The aim was to reinterpret the brutalist aesthetic of the building and the immediate architectural landscape of Brunkebergstorg Square in a way that felt relevant, comfortable and contemporary. Collectively we agreed on ideas for the larger scale pieces in the lobby and public spaces as we needed to make sure the architecture was accommodating but as far as the actual selection of specific works went, it was all on Sune who did a brilliant job.
Can you tell us more about the Stockholm elements in the design?
Some elements tie the hotel to the city and local area more literally – For example the Swedish leather from the Tarnsjo tannery to the north of the city wrapped around the staircase handrail and on the restaurant banquettes, the bespoke lighting by Swedish lighting company Rubn whose standard range of contemporary fittings evoke a sense of quintessential Stockholm design and the commissioned table in the wine bar carved from a single Stockholm Elm tree by local artist Lies Marie Hoffman.
We wanted every room to feel like a suite so even in the smallest of standard rooms we have clear hallway, sleeping and living zones.
All standard rooms incorporate a full length marble credenza that doubles up as desk with a lounge seating area comprising a custom designed sofa and well stocked minibar and drinks area. Working within a period building we felt it important to establish an interior that felt authentic in character and felt like it was built to last.
The castle is mirrored in the surrounding lake; a facade of lost romance perfect to celebrate the melancholy of the season.
You can't help yourself fantasizing about the rustling of leaves and skirts strolling in the park in a secret rendezvous after the ball ...
We have also managed to balance diversity and coherence in the public spaces so the experience as a whole feels tied together all the while offering variety and contrast. We find the Scandinavian design aesthetic very seductive and we certainly researched and referenced the work of Scandinavian architects and designers in preparation for creating the concept.
I also really like the calming influence of Mar Whispering, Jaume Plensa’s 2.5 metre high marble head situated on our grand staircase. However right from the start we focused on building a hotel that had it’s own unique aesthetic and in terms of design felt befitting for an international city which Stockholm is.
We also needed to consider the scale of the head which was a special commission – making sure that it worked for people viewing the piece from the ground floor, the first floor and how it felt to move around as people ascended the staircase.