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|Client:||The Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels|
Our brief for The Peninsula London was to create a hotel and residences of exceptional quality. Looking across three Royal Parks as well as the grounds of nearby Buckingham Palace, The Peninsula London faces Wellington Arch and surrounding public space. The unique context and history of this site have been carefully explored and are reflected in the architectural design, detailing and a materials palette which is limited to the highest quality materials typical to the area.
The form of The Peninsula London has been inspired by the Palazzo Farnese in Rome - a ‘four square’ building with streets to either side, facing onto a public space and overlooking greenery to the rear elevation. It is simply and logically organised on four wings with eight levels of accommodation arranged around the central courtyard. At the upper levels the building sets back to create a series of planted terraces and beautiful external spaces, and to create bar and restaurant space with leafy views over Hyde Park. A further five floors sit below ground and house a spectacular double-height ballroom, The Peninsula Spa and Wellness Centre, facilities for the Residences, as well as car parking and hotel servicing. A discrete residential drop-off and entrance are located on Halkin Street under a set-back colonnade, sitting a storey below the hotel courtyard.
The scale and ambition of this building presented us with an extraordinary design challenge; to ensure that the complex functional requirements and back-of-house operations can run in perfect tandem with the idea of a bespoke, hand-made building which expresses luxury at every turn and creates a welcoming and memorable experience for each and every resident or guest. Four vertical cores provide all the servicing needed for the eight upper floors and the four principal below ground levels, with servicing, kitchens and plant rooms all strategically located to ensure the smooth day-to-day running of the hotel. A separate service ramp keeps deliveries away from the courtyard and guest areas.
The facades are composed of Basebed Portland Stone, historically used on London’s monuments and major civic buildings, and generously proportioned to create a sense of permanence and solidity. Throughout the building, materials have been chosen for their warm, elegant or tactile properties. Canopies and glazing are framed in bronze. The entrance courtyard features hand crafted granite paving and 125 year old Japanese Maple trees.
After defining the spatial arrangement and scale of the functions, Hopkins Architects has co-ordinated and detailed the internal architecture to ensure that the final product is seamless and consistent in its vision of a new luxury aesthetic for London.