The Connaught hotel in London’s Mayfair is one of the capital’s oldest and grandest establishments. But the world of luxury hotels is extremely competitive, with newcomers constantly competing to be the destination of choice for the world’s wealthy. The Connaught has upped its game recently with a major refurbishment and the opening of Hélène Darroze’s Michelin-starred restaurant. But the hotel felt that its rather conservative brand was somewhat lagging behind. Following a strategic review by The Partners, who have worked with the hotel for seven years, ECD Greg Quinton suggested commissioning an original artwork from illustrator Kristjana S Williams to act as a centrepoint around which the hotel could communicate its distinctive combination of heritage and modernity.
In her trademark style, Williams has created a three-dimensional collage of cut, coloured and gilded paper, combining found Victorian imagery with modern elements. Each relates in some way to either the history of the hotel or its contemporary features. The original artwork now hangs in the hotel’s Espelette brasserie but elements from it will be used throughout the Connaught as The Partners apply them to some 160 items including menus, umbrellas and key cards.
The Partners are applying elements from Williams’ artwork on some 160 items used throughout the hotel. “The artwork serves as the central inspiration for the hotel’s new brand identity,” the consultancy says. “Choice crops from the piece have been selected for use across 160 pieces of collateral, each element specially chosen to be fitting for its application – for example, the key chain of the Duke of Connaught was used on the room keycards.” Each usage is designed to reinforce the core proposition that The Partners developed for the hotel: “Fresh, audacious and quintessentially British, the Connaught infuses classic with contemporary to create signature moments that redefine modern luxury”. 1