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Bonkers for Banquettes


Space saving yet space maximising, banquette seating is a truly wonderful design feature. Whether in a bustling bar or calming bedroom retreat, we hope this round up of our favourite banquettes shows you how to make the most of any space…

The Soho Hotel

The Crimson Bar almost feels like an old fashioned speakeasy, tucked away yet full of energy and excitement. The Pierre Frey fabric lined walls add to the atmosphere as you listen to your favourite tunes on the original jukebox.

Round tables are lined on one side of the room with little stools and a long banquette covered in a fun woven stripe with earthy browns, yellows and reds. The seating is entirely open plan, designed with the idea of unity with those you are sharing the space with. To bring out the namesake of the bar, bright pops of crimson red cushions line the back of the seating.

Outside the hotel, at the entrance of Refuel Bar, a little benched seating area greets you as you arrive. A cosy nook either side of the door provides the perfect perch as you wait for your table. We covered this in my new outdoor version of ‘Lost & Found’. The construction of this fabric means come rain or shine, it can stay outside all year long, offering a wonderful alfresco spot no matter the weather.

Knightsbridge Hotel

If you have a nook available in a room, whether a bedroom, entrance hall or drawing room, it can be all too easy to place an item of furniture there. In room 107 at Knightsbridge Hotel, the room narrows slightly to create a lovely nook which would be too small to fill with a bulky sofa. Instead we created a wonderful benched seating area, perfect for breakfast, supper or even watching a film with your feet up.

We created an entirely separate area from the bedroom section, where the walling is an ocean blue linen from Romo, a favourite due to its beautiful two toned weave.

The walling in the seating area is in a delightful jewel coloured diamond design by Lewis and Wood, with a smart tailored weave below. Joyful bursts of sunset orange from my ‘Inside Out’ design picks out the orange gems in the wall fabric. Two little wall lights either side of the shutter clad windows are the cherry on top of this perfect nook set up.

Dorset Square Hotel

The Potting Shed at Dorset Square Hotel is the perfect example of how different areas can be created by using architectural features in clever ways. In the bar area, there are two beautiful domed alcoves which would have once been the old coal cellars in times past.

Instead of hiding these, we have celebrated them by creating two delightful seating areas with large tables and comfy banquette seating, newly revamped in a fantastic Pierre Frey crewel woven fabric, in a combination of sage greens, lemon yellows, raspberry pinks and sky blues.

If chairs had been put in this small nook, it would have been very crowded for two, and really just one person would fit comfortably. A banquette really does economise on space – two guests can more than comfortably sit here and enjoy a supper for four.

Covent Garden Hotel

We believe bedrooms aren’t just for resting your head, and try to incorporate everyday life into them as much as possible.

In this romantic room at the top of the hotel, blushes of pinks, greens, yellows and blues make up the colour palette of the room, where my Ashenwood fabric design is the star of the show. A little window area was created to make the most of the shape of this room. Smart striped wool was used on the cushioning, which is continued onto the little curtains above to avoid introducing too many fabrics and complicating the scheme.

Crosby Street Hotel

When working with a large area or an open plan space, it’s important to create pockets to avoid a space feeling too much like an airport waiting room. In The Crosby Bar, a magical palette of colour fills the restaurant. We differentiated the areas by using different styles of seating, from round tables with green wool chairs to another area with my balloon chairs for Anthropologie, and of course, banquette seating.

This is one of my favourite uses of a banquette. We used a playful wide striped weave from Abbott & Boyd throughout. Running the length of the centre of the room are two back to back banquettes, this gives the appearance of an enormous sofa, and is ever so inviting.

Ham Yard Hotel

In the restaurant, the infamous back wall created with porcelain pots by Martha Freud has a long orange wool banquette which we have segmented with black wool panels.

In the bowling alley, large curved seating has been created so you can lounge as you wait for your turn. The curved shape immediately creates a communal private area.

We loved this recent post from the wonderful Melissa White via Devol Kitchens. Presenter Zoe Ball has used our ‘Mythical Lands’ wallpaper above a wooden banquette seating bench, which works beautifully with the pastel pink and sage green hues above.

No matter the size or shape of your space, we hope this shows the versatility of banquette seating. Make the most of open plan or lopsided rooms with this brilliant use of design and send us your take on this sumptuous seating using #DesignThreads.

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