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ABDA Design take inspiration from the local area for the redesign of a Leeds hotel’s restaurant

Using the nearby locks for inspiration, ABDA Creative Design & Build have created an exquisitely themed bar and restaurant area at the Hilton Doubletree Leeds.

At the beginning of this year, the hotel set out to create a more inviting offering at their Lock Kitchen and Bar located within the hotel, which would not only help to retain hotel guests but also attract non-residents diners from around the area.

ABDA Design were commissioned by Valor Europe to redesign the bar and restaurant space on the hotel’s ground floor, which included creating an inviting terrace space, as well as refurbishment of the hotel reception space.

Taking inspiration from the surrounding areas, including Granary Wharf, the River Are and its surrounding locks, the theme of the Lock Kitchen and Bar was based around the narrative of  ‘The Lock Keeper’s Bar’, using the history of a nearby lock-keeper’s cottage to run throughout the entire feel of the space.

The expert team at ABDA Design took charge of providing bespoke features for the restaurant and bar area, including screens and light fittings forged from steel, light fittings sourced from ship manufacturers, graffiti-style murals of the lock keeper and other features which reference life on the nearby waterways. The external terrace area also made use of up-cycled furniture made from reclaimed materials.

In line with the new interior fit out, Valor Europe re-developed the food offering to include an informal deli menu, alongside a more formal dining experience for hotel guests.

Martin Vann, general manager at the DoubleTree by Hilton Leeds, said: “The Lock Kitchen and Bar is all about creating a warm, friendly environment, where guests can while away the hours chatting with friends and family over homely food.

“The Lock’s new look and fresh menu has completely transformed the space. The inviting atmosphere, along with the rich heritage and character of the surrounding area, makes The Lock a unique experience whether you’re visiting Leeds for the first time or a local looking for something new.”

Brian McCarthy, managing director of Valor Hospitality Europe, said: “It’s been a great two years for Valor, with all 17 of our hotels benefitting from significant investment.

“We relaunched the Sky Lounge at the DoubleTree by Hilton Leeds last year which was really successful but we wanted to offer guests an alternative dining experience through the ground floor restaurant. By making this long-term investment in the food and drink offering, we’re confident the hotel will continue to boost the visitor economy in the city.

“We’ve been working exclusively with one hotel owner to date, but we are interested in talking to other hotel investors to expand and improve our portfolio further.”

ABDA Design also completed work on the hotel’s Sky Lounge bar located on the 13th floor in 2016, and have recently completed design and installation projects at a number of Hilton Garden Inn’s hotels across the UK.