Design challenge: brand a hotel that's also a hospital

LDY EcoGraphics, a division of architectural practice Llewelyn Davies Yeang, recently completed work on Cotton Rooms: a four-star patient hotel located in central London. Led by associate head of graphics Ting Tang, the team created the hotel’s identity, artwork, wayfinding signage, website, staff uniforms, and printed materials. The 35-bedroom hotel is the first of its kind in the NHS and offers the kind of high-quality service associated with expensive hotels, but is designed for patients at University College London Hospitals (UCLH) receiving long-term treatments who want to retain their independence.

LDY EcoGraphics’ branding for Cotton Rooms had to feature the hotel’s logo, and reflect the simple colours and tasteful layouts used in the interior design

It’s been funded and developed entirely using donations to UCLH Charity, which pioneered the first scheme in the UK to enable patients to stay in nearby hotels free of charge, rather than keeping them in hospital - this, surprisingly, can be up to three times more expensive.

Befitting the name, all the graphics are based around the idea of the cotton plant, “representing the clinical, soft, approachable, friendly and calming senses,” says Tang. “The colours and materials chosen for the welcome directory, umbrella and other items were specified to coordinate with the mood of the overall interior architecture.”

As with any luxury hotel, branded extras such as umbrellas are made available to Cotton Rooms guests to borrow during their stay if they need them

Said architecture includes wooden floors, simple soft furnishings, glossy magazines and freshly cut flowers, with flat-screen TVs in each room. There is also a laundry room, eBooks to borrow and internet access. LDY was careful to include the hotel’s logo – four joined sets of concentric circles – on everything associated with the hotel, from pencils to umbrellas.

This article was originally published in Computer Arts issue 209.

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