What we did

  • Interior Architecture
  • Interior Design
  • Furniture Design
  • FF&E Specification
  • Lighting Design
  • Public Area Shopfit

Atlas Hotels


February 2018



Main Contractor

Pacy and Wheatley


Long standing clients, Atlas Hotels brought the Occa Design team in to oversee the refurbishment of Public Areas across twelve sites.

The sites were to be aligned with the Holiday Inn Express Gen IV concept as sympathetically as possible within the constraints of a refurbishment project. Holiday Inn Express Birmingham NEC was chosen as the first of three initial sites, due to the unusual architectural layout of the large open plan public area. The existing space felt disconnected, tired and lacked in atmosphere.

To suit their client base, Atlas Hotels wished to enhance the strong contemporary design philosophy of the IHG brand design to appeal to a wider range of guests. The other primary aim was to create an inviting ambience that would encourage growth in food and beverage sales. Our brief was to provide unified spaces which would feel intimate during quiet times of day, atmospheric in the evenings and offer enough flexibility for large groups attending events at the nearby Exhibition Centre.

The completed project creates a variety of inviting spaces which flow seamlessly together, creating places where guests can eat, drink, relax or work. Colours, materials, and finishes fuse together to create a neutral backdrop, further enhanced with the introduction of rich dark grey tones and light timbers to add warmth and texture. Timber screens, fixed seats, and booths are used to break up the open plan nature of the space and further enrich the interior design concept. A bespoke carpet design adds a contemporary vibrancy to the space.

A variety of high and low seating and footstools, positioned on circular rugs create a casual and relaxed ambience in the lobby and bar lounge. The addition of softer seating, console tables, and table lamps create intimacy in the bar and lounge area. Our fabric colours take the brand direction of blues and greys, opting for darker tones and introducing dark teal and petrol colours. This adapted palette adds richness and a maturity to the concept with a broad guest appeal.

The interiors at Holiday Inn Express Birmingham NEC have been well received by IHG, Atlas Hotels and parent company London & Regional Hotels, with IHG complimenting the enhancement of the brand, which maintains the original design philosophy whilst bringing a maturity and broad appeal to the concept. Guest feedback has been extremely positive and a notable increase in food and beverage sales has been seen.

Love Holiday Inn Express Generation IV? See our Holiday Inn Express Stockport project here

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