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Int. Architecture
The Dean Hotel, Cork, Ireland  | 2021

The Dean Hotel, Cork, Ireland | 2021

Architects: Wilson Architecture
Lead Architect: Paud O'Mahony
General Contractor: BAM Ireland
Client: HQ Developments
Photographers: Janice O’Connell

The Dean Hotel, Cork, is situated in the North Docklands area of Cork City, Ireland, and forms part of a mixed-use development. The striking and unique form is generated in response to the site’s immediate environment, its relationship to the other elements of the masterplan and the greater landscape of this part of the city. The transition in scale from Lower Glanmire Road to the River Lee is reinforced by sloping the roof of the building along this axis, the slope acts as a foil to the Montenotte ridge when viewed from east and west. The lines of the plan are in response to the roads, rail lines and buildings of the immediate vicinity. The height/shape of the building minimizes any impact to the north, mindful of the residents that face the Northern façade, this elevation features no window or threat to privacy.

The shape of the building is ‘carved’ from unseen forces of its context, a concept accentuated by the external skin, which appears hewn from the raw, a precious stone, everchanging in the light. An elevation treatment with a bespoke black undulating façade was developed especially for this landmark building. The black panels alternate from tilting in at the top and in at the bottom in an apparently random pattern, creating alternate reflections in the light. The windows tend to blend with one or other of the reflections alternating as the sun's direction changes throughout the day.

The overall effect has the building appear as a single vibrant, constantly changing object, rather than a solid object punctuated by a rigid set of similar-sized and spaced openings. The black color contrasts the white limestone of the adjacent Carriage Sheds in a symbiotic relationship where each compliments the other. The black-clad structure provides Horgan’s Quay with a 120-bedroom hotel with a rooftop restaurant and marked the first stage of the Northern Quarter masterplan.

Construction was carried out in conjunction with the conservation of a Carriage Shed building, and the development of the public plaza and is to be followed by a 24-unit apartment building. The new buildings create a focal point and a contemporary cityscape around which future development of the North Quays can evolve. The building through its invitation to visitors and physical expression enhances this area, bringing life to this side of the city and connecting further afield through the adjacent rail link.

The project has been an incredible success and a great addition to the portfolio of the Press Up Group. The contemporary and innovative design of The Dean has created a striking landmark in Horgan’s Quay, the up-and-coming development that has transformed this previously industrial area of the riverside and added much-needed amenities to the city of Cork. The building not only looks impressive, but the creative design demonstrates that form and function can combine to deliver a property that operates efficiently and exceeds expectations in all areas.

The Dean Hotel
The Dean Hotel
The Dean Hotel

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