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A Living Room

When designing a living room, the first step is to figure out what the focal point is going to be, whether it’s a fireplace, a piece of art or a great view. Choosing your focal point will help you to decide where to centre your seating area.

The Drawing Room at The Soho Hotel is a long, wide space, so it is important to draw the eye through the length of the room. Your eye is immediately pulled towards Breon O’Casey’s Aphrodite sculpture right in the centre, almost as if she’s greeting you. Aphrodite is framed by light from the windows behind her.

There are two large stone fireplaces which allows us to create two different seating areas. A beautiful Scandinavian table with a chess board works well as a room divider.

In the Drawing Room at Ham Yard Hotel it’s all about the detail. The scheme is inspired by folk art from around the world. A hand-painted 1835 marriage cabinet takes centre stage besides a striking painting by Eileen Cooper.

The vibrant colours of folk art are echoed in the Turnell & Gigon crewel-work fabric on one sofa, and a Raoul African Asafo-inspired fabric on the opposite sofa. If you’re new to colour, why not cover a favourite chair in a statement fabric or design that will raise an eyebrow. It will make a room fun and interesting.

Overhead hang three magnificent crystal-beaded galleon chandeliers. A small detail like these can provide the lyrical element that brings a whole room to life. It captures your imagination and it’s the thing you always remember.

When faced with a large empty space, the prospect of creating a warm atmosphere can seem daunting. A clever trick is to use over-scaled furniture to play with the proportions of a spacious room. Use large sofas, large chairs and large lamps – it will make the room seem instantly cosier.

Empty wall space can make a room feel cold and unloved. At Charlotte Street Hotel, a collection of Bloomsbury artworks bring a sense of colour and life into the Drawing Room. Over-scaled pictures or mirrors will make a room appear bigger.

Finally, the floor – a rug always works well as a frame for the seating area. It makes for a more unified space, bringing the scheme together. At Charlotte Street Hotel we commissioned a special Duncan Grant inspired rug to complement the palette of the artworks. The simple change of introducing a new carpet or rug can make a tremendous difference and can revive a room.

Pop into a Firmdale Hotel soon for a cup of tea in any of our drawing rooms to get a sense of how we design a living space.

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