Royal Lancaster London
The Royal Lancaster London has relaunched following an incredible £80 million renovation project designed by London based designers Studio PROOF. Upon completion, the mid-century icon reinstated its original name of ‘Royal Lancaster London’ in time for its 50th anniversary.
Works to renovate the hotel included a dramatic new entrance façade and reception lobby as well as the redesign of all 411 guestrooms and 22 suites in the 18 storey tower with sweeping views across London and its iconic skyline making it one of central London’s best known landmarks on the boundary of Hyde Park.
The renovation was split into two phases and was worked on by two separate contractors. County Contractors Hotel Division were selected to deliver the most extensive element the redesign of the hotels 411 guestrooms and 22 suites.
Speaking to Premier Hospitality about the project, County Contractors Business Manager, Peter Mercer said: “We were delighted to have successfully secured this £40 million scheme, our largest value hotel refurbishment project to date which coincidently we secured on our 40th Anniversary.
Our non-adversarial proactive approach was key in delivering the new bedrooms and suites over two phases whilst the hotel remained open for the duration. Additional works alongside the rooms included the refurbishment of the 7no lifts and lift extensions from the 18th to 19th floor for all 7.”
Works on the roof included the installation of a new Triflex system, 2 new AHU’s, new structural steel and installation of 40 new condensers. In further conversation with Jason Thomas, County Contractors Project Manager he added that works were carried out on 16 floors all together, from the third up to the eighteenth floor, with floor 18 down to 15 being completely demolished.
“If you imagine coming out of a hotel lift where you would see corridors and bedrooms, we were tasked to take out every wall leaving the shell and restructure the floor plan to create larger rooms for The Royal Lancaster’s new and returning guests. Then from the fourteenth floor down to the third floor we reduced approximately 50% of the walls retaining some of the balance to add to the mix of room types and to help to engineer greater value to the client.
“Thousands of partitions were installed to create the building’s internal structure before the rooms were laid out, with new waste pipes, water pipes, domestic services, air conditioning, cabling, fire alarms, data and IT – so we had an extensive amount of work to install and create the new structure. Only after this could we start on the complete fit out of the bedrooms and bathrooms which involved designing and manufacturing case goods including wall panelling in the bedrooms, desks, wardrobes, sofa day beds, integrated headboards, and LED lighting.
“In the bathrooms we sourced bespoke Italian marble wall tiles, floors and bespoke shower trays – it was quite an intense programme overall. We had circa 300 operatives on site to deliver a project of this magnitude which produced over 300 cubic tons of rubbish a month with over 94% being recycled. Everyone and everything utilised one of two full height hoists that were wrapped to become part of the hotel’s look as the project duration lasted for over 24 months with additional infrastructure enabling works.”
The new guestroom design emphasises the premium views over Hyde Park and offers luxurious details including tactile fabrics, beautiful bronze and glass elements, with bespoke light fittings. In keeping to the hotel’s origins in the 1960s, the design of the new suites blends mid-century nuances and the quirkiness of the English character from that era, with a contemporary edge – an approach that chimes with the hotel’s vision of ‘creating the future with the treasures of the past.’
During the renovation works, the hotel remained open and operated as usual for guests.
Jason added: “The refurbishment was programmed in two phases so we worked from floor 11 to 18 first and put a buffer floor at floor 10 to reduce any noise from floor 11 away from guests on floor 9. To allow the two phase operation and to ensure the hotel stayed operational we had to install temporary links for all services required to be in use by the guests in the ninth floor to the third floor. We then stripped everything out from above; this was all carried out with no “down days” to the hotel. It is interesting because if you look on TripAdvisor between April 2016 and April 2017 there were little or no complaints from any guest who stayed in the hotel during that period, this is a testament to the way we were able to manage our works.”
The second phase of the refurbishment carried out by S and T included the redesign of the lobby, which has created a series of individual spaces, including a new bar. A restrained colour palette complements a focus on craftsmanship, joinery and metal work, with exquisite white marble and timeless metals such as gold, polished brass and bronze. The showpiece of the lobby is a palatial sweeping staircase made of 300 square meters of white Carrara marble which wraps around to the first floor.
Taking inspiration from luxury brands, Studio PROOF applied the core materials of the interior design, especially the gold, polished brass and bronze metal, to the outer skin of the building to create five-star quality. The exterior design is based on a series of vertical strata blended with a large 8m high glazed façade. The newly launched, chic and intimate Hyde Lobby Bar is open throughout the day and evening. The sophisticated space offers an enticing menu of light cuisine and an assortment of sweet and savoury bites, complemented by a wide selection of wines, spirits and innovative cocktails.
The grand opening is taking place now as the majority of the hotel is completely renovated. Royal Lancaster London will be finalised in May 2018 following a soft re-design of The Lounge Bar and The Park Room on the first floor.
Jason said: “For me individually it has been a brilliant project for which I have learnt a lot. I have been working on hotels for County Contractors for 17 years now and we have gradually gone from small single floor projects to complete hotel refurbishments, which is great and I have managed to see it grow from that the first job we did, which now on reflection was tiny. As part of my development as a manager it has been great opportunity, it has allowed me to learn new skills, look after more people and make more strategic decisions for the benefit of the client and County. It was also great working with Sally Beck the GM and her team who appreciated our proactive approach and assisted us throughout the project which makes such a huge difference to have a hotel that wants the best for their building and integrating us as part of their team. We’ve been treated like family and became part of their team so that has made it a good journey, with massive gains for both of us. They are now are our best advert for ‘The County Way’.”
Peter along with Jason has seen the Hotel business grow and Peter confirmed that this scheme has taken the company up another level with regards project value and 5 star quality finishes and one they are very proud of.
Royal Lancaster London is Hyde Park’s commanding mid-century architectural icon born and built in 1967. The hotel’s happy history has seen it hip, handsome and rolling with the times in their unrivalled London location. Today in the 21st century, the hotel is proud of the knowledge and expertise that they have gained over half a century as one of London’s leading hotels.
Royal Lancaster London enjoys the liberty of being independent and the opportunity to express their unique and genuine personality. They take pride in having a conscientious, highly professional and happy team dedicated to delivering outstanding services and ensuring that every guest experience is delightfully memorable.
For more information visit: www.royallancaster.com/.
ODonnell Furniture Makers are a leading bespoke furniture manufacturer and installer specialising in hotel bedroom case goods. O’Donnell’s manufacture wardrobes, vanity/TV/minibar units, headboards, desks and tables as well as wall panelling and doors for the hospitality and residential sectors.
ODonnell Furniture Makers is a 4th generation family-run business, with an extensive portfolio of projects having worked with various hotel chains including Hilton, Crowne Plaza, Sheraton, Apex, and Ramada. Some recent projects include The Sheraton Grand Park Lane and The Queen Mary 2. The Royal Lancaster London is the latest project to roll out of their state of the art, 60,000 Sq Ft factory.
In connection to The Royal Lancaster London, ODonnell Furniture created drawings for bespoke furniture in conjunction with County Contractors and Studio PROOF. The company manufactured numerous feature items including headboards, wardrobes, nightstands, wall panelling, doors and an assortment of desks and tables.
In wishing County Contractors well Aodh O’Donnell, Managing Director for ODonnell Furniture, said:
“County Contractors are a leading construction and project management firm and ODonnell Furniture are delighted to have worked with their team on this prestigious project.”
“ODonnell Furniture prides itself on its excellent reputation for attention to detail, quality, service and willingness to work as part of an integrated team to meet and exceed client expectations.”
Established in 1998 by current directors, Paul Gibson and Kenny Oldham, T4 Design is a specialist glass processor, offering a wide range of standard and bespoke products, including high-end decorative glass for shop fit outs, hospitality schemes and the perfumery industry. Based in Mansfield, Nottingham, T4 Design has worked across a range of projects including a foundation stone for Guy’s & St Thomas’ Cancer Centre, a glass totem pole for The John Rylands Library and a glass cover for the Malvern Hills Toposcope, amongst others.
Most recently, T4 Design has been involved with the renovation work that has recently taken place at Royal Lancaster London. Working closely with Studio PROOF, T4 Design produced a bespoke silk laminate – a mix of mirror, organza and clear glass.
The bespoke silk laminate was produced in two colours: Green for the park side and red-gold for the city side of the development. The fabric was provided by Broadwick Silks who arranged the production of the fabric from India.
T4 Design’s, Esmé Lynch, said:
“It’s been a privilege to be involved with this project from the very beginning, from the specification stages right through to completion. We always enjoy being involved in the research and development stages, as T4 always enjoy the creative part of the process.”
“Over the course of the project we built up some great working relationships, specifically with County Contractors and ODonnell and this proved to be a fantastic project to be a part of.”
DRC Ltd is a commercial decorator specialising in all aspects of decoration works for the hospitality and leisure sectors. The company has been in operation for three years, but company director, Dave Rae has more than 23 years’ experience in the industry.
Past projects include The Cumberland Hotel, Selfridge Hotel, Park Plaza Riverbank and Park Plaza Westminster, as well as work for Gianluca Vialli, amongst others. Most recently, DRC Ltd has been involved with the work on Royal Lancaster Hotel, including the decoration of rooms, corridors, stairwells and more.
DRC Ltd Director, Dave Rae, said:
“Royal Lancaster Hotel was a very important project for us and one in which we worked closely with a number of contractors, to ensure the success of this significant renovation. In particular, County Contractors – the main contractor on the project – was a great company to work with and the entire experience proved very satisfying.”
“Over the years, DRC Ltd has built up a good reputation throughout the industry, and this is thanks to our reliability, as well as our ability to deliver a fantastic end result. This is something we are very proud of and I can honestly say I’ve never failed to deliver a project on time – not once in more than 23 years.”
Silent Gliss Ltd
Silent GlissLtd is the leading global supplier of high quality curtain tracks and blinds for the hotel and hospitality sector. The company began in Switzerland in 1952, with UK manufacturing commencing in 1954.
Projects for Silent Gliss Ltd span the world, with their products installed in prestigious hotels such as the Burj Al Arab and the Yas Viceroy in Abu Dhabi. In the UK, Silent Gliss Ltd’s products have been specified in The Lanesborough, Café Royal and The Four Seasons Park Lane, amongst others.
Most recently, Silent Gliss Ltd has been involved with the work at Royal Lancaster London. Working on this project, Silent Gliss Ltd supplied and installed 2000 motorised roller blinds throughout the hotel, including 50 double systems and 56 very large single blinds.
Silent Gliss Ltd Marketing Manager, Sam Shervill, said:
“This project at Royal Lancaster London was very important to us. By being specified in prestigious, high-end hotels, like Royal Lancaster London, reinforces our position as a premium brand.”
“At Silent Gliss Ltd, we put our long-term success down to combining high quality products with excellent customer service. Our specialists, both in the field and in-house, work together to ensure projects run smoothly throughout ordering, installation and commissioning.”