Marriott County Hall, London with Ariane Steinbeck, RPW Design

With an impressive collective global experience and portfolio of projects and awards, RPW Design is renowned for its technical prowess and sensual alchemy. While varied, each project RPW Design undertakes is unforgettable for its coherence and elegance.

RPW Design is re positioning the five-star London Marriott County Hall hotel for the global market. With their trademark interiors alchemy, RPW Design has transformed the guestrooms and public areas to create a quintessentially British feel. The 200 bedrooms and suites of this multi-million pound transformation have been completed in May 2016 and the public areas were finalised in October 2016 with the opening of the Noes Lobby Champagne bar.

Whilst sitting in the luxury of the London Marriott County Hall we spoke with RPW Managing Director Ariane Steinbeck about the design process for the project.



“Good design is something that inherently feels comfortable; that you walk into and feel immediately relaxed and taken care of”


Why is design important to you?

As hotel designers design is at the forefront of what we do, and what we set out to do is create things that are memorable, have a certain level of quality, and have permanence to them.

What makes good design?

Good design is something that inherently feels comfortable; that you walk into and feel immediately relaxed and taken care of.  Of course immediately alongside what we do, what is so important, is the service that the hotel provides to make the experience truly fulfilling.

What inspires your design?

Usually we try to build a story around the location of the hotel, the location in the city, the city or country itself, or a particular market that the hotel is trying to attract.  This hotel had a very prominent location next to the Themes and the County Hall had its own history, so we took elements of the location with the history and architectural details of the building to make the design come to life.

Why is the story so important?

Because you need to have something you can hang your hat on!  Otherwise a design is basically just an assembly of pieces of furniture and it won’t have the cohesive feeling we are looking for.

How do you begin to create the story?

We start by looking for words which encapsulate what we are looking for in the outcome.  For this particular hotel we wanted to reflex a certain Britishness, so alongside words and images we also looked at suiting materials and tailored folds that we liked, to make the story complete.

How is the County Hall building reflected in your design?

The bronze details within the building are reflected within many different case goods, tables and lamps.  The listed oak milling on the ground floor was so prevalent that oak was used throughout the guestrooms.  We created a bathroom wallpaper, consistent in all of the guests rooms, from a map of when the building was built.

How did you find the colour scheme that you have used?

A distinguishing colour in this design scheme is a deep red/orange which references back to the upholstery that was used in the council chambers, it is really our focus colour.


About Alys Bryan

Alys is a knowledgeable design editor who is focused on instigating conversations, both online and in-person, with industry experts which challenge, educate and advance the commercial interior sector. Her training and 15 years of professional experience as a furniture designer for the commercial sector makes her uniquely placed to lead Design Insider as Editor
View all posts by Alys Bryan →