Completed in 2019, the landmark Vardo restaurant involved the dismantling of existing café and piling/excavation to construct a single story basement plus ground floor and open landscape roof terrace. The project ties a contemporary design with the site heritage, represented by the Grade II -listed wall of the Duke of York Headquarters.

“Working with Westgreen on the Duke of York Restaurant was exceptional. Their team shone for their experience of meticulous construction and their appreciation of fine craftmanship. From the get-go we enjoyed a collaborative relationship, and over the course of the project they became friends as well as respected peers. The refinement of the completed building is a testament to their skill, excellent project management and commitment to doing even the small things well. I wouldn’t hesitate to work with them again.”
Alan Dempsey, Nex—

One of the design’s main features is the spiralling precast concrete incorporating descending curved glazed screens. Openings in the walls form a colonnade for sheltered outdoor seating and the retractable glazed panels make it possible to open up the indoor space during the summer. Although similar retraction systems have been installed outside the UK, Vardo is the first example of a retractable curved glass system in the world.

A spiralling staircase winds around the exterior to lead visitors up to the public space located in the roof garden. Softened with timber decking and verdant planting, the roof garden is open freely to the public and is accessed independently from the space below.

This striking yet sympathetic design by Nex— has been awarded the New London Architecture Award in Hotels & Hospitality category.

Visuals courtesy Nex Architecture.
Photos: James Brittain / Joseph Asghar