Step this way and enter Clive’s immersive virtual tour of the quirkiest, most creative new experiences, tech, gadgets and venues in the world right now.
The latest Inspiration Station has really got our juices flowing here at Clive. Bursting with creativity, it covers everything from cats taking over a London underground tube station, to tattoos that can control your mobile phone. Not to mention all of the venues we’ve stumbled across; some flourishing in unique designs, some that don’t even have walls! This month’s edition is bursting with ideas, so take a peep into Volume 11 and fill your boots with everything we have to offer.
Venues & Destinations
We stumbled across this newly opened venue whilst roaming the backstreets of Shoreditch in East London. Whether you’re looking to hold an experiential pop-up installation or an internal communications conference, you’re sure to create something special with this transformed Victorian railway arch space.
Ideal for groups of 80 people theatre style or 200 standing with one main space, Motel is located less than 50 meters from Hoxton Tube Station. The venue comes complete with high ceilings, concrete flooring and exposed brickwork, leaving it with an industrial, warehouse kind of vibe.
The Printworks, London
Former print factory Printworks has recently opened and is available for private hire. This blank canvas is located a 2 minute walk from Canada Water, and features high ceilings and an industrial look and feel. Spanning across 15 acres, Printworks is ideal for larger events, with six warehouse style open spaces available on a dry hire basis. Recently playing host to Secret Cinema, this brand new venue is the perfect spot if you’re looking to create something a bit different.
The Pumping House, Nottinghamshire
The Pumping House, found on the edge of Sherwood Forest in Nottinghamshire, dates back to 1905. This newly transformed water pumping station is now a Grade II listed venue with bundles of character, complete with beautiful red brickwork and acres of woodland. Spaces include The Engine Hall, which can seat up to 200 in a theatre style layout, along with 12 smaller spaces that are ideal for breakout sessions. The flexible layout of the rooms makes it equally suitable for smaller, more intimate events.
Trinity Buoy Wharf, London
Located at Docklands on the banks of the River Thames you’ll find Trinity Buoy Wharf, another raw, exposed brickwork, blank canvas venue. This historical wharf spans across a 3-acre site with multiple event spaces available for hire.
Among the spaces, there’s an Electrician’s Shop, a clean white room holding a maximum of 220 theatre style along with the Chainstore; a Victorian warehouse located on the South side of the venue, holding a maximum of 500 theatre style. There’s also a large outdoor terrace that’s perfect for events on a bigger scale.
The Dining Club, London
This September, IKEA has opened a pop-up shop come restaurant where you can host your own dinner party. Described as a DIY dining experience, The Café is open at 10am for breakfast through until 10pm for the ideal after-work drinks spot and customers are free to enjoy the IKEA unique shop, with IKEA homeware and kitchen products for sale. You can also book a spot in the ‘Food for Thought’ workshop area where interactive master classes are hosted by guests including Instagram-stay Pixie Turner and Great British Bake Off winner Edd Kimber.
It’s open until Sunday 25th September so make sure to stop by, it’s definitely worth a visit!
Good Hotel, London
The Good Hotel does exactly what it says on the tin by investing all of its profits into its staff, along with local businesses and communities. This floating hotel group has already been helping the local unemployed in Amsterdam, and is now spreading ‘good’ by moving to London.
Originally a Dutch ex-detention centre, The Good Hotel will be towed 288 nautical miles from Amsterdam, where it will dock in Newham, East London later this month. It’s been transformed into a super-cool boutique hotel with 148 bedrooms, 4 meeting spaces and a Rooftop Garden and Terrace.
Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester
Whitworth Art Gallery, located in Manchester City Centre has recently undergone a £15 million development. The venue has doubled in size and is now home to several beautiful event spaces with its exceptional park setting which can be viewed from inside the building, Whitworth Art Gallery is sure to create a memorable event.
Six Storeys on Soho, London
Camm and Hooper – the venue group behind Tanner Warehouse, Banking Hall and Victorian Bath House – is opening an exciting new venue in the heart of trendy Soho at the end of November.
Housed in a stunning Town House at 11 Soho Square, the new space features six lavishly decorated floors, complete with a Lobby Bar, Parlour, Decantery and Study, each with a colourful, bohemian design. There’s also a Velvet Lounge where you can host an intimate private party, as well as a top-floor bar that with stunning views of Soho – humbly named The Sixth. Each floor accommodates 30 guests for lunch or dinner, 20 boardroom style or 60 standing. There is also the option of hiring all six floors for a lavish party for 300 guests standing.
St Johns Restaurant, London
St John Smithfield opened in 1994 and since then has been transformed from a rundown fire station smokehouse, into a sophisticated restaurant-come-bakery. Now, St Johns is opening on the Ropewalk on Maltby Street. This quaint little dinner venue, just a 10-15-minute walk from London Bridge Station is ideal for small meetings or private parties, with a capacity of 40-50 guests for a seated dinner. With white brick walls and a chalk-board menu, the restaurant is bursting with style.
Mama Shelter, Paris
Designer Philippe Starck has transformed the building, previously used as a multi-storey car park, into a “whimsical wonderland” that is now referred to as Mama Shelter. This streetwise hotel has a unique style with lots of waxed concrete, graffitied blackboard ceilings and a buzzy open plan layout holding a lounge, cocktail bar, restaurant, pizzeria, club, concept store and an event space for 50 delegates in a theatre style layout.
Located in an offbeat corner of northeast Paris, in what was once the village of Charonne, Mama Shelter is a metro ride to the city centre, but it does have its own car park and can also lend you a bike or moped.
The 172 bedrooms combine bare concrete walls, white bed linen and fairground masks that double up as lampshades. The basic Mama rooms are rather small, but you can opt for a larger Mama Deluxe or Mama Terrasse with a balcony. With check-in available through a machine and an iMac in every bedroom, this ultra-hip hotel is promising to say the least.
Null Stern’s Concept Hotel, Swiss Alps
Would you sleep in a hotel with no walls, no roof or bathroom – just a bed, a couple of nightstands and a lamp – oh and it’s also 6,463 feet above sea level in the mountains of Graubünden?
Null Stern, the hotelier behind the zero-star concept, charges the room out at 250 Swiss Francs (approximately £191) per night. During your stay, you can expect a Cinderella type experience, where local farmers transform into butlers, wearing bow ties, white gloves and work boots, serving a delicious breakfast sourced from local produce. A restaurant, 10 minutes’ walk away, has toilet facilities, but otherwise, weather permitting, guests are left under the stars. It’s the ultimate room with a view.
In 2017, Hoxton will be opening their fourth hotel – The Hoxton Paris. Located in the city’s 2nd Arrondissement – an area quickly gaining a reputation for its alternative café culture, hipster bars and chic restaurants. It’ll be housed in a 16th century building design by Etienne Rivie – a counsellor to King Louis XIV — ooh la la and feature 172 bedrooms, a restaurant, a speakeasy and a café cum tabac.
That’s all their telling us for the moment, but if it’s anything like their sister hotels in Shoreditch, Holborn and Amsterdam, the Hoxton Paris will depict a mixture of style and elegance.
SIR Adam Hotel, Amsterdam
SIR Hotels is an urban luxury boutique hotel brand that emerged from Amsterdam in 2013 with the first hotel named SIR Albert. Now, it’s debuting its second hotel in Amsterdam – SIR Adam. The newest five-star property is expected to open in the A’DAM Tower (the former Shell building), the new cultural hub of Amsterdam later this year.
It’ll be dishing out a hefty amount of inspiration and creativity, with guest rooms boasting Bluetooth-enabled record players, curated work from local artists and mirrors etched with illuminated lyrics.
This culturally rich hotel will also house 108 stylish bedrooms, a beer garden, a music library and three industrial creative studio spaces, holding 30-60 delegates in a theatre style layout. And that’s not all, the hotel is home to Amsterdam’s highest nightclub with MADAM located on the top floor. Get in line guys, we were here first!
Technology & Gadgets
DuoSkin Smart Technology Tattoos
MIT Media Lab has collaborated with Microsoft Research to develop DuoSkin – a smart technology temporary tattoo that enables you to control electrical devices such as your phone, through touch. The temporary tattoos are created from gold metal leaf, a material that is cheap, skin-friendly and robust for everyday wear, it can facilitate three types of on-skin interfaces: on-skin interfaces: sensing touch input, displaying output, and wireless communication.
The tattoos can also contain data which can be detected by other devices using wireless technology – just when you think you’ve heard it all…
Microsoft HoloLens is the first fully self-contained holographic computer that enables you to interact with high‑definition holograms in your own world. This exciting piece of augmented reality is pretty incredible to say the least, giving you the ability to not only look at holograms, but also control them with the use of sound and gestures.
Costing around $3,000, this new gadget really is an insight into the future with a range of different uses; from 3D computer-aided design to even decorating your house, it’s sure to blow your mind.
Event Survival Kit
Located in Montreal, Phoenix The Creative Studio has created an event survival kit that oozes a hipster aesthetic.
This agency survival kit can be tailored to your exact requirements with a range of helping aids including; a little book of tricks to keep calm, pouch of black coffee, hip flask, mix tape/USB with songs to keep you motivated, peanut energy bars, headphones and a stress ball.
Everything you need to keep you calm when you’re on-site at your event.
We think we might have just found the ‘coolest cooler’ out there. Costing around $400, this quirky little cool box comes with everything you could ever need for a BBQ party. Complete with a built-in blender, a Bluetooth speaker, a bottle opener, USB charger, plates, a knife, a corkscrew, an LED light and a secret compartment – and it still has space to hold your beers!
MyFi is a wireless router that acts as a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot so you can access the internet on the move. This clever little invention allows you to get online wherever you go and is small enough to fit in your pocket!
The London Shuffle Club
Ever heard of shuffleboard… no us neither before now! It was a game invented in the early 1500’s that was played by Henry VIII and became so wildly popular that people stopped working to play it all day and so it ended up being banned.
And now thanks to the opening of The London Shuffle Club, its back! From 12th October, the club will be taking over the top floor of an East London Warehouse and will be open 7 days a week for three months. With a choice of American style dishes, signature cocktails and craft beers, you’re guaranteed to have a good time.
Floating Dreams Installation
This incredible 3 storey high illuminated lantern, designed by Ik Joong Kang was created in memory of the sufferers of the Korean War. It was created as part of the Totally Thames Festival and appears to float in the middle of the Thames. In total, the lantern is made up of 500 tiny drawings that were all created by people displaced in the war and represent their memories of home.
Projection Artworks Showroom
Projection Artworks have opened a new HQ at Highgate Studios and created an immersive showroom where light dances, walls tell stories, floors and ceilings come alive and digital content leaps out at you from every angle. There’s immersive 3D and 4D digital art installations and rooms available for private hire for client meetings with a twist.
The sessions have now been extended by popular demand, running through the months of September and October. Those that get the chance to visit will experience the cloud-based projection mapping software from DisplayMapper.
Urban Orchard Ciderhouse
This exciting new campaign combats food waste, encourages community involvement, supports sustainability and gets you free cider – you can count us in!
The Urban Orchard Ciderhouse based in East London has created its #AppleDonor campaign – where all you need to do is bring as many apples as you can find, and you’ll receive 10% of what you donate back in cider.
The end result is a beautiful medium dry cider but unlike traditional ciders, Urban Orchard brings a truly unique experience with each bottle, depending on the urban apples sourced for that batch.
Dinner at The Twits
Roald Dahl inspired immersive dinner party that promises to be ‘the worst dinner party in the world’ featuring the famous bird pie, beard pickings and worm spaghetti. Okay we realise we’re not really selling it to you here, but hi-tech jelly creators and experiential chefs Bompas & Parr are teaming up with interactive theatre specialists Les Enfants Terribles to create something really special.
The Vaults in Waterloo have been transformed into Mr and Mrs Twit’s windowless house, where you’ll be served what they describe as ‘gleefully grotesque treats’ that are sure to delight your taste buds. Running until the end of October 2016, you can get hold of a ticket from anywhere between £75 – £115 depending on the day you come.
Bjoerk Digital Installation
Strap on a pair of goggles and prepare yourself for a visual experience like no other. Bjoerk Digital is a snazzy multi-media exhibition and virtual reality experience that includes an immersive two-screen film and a series of 360 degree virtual reality videos.
Until the end of November, this Iceland virtual reality artist will be in London at Somerset House and you don’t want to miss it.
Other Cool Ideas
Jimmie Martin Furniture
Designer duo Jimmie Karlsson and Martin Nihlmara are the faces behind the collective Jimmie Martin. This multi-award winning duo, originally from Sweden, transform every day furniture into bespoke one-off pieces, blending traditional with edgy, controversial and seemingly scandalous designs.
Their pieces include chairs, tables, cushions, mirrors and some truly unforgettable lamps, all highly sought after by celebs, including Madonna, Kylie Minogue and Liam Gallagher among others. Their work really is art.
Cats really are conspiring to take over the world – or at least Clapham Common station.
CATS – or Citizens Advertising Takeover Service – was launched in April by Glimpse, a collective of people from creative industries who have raised £23,131 to fund the initiative. The CATS takeover began earlier this month, where adverts are now no more. Instead, the usual unwanted billboard ads have been replaced with cute cuddly cats to revitalise your daily commute.
Thank you Exterion Media who made it possible for this campaign come to life.
The Blind Pig’s Silver Screen
A popcorn-infused Buffalo Trace bourbon, cherry bespoke-a-cola, 3D bitters, served with a side of popcorn. Bar snack and a drink all in one, what more could a person want!
You can get your hands on one for around £8.50 at the Blind Pig in Soho by the Social Eating House, a vintage inspired bar complete with antique mirrored ceilings, reclaimed wooden chairs and a copper-topped bar.
Show Block create bespoke temporary structures using a modular ‘building block’ system to give you complete creative control of the structure for your event. There are a number of customisable options to choose from when designing your Show Block, including concrete paneling, wooden flooring, vinyl wraps, neon signs and custom-made wire sculptures to transform your pop-up block into a feature installation.
Paper artist and graphic designer Yulia Brodskaya, creates 3D paper art installations using a quilling technique. Yulia rolls and bends strips of paper and glues them to the surface to create a vibrant and colourful work of art. This might sound like a simple technique but the artwork produced is incredibly intricate.
Avocado Burger Buns
Avocados have taken the UK by storm in 2016, so naturally we’re finding them in all sorts of dishes. Well prepare your taste buds… are you ready for the avocado burger bun?!
Yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like. A burger with buns made from avocado. It may not sound easy to eat but it sure does look good. This healthy little snack would make a great addition to your canapé menu if you’re looking for something with a twist.