One to Watch - Bergman Design House
Showcasing the work of Marie Soliman, creative director of Bergman Design House
Words by Emily Martin
Marie Soliman is co-founder and creative director of Bergman Design House and Njord by Bergman Design House. She has 16 years of design experience in the hospitality, commercial and residential sectors. ‘My vision stems from belief in the vital spark of adventurous souls willing to take risks and try and test new ideas in the service of creating fabulous and engaging experiences,’ she says. ‘My goal is always to bring fresh ideas to the fore, while revelling in — not fearing — the chaos of creation’. She has spearheaded global projects such as The Other House Hotel South Kensington, The Other House, Covent Garden, BXR London, We11, NOR hotel, Norway, and Eagle Lodge in Botswana, among others. ‘[Our] latest project is Galaxy, a 56m super yacht, and “Where is Laowai”, a hidden restaurant concept in Vancouver, Canada’s Chinatown neighbourhood – my first North American venture – with another scheduled for completion later this year in Vancouver.’
Bergman Design House was set up in November 2016 by Soliman and her husband Albin Berglund, who is managing director. The name is a blend of their surnames. ‘We were doing small freelance jobs such as small townhouses on the side, and then we met Olia, the owner of BXR (London’s Luxury Boxing Gym), and she asked us to design the gym,’ explains Soliman. From there they began picking up wellness, hospitality and highend residential projects. The studio’s first collection was the Black Berg Collection; a range of affordable, sustainable luxury furniture. ‘We launched the Lund collection for hotels and Airbnb schemes in the Cotswolds last year, and now plan to expand around the U.K,’ says Soliman. Njord by Bergman Design House is the superyacht interior architecture and design studio co-founded by Marie Soliman, Albin Berglund and Sarah Colbon.
1. The Other House Hotel and Residences, South Kensington
The Other House concept is shaped through a residential lens rather than from a conventional hotel approach, bringing a different perspective to the hospitality sector. It offers flats and a private club, with any length stays and access to hotel-style services on demand. The interior design narrative draws on the local culture of South Kensington. The spirit of whimsy and English eccentricity was the starting point for The Other House – guided by beguiling gardens, interesting architecture, the language of arches and the nearby Gloucester Road tube station. The experience for guests focuses on ‘approachable luxury’, bringing the magic of London inside. Soliman also created a bespoke update of over 100 existing 18th-century oil paintings now proudly on display at The Other House
2. M/Y Galaxy, 56m SuperYacht by Njord by Bergman Design House
The studio’s latest superyacht project is a refit 56m Benetti Galaxy, which features an eco-friendly design. The design follows a cosmic inspiration to fit the client’s desire to create a spaceship to entertain yet also call home. The yacht’s interior has been completely transformed, including: a private nightclub; multi-sensory saloon; meditation and wellness space; a cinema room and private music studio; touch-and-go helipad; and a private party deck.
3. BXR Bishops Gate
The third site for leading fitness destination BXR London, BXR City is located at the new ‘vertical village’ at 22 Bishops Gate, and is the highest gym in the City of London. Bergman Design House has been the design partner of BXR since the fitness brand’s launch in Marylebone in 2017. A nod to BXR’s boxing roots – the gym is backed by two-time heavyweight champion of the world Anthony Joshua – can be seen in the numerous murals that adorn the walls, with famous faces including Mohammed Ali and Floyd Mayweather. A boxing training area sits alongside the gym’s focal piece, a 6m climbing wall. Sitting 125m above ground level and enjoying unparalleled views across the city, the climbing wall is the highest in London.