Design Hunter Q+A with James Lohan

One half of the partnership between boutique hotel brand Mr and Mrs Smith, James Lohan's design favourites are suitably refined, discerning, and international.

18 Sep 2013

Your name: James Lohan

What you do: CEO Mr and Mrs Smith

Your latest project: The Smith Hotel Awards which will be revealed on the 7th November 2013. Not be missed if you want to find out which really are the world’s best boutique hotels.

Who are three people that inspire/excite you:

1) Sir Terence Conran
2) Nick Jones, Soho House Group
3) Andre Balazs, The Standard Group

What is your favourite…

Car/bike/plane/boat model: Porsche 911 (993 model),  I don’t do bikes as my Mum says they’re dangerous, the A380 as it’s so roomy for long-haul travel and when it comes to boats, I’ll have a Vintage Riva pretty please.

Chair model: Hans Wegner wishbone chair

Residential space: Villa Can Talaya in Ibiza you can rent it in the summer through my friend Seb at before the owner takes it back.

Commercial space: The Telegraph’s offices in London. They have a “spoke desk” system with every spoke of desks leading back to the central editors’, and above they project live stats and facts on a cinema size screen – it’s inspiring stuff.

Decorative product: The art we’ve collected from our travels.

Functional product: My 1961 Rolex that I wind every morning and still keeps perfect time.

Handmade good:  A vase we bought in Morocco

Mass-produced good: The Dyson hot and cold fan

Meal: Roast Beef and Yorkshire pudding

Restaurant: Chin Chin, on Flinders Lane in Melbourne.

Drink: Lychee Martini

Bar: Rooftop of The Standard Downtown in LA – you feel like you’re drinking on the set of Blade Runner as its in the heart of the financial district and you’re surrounded by tower blocks that the hotel projects onto.

Item in your studio: Table Tennis Table

Piece of technology: One click purchase by Amazon

Historical figure: Winston Churchill

Fictional character: Ben Hur - that chariot race still gives me goosebumps.

Vice: The occasional cigar

Virtue: Mentoring young entrepreneurs

What does the term ‘Design Hunter’ mean to you? Someone on an aesthetically pleasing mission.