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café royal - 5 star luxury hotel
place:londra, regno unito
project:david chipperfield architects
buyer:café royal
lighting project:mario nanni
Viabizzuno reseller:Viabizzuno uk
technical sales consultant:Viabizzuno inlondra, inlondra@viabizzuno.com
photos:UpO Viabizzuno
the historical and prestigious café royal re-opened in the heart of london: as a five-stars luxury hotel, a restaurant, a bar and a café design by david chipperfield architects in collaboration with donald insall associates architecture studio, specialized in historical building renovation. opened for the first time in 1865, café royal was for decades a meeting point of the stylish london, writers and artists. among the habitué, there were oscar wilde, arthur conan doyle, george bernard shaw, rudyard kipling and w. b. yeats. after the renovation in twenties, the hotel prestige growth along with the clients, that often included royals. in thirties and fourties also virginia woolf and winston churchill, among the others, used to have dinner in the hotel restaurant. the magnetic charme of the café remained untouched until the early XX century, when the entrance was crossed by famous women and actresses like brigitte bardot and elizabeth tayor, sport and music stars like mick jagger and muhammed alì and by all the spokespersons of the new avant-garde movement in sixties. david chipperfield studio has been commissioned to bring the prestigious structure back to life, creating a perfect balance between XXI century style and the majestic historical halls dated back to years around 1860 and 1920. the new elegant rooms and suites, among which the six ‘historical’ suites that recalls the past glory of café royal, have been designed in contemporary style, characterized by a refined simplicity and finished with awesome classical elements such as stone and copper. the need to mediate between the past splendour and the requirements of a modern structure also involved the lighting choices; Viabizzuno designed and engineered with david chipperfield architects the custom-made light fittings to all café royal spaces. particular attention has been given to the light fittings finishes, to the materials used, to the light sources in order to remain loyal to the historicity of the spaces. the lamp family, called royal in honor of the hotel and designed by david chipperfield and mario nanni, has elements in common, for example the hidden source and a metal conical reflector for indirect light. the light fittings have been produced in several versions (recessed, ceiling, wall, suspension and floor) and with various finishes, designed according to the hotel area they were addressed to. in particular, brass has been used for the historical ones. in these areas, decorated by paintings, finishes in gold and wood, was essential to have a warm light, dimmable, similar to candlelight. were also identified different types of light sources, halogen and led, depending on the use of each room. in the historical spaces, adorned by elegant heights, the royal grand chandelier suspension lamp has been used, while the architectural spaces with lower ceilings, like bar and retail spaces, were illuminated by royal incasso rhythming ‘scenographically’ these areas, thanks to their feature to integrate into architecture. for the wellness and spa areas the light fittings of royal family were modified on purpose to include also emergency light.

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