The Londoner, Edwardian Hotels' newest address in Leister Square, is redefining this corner of the West End with the help of Yabu Pushelberg
When thinking of a location for one of London’s premium hotel openings, the mind does not immediately land on Leicester Square. But it’s here that The Londoner – the latest offering from Edwardian Hotels, has recently opened its doors. The 16-storey building, designed by Woods Bagot with interiors by Yabu Pushelberg, is a sanctuary from the grit of neighbouring Soho and Picadilly Circus. Inside, the contrast is clear: tasteful, contemporary rooms and a buzzing restaurant worthy of its own trip into town have prompted a rethink of what it means to have a Leicester Square address.
Yabu Pushelberg worked with a design concept that plays with the hotel’s storied location within London’s West End. Billed as ‘an ode to the art of performance’, the building has its own theatricality at 32 metres high, as well as subterranean space descending 32 metres below ground.
The hotel lobby is an immediate reprieve from the charged atmosphere outside the door, with a calm, unobtrusive space for guests to check in remotely using a mobile before passing through a lounge and bar, where valets are ready to show guests to their rooms. The standout feature on this level is by far an oversized floating metallic moonhead by artist Andrew Rae. That, and Whitcomb’s, the hotel’s all-day dining spot which has proven to be a draw of its own.
Down a gestural staircase, a custom chandelier from Yabu Pushelberg’s Cipher collection for Lasvit descends four stories through a series of carefully rendered event spaces, including discreet, contemporary meeting rooms, screening rooms, a ballroom and the curved lines and soft, shadowy light of The Green Room members area. With so much of this hotel’s offer housed underground, including The Retreat spa, the lighting is carefully designed to create mood and variation throughout the spaces.
So tricky to get right, perhaps one of the most striking features of this hotel are the hallways leading to 350 guest suites. Glossy lacquer doors in punchy, vintage tones introduce what is a minimal yet interesting material palette in the rooms. Wainscoting wood veneer, colour-blocking and graphic elements come together for a cohesive effect.