The redesign of the Royal Lancaster has been one of London’s largest hotel refurbishment projects in recent years. It has included a dramatic new entrance façade of curved glass and bronze, which has enabled a complete re-planning of the inside ground floor areas, which are now over 60% more spacious. There is a new reception, new ground level bar, generous lounge areas, a new reception area for the Nine King’s banqueting suite and a beautiful new Carrara marble staircase that sweeps upwards to the first-floor restaurants and bar, and downwards to the Westbourne Suite below. All 411 guestrooms and suites within the 18-storey tower have been redesigned.When the project completes this autumn, the main dining room and the lounge bar on the first floor will also have been transformed.
Working in close collaboration with the in-house hotel team, interior design company Studio Proof began with a branding study to establish the particular values of this mid-20th century property in order to inform the design rationale. The result has been a three-year onsite programme – with the hotel remaining operational throughout – raising it to a new level of luxury. The new design recaptures, in a thoroughly modern way, the midcentury ‘cool’ of Royal Lancaster London’s heyday when it was a location for The Italian Job and a milieu for the likes of The Beatlesand young royals.
Without changing the footprint of the standard guestrooms, Studio Proof’s redesign has transformed them into spaces full of light and a sense of place. The palette is restrained; lime-washed pale oak and textured neutrals pervade, enlivened by accents of colour, which give a nod to the view outside. In the bathrooms, white marble lines the walls and vanity surfaces, providing a dynamic contrast to the stunning Antonio Citterio designed Hansgrohe tapware in the shower area.
Similar in style to the guestrooms, the Park and Spire Suites sit at opposite ends of the tower. The beauty of their positioning means that they each benefit from dual or treble aspects as well as substantially more floor area. Situated on the top floor, the two expansive 69 sq m and 83 sq m signature suites are the jewels in the crown. In both, dark American walnut panelling extends from floor-to-ceiling, creating a rich backdrop for sumptuous upholstery, celebrated furniture pieces and modern artwork.