Architects: Scott Tallon Walker
The scheme is designed around a major new civic space, Point Square, which is bounded by the shopping and leisure complex, the O2, and the landmark 130metre high tower. The Watchtower, designed as a disaggregated form, is intended to provide a slender and elegant aspect to Point Square. It will match a proposed U2 Tower on the opposite quay across the River Liffey, creating a maritime gateway where Dublin city meets the sea. Both projects are currently on hold. The site is on a public transport hub and is served by a river ferry and a quality bus corridor. The recently extended Dublin tram system (the LUAS) has its terminus in Point Square.
The hotel is entered through this 5-storey high glazed entrance foyer. At ground floor level a porter’s desk allows baggage to be dropped off. The visitor is brought up to Reception level at the 3rd floor via a series of escalators or the pair of panoramic glazed lifts that offer views across the square. The resident’s bar sits within the atrium space at 3rd floor level and takes advantage of the views south across the square and west towards the city.
A concourse runs east west across the fully glazed South façade of the main public areas and links the restaurant and bar with the terrace. Two distinct experiences are on offer to the visitor. On the one hand the South facing glazed Concourse and terrace with views down over the Urban Theatre of Point Square and all its activities will be a unique experience both by day and by night. On the other hand the bar and restaurant are arranged around a planted courtyard space offering a more intimate experience and the relaxation offered by a garden in contrast to the Urban nature of the square.
Similarly the guest bedrooms offer two different experiences. The majority of the bedrooms are organised around a series of three heavily landscaped courtyard gardens. The rooms are designed with ‘Romeo and Juliet ‘ Balconies and openable windows. Floor to ceiling glazing is framed by fixed cedar louvers that provide privacy and shade. Other bedrooms address the city and square. Rooms facing the pedestrian street to the west have accessible balconies, while the suites on the southwest corner open out onto the landscaped roof of the atrium with spectacular view over the square and the city to the west.