The pioneer Terence Conran. A portrait.

Terence Conran has truly left his mark on modern furniture design. His style is simple, aesthetic and functional. Inspired by Bauhaus and the Arts & Craft Movement, he is convinced that good design should be available for everyone.

Conran was ahead of his time. And he wasn’t the kind of person to give up. He set up his own company to prove to himself and the world that his designs had market potential even when others would not sell them. Like so many others, this success story begins in a London basement, which was where Conran opened his first office. Yet he only made the breakthrough with “Habitat”, his second company. When the corresponding designer furniture catalogue appeared on the market, Habitat quickly became the benchmark for modern interior design and paved the way for great successors like IKEA. Hip British youngsters were delighted by his colourful and modern designs. Above all, for the very first time, they were affordable. They sparked off a small revolution, which from now on enabled everyone to live out their own creativity in their homes. Here, Conran was a pioneer – the first to sell intelligently designed products to a mass market.

» He has brought modernity into British homes with vibrant colour ranges, simple forms and natural materials. «

But Conran is more than “just” a pioneer. He’s a superb designer of residential interiors and a master of metamorphosis irrespective of whether it’s a matter of transforming an apartment into a stylish place of well-being or of elevating an abandoned London waterfront to new glory and splendour. Just as in the early 90s, when he bought the rundown warehouse complex Butler Wharf and created a new urban habitat out of it. To this day you can still find luxurious offices and apartments as well as a high-quality range of restaurants right there on the River Thames. Naturally, they come with views of Tower Bridge. He himself refers to the Design Museum, which is also located in Southwark, as “the best thing I've done in my life”.

Furniture form the Terrence Conran collaboration with Marks & Spencer

In addition to his incredible success as a designer, he also made a name for himself with his restaurant empire. Conran has opened more than 30 restaurants in every major world city, from London to Paris, Copenhagen, New York and Tokyo. We particularly like the “Boundary” in London’s Shoreditch which opened in 2008. It features a restaurant, a rooftop bar, a café, a bakery, a food store and a hotel all in one. Above all, we find the 17 individually designed rooms especially charming because they remind us of our “25 hours hotel” and “THE GUESTHOUSE”...


Against this background, it seems almost unbelievable that we managed to get the British star designer to agree to work on the interior design of our guesthouse. Thanks to his timeless style, one that combines elegance with cosiness, we were able to design hotel rooms that feel just like a luxury, private apartment. Just see for yourself...

» Good, simple design. That’s all. «
Terence Conran
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