Completed in 2004, Neil Skinner designed the concept for this scheme in conjunction with NAPPER Architects from Newcastle. As lighting designers, it is our duty to enhance the appearance of our projects and there are not many better examples of this than Alnwick Gardens Tree House.
This magical treehouse building and restaurant needed a warm atmospheric scheme for the interior and exterior.
The interior design is an organic and flowing environment, in which was a design challenge to integrate not only functional illumination but also decorative lighting features. As with all of our design work; function illumination is accounted for first, the users of the space need to be able to navigate and feel comfortable in their surroundings. Discreet spotlights were carefully located, adjustability of the spotlights was also important, as this allowed the light to be focussed in the desired way. As so much of the material used is natural and has very rich tones, the quality of light needed to be of the best quality, with a high colour rendering light source. This ensured that the appearance of the wooden interior was to its truest form and further enhanced the natural environment.
Mini-festoon lighting was used to bring the project to life. The festoons were integrated within the furniture and interior elements, such as the natural tree branches. By using this simple, yet original, lighting technique, the interior of the project became a magical fairy tale-like setting. Sparking the imagination of visitors and guests, the decorative lighting added the essential atmospheric dynamic to the project.
The exterior lighting adopted theatrical lighting effects to add a sense of drama, while being cosy, warm and welcoming. The structure of the treehouse is dramatically uplit, which draws the public eye to this significant and unique project, generating excitement and intrigue. The surrounding woodland is also partially illuminated, enforcing the entire concept of the project belonging to the natural surroundings.
As one of the top destination in Newcastle, The Gate had a complete architectural make-over in 2016 and SKR worked closely with Faulkner Brown Architects to create a new enhanced scheme that would give visual impact when viewed from the famous Bigg Market and Newgate Street. The exterior lighting was sensitively design so not to create unwanted light pollution, but at the same time draw attention and generate local buzz. Colour changing projectors with precise light beam optics were used to uplight the facade canopy, whilst not spilling light into the night sky. Carefully focussed adjustable spotlights were used to illuminate the entrance vestibule, clearly indicating the entrance for the public. These were supplemented with further colour changing projectors which enhance the entertainment and theatrical character of the project.
A large amount of design work and engineering went into the planning of the architectural effect lighting, which brought the interior of The Gate to life in mesmerising fashion. Elements such as theatrical animated projection, architectural lighting accents, fibre optic effect ceilings, colour changing lift-shafts and escalators and panelled light boxes all contributing to making The Gate interior the most exciting project within its location.
The centre piece of the project was a unique chandelier to represent champagne or prosecco bubbles in a glass. SKR Lighting worked alongside lighting product designers Northern Lights to manufacture unique products and brought in Robe Entertainment Lighting products to further animate the space. Together a show-stopping scene and environment was developed and realised.
Northern Lights https://northern-lights.co.uk/project/the-gate
Faulkner Brown https://faulknerbrowns.com/
Spread across 3 levels of the former BHS store is the vibrant and stylish indoor food market at the heart of Oxford Street. One of the latest sites following the success of Fulham and Victoria Market Halls. The spacious hub is the perfect meeting spot for friends looking to satisfy their eclectic taste buds and enrich their senses with good music, innovative industrial design and an overall relaxed vibrant atmosphere over food and drink.
Collaborating on this project with Faulkner Brown Architects, the lighting design highlights the bones of the building, rough concrete textures, exposed ceilings and signage lighting as varied as the food on offer!
Designing on a low budget focused on preserving and utilising the existing features and investing in decorative elements to make each key area a destination point with a special touch.
The entrance draws you in with a feature neon signage, bespoke wall art, dark metallic finishes, contrasting lighting and a double storey staircase graphically lined with integrated step lighting leading you to a bright first floor. The heart of Market Halls is bursting with flavours from across the world, serving freshly prepared street food in a maze of food kiosks where you can find your favourite tastes and discover something new. Order at the bar and grab a table to catch up with your friends surrounded by the pleasant buzz of the lively atmosphere. Playing with the contrast of light and darkness to draw pools of light using track lighting is the success of the multifunctionality of the open plan. A lighting approach that is as flexible as the use of the space and ready to be adapted as the layouts shifts to accommodate the change in use.
Moving up to the top floor, immerse yourself in a dark intimate cocktail area, inspired by mid-century boudoir elegance with dim lighting, floating greenery and soft furniture to unwind after a long day in the chaotic city. Step out onto the terrace just to realise you’re face to face with John Lewis holding a cocktail in your hand as you watch the shopaholics in their jungle!
Originally built in 1908 in nouveau style, the indoor market was designed by a polish Architect Juliusz Dzierżanowski in Warsaw, Poland. The name “Koszyki” translates to “Baskets” in English, deriving from the production of wicker baskets. Previously famous for selling goods ranging from foods to clothes, that could only be found at Koszyki today it’s an equally unique indoor food and drink market that attracts people of all ages and taste buds.
Renovated and reopened in 2016, the historical construction of Hala Koszyki, which can be admired inside the building today, is more than 100 years old. Before receiving their second life, the steel elements were covered in a thick layer of rust. As a memento of the pre-renovation appearance of the construction, Hala Koszyki features the original steel components, a structure exposed and visible throughout. High vaulted ceilings, exposed mezzanine walkways and open seating and dining area that fits hundreds is a vibrant meeting place for friends.
The Lighting design at Hala Koszyki is multi layered, the industrial large suspended pendants provide the overall illumination with retro fit LED modules they are efficient and easily controlled for a sustainable lighting design scheme. Feature uplightig to some of the original architectural elements shine a light on the history of the building adding a layer of mood and contrast. Exposed decorative bulbs, suspended at a human centric level add a touch of warm and intimacy in a large hall, creating pockets of unique dinning areas, cleverly breaking up to the space to zones with the medium of light. The central bar has layers of integrated linear lighting, grazing the material finishes and glowing as a central focal point. The exterior seating area is illuminated with festoon lighting to achieve a warm al fresco dining experience, with a backdrop of beautify preserved brick facade.
The indoor food market offers cuisine from around the world, serving trendy cocktails and a wide selection of snacks and drink, can be enjoyed as a passing quick bite to eat or a place to enjoy after work for a wind down.
Located on the banks of the Vistula River, Warszawa, Ibis Styles is design economy hotel open to creative minds. From the threshold, the interior will surprise you with positive emotions! The hotel is in the heart of the city, making it an ideal starting point to explore the city. With no communal areas the same, Ibis Styles is an adventure! Taking inspiration from the nearby flowing Vistula River, a conceptual “river” flows through the ground floor space of the building setting up “river banks” that allowed definition of functions and activities of public spaces, using playful memories and stories for guest to connect with during their stay.
The restaurant was a beach concept with a large variety of materials and features to interact with. There were infinite opportunities to integrate lighting within the interior elements to enhance the space even further! General functional illumination is provided by wide beam optic spotlights mounted within traditional wooden canoes, mounted to the ceiling, along with ceiling recessed adjustable downlights. Decorative lighting features such as suspended rustic pendants and strings of dangling festoons conjure images of lively and hustling ports. The guest has options for lighting within their room, with various light sources to choose from, whether it’s a bedside reading light, floor standing lamps, suspended pendants or traditional downlights.
The Athens Concert Hall is a truly magnificent building with a varied pallet of materials, shapes and volumes exposing its grandeur. The lighting design is equally multifaceted, ranging from theatrical bright and dark contrasting lighting all the way to ambient, intimate, and warm areas where that is more appropriate. The interior of the concert hall sparkles with bright lights, to bring out the magic of the place, intelligently controlled to make room for the performances, always the feature of the Concert Hall.
Project Lighting Designer Neil Skinner whilst at LDP/Lightmatters.
Located on one of London’s most famous roads; Tower Bridge Road, architects Design International purchased a former warehouse from the early 20th Century, situated just a few steps away from Tower Bridge itself!
Over the years the in-house architects have been refurbishing each level of the converted building. The lower ground level, formally a sound recording studio, has been converted into a communal multi-use area. The space can be used for presentations, meetings, social events, cooking and dining, or simply taking five minutes respite away from their computers screens!
We wanted to utilise the existing structure and avoid visible light sources as much as possible. Structural “I” beams run across the ceiling and lend themselves to concealing small linear light sources. The output and positioning of the linear light produces enough illumination to open up the space at night time. Three micro downlights, with “darklight” reflectors, are recessed into the ceiling directly above the kitchen island. The beauty of these downlights are that they are so small, you do not realise they are there until being within very close proximity, yet they still generate plentiful amount of light for kitchen tasks.
For party nights, the scheme is easily adaptable to use colour changing lights, to instantly create a buzzing atmosphere to encourage fun sociable evenings!