ELLE Decoration (UK) - - Global Design -

Who is he? Hav­ing started his ca­reer in hospi­tal­ity man­age­ment, O’sul­li­van moved into ar­chi­tec­ture via cour­ses at the Univer­sity of Green­wich and the Univer­sity of West­min­ster, with a year spent work­ing in the stu­dio of New York­based ar­chi­tect Annabelle Sell­dorf. Find­ing him­self drawn to in­te­ri­ors, he ac­cepted a sum­mer place­ment with the inim­itable David Collins, af­ter which he spent three years at ac­claimed in­te­rior de­sign stu­dio Martin Brud­nizki. Fi­nally, he moved to Paris to work with French ar­chi­tect Luis Laplace, be­fore set­ting up his own com­pany in 2013. What’s his style? ‘I have learned so much from the peo­ple I’ve worked with,’ says O’sul­li­van. ‘Annabelle has a strong aes­thetic, el­e­gant with great pro­por­tions. David was su­per-tal­ented and could com­pletely change a project with the small­est tweak. Martin is equally ac­com­plished and re­ally knows how to bring out the best in peo­ple, and Luis taught me so much about us­ing art and de­sign pieces from dif­fer­ent eras.’ High on O’sul­li­van’s own de­sign agenda is to make peo­ple feel at ease. ‘ We work hard to make even the most de­mand­ing spa­ces feel wel­com­ing,’ he says. Which ho­tels has he de­signed? His big­gest hospi­tal­ity project to date is the Tam­burlaine ho­tel in Cam­bridge, opened in 2017, which proved to be a chal­leng­ing task due to the fact that the build­ing was new. ‘Ev­ery­thing was done off plan,’ he says. ‘ We needed to make it feel more es­tab­lished, and to root the de­sign in the city.’ The Great Tam­burlaine, a play by Cam­bridge’s Christo­pher Mar­lowe, pro­vided a lot of in­spi­ra­tion. Draw­ing in­flu­ences from the story, O’sul­li­van cre­ated a Per­sian gar­den room, as well as a tim­ber-pan­elled li­brary bar that takes its cue from the col­lege li­braries of Cam­bridge Univer­sity. Also, there’s the re­cently opened The Mag­no­lia Ho­tel in Por­tu­gal’s Quinta do Lago, an homage to the Palm Springs aes­thetic. What is he work­ing on now? On the cusp of com­ple­tion is the Stephen’s Green ho­tel in cen­tral Dublin. ‘It’s in an amaz­ing lo­ca­tion, but hasn’t been touched in 20 years. We’re bringing it up to date,’ says O’sul­li­van. Also in the pipe­line is a ho­tel on a golf course in Girona, Spain, with Barcelona-based GCA Ar­chi­tects. bos-stu­

‘ We work hard to make even the most de­mand­ing spa­ces feel wel­com­ing’

Tam­burlaine ho­tel, Cam­bridge The Mag­no­lia Ho­tel, Quinta do Lago

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