The project brief was to design a lighting solution for the hotel main entrance tunnel that connects the outdoor area to the interior hotel reception. The challenge was to tailor the experience between the everchanging outdoor natural lighting conditions through to the constant interior artificial lighting environment, while designing the first impression that meets the high expectations of a 5star luxury hotel. The lighting design scope also included the illumination for retail displays for high-end retail brands. The solution had to be seamlessly integrated into the architectural elements and balance the natural, ambient and display lighting within the tunnel.

The light echo:

The concept is based on a 3-dimensional spiral, where the pole of the spiral is the interior space (the reception of the hotel), the helix is the daily cycle of natural light (the exterior entrance), aiming to balance the dynamic daytime conditions to the fixed lighting environment of the hotel’s interiors and overcome the ‘cavernous feeling’ of the tunnel.

The intensity and colour tone of the artificial light constantly change according to the time of day and year. During daytime, the cool CCT and high intensity of daylight are brought into the tunnel and gradually transition to warmer tones and lower intensities as we move towards the interior of the hotel. While the interior lighting of the hotel reception (the pole) remains at a constant 2700K CCT throughout the day and night, the entrance of the tunnel (the helix) varies. Starting from dawn, with bluish tones, moving to the neutral white shades of light to gradually become warmer and warmer into night-time, when the light is almost amber to imitate the candlelight effect. The reverse transition then occurs to meet the dusk.

Meanwhile, the lighting in the retail display cases maintain a constant CCT of 3000K BUT vary in intensity according to the time of day, for optimum visual balance.

The solution had to be low maintenance, accessible from remote locations and minimum cabling interference to the existing infrastructure. Controls had to work as a standalone system, in the absence of an existing automation system. The dynamic lit effect was adapting to real time natural conditions throughout the day and year. This was achieved with intermediate long transitions for a shuttle, unnoticeable effect that provides a pleasant experience for the guests.

A Bluetooth-based control system was specified to control the luminaires, as it offered a wireless, robust and stable solution, with easy remote access by the hotel’s IT manager and maintenance crew off-site. Additionally, it offered real time daylight linking, time related scene setting and in-between long scene transitions, without the need of an automated building management system. Programming, scene setting and daylight linking was driven through a tablet used as a gateway for sunset /sunrise scene activation.

The lighting installation was deemed a success and was very well received by the Client and guests. It gave a new life to a previously neglected space, while providing visual interest and comfort to the users.

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