#10MINSWITH: HOXTON DESIGNER CHARLIE NORTH

If you’ve never been to visit or stay at The Hoxton, we strongly recommend that you do. The beautiful interiors are a great place to take inspiration from for your own home.

Located in Holborn, Shoreditch and Amsterdam (with more locations launching this year) each hotel is designed to be different by taking inspiration from the architecture and neighborhoods that they’re part of. The Hoxton Holborn is relaxed with a fun and urban industrial style. The dim lighting, dark woods and leather make the public bar and restaurant a warm and comfortable environment, and the bedrooms offer crisp white sheets and pops of colour with statement cushions and quirky artwork. As soon as you enter the building it’s hard to not instantly flop into a chair and round up the cocktails…the atmosphere is cleverly bustling but still calm. Everyone is there to simply hang out and chill.

Beautiful statement lights illuminate every space, the bathrooms stand out in bright monochrome chevron tiles, circular mirrors and scrapwood walls – an RSG dream!

As part of our ongoing love affair with the Hoxton we wanted to find out and share with you a little bit more about the interiors. We took 10 to catch up with the design director at Ennismore (the masterminds behind each Hoxton masterpiece…) Charlie North.

CHARLIE NORTH 10 MINS main

1. Before you even started planning the design of each room, what did you want for people to get out of their experience at the Hoxton?

First and foremost we want people to feel at home when they come through our doors. Whether they choose to work, sleep or play, the important thing is that they enjoy doing it with us and feel welcome. Part of The Hox fam, if you will.

2. You have a lovely motto for the hotel, to make people ‘feel like a local in the neighbourhood they are visiting.’ This really resonated with us, because it’s so important to feel comfortable in your own living space. What tips can you give to people who want to express their personality through their decor?

Our best bit of advice would be to keep your architectural finishes simple and let the furniture, fabrics and artwork talk the loudest. If you’re like us, your tastes and style will evolve over time, and this will give you the ability to be flexible, and switch out items that date quickly, or include new fun pieces and local artists whenever you find those exciting gems.

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3. We always come away from The Hoxton feeling as though we’ve visually experienced a lot in a short space of time. You manage to create very different yet connected looks in your hotels. How can people bring this feeling into their own homes?

One of our core business values is “be bold”. Trust your instincts and don’t be afraid to commit to what you like!

4. What was your favourite room to design at the Hoxton, and why?

Within our design team we have a strong group of talented people. We all have our own expertise and experiences in different areas which helps us provide a balance across the different areas. We certainly spend a lot of time getting our bedrooms right – building mock up rooms is an important part of the process to ensure the space functions seamlessly as well as looks outstanding and will stand the test of time. But we love designing the lobbies! It’s so important to get the atmosphere correct, and transferable from day-time to night-time. The trick is creating spaces which are dual function – relaxed in the mornings and buzzy in the evenings.

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5. Where would your ideal hotel location be?

All of our locations are ideal for us! One of Hoxton’s basic principles is to build hotels in places we love. What will be unveiled in the next 18 months will be a continuation of our dream locations. WATCH THIS SPACE.

6. When piecing together the room design, where did you look to for your main inspiration?

We’ve spent years finessing what we want to achieve functionally from the room, but at every new hotel we get to play with the finishes and aesthetics. All of our rooms are different shapes and sizes, so once we’ve had fun juggling the furniture around and tweaking the bathroom dimensions we can really get stuck into local influences and references. We look for colour palettes and materials in the local environments and artists in the local neighbourhoods. It’s always fascinating speaking to artists from the neighbourhood who offer a world of insight into the direction for art and those homely touches, notwithstanding turning to our architectural practices who delve into the history of our buildings and sites.

7. We have to talk lights! The Hoxton has it totally covered. What’s your first thought when you have to tackle the lighting?

Lighting lighting lighting. It’s the key to a successful space, and we are all obsessed with it. Even our headquarters in Clerkenwell is something beautiful in the evening. We avoid overhead lighting as much as possible. Keep it low and make it moody!

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8. We’d probably describe your style as ‘Urban Luxe’ (which we love!), can you give our readers 5 key items that are a must-have for this type of decor?

– Lampshades! Keep them soft to diffuse the light beautifully
– Low level furniture
– A good rug
– Some beautiful art
– Get some greenery in there! Even an urban space needs some life, and we love a good plant.

9. The event space where we held our first event doubles as an evening party space, and your hotel lobbies are never just lobbies – they provide amazing areas for leisure and drinks. Can you give us any tips on transforming rooms in our home into great entertainment areas?

Keep it homely, and don’t try too hard. The key will be setting the mood with your lighting and getting a great sound system and some amazing playlists.

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10. What top 5 pieces of advice can you give to someone who is unsure of how to express their interior style?

– Be bold
– Be confident with your choices
– Find inspiration! We all need help some times.
– Make mood boards – see how it all comes together.
– Bounce ideas off your friends, design is about collaboration.

Finally, a few quick fire questions!

I’m happiest when I’m: Drinking coffee or having breakfast in a new city (in the sun)
My biggest guilty pleasure is: Love hearts… we have jars of sweets in the office which is causing problems for my blood sugar levels.
My favourite magazine is: Cereal, a lifestyle magazine for the beautiful imagery
If money was no object I would: Buy a weekend beach house to recharge by the sea!
My best skill is: Creative problem solving
My personal motto is: Do it better
My latest obsession: Nike+ fitness app!
My favourite film is: Aviator
My go to track: Alt-J, Breezeblocks
In 5 years I’d like to: Refurbish an old property. Or buy a beach house…


Our first ever customer events were held this year at the Hoxton in Holborn, and were a huge success thanks to not only the amazing turnout, but because the whole place looked beautiful too. You can read our Q + A with interiors stylist Lucy Gough who attended our latest event, and watch the video here.

 

 

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