Built in 1901, Dylan Hotel is housed in an impressive Victorian building, designed by the renowned architect Albert Edward Murray. Prior to becoming a hotel, it was home to the nurses who worked at the nearby Royal City of Dublin Hospital on Baggot Street.
A previously dated interior scheme nudged Dylan Hotel to rethink the ground floor of the hotel. A pared back look was envisaged, in keeping with the original style of the building. Cearly defined areas were created such as a new cocktail bar, restaurant and terrace. Our role was to design an identity system, starting with the names, and to develop the personality of these areas.
It was apparent that the owners were proud of the building’s history as a former nurses’ residence, which was mentioned first and foremost in hotel listings. Once over the threshold, there was no evidence anywhere as to the previous use of the building. We decided to bring this rich heritage back through the visual identities of the new spaces.
Miss Ruby Stokes was matron for the Royal City of Dublin Hospital from 1927 – 1960. Her quarters were on the ground floor. This strategic placement ensured she could keep a close eye on her charges. Ruby’s former quarters is now the new resident’s bar, The Ruby Room.
Miss Edith Annie Eddison was matron for the Royal City of Dublin Hospital from 1909 – 1917. Miss Eddison was in charge during the 1916 Rising. During this time a stream of wounded were brought to the hospital and cared for by the nurses under her leadership. She was commended for her bravery during the rising. The Eddison Restaurant has been named in her honour.
The outdoor partially covered terrace is a social space that can be enjoyed year round, come rain or shine. A decadent array of Victorian plants create an urban oasis. The Nurserie Terrace is a play on the use of the former building, and is synonymous with the cultivation of plants.
Each of the new spaces needed their own identity, yet to also feel part of the one family. The heritage needed to be integrated within the identity and the space. We sourced old photographs of the nurses from different eras and these appear within the space and on print. Original architectural drawings are on display, to give context to the original building. The badge the nurses from the Royal City of Dublin Hospital received upon completion of their training had an embossed detailing behind the crest, provided inspiration for a pattern that forms a backdrop in a guise other than words and photographs. This is used across select print from menus to coasters through to the inlay of wood on bespoke tables. A new elegant typeface is used across print and signage. Details of the uniforms the nurses wore in old photographs, lent visual cues to the uniforms worn by staff today. The provenance becoming relevant and in an experiential form, honouring those who worked there, and enriching those who stay