The design team at No Chintz had the pleasure of being invited to visit the Solus Ceramics showroom in London last week. The space, which is located in the heart of Clerkenwell, is shared between two floors, connected with an impressive brutalist staircase. Solus products have been incorporated throughout the interior design, in numerous and inventive iterations, such as large format bespoke table tops and seamless wall finishes.
The space has been designed to feel relaxed and informal, in contrast to the traditional perception of a showroom. Consideration has been taken in the spatial planning to reflect key areas within the home, echoing the family -run nature of the company. This feeling was extended by the warm welcome the No Chintz team received from the Solus representatives, and the informative showroom tour.
This design narrative; emulating rooms within the home, is something which we as a studio have explored in workplace and hospitality design. Spatial zoning such as this can stimulate visitors’ senses in different ways and for different purposes. For Solus, these key areas create settings for a variety of clients and group sizes, ensuring that meetings can be tailored for individuals requirements. For example one space might encourage socialisation and collaboration, and another might be more suitable for a one-to-one consultation. The design team came away with lots of inspiration (and lots of samples!)
This was followed by a tour of the F&B environments at The Ace Hotel in Shoreditch. The lobby and bar have been designed to welcome and encourage local freelancers to utilise the space, giving visitors a true sense of East London’s creative community.
This has been achieved largely with furniture. Low key lounge seating surrounds the perimeter of the space and low level lighting furthers this casual tone. The style of service from the waiting staff is very unassuming, hotel guests and visitors are invited to use the space with no expectation of purchasing a meal, and no restriction on dwell time. A sharing table, seating around 16 people has library style lighting and plenty of power sockets, making it the perfect place to work.
The Ace, who are an American brand, have taken every opportunity to incorporate input from local artists, designers, and operators. In doing so, they have ingratiated themselves within the local community and as a brand are able to evolve and grow accordingly, with an invaluable insight into cultural trends.
Other highlights of the day included a visit to the Frederica showroom to see some beautiful furniture pieces (and a much appreciated ice cold beer!), a visit to House of Toogood, lunch at Boxpark, a walk along Southbank to The Tate Modern and a stop off at Material Lab.
A special thanks to Solus Ceramics for organising the trip!