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40 Winks is managed by David, Interior Designer.
£120 - £195/night
Suitable for 1-2 people

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40 Winks drawing Room - 40 Winks, in London, United Kingdom
— David: “40 Winks is like walking into a dream, going on a journey into the world of somebody else’s imagination…. in this case, mine! It’s a wonderful piece of theatre.”
Interview By:

— Please tell us a bit about the history of 40 Winks.

David: “The house was built in 1717, so it’s almost 300 years old. It’s one of four Queen Anne townhouses that were built for rich merchants and naval officers, and is one of the earliest terraces of its type still left in London. Admiral North, who served with Nelson at Trafalgar, lived next door. There’s even a little plaque across the road where Captain Cook, who discovered Australia, used to live.

I bought the house about 14 years ago. At that point, it was completely derelict. It didn’t have a roof, floors or ceilings, but it still possessed a certain quiet and mysterious elegance. It took about two years to restore, but continues to evolve.”
40 Winks drawing Room - 40 Winks, in London, United Kingdom
— 40 Winks drawing Room

— 40 Winks is a very popular location for film and photo shoots. What was your inspiration to open the guest rooms to the public?

David: “The house has always been a hugely successful location for fashion and celebrity shoots. Although we turn a lot down now, we’ve had Italian Vanity Fair, Japanese Elle, and American Vogue all shooting here in the last few weeks.

It was really because of this that 40 Winks was conceived. So many of the photographers, stylists and models who came to work here really loved the house and kept asking if they could come and stay. East London, where we are based, is very much the creative hub of London now, and has a vibrancy and energy it is difficult to find elsewhere… it tends to be where lots of people in fashion and the arts hang out.

In March 2009, I finally gave in and decided to open ‘40 Winks’, cheekily describing it as the world’s first ‘micro boutique hotel’. Almost immediately, we started getting some amazing press, and it just hasn’t stopped. Because it is so particular, the house seems to attract lots of really interesting guests, and it has been a fantastic experience.”
40 Winks kitchen - 40 Winks, in London, United Kingdom
— 40 Winks kitchen

— You are a very successful interior designer or “an illusionist and conjuror” as the World of Interiors described you. What is your approach to interior design?

David: “For me, the test of good interior design is that it is emotionally engaging, not just superficially beautiful. I want to create wonderful and extraordinary spaces that captivate and seduce people, that take them on a journey of the senses. I want people to feel something, which for me is the basis of all art, whether it’s a painting, a book or a movie. It’s that ability to engage with people, to connect with people… that’s what I strive to achieve in all the things that I do.”
40 Winks Room Two - 40 Winks, in London, United Kingdom
— 40 Winks Room Two

— How does 40 Winks fit into that philosophy?

David: “40 Winks is ultimately an experience. You walk through the front door into an almost pitch black hallway, and then have your shoes confiscated!! It’s like walking into a dream, going on a journey into the world of somebody else’s imagination…. in this case, mine! It’s a wonderful piece of theatre.

We also organize lots of events here in London, like our famous ‘Bedtime Story Nights’ and ‘Coquette’, our glamorous afternoons for girls at Kettner’s in Soho. These are all very much about the same thing – creating lovely, magical and memorable experiences for people.”
40 Winks Room Two - 40 Winks, in London, United Kingdom
— 40 Winks Room Two

— Please tell us a bit about the style of the guest rooms at 40 Winks.

David: “Some of the rooms are very dark, mysterious and womb-like. Other rooms are drenched in light. I like contrast and juxtaposition. It’s quirky, eccentric and playfully glamorous. Some people find it wonderfully soothing and peaceful, like a little oasis of calm in the madness of London. Others find it incredibly stimulating. I like the fact that people react to it in different ways.

My favorite room is probably the opium den-esque drawing room. It has a kind of naughty, understated decadence about it.

40 Winks is not a conventional hotel, and is principally aimed at people who work in fashion or the arts, or who have at least a passion for design. We have just two guest rooms (one single and one double), so can only accommodate a maximum of three guests at any one time, and the bedrooms do share a bathroom. It is definitely not going to suit everyone, nor is it meant to. What has been so amazing since we opened is to discover just how many people really love what we are doing.”
 - 40 Winks, in London, United Kingdom
 
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