He is responsible for the old building’s transformation into an iconic art museum and the hotel’s sparkling exterior with its faceted widows, reflecting both the sea and sky.
Built in the 1920’s, the original grain silo was one of Africa’s tallest buildings and a prominent landmark above Cape Town harbour. Grain from around Southern Africa was brought here to be stored for export around the world.
After serving almost a century as a rustic stone and steel, industrial edifice, the silo was mothballed until it was given a new lease on life as part of the contemporary Silo District development.
Rather than demolishing the iconic old structure, the V&A Waterfront commissioned one of the world’s leading architectural designers to re-imagine the building, thus preserving it.
Thomas is a multi award winning architect, founder and principle of Heatherwick Studios in London. After several years in conception and planning, the final result is a glimmering beacon on Cape Town’s world famous skyline.
Whilst Thomas was responsible for the faceted glass exterior and inner structure of the new hotel and museum complex as well the transformation of the 42 internal granary silos into the sculptural Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art, Liz Biden, owner of The Royal Portfolio, is behind the glamorous new Silo Hotel.
With a range of boutique hotels, The Royal Portfolio is widely acclaimed across the globe with awards such as best boutique hotel in the world being achieved on more than one occasion.
The hotel has 28 rooms including two royal suites, each 132m2 and a 211m2 penthouse. Liz has created each room to have its own individual flair with an eclectic mix of art, silks and golden chandeliers. The highlight are the breath-taking bathrooms, each uniquely styled with glamorous taste and magnificent bathroomware, the majority of which Liz personally selected from Victorian Bathrooms.
Every bathroom is fitted with our Britannia range of taps and shower mixers, all manufactured for and exclusive to Victorian Bathrooms. The centre piece, below the grand chandelier, is one of our bespoke luxury baths, either our Oslo or Classique bath. Popular for their comfort, both baths lend celebrates the fusion of tradition and modernity.
The Oslo bath is a contemporary classic with its triple raised ring detailing, and can be found in many of the bathrooms in either a sophisticated white skirt or with the specially commissioned ‘Silo Silver’ metallic finish. In other bathrooms, the Classique bath with its soft curves and signature moulded base stands proud with a graceful strength.
Equally at home in this luxury escape, are our ceramic double console basins with elegant legs. These sinuous and smooth consoles echo the flowing curves influenced by the Art Nouveau movement and complete the contemporary classic setting of the bathroom.
The Silo Hotel, with its esteemed awards, also stands out for its efforts in promoting conservation and protecting the environment by minimising their water usage throughout the hotel.
The water-saving measures developed include a desalination facility to reduce their use of municipal water, and, with the involvement of Victorian Bathrooms, restrictors have been fitted to all shower roses, taps and toilets ensuring efficient water usage.