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Langham Hotel, London appoints David Collins to re-design the bar and the restaurant

September 2006: David Collins, the star London architect, has been chosen by the Langham to transform the bar and the restaurant. The bar - which will be called Artesian, after the old well on the site that was originally used for all the hotel’s water - will re-open in early December 2006, and work in the restaurant will begin in early 2007 and be completed by early Summer 2007. The two venues - with a new street entrance - will create a much-needed new destination for the area around Portland Place, one of the most exciting and changing areas of the West End.

The brief was to create a destination bar that would be chic, romantic, with a sense of the past as well as of the future. The architecture should reflect some of the rich heritage of the hotel, and convey a sense of luxury and style. The designs should also take into account that the bar will be open all day, and so create the right ambience for the changing service needs throughout the day.

Duncan Palmer, Managing Director of Langham Hotel, London says:

“We chose David Collins to transform these two key areas of the hotel because he and his team have the experience to bring the Langham’s wonderful Listed interiors to life and give them the buzz and energy they deserve. You only have to look at the projects David has worked on, to know he is the right person for us.”

DAVID COLLINS STUDIO is synonymous with the finest luxury, architecture and interiors, with a constantly evolving style that has been hugely influential. His work has revolutionised the restaurant and hotel industry in the UK, creating the most desirable, stylish and highly-praised destinations to eat, drink and mix.

Notable projects include: The Blue Bar at The Berkeley hotel, Knightsbridge; The Wolseley, Piccadilly; Locanda Locatelli, Portman Square; Claridge’s Bar, Claridge’s, Mayfair; J. Sheekey, Soho; design for the Vivienne Westwood. The company takes an holistic approach, incorporating architecture, interior design, furniture design and graphic design, to create a one-stop design service.

As David Collins explains:

“The bar will be a chic, comfortable ‘best kept secret’ in the heart of the newly re-invigorated Langham Hotel. Taking into account the hotel’s incredibly rich history, our aim is to create an architectural style and story whose intrinsic impact will be to feel exciting and new, but not necessarily look all new.”

To reflect the hotel’s 140-year heritage David Collins Studio has created a chic ‘aged’ panelling, and the key architectural features are emphasised, using classic materials such as bevelled glass, leather, embossed walls and plaster mouldings.

To address the need for Artesian to perform as a space throughout the day, ambiance will be created with lighting. Light levels will be closely and sensitively controlled throughout the day, windows have been opened up, creating new views. Dark colours classically associated with bars have been rejected in favour of new, pale panelled walls, which serve as a backdrop to focal points picked out in more eye-catching colours.

The sense of luxury and style that befits a 5-star London hotel will be built up through the use of tone-on-tone colours, offset with subtle art, finishes and furniture. Rich contemporary textiles, such as leathers and suedes, as well as more traditional linens and Broderie Anglaise, will be translated for use throughout the scheme – even for staff uniforms.

David Collins Studio will be involved in every detail, from tableware and linens, to china and uniforms, to make Artesian a smart city destination that not only reflects the hotel’s pedigree, but which is also very much of its time.

The London hospitality specialists, the Gorgeous Group, are currently working on the new style and service aspects of the bar, alongside the bar’s existing team. Artesian will have a strong cocktail concept which will specialise in rum, whisky and champagne. There will also be a grazing menu which will change throughout the day. The Gorgeous Group has been involved in the creation of some of London’s most popular bars, including The Bar at The Dorchester, Hakkasan and the new Galvin Bar at Galvins at Windows.

For the Langham’s restaurant, David Collins’ designs will create a striking new street entrance from Portland Place. As with the bar, the designs for the restaurant and the adjacent King’s Room will take into account the influence of the architecture and colourful history that is so much part of the Langham’s story, as well as the need for a space that will be used all day – from a stunning breakfast to an elegant evening meal. Fabrics will be bespoke, and the lighting will play a key role in scene-setting and evoking a sense of the change of the day.

For information on the The Langham Hotel, London, please visit:

About Langham
Langham has a legendary hotel heritage dating back to 1865 when the The Langham Hotel in London originally opened as Europe’s first Grand Hotel. For 140 years, this flagship hotel has been at the forefront of sophisticated and gracious hospitality. Today, all Langham Hotels worldwide inherit the same philosophy that reflects elegance, continuous innovation and genuine hospitality creating a truly unique hotel experience

About Langham Hotels International:Langham Hotels International (LHI) features six properties with over 2,700 rooms in five gateway cities across the four continents, namely, London, Boston, Hong Kong (2), Melbourne and Auckland. In each city Langham Hotels is associated with the prestigious “The Leading Hotels of the World” group which represents some of the world’s finest luxury hotels.

LHI is wholly owned by Great Eagle Holdings Limited a publicly listed company (HKSE: 41) which was founded in 1963 and was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 1972.

About the Author: Winnie Tang is the Public Relations Manager of Langham Hotels International, a new international luxury hotel brand, offering innovative hospitality based on Langham’s 140 years of legendary heritage.

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