Pubs, bars and restaurants all hold historical connotations involving generations of people coming together to drink and eat. With period interior design becoming seemingly more popular in these commercial spaces, a tangible link has been created to these past shared experiences. In particular, I have noticed a rise in Mid-Century, Art Deco, Georgian and Regency design styles replacing the paired-back interiors popularised by coffee shops in the last few years. A brilliant example of this emerging trend is the Cosy Club, a chain of restaurants who brand themselves as ‘opulent and slightly dotty’. Each of the restaurants has an individually designed, uniquely quirky and historically informed interior – skillfully used to divide the space into clearly defined zones. The recently opened Cosy Club in Nottingham is an exceptional display of their expertise in heritage interior design.
I think period interior design is popular at the moment because it reflects the rich variety of historical architecture which we are blessed with in the UK. Our city centres are often full of beautiful historical buildings which lend themselves perfectly to heritage interior design – creating visual and thematic links between extra- and intramural spaces. This can be expanded by mixing different period styles and adding sensitive modern touches to create a more playful opulence.
Most importantly, heritage interior design is significant in its ability to allow people to enjoy reconnecting with their history. Because of this, I would encourage more commercial spaces to try historically informed designs as places like the Cosy Club have done, and to encapsulate the theatre of heritage and play with different periods in history to create an immersive experience.