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University of Nottingham opens new eco-friendly hotel
The University of Nottingham has opened its first four-star hotel named The Orchard Hotel with stylish, contemporary interiors designed by Graven Images.
Located adjacent to the East Midlands Conference Centre, the £20 million ($30.1 million) eco-friendly hotel is designed for both business and leisure visitors. Spread over 330 acres of lush landscape, The Orchard Hotel was aimed at creating a contemporary, upscale venue suited to the social and working needs of the nearby East Midlands Conference Centre, located at Nottingham University.
According to the architects, the main concept of the design was to relate the interiors to the surrounding parkland of Nottingham University campus, one of the largest in the UK, and to complement the sustainable architecture of the hotel. At the same time the interiors needed to be accessible and hard-working, supporting the social and functional needs.
Throughout the interiors, Graven Images has introduced a contemporary design, which complements the bold exterior by RHWL Architects. Features and materials used reflect the immediate natural surroundings, with extensive use of timber, a warm colour scheme of earthy tones across all furnishings, and wallpaper produced from photographs taken of the neighbouring woodland.
The 202-room hotel features a spacious and multi-functional lobby housed in an atrium which is flooded with natural light. Several geometrical pieces of furniture are featured in this space, including a reception desk made of English oak; a library; and a freestanding bar situated between the reception area and the 120-seat brasserie-style restaurant.
Public areas across the ground level have been adorned with art and crafts designed by independent artists discovered at an exhibition held at Nottingham’s Lakeside Arts Centre. Along with various objects, such as books and plates, several collections of intricate pieces were especially commissioned to represent the hotel’s ethos, natural surroundings and location.
Among the selected works for the hotel reception area are 25 illustrative ceramic and photographic pieces designed by award-winning Nottingham artist Anna Collette Hunt. Her work for The Orchard Hotel includes unique wall plates and dishes, some of which are inspired by natural history. These pieces are complemented by a series of hand-made plates and jugs with nature-themed motifs by Ken Eardley.
Sarah Thirlwell’s hand-turned wooden pieces complete the selection of commissioned artwork on display at The Orchard Hotel. Placed in the library, her vessels and vases are made of recycled yoghurt pots and reclaimed materials.
The hotel is also equipped with photovoltaic panels and energy-efficient systems to help reduce carbon emissions and maximise the use of natural sources of energy.
Registered in England and Wales No : 06339167
Registered Office : John Carpenter House, John Carpenter Street, London EC4Y 0AN, UK
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