CitizenM, UK

March 13, 2017

concrete design studio collaborates once again with hotel group CitizenM on its Tower of London project, using light to help guests find their rhythm away from routine.

As co-creators of CitizenM hotel concepts since the hospitality group’s conception in 2005, Amsterdam-based studio concrete stands as part of CitizenM’s Creative Board. Meeting every month to look over all on-going projects, CitizenM’s Tower of London hotel was no exception to the creative achievements of this collaboration.

With open design briefs from the start, concrete has always worked to the idea that CitizenM is not a hotel. Over the years, this idea has given them the freedom to reconsider every aspect of what a hotel should be, and change things along the way. The same approach was taken with Tower of London, as the team worked intently on every creative element of the project – from the concept design of the architecture to the interior design of all public areas and guestrooms.

While every CitizenM hotel has the same DNA, they are always unique in their adaptation of local context and changing needs. As a follow up to the successful CitizenM Bankside in London, Tower of London is a bigger and improved version, now standing as CitizenM’s flagship hotel in London.

Tower of London’s lighting design consists of a series of layers, starting with downlighting for ambient lighting, indirect lighting of cabinet and art walls, accent lighting for playful accents and a series of designer and bespoke pendant lighting to highlight the different areas within the hotel. All lighting is part of a lighting management system developed by TDE lighting, which enables CitizenM to have different light settings through the day.

The lighting helps guide guests to make their way through the lobby to the hotel’s living room, where Tom Dixon’s copper and brass Etch shades offer a warm glow to make guests feel instantly at home in a thoughtful and modern setting. The ground floor also hosts one of CitizenM’s latest ideas, the CoffeeM café, where Modernica’s Nelson Bubble lamps and Gubi’s BL2 table lamps offer a little something extra as CitizenM maintains its strong lighting plan that uses decorative lighting to provide accentuation and personality where necessary.

The surprises continue upstairs to the hotel’s rooftop, as CitizenM’s SocietyM bar transforms the rooftop into a bar at night, boasting views of London’s cityscape to make the most of the hotel’s surroundings. For this space, concrete designed large bespoke lanterns, produced and developed by Frandsen lighting, which are visible from street level, marking the rooftop from a distance. Elsewhere in the rooftop bar, Anglepoise’s Giant 1227 pendant and Moooi’s Proplight and Dear Ingo fixtures feature to perfect the space’s ambient evening glow.

As with all CitizenM hotels, each guest room is controlled with a tablet mood pad, allowing guests control over their individual environment. They can dim or colour the lights, close the curtains and maintain climate control all from one device, giving them freedom to feel at home away from home. This synchronicity with a circadian rhythm helps guests combat the disruption from routine that travel often brings, using light to help them find comfort and relaxation.

concrete’s Project Architect Maarten de Geus said: “With CitizenM, we always try to create a home away from home: a living room feel filled with art, books and colourful surprises to elevate and inspire our guests.”

Tower of London is a perfect example of this in its use of decorative lighting to create an atmosphere that allows guests to find their place of comfort away from all their comforts.