Hospitality interior design practice RPW Design has completed the renovation of Hilton Rotterdam, bringing the interiors of this 50-year-old modernist architectural icon into the 21st century. Built in 1963 by one of the foremost architects of the post-war modernism in the Netherlands, Hugh Maaskant, Hilton Rotterdam was one of the first upscale hotels to welcome visitors to the city centre. Its exterior exemplifies the glamour, sophistication and forward-looking excitement of the Dutch society of the 50s and 60s, a time when Rotterdam began to reinvent itself as a modern, vibrant and multicultural metropolis.
Fifty years on, this Grand Lady of Rotterdam has been given a new lease of life after a €36 million two-phase refurbishment of the entire hotel, including its 254 guestrooms and suites, meeting space and all public areas.
One of the most significant changes was to re-site the main entrance, which has moved from one side of the building to the other, not only for practical reasons but for a greater sense of arrival. The new entrance features a visible five-metre-wide canopy and new porte cochère, whilst the old entrance facing the main square has been retained for pedestrians.
The lobby, now more spacious, has been designed around the original grand sculptural staircase, which has been restored and complimented with new timber and bronze finishes. A light feature descending alongside the staircase and a source of fluorescent light concealed in the ceiling further above add a dramatic, luxury touch to the space.
Offering a high-end, residential environment, the lobby comprises a new, stylish coffee/tea lounge and furniture pieces arranged in small seating groups enhanced with bespoke rugs, a feature fireplace and a calming palette evocative of Rotterdam’s light colours and patterns.
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