Wednesday 05 Jun 2013
The brief was to create a space which would become the heart of London and design a scheme which complimented the interior designer's contemporary interpretation of this historic building. The lighting design had to be sympathetic and considerate to this memorable building as well as enhance the visionary concept. The impressively high ceilings and architectural features were a challenge to light sympathetically in order to create an ambience in which the guests feel special the moment they arrive. A combination of feature pendants, intimate table lamps, down and up lights and concealed linear lighting create a subtle sense of luxury across the public areas.
Mixing the use of bold modern decorative light fittings and concealed energy efficient light sources creates a very subtle balance. The spaces seem endlessly extravagant throughout, despite the scheme being well within the Part L regulations and the majority of fittings used being energy efficient light sources. Integrating linear lighting and reflecting light off the interior finishes helped to disguise the energy saving aspects of the project.
For the exterior lighting, the building’s original Victorian architecture was emphasized to express the scale by bookmarking the building with more illumination to the vertical turrets. The prominent curved corner aspect of the triangular building is given a higher level of lighting to express the building’s architectural form.
The two opposite entrances were lit with large decorative pendants, cornice lighting to gold leaf ceilings and small uplights which all helped draw the eye up and encourage guests to explore the inner spaces. The architectural lighting creates the ambience, allowing it to feel as though the decorative pieces were doing all of the hard work.
The designers worked closely with a light artist to develop this key feature of the impressive decorative pendant, with special care being taken to ensure that the colour temperature and dimming were correct.
In the dining room, high level concealed LED lighting to the restored original mouldings draws the eye upwards to the grand ceiling, whilst decorative lamps and pendants fill the space with a soft light for a comforting and intimate ambience.
The enormity of the building itself, and the way in which the areas were split up meant that the design concept could have been easily lost. Using one master set of fittings and details across the different zones resulted in a holistic design where every inch of the building feels as special as the last.
Lighting Design International