Sessions Arts Club team plan Soho hotel amid wider aims for global expansion

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Picture credit: Beth Evans
Picture credit: Beth Evans

Related tags: Sessions Art Club, Florence Knight, Restaurant, Hotel, Cabin Studio, Jonny Gent

Cabin Studio, the operator behind successful London restaurant Sessions Arts Club and the recently opened Boath House hotel in Scotland, is planning at least two further sites in the capital.

Jonny Gent, founder of Cabin Studio, tells BigHospitality ​that the group is in negotiations to acquire a site in Soho for its first London hotel; and is also looking at locations elsewhere in the city.

The plans form part of a wider strategy to expand the business globally, with the group also looking at potential outposts in Majorca, the south of France, and New York.

Gent says the Soho hotel will have up to 20 bedrooms; a ground floor restaurant with space for around 70 covers; basement bar; and outside garden.

Under the plans, Cabin Studio is also considering the introduction of a members-only element for the new site.

“There something natural about moving into the membership space and exploring that now,” says Gent.

“We’re consulting on it at the moment. It’s a difficult business plan to get your head around, but I think it would be great fun to jump into that world.

“What we don’t know is whether this the right site for that.”

Cabin Studio was founded by Gent in 2016 with a mission statement to ‘create spaces built on the pillars of art, food and supplies’.

Its first site, Sessions Arts Club, opened last summer​, and was followed in May this year with Boath House​, which is billed as 'a sanctuary for creatives' and located near the rural town of Nairn.

As with Sessions Arts Club and Boath House, it is understood that Florence Knight will oversee the food offering at all future Cabin Studio sites, both in London and across the globe, as executive chef.

Gent notes that the response to Both House has been better than he initially expected, helping to fuel Cabin Studio’s plans for growth.

Housed within a Grade A listed Georgian mansion, it has 10 bedrooms and two restaurant spaces, with the extensive grounds also featuring a walled garden.

“I thought the hotel would be the tricky thing, but it’s running really easily,” he says.

“It’s at around 90% occupancy. It’s full, and a big part of that is because of the team I’ve inherited, which are great. And having Sessions has helped in terms of promoting it.”

Situated on the fourth floor of Old Sessions House, Sessions Arts Club has captured the zeitgeist of London’s food scene since its opening thanks to its alluring setting and confident cooking.

The restaurant ranked at number 30​ on the 2022 Estrella Damm National Restaurant Awards top 100 list last month, and has received rave reviews from critics including The Guardian​’s Grace Dent and Tatler​’s Fay Maschler.

Gent runs Cabin Studio in partnership with architect Russell Potter.

A full interview with Gent and Knight will run on BigHospitality next week​.

Related topics: Openings, Hotel

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