Pride 2019…

    Queer Frontiers is set to celebrate the work of LGBTQ+ artists and allies with a pop-up exhibition and events programme open to the public from July 4 – 10 2019, during Pride in London. The exhibition will feature 31 artworks by 26 emerging and established artists, ranging from painting and photography to sculpture and screenprints.

    Proceeds from the sale of the artwork will go to support charities akt and Switchboard and LGBTQ+ artists and allies, with either 50 per cent or 100 per cent of sales donated at the individual artists’ discretion.

    The final curation for this year’s event was selected by art consultants ARTIQ (the event’s instigators and organisers); event sponsors and specialist insurers Hiscox and specially-invited judges from The Whitechapel Art Gallery. The chosen artworks include sculpture by Sam Shendi, photographic images by leading Italian photographer Paolo Raeli and artist Teo Robinson; artworks by Helen Beard, Bernard Fournier, textile artist Henry Hussey and leading street and installation artists Sickboy and Maser, as well as some of the most exciting up-and-coming artists selected by the judges, following an open call for submissions.

    “We’ve been blown away by the standard and number of serious works of art offered to ‘Queer Frontiers’ this year’” Patrick McCrae, CEO of ARTIQ commented. ‘As a consultancy, we’re very proud of our commitment to the LBGTQ+ community and the efforts of our team in making this event a success. It represents a great opportunity for buyers to purchase artworks from some of the most exciting new names in art and to raise funds for two charities who work with vulnerable young people and offer a listening service to the community.”

    The 2019 event will include a week-long free-entry pop-up exhibition at 8-10 Brewer Street (above the soon-to-reopen legendary Soho club Madame JoJo’s), London W1, alongside a Pride party on July 6th, arts programming, such as life-drawing classes for the young people akt supports and a panel discussion with Creative Industries Federation from 6-9pm on July 10th.

    Organisers, art consultancy ARTIQ, celebrate ten years in business this year, as leading pioneers in encouraging businesses to embed creativity and harness the power of art to improve wellbeing, enhance experience and promote the values and character of their business or brand. To date, ARTIQ and its clients have paid out over £3million to artists, makers and arts institutions. The company also founded and co-sponsors The Graduate Art Prize, now in its 7th year, which promotes the best young artistic talent emerging from Britain’s colleges and universities.

    Full exhibition details:

    ARTIQ & Hiscox present: Queer Frontiers at 8-10 Brewer St, Soho:
    July 4: 10am-5pm (charity workshop 12-2pm)
    July 5: 10am-5pm
    July 6: 3pm-5pm (Pride party)
    July 7: 10am-5pm
    July 8: 10am-5pm
    July 9: 10am-5pm (charity workshop 12-2pm)
    July 10: 10am-3pm

    Queer Frontiers was founded in 2018, set up by leading art consultancy ARTIQ as an expression of solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community globally, with artworks chosen because they investigate gender or sexuality, as well as issues relating to race, society and the environment. In 2018, for the first ever Queer Frontiers event, ARTIQ took over a pop-up space on Old Compton Street during, and with the support of, Pride in London, to provide a platform for and showcase the outstanding talents of a diverse range of international artists, with all artworks available for sale and profits given to LGBTQ+ charity London LGBTQ+ Community Centre.

    “Celebrating Pride wherever you are means different things to each of us’, added Richard Watson, Group Chief Underwriting Officer, Hiscox. ‘We’re looking forward to seeing all the artists bringing it to life in the exhibition and beyond.”

    This year, Queer Frontiers is back, bigger and better than ever with judging assistance from The Whitechapel Art Gallery and new sponsorship from specialist insurer and arts supporter Hiscox.

    Main image credit: Flying Lessons by Paolo Raeli

    In Conversation With: Simon Naudi, CEO of Corinthia Hotels

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    In Conversation With: Simon Naudi, CEO of Corinthia Hotels

    With a Dubai debut around the corner, Corinthia Hotels is strategically expanding its luxury arm one region – and one hotel opening – at a time. Editor Hamish Kilburn caught up with the CEO of Corinthia Hotels, Simon Naudi, to understand the trials and triumphs of evolving one of the world’s most luxurious hotel brands…

    Given its esteemed reputation among the design community, luxury enthusiast and of course its loyal returning guests, the news that Corinthia Hotels will open a property in the Middle East comes with little surprise.

    The 55-storey hotel, which will add to the ever-expanding city skyline of Dubai, is slated to open in 2020. Considering that the destination’s hotel room supply is set to reach 132,000 by the end of 2019, according to a study by the emirate’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) – and occupancy levels are forecast to remain at 76-78 per cent despite growth in capacity – the question is not why, but rather more ‘why now’. “Real Estate is expensive,” says Simon Naudi, CEO of Corinthia Hotels. “We are looking to expand sensitively. Our plan is to grow the portfolio sensibly and steadily, prioritising on looking for the right building or site in the right location.”

    According to STR, the UAE as a whole gained approximately 8,000 new branded hotel rooms last year. As of June 2018, the Middle East had 358 projects/113,830 rooms under construction, up 13 per cent by projects YOY. “We’ve had several opportunities in the past, but we are happy to have waited for this project to come along,” explains Naudi. “We have the right partners, Meydan Group, and the right location, prime seafront on JBR, and a top-notch project being built to make the very best in the city. From the design of the building itself to the interior elements, the aesthetics of Corinthia Meyden Beach with be synonymous with the Corinthia brand: confident, exquisite and elegant.”

    Image caption: Interior render of a suite bedroom inside Corinthia Meydan Beach Dubai

    While all eyes and ears focus on the brand’s Middle Eastern arrival, further west there’s also much happening between now and then. “Our main focus remains on Europe and the Mediterranean,” Naudi says. “We are currently working on projects in Bucharest, Brussels, Moscow and several other projects are under consideration. We’re also focused on the USA, Manhattan in particular.”

    Having recently featured in a two-part documentary with Corinthia London’s Managing Director Thomas Kochs, who also appeared on Hotel Designs’ Brit List last year, Corinthia London is arguably the brand’s most iconic building, and for good reason. With its headline-grabbing extravagant suites, innovative public areas and an out-of-this-world four-floor spa, the hotel has been a timeless gem for almost a decade since it was redesigned. But while the 283-key majestic hotel has stood the test of time, its interior design has had to evolve along with the brand in order to cater to the shifting demands of modern travellers. “Larger bathrooms, the less decreased demand for fixed TVs, connectivity and interactivity are all trends that have required guestroom designs to be functionally different today than they were previously,” explains Naudi. “In our case, we also continue to explore multiple uses of the foyer and lobby space, to double up as a space for meetings, social interactions and evening dining to a degree.”

    With esteemed regular guests including a long list of celebrities as well as world leaders, Corinthia Hotels seems to have mastered the formula for offering seamless luxury. “It is tantamount to making an effort,” explains Naudi. “It is an effort in terms of investment on all levels, in the product, in the generosity of space, the quality of materials, the beauty of finishes and in the architecture. It is investment in technology, upkeep, maintenance. It is also effort in terms of choice of colleagues, investment in their training and wellbeing, and above all giving time to the pursuit of happiness. Uplifting lives is our company philosophy, and that is what we aim to do, both with our guests and our colleagues. If all of the above is in place, luxury follows.”

    “Our single most effective weapon is indeed our size,” – Simon Naudi, CEO, Corinthia Hotels

    QUICK-FIRE ROUND

    Hamish Kilburn: What is the number one item you cannot travel without?
    Simon Naudi: My passport!

    HK: What has been the highlight of your career to date?
    SN: Developing and launching Corinthia London

    HK: What is the next destination on your travel bucket list?
    SN: The regions of Spain

    HK: What would you say is the number-one tool for success?
    SN: Hard work, and more hard work

    HK: What book are you reading at the moment?
    SN: The Wise Men by Walter Isaacson

    With so many lifestyle brands emerging in the market under the umbrella of large hotel groups, it’s refreshing to see an independent hotel group, like Corinthia Hotels, expanding and evolving without taking away its own core values as a brand known and loved by so many around the world. “Our single most effective weapon is indeed our size,” Naudi explains. “Being independent, and relatively small, means we can be, and are more open to be, true to who we are, and crucially nimble. We can also stay closer to our colleagues in all our hotels, the people who matter most to our guests and ensure we are all part of the spirit driving the company towards our aim of uplifting lives.”

    “In most of our hotels, the spa is a key, central component, with large physical spaces allocated to this activity wherever we could.” – Simon Naudi, CEO, Corinthia Hotels

    One of the major trends that seems to be dictating international hotel design, with the aim no doubt to ‘uplift lives’, is wellness and wellbeing, which is one topic that the brand identified early, if its London hotel is anything to go by. “We have always taken wellness seriously,” says Naudi. “In most of our hotels, the spa is a key, central component, with large physical spaces allocated to this activity wherever we could. Our guest profile has evolved over the years, and we are now more geared towards leisure guests, than corporate visitors, although all segments engage with our spas.”

    Corinthia London ESPA spa

    Image caption: Corinthia London ESPA spa

    Hotels, especially ones operating in the luxury sector, seem to be adding value to their properties with the openings and renovations of in-house spas. And with Corinthia Hotels arguably leading the way for other hotels to follow suit, the challenge for brand is more around how to build on its already successful products. “We have had several highly successful partnerships with spa brands and products, but we are evaluating all options for our future in 2019,” says Naudi. “We have beautiful spas being built to add to our portfolio and wish to use this as a basis for a spa strategy that is relevant to our guests.”

    Now that the hotel brand has pin-pointed its next destinations and is signing on dotted lines to secure them, calling the shots may be stressful and high-pressure at times, but it also carries with it unparalleled rewards. “I would count two main sources of satisfaction,” adds Naudi. “The first is to see old, abandoned properties, many of which may be heritage sites, rebuilt and launched as luxury hotels, with a legacy to span decades. Corinthia London was a case in point, but also our current projects in Moscow, Brussels and Bucharest too. Secondly, is seeing younger colleagues grow into more senior roles and take on leadership and entrepreneurial positions.” And with that, Corinthia Hotels continues to inspire generations by designing a healthy and strong family of hotels worldwide with a luxury metaphorical thread of impeccable service and innovative design connecting them all together.

    UK predicts 130,000 new hotel rooms by 2025

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    UK predicts 130,000 new hotel rooms by 2025

    Prime Minister announces a new tourism sector deal that will prepare the UK for an extra 9 million visits per year, with commitment to build 130,000 new hotel rooms by 2025…

    The Prime Minister has announced the UK’s first ever tourism sector deal today (Friday 28 June), reaffirming the UK’s global role as a key player in the industry. The new deal is said to revolutionise the way data is used by the sector, through the creation of new Tourism Data Hub.

    The hub will collate regularly updated data showing  the latest trends and spends, allowing businesses to better target overseas visitors.

    “By 2025 experts predict that there will be an additional 9 million visitors to the UK.”

    The deal will also support the creation of an additional 10,000 apprenticeships for people building their careers in the tourism and hospitality sectors.

    Last year around 38 million people visited the UK, contributing £23 billion to the local economy. By 2025 experts predict that there will be an additional 9 million visitors to the UK. The new deal commits to building an additional 130,000 hotel rooms to respond to the increased demand for infrastructure.

    The deal also outlines the government’s ambitions for the UK to become the most accessible destination for disabled visitors, through improvement of disabled facilities and access to destinations across the country.

    “This deal recognises the important role tourism plays, and will continue to play, in showcasing what our great country has to offer.” – Prime Minister Theresa May

    Prime Minister Theresa May said:“As one of the most visited countries in the world, the UK is a world leader in international tourism and it is crucial that we remain globally competitive to meet growing demands.

    “That’s why today I am pleased to announce the UK’s first ever tourism sector deal, ensuring that we continue to innovate, boost connectivity and economic productivity, expand career pathways and breakdown barriers for visitors with disabilities.

    “This deal recognises the important role tourism plays, and will continue to play, in showcasing what our great country has to offer.”

    Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright said: “Today we have set out our vision for the future of UK tourism – a commitment to an industry that is vital for the prosperity of our communities, our businesses and our economy.

    “The UK is one of the world’s greatest destinations and this deal recognises the importance of maximising our natural assets. We are dedicated to supporting life-long careers for those that work in tourism, offering insightful data to help grow businesses and ultimately creating a better visitor experience throughout the UK.”

    Business Secretary Greg Clark said: “Tourism is one of our most valuable industries and it plays a vital role in our economy, with nearly two million people employed in the communities across the country and £23 billion pounds spent by visitors in the UK last year.”

    “As part of today’s ground-breaking Deal, new Tourism Zones will deliver a direct boost to holiday destinations across the country, helping create new jobs as well as supporting improvements in transport connections.

    “This is one of the many ways in which the Deal will be key in building a world-class experience economy, helping us deliver on the ambition we set out in our modern Industrial Strategy; Government and industry working hand-in-hand to build on our exceptional strengths in this sector, boosting productivity and further increasing the UK’s attractiveness as a holiday destination.”

    Other commitments in the Tourism Sector Deal include:

    • More than 130,000 new hotel rooms are set to be built across the UK, with 75% being built outside of London.
    • £250,000 to improve broadband connectivity in conferences centres across the UK for business visitors.
    • Pilot of up to five new Tourism Zones to drive visitor numbers across the country. Zones will receive Government support for growing their local visitor economy, through initiatives like targeted support for product and promotion development, mentoring support to businesses and digital skills training.
    • 10,000 employees in the sector to benefit from new mentorship schemes.
    • A new government strategy to grow the number of Business Events and Conferences, helping to drive off-season visitors.

    Developed in partnership with the British Tourist Authority and Industry, the sector deal forms part of the UK Government’s Modern Industrial Strategy supporting the continued growth of the tourism sector, ensuring the UK remains globally competitive as a top tourist destination.

    British Tourist Authority Chair Steve Ridgway CBE said: “This sector deal is a game-changer for tourism, one of the UK’s most valuable export industries, spelling a step-change in how we underpin the success of tourism for a generation, moving it to the top table as a leading industry for the UK Government’s future economic planning.

    “And it is a game-changer for the economy, growing the value of the industry and employment in tourism, fixing issues from skills and productivity to extending the season year-round, building stronger tourism destinations up and down the country and developing world-class experiences for domestic and international visitors.

    “Tourism is one of the most fiercely competitive global industries and this deal ensures we can continue to compete internationally as a top destination for visitors, driving major economic growth across the whole of the UK.”

    Main image credit: Corinthia Hotel London

    SLEEP & EAT: Sleep Set design and architecture firms unveiled

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    SLEEP & EAT: Sleep Set design and architecture firms unveiled

    Sleep & Eat has confirmed the designers and architects who will create this years Sleep + Eat sets, two of which were finalists of The Brit List 2018… 

    Sleep & Eat, which takes place in Olympia London on November 19 – 20, has announced the architecture and design firms that will create the 2019 Sleep & Eat Sets. The roll call reveals an intriguing roster of new and long-established, multi-cultural practices based in Paris, London, Manchester and Singapore.

    The firms are twenty2degrees, Miaja Design Group, Hat Design and Barreca Tibblin, who will each create a concept guestroom. Meanwhile, NAME architecture and Space Invader will both realise a restaurant and bar Set. With the theme for 2019 of “Social FlexAbility”, the six design and architecture companies have been challenged to design flexible and engaging spaces in that guests can activate the social experience of their choice. Once again, the Sets – a cult favourite amongst Sleep & Eat visitors – are poised to provide a conceptual playground which, this year, will explore one of the major issues of our technology-enabled age – connection with other human beings.

    twenty2Degrees is one of the most prolific hotel interior design firms in London today. “We are thrilled to be a part of the creative team of designers involved with this year’s Sleep & Eat sets,” says Joseph Stella of twenty2degrees who was last year a finalist in The Brit List. “We look forward to delivering a design that not only encapsulates our studio, but also responds to the challenge of this year’s brief. Our aim is to design a space that feels fresh, excites those who visit and inspires others in the way that we have been when visiting The Sets in previous years.”

    Headquartered in Singapore, Miaja Design Group has been bringing artistic design to hotels & resorts, luxury residential and F&B developments since 1995. The founder, Isabelle Miaja, says: “I am very excited to participate in Sleep & Eat 2019. Innovation and inspiration have always been a driving force for me in creating my designs and this event embodies these precepts.”

    Paris-based Hat Design already enjoys a hospitality portfolio across Europe. Anne-Marie Sabatier believes that their quest is to design destinations and new experiences of wellbeing that engage all the guest’s senses. “With the prodigious opportunity offered at Sleep & Eat, we will be sharing our vision of relaxed aesthetics and transformable social collaboration,” she explains. “Sleep & Eat is an opening for HAT to a global audience, prestigious representation where functional business design matters.”

    Barreca Tibblin was founded in London just last year, an interior design company combining the Scandinavian and French heritage of creative duo Emilie Barreca and Maria Tibblin.Maria Tibblin. “’Tradition of the future’ is my inspiration when designing a space,” says Tibblin. “It honours our heritage and welcomes the next generation. A timeless design combined with the creative sense of tomorrow. When I visited the Sleep & Eat event last year, I was so inspired and eager to be part of the show to share my ideas with a wider audience.”

    Based in London and Paris, NAME Architecture is an award-winning architectural practice led by Nathalie Rozencwajg, whose experience ranges from landmark museums to residential spaces and luxury hotels. Rozencwajg was also a finalist in last year’s Brit List. “We are looking forward to contributing to a leading event in the hospitality sector and sharing our vision for the future of the industry,” she says. “Sleep & Eat is a driving force that bridges today’s solutions with visions for tomorrow and designing a Set is a unique opportunity to contribute to the debate and explore the power of design to personalise a social experience through a spatial one.”

    Katie Edgar is the interior designer behind Oddfellows On The Park, Hotel Designs’ most recent interactive hotel review. “At Space Invader, we are always looking for new ideas that inspire us as interior designers,” says Edgar. “The Sleep & Eat event is a must for us as it combines new products, thought leadership, opportunities to speak to key figures in our industry and a chance to soak up the buzzing atmosphere. The opportunity to design a Set was a no brainer and a chance for us to come together as a design studio and create something special.”

    Sleep & Eat 2019 returns to the National Hall, Olympia London, on 19th-20th November. For more information or to register for a complimentary pass, visit www.sleepandeatevent.com/visit/register-your-interest.

    Main image credit: Sleep & Eat

     

    SPOTLIGHT ON: Laura Ashley, from homes to hotels

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    SPOTLIGHT ON: Laura Ashley, from homes to hotels

    One strategic acquisition at a time, Laura Ashley Hotels is injecting quintessentially British charm into the hospitality industry. As Hotel Designs continues to put Hotel Groups under the spotlight, editor Hamish Kilburn speaks to commercial designer Kay Cullen and head of brand Nimo Abdi about the company’s growing hotel portfolio…

    The year was 1953 and celebration was in the air. Queen Elizabeth II was crowned in Westminster Abbey while Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tensing became the first climbers confirmed to have reached the summit of Mount Everest.

    In the same year, one lady and her husband launched a design and textiles company, Laura Ashley, in the Pimlico area of London. Using silk screens, the pair started printing placemats and scarves on their kitchen table. By 1984, the company that we all know and love today’s sales grossed $130 million.

    In 2013, the company followed in the footsteps of many residential designers, by entering the commercial market. The British textiles company opened its first hotel and today, 66 years after the company was founded and having won the hearts of more than 300 million hearts around the world all searching for authentic quintessentially British designs, the brand has its sights on expanding its presence within the hospitality industry with a unique platform. “The fact that we already have a brand has been a significant advantage,” explains brand manager Nimo Abdi. “Our customers are brand loyal and that has encouraged us to invest further by acquiring hotels as well as launching the Laura Ashley Tearooms.”

    As guests check in to a Laura Ashley Hotel, they are welcomed in a true-to-the-brand home-from-home setting – and location seems to be at the heart of every strategic acquisition. “Obviously we do want to create that ‘wow’ factor,” explains commercial designer Kay Cullen. “But our main ethos is in the heritage. I take a lot of inspiration from the original building and try to take that from an initial concept right into where you end up.”

    Image credit: Laura Ashley Hotels

    The Belsfield Hotel in The Lake District is an example of blending new with old. “It’s an amazing Victorian building,” says Cullen. “It’s set right out there on the lake, and while a lot of inspiration was taken from that, it also had beautiful Italian ornate architecture that we wanted to enhance throughout.”

    The hotel’s timeless architecture has been accentuated with the addition of a conservatory-like structure adding natural light and making the public areas look and feel bright, open and modern. “When we got there, everything was faced inwards, which was ridiculous,” explains Cullen. “We used Laura Ashley products that felt authentic and replicated how the building’s interiors would have looked but with a touch of modernity.”

    Due to the often-hefty demands of modern-day operators and developers, most guestrooms and suites within international hotel design are imagined with the aim for them to be timeless – or as timeless as possible. Upstairs in Laura Ashley Hotels, however the guestrooms and suites are decorated with the season’s latest products, creating a ‘living showroom’ concept. “We have a design department that comes up with the main six-monthly seasons of products that we have,” explains Cullen. “I then work with that palate to understand and decide what goes into the hotels.”

    The most recently completed hotel within the Laura Ashley Hotel portfolio is the conversion of the 66-key The Chace Hotel in Coventry. “It’s a building that’s hard not to fall in love with,” adds Cullen. “It’s got amazing William windows, original fireplaces. For us, it’s about bringing it back to life, which is part of my job that I love.”

    Image credit: Laura Ashley Hotels

    Laura Ashley’s love of creating beautiful spaces within the home has been well and truly extended to the hotel environment. Its current portfolio includes just one hote, The Belsfield Hotel in the Lake District. The Chace in Coventry and Burnham Beeches are currently on the boards, slated to open this year, with more hotels yet to be announced.

    The future for the group’s footprint in the hotel design scene is now very much secure in looking for new unique buildings that with the help of its design team, they can turn into truly unmatched, British-themed hotels.

    In Conversation With: Senior designer Kate Jarrett on Hard Rock Hotel London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    In Conversation With: Senior designer Kate Jarrett on Hard Rock Hotel London

    Since becoming a Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30, Kate Jarrett, senior designer at Scott Brownrigg has completed the Hard Rock Hotel London. Sitting down with editor Hamish Kilburn, Jarrett talks job satisfaction, preferred materials and the challenges that come with being a young designer in 2019…

    The early summer vibes are in full swing; the sun is out over the capital and its latest hotel, Hard Rock Hotel London, has arrived.

    Upon entering, the hotel is humming with activity. Guests are soaking in the iconic memorabilia hanging on the walls, while locals gather around the bar enjoying a post-work refreshment or two.

    The Lobby Bar feels like an apt place to meet Scott Brownrigg’s Kate Jarrett, the senior designer on the project, who earlier this year became a Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30. “This started with a passion for illustration, something I studied before moving to Brighton University to study Interior Architecture,” she says. “I then started as an interior designer and I haven’t looked back. I have worked across several sectors but my real passion is for hospitality design.”

    “We have used drumsticks to create unique lighting over the concierge desk.” – Kate Jarrett

    The completion of the new 900-key hotel, which is located a stone’s throw from Oxford Street, is the perfect stage for the designer to amplify what has become a milestone moment in her career. “We drew inspiration from the history of music and specifically instruments themselves, breaking them down in detail seeing how they have been made,” she says. “This was an unusual take on the obvious theme of ‘music’ and we never lost sight of this unique brief in our design. For example, we have used drumsticks to create unique lighting over the concierge desk.”

    Drumsticks used as lighting in the hotel's lobby

    Image credit: Philip Durrant

    The hotel’s walls are plastered with memorabilia that reference the legacy of legends who stayed in Hard Rock Hotels in decades past, including Jimi Hendrix, Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, Bob Dylan, Diana Ross and Madonna. Balancing the history and heritage of the brand in a timeless style to avoid cliché moments was the first task for design firm Scott Brownrigg when confronting the motifs that will be sheltered in the new hotel. “We knew we had to represent the Hard Rock brand in an innovative way for the contemporary London market,” Jarrett explains. “The hotel scene here is competitive so we knew we had to create something that tied into London and Hard Rock’s music heritage, while still being completely contemporary.”

    Contemporary bar

    Image credit: Philip Durrant

    The F&B structure at the Hard Rock Hotel London originally took its inspiration from the original art-deco style ceiling of the Lyons Corner House that original stood on the site in the early ‘90s. “Great F&B and bars are key to the success of a hotel as they offer a destination for non-hotel guests too,” explains Jarrett. “For that matter, the expectations of hotel customers on what they want from the hotel experience has also changed. They want it to feel like a home, workplace and a space to socialise; the brief is more open than it used to be.”

    QUICK-FIRE ROUND

    Hamish Kilburn: If budget was no object, what product would you include in a project you are currently working on?
    Kate Jarrett: An incredible art collection

    HK: Best thing about being a designer in London?
    KJ: The constant source of inspiration

    HK: Where is next on your travel bucket list?
    KJ: Japan – it would be like an experiential mood board. I already have a list of places I want to visit

    HK: Where was the last hotel you saw that took your breath away?
    KJ: I recently visited the Beekman in New York, and it really impressed me. That central atrium is like something straight out of a 1920s novel.

    HK: What does luxury mean to you?
    KJ: For me it represents a space that I want to spend time in, a collection of pieces whether its furnishings, art etc. that make me feel like I can sit back and slow down.

    HK: What’s the last item that will appear on your bank statement?
    KJ: Most likely ASOS… or coffee, as I’m always running around at the moment!

    Without a doubt, it’s her ability to let the project do the talking that has made Jarrett the designer she is today. But the challenges of being a young designer in 2019 are far deeper than simply securing projects, or belonging to a leading firm. “London has a lot to offer, however it also means that you have to shout louder, metaphorically, to get yourself heard and to stand out in the industry,” says Jarrett. “Platforms like the 30 Under 30 I find career-affirming as they enable us to get our names out there and really help to showcase the talents of young designers.”

    With sustainability arguably as big a talking point as any other at the moment in interior design and trends, Jarrett is insistent, where possible, on using naturally sourced materials within her projects. “I really enjoy working with natural materials,” she says. “Specifically, I like working with the tactile qualities of natural timbers, stones and the effects achieves by a neutral palette.”

    “Scott Brownrigg has been really supportive and encouraging with the projects I have worked on.” – Kate Jarrett

    At the root of Jarret’s decisions and place in the market is a design firm that has incubated and supported the young designer’s creativity to ultimately develop better places to live, stay and work. “At Scott Brownrigg, we are all encouraged to enrich lives through the environments we design,” she explains. “Scott Brownrigg has been really supportive and encouraging with the projects I have worked on. As a young designer it can be hard to establish yourself in a company, but Scott Brownrigg has really been great at championing me every step of the way. We’re a friendly, social bunch so I have also make some great relationships with colleagues along the way which has really helped.”

    Aside from the Hard Rock Hotel London, current projects that Jarrett is working on that on the boards are firm proof that she is anything but a one-trick pony in the race. “We are working on an exciting hotel project in Stratford,” she explains. “This area is having a surge at the moment with lots of new developments, particularly in the hospitality sector. There are also some further Hard Rock projects we are working on; it’s great to get repeat work as it means we are doing something right!”

    The fresh and vibrant interiors that surround the new hotel that everyone seems to be talking about are a reflection of the designer that Jarrett is becoming, or arguably already become. Modest, calm-natured and enthusiastic, Jarrett is, in my opinion, a credit to the firm that has helped support her on her way.

    Main image credit: Tash Busta Photography

    MINIVIEW: Hard Rock Hotel London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    MINIVIEW: Hard Rock Hotel London

    In spectacular fashion, as expected, Hard Rock Hotel London has opened its doors, adding 900 stylish rooms to the Capital’s hotel scene. Hotel Designs took a peak inside…

    Positioned on the corner of Oxford Street at Marble Arch, Hard Rock Hotel London has arrived, catering to the needs of both business and leisure travelers from around the world. Designed by award-winning design firm Scott Brownrigg, the concept for the interior design was inspired from the heritage of the existing building, which was built in the mid 1700’s.

    Drawing on the legacy of legends who stayed here in decades past, including Jimi Hendrix, Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, Bob Dylan, Diana Ross and Madonna, the new venue pays homage to the site’s rich history through stylish interior design and carefully curated music memorabilia displays. It also is an inspiration to those who have yet to write their own story – Hard Rock Hotel London stands alone as a hotel haven for music lovers everywhere.

    Image credit: Roberto Lara Photography

    Hard Rock Hotel London accommodates two vibrant bars and a lively Hard Rock Cafe – the second Hard Rock Cafe to open in the Capital City. With 370 seats, the hotel’s Cafe is set to be the ultimate Central hang out. Combining elevated food and drink offerings with weekly live music performances that celebrate both local London and international talent, the Cafe offers an electric atmosphere, perfect for all occasions – from lunch meetings to after work drinks.

    “As the original birthplace of Hard Rock, we are delighted to open a new hotel in London, the brand’s spiritual birthplace,” said Ian Fletcher, general manager of the hotel. “In true Hard Rock style, the property offers stylish and contemporary design, incredible in-room amenities, fantastic food and unparalleled service, with the thread that unites them all – music. We know all our guests have an unforgettable experience.”

    Image credit: Roberto Lara Photography

    Meanwhile, the 42-seat Lobby Bar takes its inspiration from the original art-deco style ceiling of the Lyons Corner House, which originally stood on the site in the early 1900’s. As well as celebrating the site’s unrivalled heritage, the bar embodies Hard Rock’s musical roots, with an abstract installation designed to reflect a master disc and record player. Memorabilia, in true Hard Rock fashion, is suspended in the bar from the walls through guitar strings to replicate a ‘larger than life’ fret board.

    ‘It has been a great experience working with two established brands, glh hotels and Hard Rock International,” said Kate Jarrett, Interior Designer at Scott Brownrigg who was also credited as a Hotel Designs 30 Under 30 earlier this year. “We have enjoyed collaborating with them to create a unique and sophisticated offer for the London market. Combining the history of the central London location with the iconic musical heritage of the Hard Rock brand.”

    With venues in 73 countries including 184 cafes, 237 Rock Shops, 28 hotels and 11 casinos, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one of the most globally recognised companies – and the hotel brand’s most recent opening fittingly returns to where it all began.

    Main image credit: Roberto Lara Photography

    Hotel Designs becomes media partner for Outstanding Property Award London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn

    [vc_row padding_top="35"][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_column_text el_class="newposttitle"][page_title][/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Hotel Designs become an official media partner for the Outstanding Property Award London as editor Hamish Kilburn is confirmed on the jury... The Outstanding Property Award London (OPAL), which honours innovation and talent in the most exceptional projects globally within property development, interior design and architecture, has confirmed Hotel Designs as an official media partner.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="2/3" el_class="top-left-border"][vc_column_text][thumbnailnew][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In addition to covering news and features around the awards, Hotel Designs has also put forward its editor, Hamish Kilburn, to be on the jury. "As the leading international hotel design website, Hotel Designs is all about supporting awards, events and concepts that are dedicated to rewarding outstanding individuals and projects worldwide," he said. "There's a lot of synergy between OPAL and Hotel Designs. For starters, both brands aspire to identify and celebrate the leading individuals and firms who are pushing the boundaries of design and architecture. On a personal note, as a member of this year's jury, I am eager to sift through the entries, but what I am most looking forward to is helping to amplify the individual property developers, designers and architects who are internationally shaping the future of our industry."Other jury members of OPAL 2019 include Richmond International's Fiona Thompson, Stylt's Erik Nissen Johansen, Zaha Hadid Architects' Michele Salvi, Beauchamp Estates' Gary Hersham and Yasmine Mahmoudieh among others.  "The awards are now open to outstanding entries from around the world." Described on its website as "not just another award", OPAL creates the opportunity for each participant to gain visibility for their latest innovative projects and allows developers, designers and architects to connect with leading professionals within the industry and beyond.The awards are now open to outstanding entries from around the world. An exclusive event, organised in London, will celebrate the winners. OPAL will reward the world's most outstanding property projects and expose them to the world - and Hotel Designs will now be there alongside the awards with live updates between now and the ceremony.OPAL accepts applications for project submissions from three industry sectors, which are property developers, interior designers and architects.To apply for this year's OPAL, and/or to find out more information about the concept and the jury, please click here. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

    100 Years of Hilton exhibition opens in London

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    100 Years of Hilton exhibition opens in London

    The London Hilton on Park Lane, which was the first Hilton hotel to open in the UK, has opened an exhibition today for guests and visitors alike to explore the brand’s 100-year history…

    100 Years of Hilton exhibition has opened to showcase the iconic history of the the group’s first hotel in the UK, London Hilton Park Lane, since opening in 1963 and explores the history Hilton as a brand and the London Hilton on Park Lane as an institution across the hospitality and London landscape.

    A hotel of many firsts, founder Conrad Hilton himself commissioned what was the biggest post-war hotel build in Europe, standing at a majestic 28 floors. Conrad Hilton was noted upon opening the London Hilton on Park Lane as saying:

    The hotel is known to have had a significant financial impact on the London economy, cited at around £7 million upon opening in 1963 and the hotel is proud to have helped redefine the UK’s event industry; one valued at an estimated £18.1 billion today and recently overtook Marriott International to become as “world’s most valuable” hotel brand.

    “In a city as globally significant and as popular as London,” said Michael Shepherd, the longest serving General Manager of the London Hilton on Park Lane. “Standing out isn’t easy or straightforward; for the Hilton to land here in the 1960’s and immediately set the standard was quite a feat. To still be going strong and remain one of this city’s great hospitality settings is fitting to the work of the hotel staff, and shows that the Hilton brand is still timeless and appealing to guests around the world today.

    “As Hilton turns 100, the celebrations will look at the positive, world-altering impact Hilton continues to have on billions of lives and thousands of communities around the globe, pioneering new travel markets and bringing people and cultures together, while expanding new horizons and opportunities.”

    The exhibition will be displayed in the lobby area, and is open for guests and visitors to enjoy from Tuesday 28th May to Sunday 2nd June.

    Main image credit: Hilton Hotels

    5 examples of art outside the frame at Clerkenwell Design Week

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    5 examples of art outside the frame at Clerkenwell Design Week

    Clerkenwell Design Week once again inspired designers, architects and Londoners alike to celebrate London as a creative design hub. Editor Hamish Kilburn identifies five installations that took art outside the frame…

    In seven exhibitions across London’s much-loved design district, exhibitors at Clerkenwell Design Week displayed the latest products and emerging trends on the market.

    But in between each tented venue, creepy crypt and a deserted nightclub were a number of artists, designers and architects reflecting their creativity on the city’s streets. CDW showcased commissioned site specific installations across Clerkenwell. For CDW’s 10 year anniversary, visitors were asked to expect the most exciting street spectacles yet, and here were just a handful of the main attractions.

    Once Upon A Time

    Main image credit: Sophie Mutevelian/Once Upon a Time

    The installation took inspiration from the rich and sometimes dark historical tales of Clerkenwell. For the initiative, CDW collaborated with Chelsea College of Arts, BA Graphic Design Communication students to create a series of graphic installations inspired by the stories relating to the significant locations. The six winning entries were selected by a judging panel including; Max Fraser, CDW Content Editor; Priya Khanchandani, ICON Editor, and David Barnett, Chelsea College of Art Course Leader, BA Graphic Design Communication. In conjunction with the project, Lansdown’s London hosted a number of historical walking tours during CDW exploring its past as a centre of making, from clock-makers to gin distillers.

    Decade

    Man looking at the installation on the streets of Clerkenwell

    Image credit: Hakwood Adam Dale/Decade

    The piece was a dramatic trail of 10, three metre high candle like beacons designed by pioneers within the creative industry. The installations, symbolic of birthday candles also formed part of CDW’s wayfinding strategy to help guide visitors across the exhibition route. With a nod to the area as London’s creative heart, each installation showcased the designers’ individuality and imagination.

    Reflect Us

    Created by Beau Kerouac in collaboration with ‘The Big Issue’, the installation intended to bridge gaps in society by confronting visitors with 10 door-sized gateways to eyes that are sometimes hard to look into, telling the stories of vendors from our city streets. Using AR technology, Beau Kerouac invited visitors to question how an act of respect; simply making eye contact, can change someone’s day for the better through shared experience.

    Scale Rule

    The large installation, which was displayed at St John’s Gate arch, responded to the theme of history and heritage by proposing a new structure that subtly draws on the historic form whilst bringing in materials and geometries that reference the design culture of Clerkenwell today.

    The concept played with the idea of space and enclosure, by inserting a densely built timber structure within the void of the archway.  This was then carved away to allow a route through and to frame the historic features of the site. The timber frame was filled with moments of colour that intensify towards the top of the arch, drawing visitors’ gaze upwards towards the historic architecture. The colour was created by using recycled materials and fabrics that reference the design identity of the area.

    While on the site, the pavilion highlighted details of the archway and drew parallels to the 10 year anniversary of CDW.  When moved to a new location, the pavilion will take with it the geometry of the archway to act as a casting of the original site.

    Pareidolia

    Man walking past light-like installation

    Image credit: Jestico + Whiles

    For their second CDW collaboration, Jestico + Whiles and Porcelanosa Group teamed up with Studio Fractal and Architainment Lighting to display a new and experimental immersive experience, which was entitled Pareidolia.

    The immersive installation explored concepts of movement, memory and pattern with an impressive large-scale digitally fabricated installation made of Krion, a Porcelanosa product derived from natural minerals.

    Hotel Designs was a proud media partner for Clerkenwell Design Week 2019. To read the editor’s round up of the entire festival, including news of the major product launches during the three-day-show, click here.

    Main image credit: Sophie Mutevelian

    New ‘super boutique hotel’ in London to become leader in sustainability

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    New ‘super boutique hotel’ in London to become leader in sustainability

    Edwardian Hotels London has secured a £175 million Green Loan from HSBC UK that will help make its new ‘super boutique hotel’, The Londoner, one of the most environmentally friendly in the UK, with sustainability at its core…

    Edwardian Hotels London has secured a £175 million Green Loan from HSBC UK to ensure its new super boutique hotel, The Londoner, situated in Leicester Square will be one of the greenest hotels in the UK.

    The deal with HSBC UK breaks new ground in sustainability for the hospitality industry. It is the first Green Loan in the sector that meets the Green Loan Principles, which were set out in March 2018 to encourage and facilitate environmentally-friendly economic activity. The funding will be used to ensure the new hotel doesn’t just meet but exceeds the BREEAM Excellent category in building environmental and sustainable performance.

    Thanks to the Green Loan, The Londoner’s impressive green credentials will range from use of construction materials with a low environmental impact, to new technologies including an innovative liquid film which will reduce evaporation and energy loss from the hotel’s swimming pool.

    The hotel is also aiming to contribute to the sustainability of its neighbours by including a heat network connection. Initially, this will be linked to the Edwardian Hotels London-owned hotel next door to The Londoner, The Radisson Blu Edwardian Hampshire, but could also be extended to the surrounding area in the future. In total, the hotel is set to use 30 per cent less carbon than regulations demand.

     “Since its inception we have always had bold ambitions for The Londoner to write itself into the very fabric of the city, said Jasminder Singh OBE, Chairman and Founder of Edwardian Hotels London. “We have been dedicated to delivering a high-quality, sustainable, integrated hotel and this Green Loan supports that vision. We are delighted that this new property, designed to celebrate the character of the capital, has become the first in the hospitality industry to secure this.”

    Rob King, Head of Sustainable Finance at HSBC UK, said: “HSBC has made a commitment to provide US$100bn of Sustainable Finance by 2025 to help businesses transition to a lower carbon economy. We are very pleased to have supported Edwardian Hotels London with a Green Loan to support the construction of this high profile hotel with very strong sustainability credentials.  Green Loans are an exciting development in Sustainable Finance which will encourage the investment urgently required to meet our carbon emission reduction targets.”

    The Londoner is in a new hotel category of one. Boutique in feel, yet staggering in scale, at 15 storeys, the property will offer a multifaceted experience through its 350 exquisite rooms and suites, signature restaurants and dining offerings and with the bespoke meetings and event spaces infused with London character. It is scheduled to open in Spring 2020.

    Main image credit: Edwardian Hotels

    GROHE’s new partnership brings sustainable design to London’s CDW

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    GROHE’s new partnership brings sustainable design to London’s CDW

    GROHE’s latest collaboration for London’s Clerkenwell Design Week puts emphasis on a sustainable bathroom future… 

    As Clerkenwell Design Week celebrates its 10th year, GROHE and Mosa, contemporary tiles specialist, will reignite their partnership for a second year, coming together in a collaboration that celebrates sustainable design.

    United by their common heritage of sustainable brand values, craftmanship and industry-leading design, GROHE and Mosa will present their inspiring design possibilities for bespoke architecture at Mosa’s St Johns Street showroom, located in the very heart of the design suburb. Offering design-inspired products that are crafted with consideration for the earth’s precious resources, GROHE and Mosa are able to support architects with solutions for green buildings and sustainable architecture projects.

    Not only will the partnership celebrate a strengthened and shared vision for sustainable design but it will also mark the official opening of the renewed Mosa showroom, which will showcase two permanent GROHE displays along with a GROHE Blue Home still and sparkling water in the kitchen. Visitors to the showroom will be able to seek design inspiration from the beautifully curated product displays and take valuable advice and insight from product experts. With a colourful display of GROHE’s Allure Brilliant and Essence lines against the striking backdrop of Mosa tiles, to the intuitive SmartControl shower system and the latest collections from Mosa, this is a design haven not to be missed.

    Visit the Mosa showroom at 56-60 St John St, London from 9am to 3pm on May 21 – 23.

    GROHE 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.

    SPOTLIGHT ON: 10 inspirational hotel bars and restaurants

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    SPOTLIGHT ON: 10 inspirational hotel bars and restaurants

    To kickstart our Spotlight On topic of Bars & Restaurants, Hotel Designs has scoured the globe to highlight hotel F&B gems that deserve to be recognised. Editor Hamish Kilburn edits…

    In 2018, according to Technomic, overall consumer spending for hotel food and beverage showed a solid 5.5 percent annual growth since 2011. In design, architecture and in service, there is a clear move to produce instagrammable F&B areas.

    While the overall dining and drinking experience is becoming somewhat of a theatrical performance, we have identified 10 hotels going above and beyond – in both design and service – to ensure that they are entertaining their customers’ ever-evolving demands.

    Joali – Mura Bar (Maldives)

    Beach blue wallcovering with wooden roof

    Image credit: Joali – Mura Bar

    Overlooking a pearly beach and pool that meets the sea, The Mura Bar is designed to encourage guests to naturally relax and unwind. The hotel’s entire construction was designed to build around its natural landscape. As a result, 1,000 trees were preserved in the process, creating luscious green scenes in a natural paradise.

    Gleneagles – The American Bar (Scotland)

    close up of plush light blue seating

    Image credit: Gleneagles

    With the aim to bring back the glamour and decadence of fine dining experiences of the 1920s and ’30s and redesign a legend, Gleneagles will in May 2019 unveil the relaunch of its famous restaurant, The Strathearn following a design transformation by Ennismore Design Studio.

    Conrad Malives Ranhgali Island – Ithaa Undersea Restaurant (The Maldives)

    The awarding winning underwater Ithaa sits five metres below the surface, offering 180-degree panoramic views of the vibrant coral gardens surrounding it. Ithaa (meaning ‘mother of pearl’ in the Maldivian language of Dhivehi) serves contemporary European cuisine in a six-course set dinner menu.

    Since its opening in 2015, the restaurant has become an Instagram sensation and its popularity led to the concept of opening the world’s first underwater hotel suite.

    Hotel Gotham, Manchester – Club Brass (United Kingdom)

    Image credit: Hotel Gotham

    Poised to become the backdrop of Hotel Designs’ Meet Up North, Manchester’s Hotel Gotham, which opened in 2015 – read full review here, has been a major catalyst that has crowned the northern metropolis a major hot spot for hotel design and development. The jewel within the crown is located on the rooftop, at Club Brass.

    Leading designers, architects, hoteliers and key-industry suppliers are expected to gather at the hotel’s exclusive members-only rooftop bar, Club Brass, for drinks and canapés above the city on July 1 for Meet Up North. Click here to purchase your exclusive ticket

    Peninsula Paris – The Rooftop Bar (France)

    Paris rooftop bar with curved windows overlooking a model plane

    Image credit: Peninsula Hotels

    Located on the sixth floor of The Peninsula Paris – and offering unparalleled views over the city – sits L’Oiseau Blanc, one of the most elegant and singular restaurants in Paris. The aviation-themed interior celebrates flying aces Charles Nungesser and François Coli who attempted to cross the Atlantic in 1927 from Le Bourget.

    The Moxy, Chelsea (USA)

    Dark-lit, open-planned room with lavish bar

    Image caption/credit: The Fleur Room | Moxy Hotels/ Marriott International

    Located on the 35th floor, the intimate rooftop bar, The Fleur Room, is open to hotel guests and locals alike. The alluring glow of light and color birth a heightened space of intimacy and mystery. The sofa material is embedded with a floral design and the bronzed furniture surfaces are smooth and polished. “Sink back into the comfortable couches and let your eyes settle on an incredible view of one of New York’s most recognizable charms – the Empire State building,” suggests journalist Hannah Kaplan who checked in to review the the kid on the block for Hotel Designs last week. Read the full review of the hotel here.

    Soho House Istanbul – Club Bar (Turkey)

    Refined interiors in a modern bar that is sheltered in a heritage building with bold lighting

    Image credit: Soho House Istanbul, Club Bar

    Sheltered within a striking 19th century mansion, which was originally designed for a Genoese merchant before becoming the US embassy for most of the 20th century. The Club Bar  is an oasis of calm, featuring decadent wallcoverings that are balanced with plush bar seating and thoughfully designed break-out areas.

    Zuri Zanzibar – The Upendo Restaurant (Tanzania)

    Sustainable materials - including furniture and lighting - make up the raw and rustic restaurant

    Image credit: Zuri Zanzibar

    Designed by Jestico + Whiles, the eco hotel’s Upendo Restaurant overlooks the entire resort. The restaurant’s laid-back Zanzibari style and live cooking shows make it the ideal place for breakfast and dinner, whilst its separate deck is ideal for private events or larger dinner groups. Peponi bar in the Zuri Zanzibar offers comfortable benches and sofas for a peaceful and relaxing ambiance.

    Raffles – The Long Bar (Singapore)

    Exterior of the hotel

    Image credit: Raffles

    Redesigned by Alexandra Champalimaud, the earthy decor of the two-storey Long Bar which will reopen this summer is inspired by Malayan life in the 1920s. The deep, rich colours and lush greenery transport patrons to the edge of a tropical plantation. In keeping with the relaxed atmosphere, guests are invited to brush peanut shells off the table and bar counter to the floor. In addition, and arguably thus making the hotel one of the early innovators for encouraging bar theatre, The Long Bar is quite possibly the only place in Singapore where littering is encouraged.

    The Morpheus (China)

    The sky bar, with sophisticated gold barriers between tables

    Image credit: Melco Resorts & Entertainment

    Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, Yí on the 21st-floor Sky Bridge at The Morpheus takes fine dining to new heights with a unique blend of regional Chinese cuisine served in tasting menu format. Yí is the first Chinese restaurant in Macau offering daily multi-course tasting menus.

    Main image credit: Moxy Chelsea, New York

    CDW PREVIEW: Zaha Hadid Gallery to unveil exhibition with Fritz Hansen

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    CDW PREVIEW: Zaha Hadid Gallery to unveil exhibition with Fritz Hansen

    For Clerkenwell Design Week 2019, Fritz Hansen partners with Zaha Hadid Design to present ‘Shaping Reality Through Time’, an exploration of Fritz Hansen’s design evolution…

    To celebrate a decade of Clerkenwell Design Week, design studio Zaha Hadid Gallery has partnered with Fitz Hansen to exhibit ‘Shaping Reality Through Time’, which will be held at the Zaha Hadid Gallery, 101 Goswell Road, London between May 21 – June 13.

    On Tuesday May 21, to celebrate the opening of the exhibition, a talk will take place between Fritz Hansen head of design, Christian Andresen and Zaha Hadid Architects head of interiors, Kar-Hwa Ho.

    The story of Fritz Hansen’s design evolution can best be told through the series of chairs produced since the cabinet maker Fritz Hansen obtained a trade license in 1872, before beginning his own furniture production company.

    ‘Shaping Reality Through Time’ will offer a rare glimpse at aspects of the Heritage Exhibition, brought to the UK for the first time from Alleroed, Copenhagen – home to the original factory plant and current Head Office.

    This London exhibition will include anniversary pieces, early examples of the signature laminated technology still in use today, original prototypes and limited editions, alongside newer pieces launched at this year’s Milan Design Week.

    Hansen has worked with Zaha Hadid Design to co-curate and edit the exhibition with a specific focus on chairs carrying a shared aesthetic and design DNA, typified by sculptural form and organic lines.

    ‘Shaping Reality Through Time’ will also see pieces revealed in the UK for the first time, following their launch at Milan’s Salone del Mobile, April 2019 including ‘Plenum’, Fritz Hansen’s 2018 first dedicated contract furniture piece. Arne Jacobsen’s ‘Little Giraffe’ was first produced in 2019 but created 60 years ago for the S.A.S Royal Hotel, Copenhagen; A new piece by Jaime Hayon will also mark ten years of Hayon’s ongoing collaboration with the brand and heritage pieces will include the limited edition PKO – Fritz Hansen’s first collaboration with Poul Kjaerholm as well as Henning Larsen’s ‘Kar’.

    Much of Hansen’s furniture begins life as an imaginative sketch before being transformed into functioning reality through impeccable craftsmanship, precise technology and excellence of materials. Pieces such as the original Swan, Drop, Egg – as well as Nendo’s more recent N01 and Hayon’s earlier Ro – perfectly illustrate the continued evolution of sculptural and at times almost flamboyant expression. The exhibition will be further bought to life with original sketches and drawings as part of an illustrative timeline supporting the historical journey.

    Hotel Designs are proud media partners for this year’s highly anticipated Clerkenwell Design Week

    Main image credit: Zaha Hadid Gallery/Fritz Hansen

    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

    Managing Director of The Lanesborough confirmed as speaker for Hotel Summit

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Managing Director of The Lanesborough confirmed as speaker for Hotel Summit

    Managing Director of The Lanesborough, Marco Novello, has confirmed that he will speak at Hotel Summit, which takes place at Heythrop Park, Oxfordshire, on July 8 – 9… 

    One year on from succeeding Geoffrey Gelardi as the managing director of The Lanesborough, Marco Novello has confirmed that he will be a speaker at Hotel Summit, which takes place at Heythrop Park, Oxfordshire on July 8 – 9.

    Novello, who was a finalist at The Brit List 2018, will address the audience at The Summit with a 15 minute presentation on himself and where he is at one year into his role. He will then join editor Hamish Kilburn on stage for a live Q&A, which will focus the conversation on Marco’s plans for the future, how trends dictate what a hotel should offer and the importance of wellness – even in the centre of London where space is limited. The pair will also discuss how The Lanesborough blends technology into its interiors, the importance of a strong relationship between hotelier and interior designer and the challenges that come with being one of London’s most prestigious hotels.

    Kilburn, who reviewed the hotel when it first reopened in 2015, said: “We have never had a speakership programme like it for Hotel Summit, and it is such an honour to announce that Marco will join us at this year’s event in its new home at Heythrop Park. Marco is a one-of-the-kind managing directors who, with his incredible team, manages to keep one of London’s most prestigious hotels current and relevant to the luxury market by effortlessly and sensitively reacting to key travel and luxury trends. Marco’s modern vision was exactly what The Lanesborough needed when he was appointed last year, and I look forward to discussing his and the hotel’s journey ahead.”

    How to register 

    If you are a supplier to the hospitality industry looking to meet top hotel professionals, contact Jennie Lane at j.lane@forumevents.co.uk– or click here to book your place.

    If you are a hotelier and would like to attend the Summit, please contact Liam Cloona on l.cloona@forumevents.co.uk – or click here to book your place.

    In Conversation With: Harry Allnatt, Richmond International

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    In Conversation With: Harry Allnatt, Richmond International

    Following Hotel Designs’ public unveiling of its 30 Under 30 at Meet Up London, editor Hamish Kilburn catches up with one of the winners, Harry Allnatt from Richmond International, to discuss challenges and opportunities that come with being a young rising star of the industry…

    Among Hotel Designs’ celebrated 30 Under 30s, which were spectacularly unveiled at Meet Up London, is Harry Allnatt (29).

    A unique and talented young creative whose ability is most certainly not defined by his date of birth, Allnatt is a senior designer at Richmond International. Having been at the firm for eight years, he is now a vital team member who has worked on some of the company’s most important hotel and hospitality projects in recent years, including Four Seasons Hvar, Langham Boston, The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas, P&O Britannia and many others.

    The foundations of Allnatt’s career started following an early admiration of design. He attended Nottingham Trent University to study furniture design having been inspired by the ethos of the likes of Jasper Morrison. “My goal at the time was more to be an architect and, in my head, furniture design was like mini architecture.” he says. “As part of the course, in 2009, I was encouraged to partake in a placement year. Before I knew it, I was working for an architectural practice in Milan that specialised in hospitality and high-end design.” It was at this point in his career when Allnatt’s curiosity took over. “Why stop there, I thought. I started to think about more than the pieces I was creating, to the room and space around the furniture,” he explained. “Milan certainly enriched my interest in furniture design, but the placement year also exposed me to so many new projects, which led me into the path of interior design.”

    As a result of his studies and the valuable experience he gained in the design incubator of Milan, Allnatt started to acquire a unique set of skills as a creative designer in order go beyond  decoration. “It’s actually really helped me to add value to projects, especially when required to design certain looks,” he said. “It also allows me to design interiors and furniture that is not just aesthetically pleasing, but that also meets operational standards – standing the the test of time and enabling staff to maintain excellent service.” An exceptional example of this is The Sterling Suite in The Langham London, which is frequently praised for its effortless functionality and timeless feel. Allnatt admitted to working on almost all of the six-bedroom suite’s casegoods and laughs: “I don’t think I could do that one again.”

    The plush Sterling Suite at Langham London

    Image caption: The Sterling Suite, Langham London

    Approaching every project around peoples’ movements and behaviors, Allnatt’s ethos is a tight fit for Richmond International, which is known for being a company that designs awe-inspiring hotels that are also practical spaces. “I’m inspired by stripping things back to discover what is necessary,” he says. “To me, that’s what makes a beautiful project – and it’s this approach that is now very relevant in interior design. If a space is designed to be used well, then it will enrich the overall experience of the people using it.” Allnatt’s explanation gives credence to the obvious shift in how modern design is perceived by those checking in; the knowledgeable and more aware consumer.

    Unchartered waters ahead

    With its prestigious reputation on the international hotel design stage, Richmond International was asked to repackage its luxury hotel visions onto the high seas. With the aim to modernise all spaces, the team, led by Director Terry McGillicuddy, were asked by P&O Cruises to redesign two new ships, Britannia and Iona. “Britannia was by far the most challenging project, purely because of the amount I had to learn and work out on the job,” explains Harry. “I learnt quickly about the regulations from Terry, P&Os incredible technical team and the shipyard. However, going from designing for land to designing for sea was a challenge, but I am so proud that we were one of the first hotel designers to really tackle a project of that magnitude at sea.”

    Simple, minimalist cabin on board P&O Britannia

    Image credit: P&O Britannia

    Following the success of both vessels, Allnatt, the retentive designer, is now a senior designer working on the firm’s next marine project, to create the interiors of a new luxury cruise liner of which the details are yet to be unveiled. “It really is like designing a city on the sea,” Allnatt laughs. “The beauty of it [designing cruise ships] is that we get to create so many different spaces – from the casinos to the theatres, cabins to bars.”

    The challenges for young designers

    Being young in an industry full of legends can be daunting, to say the least, which adds to weight on the shoulders of having to prove oneself as an individual. The somewhat right-of-passage feeling of unease and overwhelming responsibility that comes to us all in the start of our journey, was for Allnatt the time to stand out. “The industry is saturated with great designers, and the landscape is so subjective,” he explains. “Creating an identity and establishing yourself, inside and outside the company I believe is one of the major challenges that young designers have to face in our industry.”

    QUICK-FIRE ROUND

    Hamish Kilburn: What’s your favourite colour?
    Harry Allnatt: Blue, I love grey and all the different shades.

    HK: What’s been your favourite year so far?
    HA: 2018 was the year that shaped me the most. It’s been lovely having a local project in London and seeing it through from concept to site completion. Seeing something take shape on a daily basis has been very rewarding, but not without it’s problems.

    HK: What is your favourite hotel?
    HA: Rosewood London because it all ties together. The rose-bronze gallery from the courtyard entrance, the staff uniform… even the guest signage, which is an open book sitting on a plinth. There is an unmatched sense of discovery in this hotel. Details you notice makes the space more than just a good-looking luxury hotel.

    HK: Are there any shortcuts or secrets for getting ahead?
    HA: I wish I knew them. It’s as simple as working hard and soaking up information as a sponge. Being a designer is a lifestyle.

    HK: Where’s next on your travel bucket list?
    HA: I would love to go to the Amalfi Coast.

    HK: Who is your current design icon?
    HA: Tony Chi and Yabu Pushelberg. They both fool you into thinking a detail is simple, but the process of making something look simple is complicated. 

    Having worked on a variety projects, Allnatt is grateful to the company that supports him in becoming a rising star. “Without Richmond International I would not have been given these incredible opportunities to work on so many amazing projects,” he says while reflecting. “Working in collaboration with Vivienne Westwood’s team, for example, on the London West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, was an incredible experience. The aim was to merge fashion and design together, and during this project we created a feature console inspired by their prints and graphics – it was great!”

    Large and spacious public area of plush suite

    Image Caption: Penthouse of London West Hollywood

    The sensitive designer who sits before me is a knowledgeable leader who makes the most of the opportunities that present themselves – and is, as such, a worthy name alongside 29 others who deserves to be included in Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30.

    Regal London secures planning permission for aparthotel in Whitechapel

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Regal London secures planning permission for aparthotel in Whitechapel

    Regal London has secured planning permission in Whitechapel for a 68,795 sq ft, 14-storey aparthotel…

    Developer Regal London has been granted planning permission for an aparthotel at 73-77 Commercial Road, Whitechapel. Operated by Dublin-based Staycity, through its ‘Wilde’ brand, the project is being developed by Regal London and designed by Dexter Moren Associates.

    The planning approval comes while demand for luxury hotels in the Whitechapel area rises as a result of the new transport line, The Elizabeth Line, slated to open in Autumn 2019. A long-term lease of the property has been agreed between Regal London and Staycity. Iceni Projects provided the planning consultancy to Regal London and Staycity.

    The property will be the second ‘Wilde Aparthotel by Staycity’ in London, following the opening of the first on The Strand in March 2018.

    When complete, the Wilde Aparthotel will occupy 68,795 sq ft over 14-storeys and offer 156-bed accommodation, with each studio or one-bed apartment having its own kitchen facilities, as well as in-room technology including a 43” flat screen smart TV and touch control panels for lighting and air conditioning.

    Onsite facilities will include a 24-hour reception, guest lounge, fitness room, weekly housekeeping, laundry room, and a café open to both guests and the general public, providing active frontage onto Commercial Road. There will be a chamfered corner at the junction of Greenfield Road and Commercial Road to maximise footfall and provide an engaging public realm directly outside the site.

    “Staycity’s second Wilde offering is set to become a valuable asset for local professionals, the residents of East London and guests alike, said Simon De Friend, Joint CEO, Regal London. “Tower Hamlets’ vision for Whitechapel, alongside the pending arrival of Crossrail, has spurred regeneration along Commercial Road. New residential and commercial offerings are continuing to emerge, attracted by the proximity to the City and Old Street as well as the thriving arts and culture scene.

    “Wilde is the latest chapter in Whitechapel’s transformation and as Regal London’s first purely leisure project, it signals a milestone in the company’s strategy to pursue more hotel-led developments in the capital.”

    Neil Short, Staycity Development Director, London said: “This letting demonstrates that Staycity is an increasingly viable alternative to office and residential uses in central London. Commercial Road is a great fit for our Wilde brand with its close proximity to the City as well as hipster East End haunts, making it ideally placed for both business and leisure customers. Well served by rail and tube services guests will also benefit from the new Elizabeth Line opening in nearby Whitechapel station in 2019.”

    The project is due to break ground in summer 2019 and the hotel is expected to be complete by 2021.

    Why UK hotel investment is booming

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Why UK hotel investment is booming

    Real estate professionals from Fieldfisher believe that the low sterling exchange rate is why UK hotels have becoming more affordable, while Colliers  International UK identify mass investment in tier-two cities…

    Despite the political landscape of the UK hanging in the balance at the moment, hotel development experts and real estate professionals have identified that UK hotel investment is booming, with a major focus on tier two cities.

    European law firm Fieldfisher, which represents hotel developers such as Dominvs Group, Easy Hotel, Millennium & Copthorne Hotels, Morgans Hotels and Searni Hotels as well as their investors has identified some of the reasons why UK hotel investment is performing particularly strongly at the moment.

    The low exchange rate, the genuine shortage of stock in real estate investment sector and the rise in budget brands are among the main factors identified by the firm and real estate experts Fieldfisher.

    Paul Houston, a real estate partner and head of the hotels and leisure practice at Fieldfisher, has produced announced a comment on why UK hotel investments in particular are performing so strongly at the moment – although we are also seeing very strong growth in Spanish hotels as well – which is partly to do with innovation in the sector and offering new kinds of services tailored to the needs of business travellers and guests on tight budgets.

    In a statement, Houston said: “The hotels and leisure sector is very buoyant at the moment.

    “The low sterling exchange rate has made UK hotels that much more affordable – both for tourists to stay in and for international investors to build – and because hotels are prime real estate, they are good investments for people who want long-term capital growth.

    “The genuine shortage of stock in the real estate investment sector has led institutions to look at alternative asset classes and hotels have been one of the main beneficiaries. Where funds would have traditionally invested in office, retail, logistics or industrial assets – they will now look at hotels.

    “Hotels are also fighting back against the big accommodation sharing sites with more budget brands. They are re-engineering the hotel offering with more basic, more affordable accommodation which often provides a better, more consistent product than alternative short-term rentals  – which is important for business travellers. And there is a lot of business travel happening right now.

    “The acquisition of a hotel may be a pure property transaction, but quite often hotels sit within a corporate wrapper, meaning the transaction involves the full gamut of property, finance, franchising, employment, tax and corporate legal matters – which is good news for advisers to this sector.”

    The comment from the law firm follows another report that was published this from Colliers International UK Hotels Market Index highlighted that Edinburgh remains the number-one location for hotel investment.

    Marc Finney, head of hotels and resorts consulting at Colliers International, stated: “The UK hotel market adds about 10,000 new rooms each year and this has increased in pace recently, with almost 18,000 new rooms expected to open in 2019. This leaves hotels as a rare bright spot in a property market that is facing challenges in other sectors.”

    The top 10 UK spots for hotel investment and development are as follows:

    1 Edinburgh
    2 Belfast
    3 Liverpool
    4 Chester
    5 Bath
    6 London
    7 Glasgow
    8 Brighton
    9 Cambridge
    10 Leeds

    To have your say on this topic, please tweet us at @HotelDesigns.

    Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30: Winners announced

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30: Winners announced

    Hotel Designs’ unveiled the winners of its 30 Under 30 initiative at Meet Up London on March 28, 2019…

    40 shortlisted 30 Under 30 finalists were among the more than 200 interior designers, architects, hoteliers and key-industry suppliers who gathered at Minotti London on March 28 for Meet Up London. The event, which was Hotel Designs’ first networking event of the year, witnessed the unveiling of Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30.

    Speaking at the event, editor Hamish Kilburn said: “I have to say, as a young design editor, I support this initiative with every fibre in my body. Throughout this whole process I have been so impressed to see such interesting in-house schemes in leading design and architecture firms in order to give credit to the rising stars of our industry. But I have been as impressed with individuals going it alone and really proving themselves to be creative geniuses.”

    Below are the final winners who have been listed in alphabetical order.

    Adam Crabtree
    Studio: Chelsom Lighting

    Role: Technical Engineer

    Adam Crabtree works closely with the sales and projects team to develop solutions for all bespoke lighting enquiries. As a fundamental part of the Technical team Adam is involved in development of the project all the way from design concept stage to final product installation.

    Projects:

    • Mandarin Oriental, Hyde Park, London
    • Tottenham Hotspur Football Club
    • The Peninsula Hotel, London
    • Le Meridien, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA
    • Great Scotland Yard
    • One Aldwych
    • Plan B
    • Puro Lodz
    • Six Senses, New York

    Ali Bacon
    Studio: The Gettys Group

    Role: Senior Project Designer

    Ali Bacon is a dynamic and talented designer who creates thoughtful, memorable places for The Gettys Group’s diverse hospitality clients. She brings more than a decade of experience designing for commercial clients, and her wide-ranging expertise in hospitality, retail, and multi-family residential applications can be found in projects throughout the country and beyond.

    Projects:

    • The Blackstone, Autograph Collection, Chicago, IL
    • Hotel LeVeque, Autograph Collection, Columbus, OH
    • White House Napa Valley Inn, Napa Valley, CA
    • Hilton Portland Downtown, Portland, OR
    • Claridge House, Chicago, IL
    • World of Wine, Porto, Portugal
    • Hyatt Centric City Center, Sacramento, CA
    • Sheraton Ft. Worth, TX

    Anya Gordon Clark
    Dexter Moren Associates
    Role: Interior Designer

    The most important feature of Anya Gordon Clark’s personality as an interior designer is her desire to create non-banal spaces with a strong mark of her personality along with unstoppable wish to learn new and improve her existing skillset.

    Projects:

    • Avon Gorge Hotel
    • Vintry & Mercier hotel

    Catherine van der Heide
    Studio: HASSELL
    Role: Interior Designer

    Catherine van der Heide puts a key focus on a project’s complexity to extract a meaningful and bespoke narrative. As an interior designer at HASSELL, Heide has collaborated on a diverse range of projects throughout the UK, South East Asia and Australia.

    Charlotte Roe
    Studio: WISH London
    Role: Interior architect

    Since joining WISH London last year, Charlotte Roe has become an invaluable team member who has contributed to the successful design of a variety of projects. Working primarily in the hospitality and commercial sectors, Roe has immersed herself in all aspects of interior design from concept to completion.

    Charlotte’s passion for current trends and fine detail has shown through in a recently completed high end commercial project based in Windmill Street, Fitzrovia.

    Projects:

    • The Nadler Hotel, Covent Garden

    Daniela Anedda
    Studio: M Studio London
    Role: Interior Designer

    Daniela Anedda gained a Bachelor degree in Architecture at the University of Cagliari, Italy, and then moved to London in 2016 to study Interior Design at KLC School of Design. During her course, she had the opportunity to work for the Lelievre showroom where she could deepen her knowledge about fabrics and schemes and have a first glance of the interior design world. With M Studio London she now works on high-end residential and commercial projects, following all stages of the design process.

    Projects:

    • InterContinental, Porto

    David Jelensky
    Studio: M Studio London

    Role: Interior Designer

    David Jelensky moved to the UK in 2011 to enrich his abilities at University Campus Suffolk, studying Interior Architecture & Design. As an innovative designer, passionate about architecture and design, he is characterised by precision and exquisite attention to detail creating elegant technological designs representing purity, sophisticated use of materials, environmental responsibility. This has been captured through his successful design projects as he was rewarded by first class in Bachelor of Arts, Interior Architecture and Design. His skills has been enriched in London and Dubai working on high-end residential and hospitality projects.

    Projects:

    • InterContinental, Porto

    Gina Langridge
    Studio: WATG
    Role: Designer

    Gina Langridge is an ambitious and passionate designer who utilises design as a tool to create exciting human experiences. She strives to design spaces that harmonise within the landscape setting, delivering the best possible design solution for both client and guest.

    Langridge has experience working on a wide range of projects throughout the UK, Europe, Australasia, and the Middle East. She has a solid grounding in the design of tourism and hospitality facilities, and her involvement in hugely successful renovation projects has strengthened her construction experience.

    WATG has a robust internal leadership programme, providing a voice and a platform for our young designers to flourish. As one of WATG’s brightest rising stars, Langridge has been selected to take part in the 2019 programme for her excellent communication skills, strong self-awareness and a passion for excellent design.

    Langridge is a leader of tomorrow and has been successful in exceeding expectations at every turn.

    “Gina is a talented and astute landscape architect. She has been involved in the design and delivery of some of our most memorable recent work, including refurbishments, which are extremely difficult to deliver,” said John Goldwyn, Vice President, Director of Planning & Landscape, WATG. “Gina demonstrates the perfect blend of skill in client focus and attention-to-detail that hospitality projects require.”

    Gioia Corrada
    Studio: M Studio London
    Role: Interior Designer

    Gioia Corrada gained her degree in Interior Design at IED in Milan and then a Master’s degree at Polytechnic of Milan. By the end of her studies, she had learnt how to manage projects, be a team player and to work to high standards with attention to detail. Gioia went on to work for a Design and Architecture studio in Milan which gave her the chance to work on a project for the Salone del Mobile in 2014. After moving to London, she joined M Studio in March 2018 to pursue a career in the world of Interior Design and get a first-hand insight into the world of high-end luxury design.

    Harry Allnatt
    Studio: Richmond International
    Role: Interior Designer

    Harry Allnatt, a product and furniture design graduate, joined Richmond in 2011 following a placement year in Milan as part of his degree, which resulted in steering his career direction towards interiors in the hotels and hospitality sector.

    With a strong eye for detail, Harry enjoys challenging the norm to achieve sophisticated design solutions on many complex projects.

    Allnatt has consistently shown creativity, responsibility and an unwavering level of commitment which has resulted in our recognition of his skills, rapidly progressing him to the position of Senior Designer.

    Projects:

    • Langham Boston
    • Cosmopolitan Las Vegas
    • P&O Britannia
    • Four Seasons Hvar

    Jen Lees
    Studio: HBA London
    Role: Interior Designer

    Jen Lees found her passion for interiors whilst successfully completing her BA (Hons) in Printed Textiles and Surface Pattern Design degree from Leeds Arts University. Throughout her studying, Jen created a number of her own personal collections, aimed at the interior design sector, gaining a wide understanding of the importance of innovation and originality within design.

    After exhibiting her degree show at New Designers 2016, she began her internship placement year at HBA London, working on a variety of global luxury projects. Now a Designer, with a strong focus on FF&E specifications, she applies her eye to detail and knowledge in material culture to create dynamic and fresh aesthetics to suit every client’s vision, whilst still pushing the boundaries of design to form a unique space.

    Projects:

    • Amadria Park Capital Zagreb, Croatia
    • InterContinental Munich

    Jodie Hatton
    Studio: Brintons
    Role: Designer

    Jodie Hatton was one of the designers at Brintons behind the award-winning collaboration with design studio Timorous Beasties. Unlike most other carpet manufacturers, Brintons designs and develops all of its own looms and supplies carpet to both commercial and residential markets globally.

    Projects:

    • Kimpton Fitzroy London
    • Holland Casino, Rotterdam
    • D&D London

    Jordyn Dickson
    Studio: The Gettys Group
    Role: Designer

    Designer Jordyn Dickson is a native of Chicago’s north suburbs. She draws interior design inspiration from trends in the world of fashion, and — as a talented musician herself — she spends most of the day plugged into artists like Kurt Vile to fuel her creativity.

    Dickson holds a degree from the CIDA-accredited design program at Indiana University.

    Projects:

    • Hampton Inn Public Area Prototype Refresh,
    • Hilton Worldwide
    • Hampton Inn Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
    • Holiday Inn Orlando – Disney Springs, FL
    • TownePlace Suites Colorado (5 locations)
    • Residence Inn Deerfield, IL
    • Fairfield Inn San Diego, CA

    Josh Piddock
    Studio: Project Orange
    Role: Architect

    Josh Piddock completed his RIBA Part 2 at Sheffield School of Architecture in 2015 and joined Project Orange later that summer having travelled India in between. He completed his Part 3 at the University of Bath and fully qualified as a RIBA chartered Architect in 2017.

    Piddock is currently working on an exciting custom build project in Norfolk, amongst other early stage projects in the office, whilst outside office life most of Josh’s time is taken up in the renovation of his flat in Hackney and in entering architectural competitions with his self-confessed wacky ideas.

    Projects:

    • My Fortune Guntur, India
    • The Park Hotel Bangalore
    • NHOW London
    • Room 2, Southampton.

    Kate Jarrett
    Studio: Scott Brownrigg
    Role: Interior Designer

    Kate Jarrett is a creative young designer who thrives in all elements of the design process, from initial concept to project management and site installation. Having joined Scott Brownrigg in 2016, she has excelled in winning the respect of every client she works with. Jarrett has worked closely with glh Hotels and Hard Rock in delivering the public areas for the exciting new hotel located in London’s Marble Arch. She has also been intrinsic in creating a fun, young and Instagram-able hot spot and destination 10th floor bar on the edge of Leicester Square. A key strength is Jarrett’s all-round ability to communicate extremely well with clients, design team, consultants and contractors, with an end goal to produce an exceptional and innovative final product.

    Projects:

    • GLH Hotels
    • Hard Rock Hotel London

    Kayleigh Jones
    Studio: Brintons
    Role: Designer

    Kayleigh Jones joined Brintons in 2016 as the result of a close working relationship between the carpet manufacturer and Birmingham City University’s (BCU) School of Fashion and Textiles. Impressed by the originality and inspiring nature of her material concepts, the Brintons panel had no hesitation in awarding the prize to  Jones, a graduate of BA (Hons) Textile Design (Constructed Textiles), for her project ‘Puff, powder, Gloss – cosmetictactility’ which was influenced by the seductive materiality of cosmetics. Following this, Brintons decided to offer the young designer the opportunity of joining their busy design department.

    Lauren McEwen
    Studio: Goddard Littlefair
    Role: FF&E Designer

    Lauren McEwen began her career with a five-year stretch at David Collins Studio, establishing herself as an FF&E specialist, with standout schemes for luxury hospitality projects including the Delaire Graff Estate in South Africa and the award-winning Gleneagles Hotel. McEwen was also involved in the design of the public spaces at the prestigious Ritz-Carlton Residences, housed within Ole Scheeren’s Maha Nakhon tower in Bangkok, Thailand, one of the most architecturally significant developments in the region. The project won several major awards including the ‘Best Luxury Condo Development’ at the Thailand Property Awards.

    McEwen joined Goddard Littlefair in 2018, which has also challenged her ability to design within budget, another constraint the studio believes makes designers become more creative.

    A committed advocate of craft, McEwen regularly keeps up to date with the latest techniques, visiting workshops and factories to reinforce her understanding of how things are made.

    Projects:

    • Delaire Graff Estate
    • Ritz-Carlton Residences, Bangkok
    • Gleneageles, Scotland
    • Hilton Vienna
    • Grosvenor Hotel, London

    Lisa Liu
    Studio: WATG
    Role: Architect

    Lisa Liu is a RIBA and ARB qualified architect, with a Master’s degree from London’s distinguished Bartlett School of Architecture. Born in China, raised in New Zealand and now living in the UK, Liu has a diverse understanding of culture and locale, which is showcased throughout her work.

    Having worked on a variety of land-uses; mainly hospitality, residential, and commercial projects; throughout Europe, Asia, North Africa, and the Middle East, she’s contextual within her design process, bringing the local surroundings into the heart of the project. Lisa has been involved in the design and delivery of some of our most memorable recent work.

    “Lisa is a very talented architect, with great design skills. She has designed some of our most outstanding hospitality projects, and has a great sensibility for context and local culture” Nic Jacobs, Vice President, WATG.

    Her advanced technological skills have allowed her to become a leader in emerging digital programmes at WATG. She has been a trailblazer in the use of the innovative software, particularly Grasshopper, and is able to use these tools, alongside her impeccable design skills to create a fantastic project.

    Liu is a natural leader and an incredible asset to WATG and the architectural profession. We look forward to watching this talented individual grow and flourish.

    Mahesh Parekh
    Studio: ARA Design
    Role: Junior Designer

    Mahesh Parekh’s culturally rich background and his travels back home in India have placed him in a strong position for a colourful career in design.

    Working his way up the ladder from an intern at ARA Design to now being a junior designer, Mahesh has grown into a confident young creative member of the team who has proven his skills in a number of projects, one of which is Isrotel Hotels.

    Marion Pierru
    Studio: Wilson Associates
    Role: Junior Designer

    Marion Pierru is a Junior Designer at the Wilson Associates’ Paris office, leveraging nearly five years of professional experience in the architecture and design industry.

    Prior to joining the Wilson Associates team, Pierru was with George Wong Design, where she worked with clients such as Hyatt’s Hotel Louvre in Paris. Having won the opportunity to be on the design team through a student design competition, the Hotel Louvre project sparked Marion’s passion for the hospitality industry and became the catalyst for the career that has followed in the years since. Marion has also worked on projects such as the renovation of Un Hotel Trait D’Union and Baton Rouge Pigalle in Paris.

    At Wilson Associates, Pierru assists in all phases of a project’s design. With the approval of the project manager and design director, she prepares a preliminary budget and purchase estimate, secures product samples, and creates specification books and presentation boards. As a primary contact with the purchasing agent, Marion prepares FF&E specifications to adhere to the client’s budget and the overall design direction for the project. At Wilson Associates, Marion works with the design team in Paris on projects across the globe and locally, including the Hotel Scribe in Paris and a range of properties for luxury brands such as Park Hyatt, Carlton and Jumeirah.

    Nicola Brook
    Studio: Nicola Brook Design
    Role: Director

    With more than eight years’ experience in the superyacht interior design sector, Nicola Brook recently set up her own firm, a human-centred interior design and creative consultancy studio based in London. Nicola is looking to broaden the studio’s portfolio into hotel design, believing that this fast-paced sector has many close links to the superyacht market which shaped her creative vocabulary.

    Omar Nakkash
    Studio: Nakkash Design Studio
    Role: Co-founder, Designer

    Omar Nakkash launched NAKKASH Design Studio which specialises in contemporary designs and furniture sourcing as well as designing signature commercial spaces such as Nourish and Parlour Boutique. Nakkash, who is based in Dubai, made his debut as a solo product designer with Trinity, a sculptural table lamp, at the Beirut Design Fair 2018.

    His ability to look past design for aesthetical purpose and more for functionality made him a strong candidate in Esquire 100, which is described as “a list of men and womden who have helped the publication become the voice of the modern man.”

    Patrick McCrae
    Studio: ARTIQ
    Role: CEO

    This year, Patrick McCrae celebrates the tenth anniversary of ARTIQ, the art consultancy he first launched in 2009 to bridge the gap between the art and business worlds and to promote fair pay for artists.

    Today, ARTIQ is one of the UK’s leading art consultancy, working with an extensive client base throughout the EMEA to bring outstanding art and experiences to businesses and brands and to push barriers constantly in terms of what art can achieve and who it can reach and engage with.

    Projects:

    • Gleneagles, Scotland
    • Sessions House
    • Hilton Imperial Dubrovnik
    • Mode Aparthotel Arc De Triomphe
    • The Principal Edinburgh Charlotte Square

    Rebecca Quickfall
    Studio: Diamond Interiors
    Role: Interior Designer

    Formally a designer at Jasper Sanders + Partners, Rebecca Quickfall is a burgeoning talent defined by energy and enthusiasm, as both studios will agree.

    Quickfall was an integral part of helping bring Jasper Sanders + Partners’ projects to life. Her creative and thoughtful contribution to every project gives clients the confidence that the solutions are right for their business.

    Designing for people and creating valuable experiences that are not just intelligent spaces, Quickfall thrive as part of a team and believe collaboration is essential to good design.

    Rosalynn Youdan
    Studio: Jestico + Whiles
    Role: Designer

    Immediately after graduating with a first-class honours degree from Falmouth Rosalynn Youdan joined Jestico + Whiles in 2014 and has since played a pivotal role on several unique hotel and hospitality projects across the globe.

    Her wide experience at Jestico + Whiles also includes the award-winning micro-brewery and pub Shilling’s Brewing Co. in Glasgow, which graced the cover of FX magazine in 2018, and the latest venture for etc Venues at London’s historic County Hall.

    With experience in cruise liner design Youdan was lead designer for areas of Iona, the first of the next generation of ships for P&O. The ship launching in 2020 is set to be the largest cruise ship to be built exclusively for the British cruise market, with capacity for 5,200 guests and more than five speciality restaurants

    Projects:

    • InterContinental Hotel Tbilisi
    • Old Spitalfields Market
    • Ted & Muffy Boutique
    • Shillings Brewing Co.
    • London County Hall
    • Hard Rock Hotel Malta
    • Hard Rock Hotel Berlin
    • Project Gala Cruise Ship
    • W Hotel Edinburgh
    • Hotel Palace Lucerne Switzerland
    • Hotel Titlis Palace Engelberg
    • W Marrakesh

    Sarah Murphy
    Studio: Jestico + Whiles
    Role: Architect

    Sarah Murphy joined Jestico + Whiles in 2014 after graduating from the University of Manchester with a First-Class Honours degree in Architecture.

    Throughout her time in the practice she has been studying to qualify as an Architect and is currently undertaking her Part III.

    Her architectural design background has been reinforced through the wide range of hotel and hospitality projects in which she has played a key role. Murphy has formed invaluable connections with the extensive design team and with self-determination remains close to the project to ensure the final product is as faultless as it can be.

    Murphy is currently leading design of key areas of the design of Titlis Palace Hotel, a beautiful grande dame hotel in a mountainous area of Engelberg, Switzerland,  nestled below the shadow of Mount Titlis.

    Projects:

    • Paul Street Hotel, London
    • Odeon, Shaftesbury Avenue, London
    • Hard Rock Hotel Malta
    • Hard Rock Hotel Berlin
    • Hotel Palace Lucerne Switzerland
    • Hotel Titlis Palace Engelberg

    Scarlett Supple
    Studio: Soho House Design
    Role: Senior Interior Designer

    Scarlett Supple has now been working in the industry for seven years.

    It was during her second year as an interior designer that led the design of the main farmhouse, 5 cabins and 2 of the main barns at Soho Farmhouse in Chipping Norton. She said of the project: “The architects and I worked closely to develop a design that was true to the existing features of the space and celebrated the local materials as well as designing bespoke furniture and lighting that made each area unique.”

    Arguably, her largest achievement since joining Soho House Design in 2015 was leading the design of Soho House Mumbai. “My time was spent designing bespoke fabric, with inspiration taken from traditional Indian motifs and patterns, working with local craftsman developing bespoke furniture and lighting as well as working with external developers and suppliers to ensure a successful opening of our first Soho House in Asia,” she said.

    Projects:

    • Soho House West Hollywood
    • Soho House Greek Street
    • Babbington House
    • Soho House Mumbai
    • Soho House Paris

    Simona Mirón
    Studio: Gensler
    Role: Architect

    Simona Mirón taps into her boundless creativity to design unique and contemporary hotel environments – providing design expertise on projects from concept through to completion – for some of the most challenging clients not just in the Europe but also in Saudi Arabia, Malta and North Africa among others. Mirón is currently leading on the design of a complex 5* Hotel in the Middle East that’s part of a $300 million redevelopment. Her responsibilities include providing design expertise, collaborating and coordinating with 11 consulting firms in order to develop solutions that embody her client’s vision and needs.

    Her growth within the profession over the last few years has been a joy for her colleagues to observe. Tom Lindblom, Hospitality Leader and Principal at Gensler comments: “Simona has developed a very strong design language for hotel and hospitality design. She makes the very important connection between master planning and architecture to create holistic designs for our clients on projects in Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. Her combination of clear design thinking, team spirit, amazing computer skills, and relentless work habits allows Gensler to continue to make innovative and successful projects. We look forward to great things for Simona.”

    Achievements:

    Leading the design of 5* Hotel that’s part of a $300 million redevelopment in the Middle East.

    Winner of Europan 13, biennial competition for young architects under 40 years of age to design innovative urban design schemes across Europe, out of 1,862 entries across 15 countries for her Stavanger Project.

    Winner of Gensler’s Design Excellent Award which celebrates the company’s most innovative projects.

    Stephanie Riedl
    Studio: B3 Designers
    Role: Interior Architect

    Stephanie Riedl’s career began in Stuttgart, Germany, where she gained her Bachelor of Arts in Interior and Architectural Design in 2016. During her studies Steph carried out a number of internships covering interior design, carpentry and residential design consultancy.

    Riedll began working for Dittel Architects in Stuttgart after completing her studies and worked on a number of interior and branding projects. She then moved to G20 Architects where she freelanced and assisted in the design of a new build hotel.

    Upon moving to London in June 2017, Steph joined B3 Designers; an award-winning interior design and branding studio specialising in restaurants, bars and hotels.

    Most recently, Riedll also assisted with the design and attended the opening of the recently refurbished Champions Bar & Restaurant at the Marriott Hotel in Frankfurt.

    Yosola Akinwumi
    Studio: HBA London
    Role: Junior Designer

    From a young age Yosola Akinwumi has always been mesmerised and taken inspiration from the built environment she is surrounded by and her educational paths have guided her in the pursuit of her architecture dreams.

    She studied Interior Architecture and Design at Nottingham Trent University, which gave her the opportunity to complete a year’s internship with HBA London. After completing her university degree, Akinwumi joined HBA London as a Junior Designer in 2016, fast expanding her skills in technical drawings and FF&E design. She continues to evolve in her design knowledge and flair, creating tailored design solutions. Since working with HBA London, she has been involved with projects in the Middle East, China, Maldives and Europe.

    Projects:

    • Waldorf Astoria, Doha
    • Luxury Collection, Doha
    • Raffles Hotel and Residences Istanbul

    The full gallery of Meet Up London, where the 30 Under 30s were unveiled in spectacular fashion, can be accessed here.

    Meet Up London ’19: In pictures

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Meet Up London ’19: In pictures

    Hotel Designs’ Meet Up London, which took place on March 28 2019, provided an evening full of celebrations…

    More than 200 of the industry’s finest attended Meet Up London held at Minotti London’s showroom on March 28 for Hotel Designs’ first networking event of 2019. New to this year, the evening included the final of Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30, while also publically cutting the ribbon for the unveiling of its new website. Here is the official gallery of the evening.

    #MEETUPLONDON19

    Please feel free to share any of the above on social media with the hashtag #MEETUPLONDON19
    Instagram: @HotelDesigns | Twitter: @HotelDesigns

    Hotel Designs’ next Meet Up in the calendar is Meet Up North, which takes place in Manchester on July 1. More details to follow. 

    Exclusive style partner: Minotti London

    Exclusive headline partner: Hamilton Litestat

    Event partner: Tarkett

    Gifting Partner: Aslotel

    Hotel Designs launches into a stylish new era at Meet Up London 2019

    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
    Hotel Designs launches into a stylish new era at Meet Up London 2019

    The hotel design industry’s finest gathered at Minotti London last night for Meet Up London, Hotel Designs’ first networking event of 2019, which unveiled many causes for celebrations…

    London was at the centre of the design world once more last night, as hundreds of designers, architects, hoteliers and key-industry suppliers descended on city’s Fitzrovia district for Meet Up London.

    Providing the perfect stage for Hotel Designs’ first networking event of the year, Minotti London opened its showroom doors to the sea of leaders and visionaries who attended the event.

    Among the guests were young designers, directors and principals from studios such as Richmond International, Conran & Partners, WATG, Jestico + Whiles, ARA Design, Scott Brownrigg, Gensler and many more.

    Unique to this year’s format, Meet Up London hosted the final of Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30 initiative. All 40 shortlisted finalists were invited, courtesy of Hotel Designs, following the title’s aim to help bridge the age gap in international hotel design. “Tonight’s concept, and its very important theme, has evolved in order to make our networking events more relevant to our audience,” said editor Hamish Kilburn who made the sofas of Minotti his stage for the evening. “Since the success of The Brit List 2018 Awards last year, we have decided to lightly theme each of our networking events. Tonight, it is about celebrating and profiling young designers and architects who are proving themselves to be true leaders in the making, if not so already.”

    Following the unveiling of the final 30 Under 30, the evening’s programme gave guests a sneak peek of Hotel Designs’ new branding and website ahead of its highly anticipated launch that was announced today. “I am delighted that we are turning this page so publically here this evening in order to start our new chapter.” explained Kilburn. “Our new slogan is: ‘Defining the point on international hotel design,’ and we believe that events like these that are attended by so many of you, our readers, do just that.”

    Meet Up London continued with an engaging talk from the London School of Architecture’s Director of Critical Projects, James Soane. Aptly entitled Repairing The Future, Soane’s presentation captured the audience’s attention and imagination into understanding how we can, as a collective creative industry, design and build better cities and hotels. “Are you doing what you believe in and are you practicing what you preach” Soane asked the audience. “Or are you just preaching what you would like to practice? Design can make the world a better place. It has a lot to do with equality and the future.”

    Attendees were then able to use the evening as a networking event to catch up with like-minded industry experts, while also learning about the latest products on the market from suppliers such as Hamilton Litestat (exclusive headline partner), Tarkett (event partner), Minotti London (style partner), Crosswater, Brintons, Laufen and many more.

    Ensuring that no guest left empty handed, gifting partner Aslotel supplied all attendees with a generous goody bag that included a selection of its luxury amenity products.

    The full gallery of the evening – and the details for Hotel Designs’ next networking event, Meet Up North – will be announced shortly.

    Accor’s Aparthotel brand Adagio arrives in London

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    Accor’s Aparthotel brand Adagio arrives in London

    Hotel Designs attended the official launch party of Aparthotel Adagio London Brentford last night, which marked the brand’s official arrival in London, UK… 

    Adagio has celebrated the opening of its first London property by hosting a show-stopping party that was attended by more than 150 people.

    The 100-key Aparthotel Adagio London Brentford, which informally opened in October of last year, is located just a few miles from London’s main airport Heathrow and is the fourth hotel within in the brand to open in the UK, with more in the pipeline.

    “This is an important milestone for us, with many more openings in the UK to be announced,” said Karim Malak, CEO of Aparthotels Adagio at the event. “Our target is to have 20 properties in the UK by 2023.”

    Aparthotels Adagio London Brentford’s public spaces have been created as an open area for guests to meet and collaborate. Each apartment offers a fully equipped kitchen, spacious bedroom and living area with a flat-screen smart TV. Guests also have access to a bar, virtual concierge, fitness centre, laundry facilities, business services and onsite parking.

    Image credit: Accor/Adagio

    The West London property is part of Brentford’s Kew Eye Tower GWQ development. The aparthotel is the fourth UK opening for the brand following launches in Edinburgh, Birmingham and Liverpool. The aparthotel brand is planning further properties in London Stratford, Leicester (opening by the end of 2019) and Glasgow (opening by the end of 2020).

    The opening of Aparthotel Adagio London Brentford emerges as part of the brand’s strategy to open 10 new hotels this year and to double the amount of properties it has within its portfolio by 2023.

    Hotel Designs will be investigating the rise of aparthotels when it puts Hotel Concepts under the spotlight in August. If you would like to contribute to this topic, please get in touch with the editorial team.

    Main image credit: Accor/Adagio

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

    800 524 Hamish Kilburn

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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

    MEET UP LONDON: 1 Week to go!

    874 556 Hamish Kilburn

    The latest attendees who have confirmed their place at next week’s Hotel Designs’ Meet Up London include the Managing Director of RPW Design, CEO of Conran and Partners and Leading Architects from John Simpson Architects

    With just one week to go until Hotel Designs takes centre stage to host its Q1 networking evening, time is running out to purchase your tickets.

    Meet Up London, which takes place on March 28 at Minotti London’s showroom, will be attended by leading designers, architects, hoteliers and key-industry suppliers. Unique to this year, the event will also host the final of Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30 initiative and all 40 shortlisted finalists have been invited, courtesy of Hotel Designs in order to help bridge the age gap in international hotel design with equal networking opportunities for all in the hotel design community.

    RPW Design, Conrad and Partners, John Simpson Architects, Dorchester Collection and Benjamin West are all among the companies that have confirmed their attendance over the last few days.

    “It’s very clear to me that there is a real bridge to be made so that young designers and architects can also benefit from our exclusive networking events, and we believe that the concept of Meet Up London this year does just that,” said editor Hamish Kilburn. “As a young design editor myself, I am very excited to host the evening. There are a lot of elements included within our first Meet Up of the year; the 30 Under 30 unveil, the London School of Architecture’s James Soane speaking about Repairing the Future and myself discussing the new era of Hotel Designs. Everything within the agenda has been designed to create an engaging evening for all guests attending that will help to create wider conversations on the international hotel design scene.”

    VERY LIMITED TICKETS AVAILABLE: 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 Meet Up London sponsor, please contact Zoe Guerrier on 01992 374059 or email z.guerrier@forumevents.co.uk.

    Exclusive style partner: Minotti London

    Exclusive headline partner: Hamilton Litestat

    Event partner: Tarkett

    Gifting Partner: Aslotel

     

    CDW 19 PREVIEW: Morgan to launch new collaborative projects

    800 600 Hamish Kilburn

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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.

    TECHNOLOGY FEATURE: It pays to be social

    800 534 Hamish Kilburn

    We are living in an era in international hotel design where it pays to be social. To put social media under the spotlight, digital specialists in social media and web design at Arise explain how to use social media platforms effectively… 

    When it comes to generating sales for your hotel, direct bookings are often much more profitable and valuable in terms of returning customers than bookings made via Online Travel Agents (OTAs) such as Booking.com or Expedia. OTA commission rates seem to creep up each year, with some sites charging as much as 30 per cent in commission.

    While third party booking sites have their uses, direct bookings are key for maximising your profits and giving your guests a taste of your establishment before they even arrive. Of course, driving your customers to book directly with you is easier said than done…

    One of the most effective, but criminally underutilised tools you can use to drive new customers to your website is social media. We often find that the clients we work with are overwhelmed by the prospect of digital marketing, unaware of its potential or unable to devote the amount of time needed to launching and maintaining effective marketing campaigns.

    “We managed to increase the revenue generated via their website by an incredible 823 per cent in just four years.”

    To demonstrate just how powerful social media can be when used as a marketing tool for hotels, let’s take a look at Losehill House Hotel & Spa. Four years ago, this luxury hotel and spa located in the beautiful Derbyshire Peak District was not present on social media at all. They did have a website, but it was nowhere near the standard that guests could expect from such a high-end, reputable establishment. After creating a new website for the hotel, and giving them a presence on Twitter and Facebook, we managed to increase the revenue generated via their website by an incredible 823 per cent in just four years.

    Social should reflect what makes you unique

    Setting up social accounts and including a link to your website in your bio/about section is a first step, but this alone does not make up a social media strategy. Each hotel is different, and as such will need a unique approach to social media which not only reflects the hotel as a brand, but also achieves everything they want to in terms of sales and marketing. In the case of Losehill House, we focused our efforts on showing off the unique aspects of the hotel, spa and award winning restaurant, while trying to connect with customers looking to book imminently, and cultivating an audience of potential guests.

    Getting potential guests onto your website can be something of an effort, but it’s one worth putting in. The ultimate aim of social media activity is getting the right people onto your website, and converting them in