Dexter Moren Associates secures planning for boutique hotel in the heart of Victoria, London

Dexter Moren Associates (DMA) has won planning permission for a new, 137-key boutique lifestyle hotel on Vauxhall Bridge Road in the heart of London’s Victoria district. The hotel, featuring a unique façade design with two appearances, will become the latest addition to client 4C Hotel Group’s growing portfolio of central London hotel developments.

The eight-storey, 6,224m² property – due for completion in summer 2022 – comprises a bar, food retail, café and formal restaurant, available to the public as well as guests. In addition, the scheme includes two residential units with a dedicated entrance on King’s Scholars’ Passage to the rear.

DMA’s design has been influenced by the nearby Westminster Cathedral Conservation Area and the relationship between the hotel and neighbouring buildings, fine-tuning its perceived height, scale and massing to settle it into the streetscape. The proposal utilises the two predominant materials used in Victoria – masonry and stone – while the design endeavours to make a unique take on this contextual reference, with a deep facetted façade allocating each material to a specific orientation.

In doing so, the sculptural façade geometry creates an interesting play of materiality, with tonal elements changing depending on the viewer’s standpoint. When viewed from the south the building appears white framed with subtle accents of brickwork, while from the north, in the context of the reddish masonry, terracotta and stone of Cathedral mansions, the building shows itself predominantly of varied tones of brick panels with hints of light stone.

“This is far from the old-fashioned cookie cutter hotel façade. In order to break the composition of the building within its streetscape setting, the overall façade has been broken up into several tonal elements, giving it two appearances,” says Mark Wood, Partner at DMA. “This project adds to DMA’s growing portfolio of considered, unique and interesting hotels that we have been designing and building in towns and cities across Britain and beyond.”

In comparison to the existing buildings on site, which form a lacklustre gateway to central Victoria with little active frontage, the proposed hotel will feature a high quality, publicly accessible ground floor with food and beverage facilities accessible to all. This will provide vibrancy, interest and activity along this stretch of Vauxhall Bridge Road.

Addressing pre-existing issues with anti-social behaviour in King’s Scholars’ Passage, identified during the consultation period, DMA has developed a glazed treatment at the rear and used the existing levels to set the ground floor part way below and part way above street level. More akin to a high street than a mews, this treatment provides natural surveillance from within the hotel, whilst the proposed white brick facing maximises the light reflection and improves the ambience and atmosphere within the mews.

Located less than a five minutes’ walk from Victoria Station, one of Europe’s busiest transport hubs, the hotel has been conceived and designed to meet the growing demand for tourist and business guest accommodation in the area.