A University of Brighton graduate is one of two graduate designers chosen by luxury travel brand Belmond to bring their creative vision to life at its historic Cadogan Hotel in Chelsea when the property reopens later this year.
Antonia (Toni) Packham, was chosen from more than 3000 designers who displayed their work at the New Designers exhibition in Islington in July.
The judges found that Toni’s forward-thinking and environmentally conscious approach to design resulted in the highly innovative use of plastic found polluting our oceans to create unique, hand-finished and ultra-high-quality products, including kitchenware, using a highly skilled and zero-waste production process. Collecting discarded rubbish from the shores of beaches across the UK, Packham’s beautiful designs and intricate details captured the judge’s eye while the story of sustainability and craftmanship spoke to the spirit of the Belmond brand.
Toni will now have the opportunity to learn from Belmond’s in-house bench of design experts, as well as its wider network of leading creative professionals, craftsmen and women and will then be commissioned to design a bespoke design to be manufactured for and featured in the Belmond Hotel Cadogan – making it a central part of Belmond’s art and design-led portfolio.
“I feel excited and overwhelmed to have been chosen by Belmond,” Packham said. “I think it’s amazing that a luxury brand is supporting new designers like myself and championing creative innovation. My designs are all about taking a waste material of apparently no value and turning it into something functional, individual and aesthetically beautiful. It has been said that waste is the result of poor design – by working with Belmond, I am excited by the opportunity to address this and raise awareness of the value of waste material.”
Craftsmanship and design is central to the identity of Belmond’s family of 47 properties, trains and cruises across the globe. The company has worked with a host of renowned designers and craftspeople – including famed British designer Matthew Williamson who recently designed Suite ‘No. 67’ at Belmond La Residencia Hotel in Deià, Mallorca.
Elsewhere, Belmond has collaborated with other remarkable creative talents, including British Designer Tara Bernerd and French mosaicist Jérôme Clochard on the Venice-Simplon Orient Express.
The Cadogan has been closed since 2014 and is currently undergoing a £28 million pound refurbishment, designed to preserve the unique heritage of the Queen Anne Style property dating back to 1887, whilst updating the property to ensure its design retains a modern-day relevance. The iconic London hotel is steeped in history: it was famously the scene of Oscar Wilde’s arrest in 1895, as well as home to actress Lillie Langtry where she courted the future King of England.
The property is due to reopen in December, with London-based British talent and Head Chef of The Frog Adam Handling as Executive Chef, bringing his traditional yet modern British cuisine and zero waste philosophy to the Cadogan Hotel.