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Project: London House 2

This Grade II * listed house from the 1750s is one of a group of important Georgian townhouses built in Mayfair at the time. The house suffered the fate of many in the area by being converted into offices in the mid 20th century. In the 1980s it was partially restored as a family home. A glass roof was constructed over the area between the main building and the mews, creating a spacious atrium. The present owner acquired the house in 2007 and decided to reinstate as much of the Georgian architecture and interior features as the planners would permit.

Hotspur Design was asked to revive the Georgian spirit of the house. Great care was taken to source materials and find skilled craftsmen who could restore the features as faithfully as possible. Modern technology necessary for the smooth functioning of 21st century life was incorporated as discreetly as possible. Georgian antique furniture, paintings and accessories were purchased and furnishing fabrics with period-style designs were used for upholstery and curtains. Our remit included detailing most of the decorative elements of the property, including murals, bespoke carpets, furniture, lighting and brass radiator covers. To achieve this, we conducted extensive research into the designs and techniques of the Georgians.

The entrance hall and staircase walls were hand-painted to suggest carved stone. The floor is ivory-coloured Portland stone with dark green slate diamonds, a less stark effect than the black and white colour scheme often found in Georgian halls.

The drawing room includes many bespoke items such as carpets, marble chimney breasts, brass radiator grills and carved giltwood pelmets. The sofas were hand carved especially for the room in the style of George III. The dado and ceiling were painted with an intricate trompe l'oeil plaster design inspired by the ceilings of Robert Adam.

In the atrium, we resolved the problem of a very large blank wall by painting an 18th century parkland scene. Verdure tapestries from the same period were hung on adjacent walls to complement the scheme.

The dining room murals refer to early Pompeian wall paintings. Daylight glows through hand-painted blinds and provides privacy from the street frontage. The antique furniture and lighting are from the Regency period, reflecting the Empire style.

The sculpture gallery was a narrow corridor which was visually widened by painting trompe l'oeil bronze sculptures in niches behind bamboo plants in antique urns. This room leads into the library, with bookcases made of cherrywood highlighted by brass trims. The antique fireplace is composed of Siena and Carrara marble.

The warm colour scheme of the master bedroom is complimented by voile under-curtains casting a golden light, even on a grey day. The walls are hung with 19th century paintings of Venetian scenes.

We overcame the challenge of low barrel-vaulted ceilings in top floor bedrooms by painting murals to increase the impression of space. For the Egyptian bedroom, we referenced Napoleon's late 18th century campaign in Egypt. Antique furniture, accessories and furnishing fabrics are all in the Empire style.

The inspiration for the Greek bedroom was the Georgian Grand Tour. The walls were painted with a wisteria-covered pergola design and furnishing fabrics were carefully chosen to match. One wall is painted with a glimpse of an island harbour view, the others with Grecian ruins.

One of the cloakrooms has neo-classical themed wallpaper suggesting an 18th century print room. We considered that a carved green marble basin, after the Antique, was more appropriate than a modern white one.

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