Hans Road Office – London

Tuckey Design Studio transformed an Arts and Crafts townhouse in Knightsbridge, restoring period features and adding contemporary elements to create bespoke workspaces with shared amenities.

  • Client Unnamed Company,
  • size 5,543 sqft
  • Year 2023
  • Location United Kingdom, London, England,
  • Industry Spec Suite,
  • Positioned in the heart of Knightsbridge is a characterful Arts and Crafts townhouse which has been sympathetically reimagined by Tuckey Design Studio to create bespoke workspaces with shared amenities.

    Tuckey Design Studio were approached to renovate a landmark terrace for Dorrington. Originally designed as a house by AH Mackmurdo in the 19th century, the Grade-II listed building was sectioned into individual offices in the 1980s, with white plasterboard, warren-like corridors, vinyl floors, suspended ceilings and peppered with recessed downlights defining the building’s interior.

    The approach on Hans Road is an enchanting experience, with the animated backdrop of Harrods and grand uniformity of the adjacent CFA Voysey terraces. The façade is an exquisite example of the Arts and Crafts movement; defined by a bay window and vertically stacked glazing paired with elegant keystones and a segmental pediment which announces the front door.

    The practice took inspiration from historic drawings, allowing them to understand the essence and early Victorian character of the idiosyncratic terrace. At the forefront of the design intention was an aim to reinstate the original plan, including period proportions, eccentric intersecting mezzanines, floral motifs, unique bay windows and a grand central staircase.

    The building comprises eight floors that are each unique in orientation, scale and atmosphere. A varied selection of window sizes and shapes, puncturing both the front and rear of the property, bask the interiors with natural light and cast an array of vivid shadows. Tuckey Design Studio implemented a rich colour palette and vernacular that references this light; with a gentle transition of texture and tonality as one ascends the centrepiece stairwell. New timber panelling, tapering from wide panelling at the reception washrooms to slim timber detailing on the top floor, offers a subtle visual transition when ascending the storeys.

    When entering the reception, visitors are greeted by a calming space; framing a meeting room, central stairwell and a neighbouring reception. A carefully considered selection of furniture, fittings and decoration allude to the building’s spirit of craft and historic association to the arts. A deep green palette pays homage to the CFA Voysey textile prototypes hung throughout, with glazed tiling and painted panelling bridging the gap between uniformity and idiosyncrasy.

    Upstairs, the greens are swapped with calming blues, whites and greys which define the main workspaces. Original fireplaces anchor the rooms, accompanying framed vignettes of Harrods and tranquil gardens, at the front and rear respectively. The strong sense of craft is further enhanced by furniture, textiles and artworks which sensitively respond to the rooms’ heritage. These restored dining and drawing rooms are generous in stature and lend themselves well to their new found versatility.

    Specially commissioned artworks are intrinsic to the interior design with contemporary talents, Jo Elbourne and Valerie Wartelle, presented alongside CFA Voysey and William Morris drawings, harking back to the building’s origins. Together, these pieces guide a compelling exploration of past and present throughout.

    Spacious landings throughout the central stairwell provided an opportunity to integrate bathrooms and kitchenettes on each level. A palette of reeded glass, linoleum and worktops made from recycled post industrial plastic sit within colours taken from Arts and Crafts wallpaper.

    12 Hans Road can be defined by its timeless appeal, architectural merit, association with a high level of craft and spaces with intimate nuance. Tuckey Design Studio has brought new life to the building’s historic bones with a scheme that reinforces longevity. Meticulous restoration and a distinctive interior design scheme have added vibrancy to what was already a breath-taking series of volumes. The works have had a successful reach, resulting in a 98% let rate within months of opening.

    Bruce Thompson, Director at Dorrington PLC says:
    “12 Hans Road is a Grade II-listed office building that was in need of refurbishment. We wanted to create a community style workspace that stands out from the competition that could be let out on a flexible basis. JTD balanced making the most of the original architecture and heritage with a thoughtful new look and palette to create something unique. Their sensitive design approach, attention to detail and clever use of colour is evident in the end product.”

    Design: Tuckey Design Studio
    Design Team: Jonathan Tuckey, Balasz Hudy, Annas Mojaddidi, Dan Stilwell
    Contractor: Invicta
    Photography: James Brittain