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Falling for walls

Chalky greens, flashes of burnt yellow, art deco accents and that wallpaper… Interior designer Matt Hulme of Dynargh Design shares some inspirations and insights from his reimagining of the Ullswater Suite (Room 24).

The Lake view suites

“The landscape around here is truly incredible and very inspiring – the changing seasons and overall feeling of escapism is something that I love and crave. I’ve visited the Lake District at least twice a year for the past seven to eight years for holidays / breaks with my partner, family and our dog. It’s such a beautiful part of the world, and somewhere I travel to escape and switch off.

The word I’d use to describe how guests use the hotel’s spaces is ‘relaxed’ – there’s a real informal and relaxed atmosphere to the entire place. You can sit curled up on a sofa with a flat white, sat next to a family who have been in Swim Club, together with a couple who are back from a walk with their dog sleeping by their side. It’s a very inclusive feeling.

The initial design brief for the Ullswater Suite was to give the room a lift, whilst making sure it was in keeping with the scale and grandeur of the space. The room has some beautiful original features, including a marble fireplace and beautiful high ceilings, which already created an inspiring atmosphere to spark design ideas. The incredible view of the Lake is a key feature of the room so the design had to incorporate this and not distract.

“The incredible view of the Lake is a key feature of the room so the design had to incorporate this and not distract.”

The suite has some timeless antique pieces, harking back to the Jazz Age, blended with some more contemporary details. The idea was to ensure that the original pieces worked with the new design. I also sourced a new antique desk that was a little larger, and installed a traditional-style Chesterfield sofa which converts into a double sofa bed, to make the space adaptable for a family.

Lake view suite

“I instantly felt like the wallpaper encapsulated the incredible landscape of The Lake District and Cumbria, with a nod to the fells.”

The inspiration for the whole scheme came from the Designers Guild wallpaper. I was completely drawn to it and felt like it encapsulated the incredible landscape of The Lake District and Cumbria, with a nod to the fells. The tonal green colours with flashes of burnt yellow are stunning, and enabled so much to be drawn out and explored throughout the rest of the design. I chose ochre tones for the bed’s fabric headboard (see below), which also linked to the bed throw and new brass bedside table lights, to create a cohesive flow.
This room was meant to feel unique within the hotel, similar to how The Joules Suite has its own identity. But the other rooms refurbished at the same time (21, 22, 23) have also taken some elements from this scheme – with chalky green paint colours, warm ochre fabrics and flashes of burnt orange featuring in their designs too.

Room 24 really does have an appeal at different times of the year. When we completed it in July, it was a beautiful sunny day and the light coming in from the lake emphasised the grandeur of the space. The chalky tones of the paint and wallpaper are also going to feel very warm and inviting during the darker autumnal and winter months. The sofa would be a perfect place to curl up with a book, cup of tea and a blanket….”

Beyond the inspirational wallpaper, we asked Matt to talk us through some of his other favourite elements of the room:

  1. The feature bed: “The existing four-poster bed was replaced with a new Super King (1800mm) feature bed, made bespoke for the hotel by a local supplier in Lancashire. The wooden framework is teamed with an upholstered headboard to help soften the space – it has an art deco feel in its shape and design, and contrasts with the more geometric design of the wallpaper.”

  2. The ottoman: “At the foot of bed, this lovely ottoman is upholstered in a cracked green leather that will continue to wear with time and use – creating a piece of furniture with character rather than something too clean and perfect.”

  3. The cushions: “The new bed cushions are a watercolour mountain / lake view – to give a subtle link to the location of the hotel without feeling to themed.”

  4. The artwork: “I sourced the pieces on the walls from a number of different places in order to create a ‘collected’ feeling.”

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