Ham Yard Hotel in London is the result of an inspired and eclectic vision from Kit Kemp of Firmdale Hotels. In a space that feels more like a friend’s house than a hotel, Lighting Design International (LDI) was brought on board by the hotel group to work on this latest boutique project, having previously worked on The Potting Shed restaurant at Firmdale’s Dorset Square Hotel.
LDI worked to create a combination of concealed lighting effects to complement the decorative elements without dominating the space. Architectural lighting in the form of Lucent Prospex 90 pinhole LED50 downlights, were discreetly integrated into ceiling slots and joinery wherever possible throughout the public spaces – allowing the feature chandeliers and quirky neon light art to make a statement on the design as a whole, adding depth to the spaces by complementing the vibrant colourful interior finishes.
With large pieces of art featured throughout the hotel, particularly the retro film posters that hang beneath a triple height ceiling, the project was a challenge to light. Notably, in the Dive Bar and meeting room breakout lobby, single and twin custom LED DR7 downlights from Remote Controlled Lighting are used to illuminate the tall spaces. For the oversized artwork featured in the meeting room breakout lobby, iGuzzini Palco MT58 LED spotlights featuring a 10Ëš angle and barn doors are used for framing purposes.
As you move through to the brasserie and bar, Tryka 2,700K linear LED fixtures are used in the coffers and integrated into the banquette and bar fronts, shelving and bottle backlighting. Then, in the dining space, a Firmdale-designed art installation of ceramic vases, fitted into wall niches, features on the restaurant’s back wall. It was agreed to uplight the vases from within, creating a soft warm glow and to achieve this, a Toshiba E-Core GLS wide 7W dimmable lamp was fitted in each niche.Each ceramic vase is hollowed in the base and mounted on top of the lamp and the lamp cap and heat sink are sunken to avoid shadowing. The result is a warm understated lighting element that complements other features in the space.
Ham Yard also comes complete with a bowling alley, which makes use of lit brick wall niches at the end of the bowling lanes; lit up to create the effect of moving glowing candles. After much discussion and testing of fibre optic and LEDs, the glowing candle effect was achieved by using LED Feeling’s Flame Bulbs and the Ultimate Beeswax Candle sleeves.
Large prints by artist Howard Hodgkins decorate the bowling alley, all of which are lit by Lucent Prospex Plus wallwash trimless fixtures and Xicato XSM Artist Series LED modules. Moving outside, the courtyard terrace is a public thoroughfare in the heart of bustling Soho, drawing people through the arcade into the hotel courtyard by creating a river of lights recessed into the ground. For this, Cube marker lights in a winding stream pattern, that goes through the arcade to the courtyard, are featured. Above, warm white ERCO cylinder façade luminaires are found while under-canopy DAL Ambiance X100 Directional ID44 LED Xicato downlights in cool ambience surround the entrance to the hotel apartments.
On the whole, the design of the hotel owes its success to a true collaboration between decorative and architectural lighting, which leaves guests with the impression of being in a truly unique environment, which is fun, cutting-edge and unpretentious.