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THDP designs Pigeon Post Bar and Eatery at Hilton Cologne

Hospitality experts THDP have revealed their design for the new Pigeon Post Bar & Eatery at Hilton Cologne, referencing the building’s long history as a post office.

13/01/2022 2 min read
central bar

Project Team

  • Client

    Hilton Hotels

  • Designers


  • Main Contractors

    Hagenauer Group

  • Furniture

    Stellar Works, Parla Design, Hagenauer Group,

  • Lighting

    Decor Amo, Anglepoise, Lee Broom, Il Fanale, Marset, Insight Cordless

  • Surfaces

    Dekton by Cosentino, Neolith, Flukso, Sekers, Kvadrat, Naturtex

  • Flooring

    Brintons Carpets

Once home to Cologne’s postal savings bank, the building was a post office in the early 1950s through to the late 1990s – finally gutted and converted into the Hilton Hotel in 2002. Nestled in the vibrant city centre, the hotel’s lobby, bar and social space have been redesigned and refurbished by THDP, with the Pigeon Post as a social and culinary centrepiece. Inspired by the building’s history, the combination restaurant, bar, lounge and working area incorporates quirky, vintage details with considered, contemporary design.

A feature central bar with a prominent overhead gantry in wood and copper sets the scene for the industrial styling, with faux marble tabletops, wooden panelling and a simple earthy palette of blue greens, mustard expressing the previous functionality of the building.

The restaurant bar was built with a total of 110 seats, from stylish Stellar Works bar stools to intimately lit custom half-moon booths fabricated by Hagenauer.

Curating the artwork and accessories sprang from the narrative of the F&B concept – an early choice by THDP was to reuse obsolete German 70s office equipment and furnishings and re-appropriate them in a relevant contemporary way. Vintage mechanical typewriters, light fittings and objet d’art (including wooden pigeons) were curated to offer an ornamental talking point for guests. Signage is taken from post office graphics mimicking postal or travel signage – using post marks and postage stamps.

In the social hub and working area, mixed media artworks recall the graphics of old German post offices and typewriters are mounted in glass display cases on the wall, complete with love letters left unfinished.  Writing counters offer guests a chance to pick up a free postcard and write a letter to a loved one – which the hotel then posts for free.

Photography: Stefan Bunkofer

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