Paul Linse and Barbara de Vries
Design directors at Studio Linse
After having created interior designs for important buildings like the Rijksmuseum, the Royal Concert Hall Amsterdam and the Royal Opera House in London we are honoured to be chosen by the iconic Dylan Hotel for, initially, the new design for its Brasserie OCCO. Being an old-time personal favourite of mine, with its top-level service and respectfulness to the guests it felt more like we were looking for what to maintain rather than to re-create or re-invent.
To create a new design in this Golden Age monument with its rich history on the stunning main canal Keizersgracht, right in the middle of the Unesco protected old town, is not something to take lightly yet gave us as a design team the opportunity to do what we love most: creating a timelessness that respects the past and welcomes the present.
A building that ages well and succeeds to always remain relevant deserves the best. For Occo we not only cherry-picked from famed international furniture collections but also designed bespoke seating such as an oversized velvet upholstered sofa that invites and embraces, comfortable chairs and marble tables in subtle textures in natural shades.
The wonderful terrace in the historical courtyard is reflected in the custom made mirrors, doubling natural light during the day while guests are enjoying breakfast, having the best coffee, a refreshing lunch or afternoon tea. Since we believe that light is the main ingredient to influence and create the best atmosphere we designed a 5-meter brass chandelier hanging over the solid marble bar.
Its sparkling lights bring animation and joy, allowing the venue to transform into a perfect place for cocktails, bites and dinner in the evenings. The fact that the space at one point in history served as a theatre is echoed in the velvet arch, like a theatre curtain, a backdrop leading to the Michelin star Restaurant Vinkeles.
From the design of OCCO, Vinkeles’ new furniture and an extension into the garden we moved on to the rooms with this same design approach of timelessness and comfort. Bringing together different pieces of signature furniture in an elegant and balanced setting of lush fabrics and calming colours the design of the rooms reflects the Dylans uniqueness and high sense of hospitality and discreteness. What a pleasure to be part of the evolution of this Dutch historical icon.