Rough Luxe hotel in London's King’s Cross is the brainchild of Beirut-born designer and gallerist Rabih Hage, who has deliberately left some walls half-finished to create a feeling of 'urban archaeology'. Contemporary touches, such as the photograph of Gilbert and George in the lobby by Jonathan Root, add the 'luxe' element to the 'rough'
The dining room features a solid wood dining table made out of reclaimed timber from Brighton pier, a ceiling trompe l'oeil photograph of the Cupola di San Lorenzo, and a plaster chandelier by French designer Patrice Gruffaz
Rooms also juxtapose contemporary furnishings with distressed walls. Bedroom one has a fake crocodile print on the bed's headboard under the original print of the opulent Palazzo Altieri in Rome by Massimo Listri. Hage says: 'You can go into luxury hotels in Kensington and Chelsea and you know what you will get. Here there is an element of discovery. There is a richness without any of the ostentation'
Cynics may well see the half-finished interiors as a simple money-saving exercise. Hage says: 'If something is good and works, what is the point of replacing it? We don't have flatscreens and DVD players. Instead there is an element of surprise; an experience.' And also a sense of playfulness and wit
Reclaiming and recycling also plays a part - this room is furnished with an original copper bath tub and a ceiling light, bought at auction, that was once an emergency corridor light in the Savoy hotel
Whether Rough Luxe's peeled-back aesthetic is an inspired egg or economic necessity, it's refreshing to find a boutique hotel that isn't obsessed with contemporary 'mochaccino' colour schemes. It's a warm and witty concept and a beautiful piece of design
Rough Luxe Hotel London | Travel | guardian.co.uk