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First look at RSHP’s new Berkeley hotel entrance

The Berkeley by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
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Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners has unveiled its new entrance for The Berkeley in Knightsbridge, West London


The ‘revolutionary facade’ features a glass canopy supported by sixteen 9m-long carbon fibre beams.

Described as a ‘one of a kind creation’, the beams have been sculpted to express the structural forces on the entrance canopy.

The canopy is supported by series of steel columns which sit on a levelled stone base with integrated steps and platform.

At each end of the structure is a glass pavilion extending the hotel’s existing bar and restaurant.

The glass which has been used has a honeycomb detailing which reflects light into the space.

The detailing was one of the last projects of RSHP long-standing director Amo Kalsi, who died in 2014 aged just 57

Richard Rogers, Partner, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, said: ‘The carbon fibre beams bring a lightness and elegance to the glass structure, creating an open, transparent and welcoming point of arrival.  It is a tribute to my late colleague Amo Kalsi that this project shows off his incredible architectural skill and sensitivity, bringing light and drama to The Berkeley.’ 

Ivan Harbour, Partner, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, added: ’Rather than follow the lightweight, ‘high tech’ add-on entrance canopy cliché that has pervaded our cities since Lloyd’s of London, at The Berkeley we conceived the entrance as a complete new building; a contemporary lean-to. The architectural approach, in keeping with the morphology of the hotel was to contrast new additions, which pioneer glazing and carbon fibre technology, with the existing architecture. The result brings an extraordinary level of 21st century craftsmanship to the forecourt of The Berkeley, giving a unique arrival befitting of the hotel.’

Knut Wylde, general manager of The Berkeley commented: ’The Berkeley is remarkable amongst London’s luxury hotels for its ability to adapt, evolve and reflect contemporary life.  Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners’ breath-taking new design of our entrance is a perfect example of how an established building in the centre of a major capital can embrace the most cutting-edge design aesthetic and provide guests with an exciting environment where they receive an unparalleled sense of arrival.’

The practice is also working on a second phase of renovations at the hotel which includes a new lobby, bar and dining room and a number of new suites and terraces.

The Berkeley by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

The Berkeley by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

Project data

Location Knightsbridge, West London
Type of project hotel
Client The Berkeley
Architect Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
Interior design Robert Angell
Engineer and fabricator Bellapart

  • 1 Comment

Readers' comments (1)

  • Dea AJ,

    Lovely to see our work on the Berkeley Hotel's carbon fibre canopy in the AJ.....we had a brilliant time working with the RSHP's late Amo Kalsi on the design. It would have been great if you had mentioned the contribution of our practice to the design, as it gives the mistaken illusion that RSHP and Bellapaart managed to come up with this on their own...they played their part but so did we and it is important that UK engineers see how creative an industry we are in. As a matter of structural detail, the way in which the carbon fibre beams are seated within the support posts, rather than on top of them, is taken directly from the structural system developed (also with the Rogers practice) for the roof of the Bordeaux Law Courts in the 90's.

    Chris Wise, Director, Expedition Engineering, London.

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