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Mullion Cove Hotel & Spa

A Stylish Cocktail of Past and Present

Reimagining a colourful Art Deco history with a new story for the future – an ambitious hotel undertaking substantial investment creating a unique hospitality experience.

Our design work for Mullion Cove Hotel & Spa was short-listed for the prestigious Mixology ‘Project of the Year’ – Bar & Leisure Interiors, the hotel has featured in The Times top 20 spas and most recently won Gold for Spa experience of the Year and Silver for small hotel of the year at the Cornwall Tourism Awards. 

Relaxed luxury, heritage flavours

Mullion Cove first tasked us with redesigning their bar and bistro area (now the Glenbervie Bar) in 2012 which has then led to programme of works in each season resulting that has repositioned the hotel within its market and captured a new guest demographic with the jewel in the crown – the Spa – being completed in 2020. 

The initial challenge for us was to enliven a traditional hotel with a contemporary feel and this has since grown into a phased programme of works which allows the heritage of the 1900 building to shine and a guest experience that appeals to a broader and younger demographic. Our work to date has included bedrooms, communal spaces and two complexes of apartments. Upcoming works include a new restaurant and additional apartments.

Research and listening

Our approach with the team at Mullion Cove has been very much based around listening – we listened, brainstormed and did our homework, working closely with director Matt Grose and General Manager Daniel Thompson to explore different approaches for creating a point of difference. We’ve drawn on the story of the building, which was built by the Great Western Railway and dug into the intricacies of the guest journey, how spaces would be used and how can this coastal hotel differentiate itself thus ensuring our designs had a really positive impact.

“The whole process has been an absolute pleasure.” Says Matt Grose, Managing Director, adding “The relationship we have with Hart Miller has delivered results. They’re very good at listening to what we want to achieve and we like the way their approach is personal.”

A bold reimagining

Gathering stories and functional needs created the foundation of a new direction for the hotel. We drew on the hotel’s Art Deco-era architectural details to bring a grounded heritage feel to the interior whilst mapping the guest journey through key touch points. The Spa brief for example was inspired by the rituals of bathing, in particular those in Japanese culture where the custom was believed to not only wash the body, but also cleanse the spirit and improve one’s health. Within each space there are bold moments to create impact such as the beautifully detailed bar that forms the centrepiece for the Glenbervie Bar and the Spa Lounge which envelopes guests on arrival creating a sanctuary from the everyday. 

Revenue up and changing demographic

Our work with the Hotel has had impact year on year but no more so then when the Spa started to welcome guests. Our work was short-listed for a coveted Mixology Award for Project of the Year – Bar & Leisure Interiors and the hotel secured a top spot in The Times as one of 100 Great British Hotels as well as their top 20 spas in the UK.

In the first year advanced bookings increased by 25% coupled with a year on year increase of 25% in revenue and the Hotel & Spa has now been awarded AA 4-star status. 

“The whole process was an absolute pleasure. The relationship we have with Anna makes it really work. We like what she does, we like the way she works. So the process is one of always talking. She’s very good at listening to what we want.” – Matt Grose, Director, Mullion Cove Hotel

A bold reimagining

Once we’d gathered the stories and functional needs of the bar, we drew on the hotel’s Art Deco-era architectural details to bring a grounded heritage feel to the interior. Our boldest move was to place the bar centre-stage, creating an effective division and striking centrepiece to define the cocktail bar and bistro spaces. Layering rich turquoise and yellow hues with plush textures and angular details of the period, the bar is a nod to the building’s heyday, with a new story to tell for the future.

Blending new and old continued in the Harbourside Apartments. Inspired by the high-end luxury yet relaxed feel of places like Martha’s Vineyard, we transformed the four pilchard cellars into sleek coastal accommodation that would stand the test of time (and guests of all ages) with hard-wearing furnishings and fittings, topped off with playful references to the sea.

Revenue up, maintenance down

The Glenbervie Bar has continued turning heads year after year. “Mullion Cove Hotel isn’t your typical Cornish hotel with wooden floors and pictures of mackerel everywhere,” says Matt. “It strikes a tone. People are always commenting on it.” More importantly, the redesign has had a positive impact on the bar’s bottom line, with increased spend from guests and non-residents alike. What’s more, the Harbourside apartments have enjoyed 100% capacity through the spring/summer season, with upkeep less than anticipated strong occupancy in the the winter months.