PointOfView carries out the interior lighting design project at new Hotel Hotel in Canberra
Marcos Elliott and his team at PointOfView Lighting are delighted to announce their work on Hotel Hotel, in NewActon, the cultural heart of Australia’s capital, Canberra. Hotel Hotel is the latest from the Australian based Molonglo Group, which wholeheartedly celebrates sustainability, community, diversity and lifestyle.
“Our lighting brief was pretty open, but Nectar Efkarpidis, Director of Molonglo Group, had a vision of a hotel unlike any other. He wanted a sanctuary from the norm, like a luxury shack in the city,” said Mark Elliott, director of POV.
Hotel Hotel’s 68 rooms and 31 apartments have been interior designed, within an envelope by Fender Katselidis Architects, by the London-based Don Cameron. It was an inspired choice of designer and no two rooms are alike. Bespoke furniture, natural materials, art and ‘Objets Trouvé’ feature throughout and the spectacular entrance staircase is handcrafted from salvaged timbers.
From the very earliest meetings it was clear from the client’s passion and the caliber of the design team being assembled, that design excellence was key. “March Studio are well known for their design of the Aesop stores, and have an amazing ability to see design in inanimate objects” said Elliott. Don Cameron comes from a music video direction background and it is his aesthetic that brings the shabby-chic to Hotel Hotel. Cameron is working closely with Nectar and the Management team on the guestrooms, public space, soft furnishing and styling.
“The combination of these two designers with the architecture by Fender Katsalidis has delivered an amazing space for us to light,” said Elliott. Equally important was sustainability, and Molonglo have the conviction to follow through with ecological ambitions and their associated additional costs.
“For instance, as a lighting designer, I still love the quality of light delivered via a halogen lamp, but this was quashed following direction from Nectar, who held strong on his desire to create a sustainable project, and we used LEDs throughout instead,” Said Elliott.
The Hotel is located on three floors within the Nishi residential building on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin, a 15-minute bike ride from the Bush and two hours from Australia’s premier ski ranges.
“Everyone knows how important lighting is to a space, and especially in hospitality where you want to make everyone feel and look their best,” said Elliott. “At the same time, architects and designers want to minimize the visual impact of light fittings in their space, and this is why we have a philosophy of always trying to integrate the light.”
However, on the Hotel Hotel project POV had clear instructions not to present a ‘slick design’. It had to be more ‘honest’ in it’s delivery, and consequently the lighting scheme became a careful balance of integrated design and purposefully obvious fittings that chime with the interiors.
“As an example in the guest rooms there are integrated cove and joinery details to provide ambient light and to accent the raw materials used, whilst the down lights are surface-mounted spots with a custom bracket so they don’t look out of place on the concrete slab. This is critical for the daytime appearance of the rooms. The night-time experience is very sexy.” said Elliott.
Unlike when working for big hotel chains where blanket standards for light levels are often higher than a lighting designer might think necessary, this project was about trying to push the limits of darkness and functionality.
Canberra is known as the Bush Capital and is surrounded by eucalyptus forests and wildlife. The NewActon precinct is Canberra’s new cultural hub, hailed as a cool new precinct where arts, business, local community and university life mingle.
POV have considerable experience in hospitality and they know that often, to achieve something different they need to approach it from a new perspective. “This is really something out of the ordinary – and we have it right here in Australia!” said a delighted Elliott.
Information & images by courtesy of PointOfView
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