Dunnell Robertson – Distinguishing outstanding projects
Winning recognition for the exceptional design of two outstanding projects, architects Dunnell Robertson Partnership have made the shortlist in the Guernsey Design Awards.
The projects are: the Crown Club Bar and Restaurant development at the Old Government House Hotel in St Peter Port, (shortlisted in the awards Non Residential (over 250k) category) and 1 St Julians Avenue – a development of prestigious luxury apartments, also in St Peter Port, which was shortlisted in the Residential New Build (over 250k) category.
The Crown Club Bar and Restaurant
The scheme involved refurbishing the listed historic three storey Old Crown Offices, which had been purchased by the Red Carnation Group to provide additional bar and meeting room facilities for their adjacent Old Government House Hotel.
The project was carried out by main contractors RG Falla and was designed by Dunnell Robertson Partnership’s Drew Robertson and Aidan Potter, working together with the practice’s Contract Administrator Kieran Lee, and Brian Brennan, Projects Director for Building and Interiors at Red Carnation Hotels.
The Old Government House Hotel has a five star rating but lacked an adequate bar facility for its guests and also wish to provide a bar which would also appeal to non-residents. Dunnell Robertson Partnership’s brief was to integrate The Old Crown Offices into the overall design of the hotel, whilst retaining and enhancing the historic elements of the listed building.
The works included the stripping out of the office interior, which had no historic merit. The historical features of the property were all contained on the external aspects of the buildings such as balcony railings and an existing glazed canopy feature which were all retained and refurbished.
Kieran Lee of Dunnell Robertson Partnership said: “The Crown Offices moved out of the building which was subsequently refurbished as commercial office space before being purchased by the hotel. The design that we developed included creating a glazed link using traditional materials and detailing to connect the bar of the existing hotel with the separate bar and facilities of the new Crown Club.
“New accommodation on the upper ground floor of the Old Crown Office building (the main level connecting with the hotel’s bar) includes a bar area and two further bar seating areas. The glazed link itself also includes seating areas. The glazed link also opens out to a roof terrace area above the hotel’s swimming pool and which also enjoys sea views over the harbour and to the islands beyond.
“On the uppermost level we have created three new meeting/private dining rooms rooms – one of which is housed within a newly constructed extension built as part of the project.
“On the lower level beneath the bar, we have installed new toilets and a beautiful new wine tasting room.”
The new bar is decorated in rich regency reds, with timber flooring and individual antique pieces such as lanterns, chests and book cases, banquette seating and other artwork. The glazed link also has a pair of ornate marble spiral columns and, to enhance the luxurious ambience.
The meeting rooms/private dining rooms are also of a very high specification and include state of the art sound and video systems with ‘invisible’ mirror fronted TVs.
Kieran Lee said: “It was very pleasing to know that the project has been recognised in the awards. RG Falla, G4S and the rest of the project team performed very well and finished the project on programme – no mean feat when all the ground works had to be done by hand, the site was very confined and was located next to the Hotel which was in full operation throughout. With the project finished, the Hotel have had comments from guests saying that the Crown Club looks as if it has always been part of the OGH. For us, this is very satisfying as the Hotel has been here for over 150 years and is testament to how seamlessly the Crown Club blends in.”
One St Julian’s Avenue
Comprising 32 prestigious luxury apartments – all with exceptionally large living spaces, light, airy and contemporary interiors, and world-class views, One St. Julian’s Avenue is Guernsey’s number one choice for luxury living, with around 65 per cent of the apartments already sold.
Constructed on the former Vauxlaurens Brewery site and ideally located close to the financial sector and capital, St Peter Port, the development includes 29 local market one and two bedroom apartments and three open market penthouses. All have an exceptional outlook across the East coast of Guernsey – enjoying some of the best views in the island.
The complex construction project to create the development involved cohesive teamwork between Vauxlaurens Property Holdings Limited (who own and have developed the site) architects Dunnell Robertson Partnership, structural engineers CBL Consulting and main contractors JW Rihoy & Son.
The project involved the demolition of the former brewery buildings with the exception of a distinctive original Victorian building which fronts onto St Julian’s Avenue, with this building being retained and incorporated into the new development.
Each apartment and penthouse has been designed to the highest standards with high quality fixtures, fittings and finishes throughout, including white silk-brushed oak flooring, state-of-the-art lighting and underfloor heating systems.
Other features include superb Mobalpa kitchens, fully tiled bathrooms with Villeroy and Bosch fittings, walnut doors, frames and architraves, the very latest home automation features such as video door entry phone systems, and secure underground parking.
The site’s restrictive size, considerable level changes, and busy central location resulted in considerable logistical challenges in both the demolition and construction phases. From drilling down two storeys into local granite for underground car parking, to the 30-metre static luffing jib tower crane that was shipped over by Rihoy & Son from the UK.
Mitch Sneddon of Dunnell Robertson Partnership said: “We designed the new development to respect the features of the original retained building and surroundings, using traditional materials including render, granite and brickwork, which are very much in keeping with the industrial feel of the building that previously occupied the site. However the traditional forms are expressed in a more contemporary way in the new build elements.”