This month we are celebrating London! Over the course of the past 32 years David Collins Studio have left their sophisticated, modernist and fastidiously detailed mark on London, redefining how we live in public and private. With David Collins Studio’s latest London project, Mexican Chef Martha Ortiz’s restaurant Ella Canta at the InterContinental on Park Lane, due to open this month we look at a selection of the studios most notable London projects.
The studio’s work stretches across hotels, residential, retail, restaurants and bars. Each project, being rooted in the life and traditions of London, is an illustration of the Studio’s capacity to create deeply textured detailed contemporary spaces that reinterpret the past and honor the iconic buildings in which they reside.
‘London is the home of David Collins Studio, and whilst we are a British brand and proud members of Walpole, we are very much international designers. In our work we always try to create a narrative within a space, and the city or location of that project plays a very key role in that process. A city’s architecture, its sense of culture, of art and fashion all inform our work – together with an imposed vision of what the building or space or narrative should look like. With projects in listed buildings such as The Gilbert Scott and The Wolseley, the physical envelope of the space informs the project and with projects such as De Grisogono Bond Street and even Pret A Manger, brands with very rich histories in their own way, you have to work with the codes of the brand to create something authentic, relevant and site-specific.’ – Simon Rawlings, Creative Director.
De Grisogono, New Bond St (Opened 2016)
De Grisogono’s flagship store on Bond St features interiors developed by founder Fawaz Gruosi in collaboration with David Collins Studio. The concept takes the craftsmanship and detailing of the jewellery product itself and translates these codes into interior architectural elements, utilising classic details and proportions juxtaposed with modernist furniture pieces. The concept includes three distinct organic shaped rooms inspired by the Italian founder’s heritage, including the Grand Sala (Grand Salon), a luxurious residential style living room where customers relax on plush velvet sofas, have a drink from the drinks trolley and experience the De Grisogono brand.
The Artesian Bar, Langham Hotel, Portland Place, London (Opened in 2008)
Created for Langham Hotels & Resorts, the award-winning Artesian Bar is an opulent eclectic space with inspiration drawn from the Victorian cabinets of curiosities and exploration of the Far East. The space features hidden textures, details and design references including jeweled mirrors, blue and purple leather crocodile tiles, bespoke lacquers referencing La Chasse Aux Papillion, oversized hand-crafted chandeliers and a show stopping central pagoda bar.
The Gilbert Scott Bar. St. Pancras Renaissance (Opened 2011)
Victorian Gothic masterpiece St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel, one of London’s greatest landmarks, is home to The Gilbert Scott Bar, which after years in hiding emerged in 2011 following David Collins Studio’s subtle intervention. Developed in collaboration with English Heritage the space was inspired by grand historic railway stations and although contemporary, the design concept acknowledges the significance of its surroundings with carefully considered artwork, furnishings and choice of colour palette.
Pret a Manger (Ongoing brand roll-out)
As well as creating opulent and glamorous interiors across London David Collins Studio have also bought their aesthetic to Pret a Manger. The Studio’s concept for Pret a Manger is an evolution of the brand’s interiors graphics and branding. The original design concept is based on the mobile steel sandwich bars seen in New York and features the use of perforated metal, red leather upholstery, blond wood and plywood and a star banquette that takes inspiration from the brand’s logo.
David Collins Studio have worked on numerous departments within Harrods, including Shoe Heaven, which utilises space reclaimed from the stores back of house space to create the ultimate destination in lady’s shoe shopping. David Collins Studio have respectfully referenced the original architecture of the store whilst presenting a design vocabulary that looks forward to the future of the store.
The Studio’s relationship with the store has also seen them complete a sensuous and textural backdrop to the Women’s Eveningwear Department in 2015 and in 2016 the refurbishment of the Fine Jewellery Room. Drawing inspiration from the iconic Knightsbridge store’s original gem room and archive jewellery designs, the space features a soft onyx colour palette that compliments the vintage inspired glass counters which feature intricately woven cast bronze panels.
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