What will hospitality interiors look like in 2024?

As part of our series on design in 2024, Run for the Hills co-founder Anna Burles offers her view on what hospitality interior design might look like next year.

What do you think hospitality interiors will look like in 2024?

In terms of hospitality design predictions we have a hunch that we’ll be seeing more adventurous pattern play and more layered, accessorised design –  with more of an emphasis on original and individual ‘artistic’ touches – in contrast to some of the more pared back interiors we’ve seen (but not necessarily quite as maximalist as some of the interiors we’ve seen emerging post Covid).

We will be seeing more wallpaper and even textiles on the walls and fabric drapes – slightly more fantastical and whimsical but all designed to make venues cozy and soft and full of lovely corners to get lost in. And extra fabric and drapes are also great for acoustics to make venues less noisy. Comfort and cool creativity all wrapped up together.

We also predict that hospitality venues (bars, restaurants and hotel lobbies) will be looking to design and refurbish their venues in ways that encourage guests to spend far more dwell time; letting them use certainly ‘all-day’ venue spaces for a hybrid mix of social and work. For us designers, the key will be making them yet more comfortable, inspiring and accessible for people, so that those who choose that venue as their favourite destination find themselves somewhere comfy, stylish and cool to get away from home-working for a change of scene, pace and buzz.

Interiors will also be tapping into the fact that it’s a tough time out there for everyone: from the venues themselves to their customers, everyone’s feeling the pinch. So all venues need to work even harder – deliver an amazing design and experience, but also be great value and make themselves a destination to encourage people to come time and time again.

And where there’s a ’need’ like this, good design should facilitate this in creative, inspiring ways. We’ll see increasing numbers of venues learning that it isn’t the thing to be sniffy anymore about people working between their breakfast and brunch – it’s an asset and best to make people feel ultra welcome – as the busier a venue looks, the busier it is, and it creates huge consumer loyalty. And us designers can still create areas of the space which ‘aren’t’ laptop friendly and venues can adopt gentle rules that for 5/6pm laptops should be turning off and people relaxing fully.

Overall, we think there will definitely be a shift towards sharpening up of elegance in hospitality interiors with bold, multi-layered textural palettes and colour schemes, often led by the art rather than just the finishes – which will be exciting to see more of!

What was your favourite hospitality interior project of 2023, and why?

We love everything that interior designer Kelly Whearstler does in design – she is a true original and inspiration – so we keep an eye on her new hotel, restaurant and residential project launches. This year’s Grotto at Santa Monica Proper Hotel is billed as a cove-esque library and art gallery – but to be honest nearly all of Kelly’s interiors feel like a celebration of art in design. Everywhere you look there is either an amazingly curated mix of art, objects and breathtaking artistic features. The wall mural in the lobby of the Downtown L.A. Proper Hotel (pictured above) is unbelievable, complemented by the gorgeous credenza joinery piece, wall panelling and quirky positioning of the framed art. We love the fact that Kelly influences her clients to be bold, brave and more edgy than most. Long may she reign.

Banner and featured image: Larry’s Bar interiors at the National Portrait Gallery, designed by Run for the Hills 

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