Q+A : David Harte talks about the new Holiday Inn Manchester

Situated in the heart of Manchester, the vibrant new 298-key, 4 star Holiday Inn is interior designed by Dexter Moren Associates and is rooted in the city’s heritage. The hotel occupies a prime position as part of the recently completed 250,000sqft mixed use Piccadilly Regeneration Project, the city’s vibrant new ‘gateway quarter’. DMA interior designer David Harte talks about working on the project:


What was your inspiration for the Holiday Inn Manchester interior design concept?
With the Holiday Inn Manchester City Centre, my colleague Lindsey Bean-Pearce and I were inspired by the city’s rich cultural scene, in particular the bold, unapologetic music scene, typified by Factory Records and the Hacienda, and the clashing graphic art of Peter Saville as well as Manchester’s rich industrial past.

 

Talk us through the key spaces…
We focused on the signature Holiday Inn open lobby brand concept, which combines an open plan reception, bar restaurant, lounge, café and IT hub. These key areas were designed with a distinctive contextual approach- amalgamating elements of the city’s identity with references to Manchester’s musical scene and industrial heritage to create a fresh design response. This large, flexible space is designed to attract neighbourhood residents as well as hotel guests and is a focal point of the hotel where guests can socialise or work, eat and drink and kick back and relax.

 

How do the key finishes support the design?
This concept inspiration is immediately evident in the lobby space with its graphic pops and patterns and orange, yellow and blues in the fabrics that are reminiscent of the palette used in the album artwork of Peter Saville – the iconic graphic designer for Factory Records and renowned with the Hacienda nightclub scene. The lyric wall in the lounge area features lyrics from Manchester based bands Elbow, Oasis and Take That, while the meeting room wall features a map of the city. The guestrooms are fresh, in keeping with the brand standards, styled with bright cushions, curtains and throws for contrast with the contextual concept focus shifting to the textile industries, reflected in the design of the carpets and wallcoverings.

 

What is your favourite design feature?
There is a quote by the legendary Tony Wilson (of Factory Records fame) illuminated in neon lights on the ground floor reading ‘This is Manchester, we do things differently here’ and I think this perfectly sums up the significance of the city, the hotel brand, our approach and this particular design concept.

For more about the project, click here.