With holiday season on the horizon, what better time for us to take a look back at one of our favourite Timothy Oulton Studio design projects, whilst also serving up a serious dose of wanderlust inspiration along the way?
Back in 2014, we were entrusted with delivering the full ground-up renovation of Glazebrook House Hotel in Devon, England – and we’re proud to say that even five years later, the results are nothing short of magical. So, who fancies a summer holiday to the UK?
Down The Rabbit Hole
Set amidst three acres of idyllic South Devonshire gardens, Glazebook House was originally built as a farmhouse in the 1600s, turned into a grand country manor in 1865, then converted into a hotel in the 1970s… and hadn’t really been touched since! The property’s new owners, Fran and Peiter Hamman, came to us wanting a redesign that honoured Glazebrook’s wonderful history whilst adding an abundance of unique playful twists – creating a one-of-a-kind luxury boutique hotel sprinkled with plenty of quintessentially British wit and whimsy.
It therefore seemed a perfect fit to theme the hotel’s new interiors around the classic English novel, Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland. Lewis Carroll originally wrote the book in 1865, the period when Glazebrook was first converted into a manor house, whilst Alice’s surreal escapades provided an array of eccentric fantasy elements for us to weave into the property’s British revival décor. Featuring sumptuous handmade furnishings and over 900 quirky vintage curios waiting to be discovered in every corner, our project designer Simon Laws described it as recreating “the atmosphere inside a 19th-century collector’s house – a fantasy where people can escape”.
Curiouser & Curiouser
Guests enter Glazebrook through its spectacular original Gothic revival porch – and once you step inside the hotel’s welcoming central lounge, the fun really begins. A visual feast of contrasting textures like black marble, burnished steel and warm wood, the area showcases the winning blend of tradition and modernity that Timothy Oulton has become so renowned for, with hand-softened leather armchairs (including our famous Mars model), sparkling crystal chandeliers (Odeon pendant lighting, since you ask), exquisite vintage rugs and reclaimed furniture (our Junk Art designer coffee table, made from the propeller of a decommissioned Chinese junk).
Follow the teak parquet wood floor through to the cosy bar, which exudes an old-school gentleman’s lounge feel. Grab a welcome cocktail and you’ll feel right at home amidst its lavish red marble bar, tufted leather walls, wonderfully weathered-in leather armchairs and swanky chandelier light coffee tables; there’s also a dedicated wine and whiskey room where you can arrange private tastings with the hotel’s expert sommelier. Fancy something more substantial? Head to Glazebrook’s restaurant to sample the best of British cuisine – including Devon cream tea, naturally – in truly scrumptious surroundings. Natural light streams through the windows into the dining room, with round wooden dining tables and leather dining chairs creating an elegant, comfortable space – right down to the rather fabulous feature walls made from vintage blue-and-white china.
We’re All Mad Here
Each of the nine deliciously different guest rooms at Glazebrook House Hotel have been named after characters from Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland – and all feature unique design touches inspired by their namesakes. The White Rabbit room boasts giant 19th-century playing cards framed above its sumptuously-soft white sheepskin king bed, the Mad Hatter room features antique plates and doll’s houses mounted on its walls, and the Caterpillar room showcases a beautiful butterfly writing desk alongside stunning garden views. One thing all the rooms have in common however are their amazing luxury bathrooms, with spacious black and white interiors anchored by mesmerising marble tiled floors that give an eye-catching 3D-style effect.
Not enough Alice-inspired features for you? Detail-loving guests will be able to spot many more Wonderland references throughout the rest of the hotel – including a flamingo skeleton in the lounge, walls filled with rows of hats in honour of the Mad Hatter, a collection of vintage musical instruments, and a display of magnifying glasses in the bar that reveal pages from the book itself.
So if you’re looking for a hotel stay that’s incredibly luxurious, brilliantly quirky and gloriously British, head down the rabbit hole to Glazebrook House… our very own Devonshire wonderland.