Project
Devonshire Square

Location
London, United Kingdom

Completed
2008

Architect
Fletcher Priest Architects

Photographer
James Newton
Type
Leisure and Retail

Discipline
Architecture + Environment




Close to London’s Liverpool Street station, a group of 18th-century buildings that were once the warehouses of the East India Company offer a rare glimpse of London’s surviving commercial heritage.

The architects Fletcher Priest were keen that the lighting design would support the promotion of the estate as a business attraction by activating the site after working hours, while also highlighting the period features and safeguarding the character of the original architecture.

To encourage use after dark, we used light to reshape the space into something softer and more intimate. We introduced a sense of human scale at ground level to make the cavernous Western Courtyard space feel more comfortable, and to balance out the slightly overbearing effect of the large buildings.

As the courtyard was covered in a translucent roof, we decided to maintain the feeling of an outdoor space by creating the impression of a moonlit landscape. A theatrical wash of blue is applied across the courtyard floor, with the illusion reinforced by blue accent lighting of the roof structure. Leafy gobo projections are used around the trees to recreate the effect of sunlight passing through the tree canopy. Contrasting golden light is introduced at low level, evoking the warmth of firelight and encouraging people to linger.

Warm lighting is carried through to the restaurant terrace, where custom designed pendants make the restaurants the focal point of the courtyard, and provide the practical lighting for diners at a human scale.

A star field under the terrace, revealed only by the reflections in the pool below, provides a special moment of discovery.

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