The three hotels that go under the name Artist Residence come with the strapline, ‘An eccentric bunch of fun and friendly hotels’ and this optimises what the brand is all about.
Opening first Brighton in 2008, then Penzance in 2010, the brand has become one of the most talked about boutique names of the last decade. Each one is home to quirky artwork, plenty of exposed brickwork and all manner of rakish touches – from Kilner jars and tea crates to authentic milking stools refashioned into bedside tables. The hotels are all firmly established in the ‘boutique’ variety.
And this was even before the dynamic duo launched into the London market towards the end of 2014, transforming a Victorian townhouse in Pimlico into a welcome arty haven that breaks the rules of traditional hotel design. The clever model offers good value, a sense of fun and a strong affiliation with local artists than many of its neighbourhoods in each location.
Despite the success, Justin and Charlie have always been careful not to rush into anything and learnt some key lessons when they appeared on the Hotel Inspector just as they were finding their feet with the Artist Residence in Brighton, which was then just a B&B.
Pioneering much of the local art movement that has since rocketed up the trends’ scale at so many hotels, Justin and Charlotte prides themselves on sourcing pieces for each project themselves and leaning on local artists and creatives for inspiration along the way.
“The aim is always to create a fun, design-led environment, which ultimately centres on fantastic service and hospitality,” explains Charlotte.
The Artist Residence proves that bigger isn’t always better as each property has been converted from a townhouse into cosy hotel; the biggest in the group is home to just 23 bedrooms.
Now the Artist Residence consists of three boutique hotels, three restaurants and two cocktail bars and the Pimlico property was named London Hotel of the Year in the Cesar Awards 2015, run by industry bible, the Good Hotel Guide.