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Collective Design

Collective Design

Collective Design – Breaking new ground at the forefront of design

Collective Design

A ground-breaking multi-award-winning interior design practice who thrive for excellence in the commercial world, Collective Design is a one-stop shop of services from concept through to completion.

Services available include everything from obtaining planning permission, to full design and detailing, branding, styling, specifying, lighting design, signage design, and on-site support throughout the project – including managing contractors, working with specialists and other professionals, handling contingencies, and helping determine budgets.

No matter what the scale of project or the budget, Collective Design ensure the very highest of standards at all times.

Their experienced team of designers communicate and act decisively throughout a project, investigating every requirement, precedent and possibility. These findings are then documented in a cohesive design which brings to life the ‘vision’.

The practice designs the very best bars, restaurants, nightclubs and retail environments in the United Kingdom and Europe.

At Collective Design every square inch of design matters in creating beautiful interiors that are sustainable. The practice prides itself on creating exciting, cutting edge concepts which are at the forefront of interior style.

Examples of the high standards of excellence achieved in projects carried out by Collective Design include recent schemes at The Roker Hotel in Sunderland, Yolo Townhouse in Newcastle, The Plough in Durham, and Tapas Revolution and Central – both in Newcastle.


Roker Hotel

At the Roker Hotel on the seafront in Sunderland, the scheme involved the refurbishment of the bar, known as ‘Poetic License’, as well as the addition of a new gin distillery where visitors can watch the distillation process of the hotel’s award-winning gin in action.

Further works included the complete re-design and upgrading of all of the hotel’s bedrooms.

Works within the bar included a complete strip out of the existing interior and comprehensive refurbishment, implementing a stunning new design concept with a completely new layout.

Simon Mcilwraith, senior interior designer at Collective Design said: “We based the concept on an industrial Victorian style bonded warehouse look, with design element including the addition of a new bar counter in reclaimed material, the addition of a back bar in feature copper piping, the installation of a new lighting system and complete re-decoration echoing the client’s desire to reflect the creation of an artisan product within the new distillery.

“Wall finishes include reclaimed oak timber panelling and exposed brickwork, with reclaimed tin tiles from France being used on the ceiling. Further new copper metalwork elements were also introduced, together with new flooring in reclaimed timber.”

The colour palette included green and other natural shades, including a hint of Juniper (again reflecting the gin product theme).

The new distillery element included the installation of a screen in mild steel, enclosing the distillation process equipment, which was also newly installed.

The colour scheme and design of the bedrooms was based on a seaside theme in keeping with the hotel’s location.

Simon Mcilwraith, said: “The design of the bedrooms has a nautical feel with the works including the addition of new wall finishes incorporating tongue and groove elements combined with striped fabric, as well as new ceiling and floor finishes, new fixtures, fittings and furniture. The bathrooms were also fully refurbished, with the colour palette generally including marine shades such as soft greys and blues. The client was very happy with the end result.”

Collective Design

Yolo Townhouse

Located in Highbridge in the centre of Newcastle, the project at the Yolo Townhouse involved the conversion of a former retail venue into a bar and restaurant.

Main contractors for the scheme were One Concept.

Simon Mcilwraith, said: “Our work on this project included the completion of all of the planning applications, as well as the design concept.”

The works included the complete strip out of the interior, with the design concept being based on a chic French theme.

The project also involved a considerable amount of structural alteration (including the removal of the original roof), in order to create an additional storey forming a rooftop terrace, incorporating a new kitchen and bar.

Simon Mcilwraith, said: “The ground floor is very much orientated towards daytime use and designed as a space where people can have coffee, snacks and cocktails. The first floor is geared towards evening trade and has more of a ‘later hours’ feel. The main restaurant area is spread across both floors.

Design features include a zinc-topped bar and seating in high quality velvet and leather. The overall colour palette incorporates subtle, light shades including creams.

“The client was very pleased with the result of the project and reports that the venue is very busy. This is the second project which we have carried out for them,” concluded Simon Mcilwraith.

Collective Design

The Plough

Located on a rural estate in Mountsett, Durham, the project at the Plough public house is the second scheme carried out by Collective Design for the same client.

Simon Mcilwraith, commented: “The venue was originally a typical rural estate-type public house and we started by completely stripping out the interior.

“The design is based on an agricultural, rural farm theme, using rustic timber panelling on the walls and elements of corrugated steel, giving the interior very much of an ‘outdoor’ feel.

“We also incorporated a lot of agricultural bric a brac, including an old plough, dovecotes and farming tools. The ground floor incorporates a main bar and restaurant, with the upper floor being a wedding venue.”

All of the colours within the design palette were inspired by the natural materials used in the interior. The works included the installation of a new bar, new lighting, a new kitchen, new flooring, new toilets complete re-decoration and the addition of a brand new landscaped garden terrace, complete with potting shed.

“Everyone was happy with the scheme and feedback has been very favourable,” said Simon Mcilwraith.

He added: “The client, a brewery company specialising in craft ales, was very pleased with the outcome of the project and felt that the scheme perfectly reflected the image of his brand. We have since had some very good feedback from them.”

Tapas Revolution

Opened by renowned Spanish TV celebrity chef Omar Allibhoy, who aims to bring traditional tapas flavours to the UK, Tapas Revolution bar and restaurant in Newcastle was stunningly transformed in a project carried out by main contractors One Concept.

Simon Mcilwraith, said: “We started with a strip out to a shell and core interior of the basement and ground floor levels, which we re-designed from scratch. We aimed for a contemporary twist on a traditional tapas bar, so we used inspiration from the architecture of places such as Madrid and Barcelona, where traditional tapas originally came from and then added a modern twist, creating a fusion of the two.

“Following considerable research, we used traditional Spanish tapas style colours such as reds and mustard yellows, but added modern elements with a key aim being to create a place where people can socialise.

“Every element of the interior was new – including new wall and ceiling finishes, furniture, fixtures and fittings, a complete new kitchen, lighting, flooring and services.”

A central focal point of the interior is the tapas bar itself, with high seating, providing a place where people can eat and socialise.

“This is the second project we have carried out for this client, with the first being in Bath, which was recently handed over. The client’s reaction to the design of the Newcastle venue has been fantastic – the venue has been a huge success and we particularly enjoyed designing this project as it was something different for us and was very interesting. We were incredibly pleased with the outcome and are now working on another project for the same client.”

Collective Design


A cocktail bar and restaurant based within Newcastle’s Central Station, Central was transformed with inspiration being taken from ‘retro’ style Italian architecture in keeping with the design of 1950s and 1960s Italian pizzerias. Main contractors were One Concept.

The original unit occupied by the venue was extended into an adjacent unit, with the entire interior being initially stripped out.

The interior now incorporates a lower ground floor bar and an upper ground floor level restaurant and function space located on a newly installed mezzanine. The works also included the installation of a new shop front.

Key design elements included the use of Carrera marble, brass metalwork and walnut timber, with the colour scheme utilising those of the Central brand – namely pinks and blues. All of the new fixtures, fittings, decor, lighting, furniture and flooring echoed the ‘retro’ Italianate feel, except for the retained exposed concrete ceiling, which added a modern twist.

Simon Mcilwraith, said: “The ‘retro’ features that we included were a huge success in the design.

“The client, Crafted Projects, was very pleased with the outcome – we have won many awards on past projects undertaken for this client and are now also carrying out a new scheme for them.”

Collective Design






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