Years of investment in business development has just paid off in spectacular fashion for Rachel McLane Ltd as the Yorkshire interior design consultancy's memorable work on Scarborough's Bike & Boot Hotel has won Best Hotel Interior Design of the Year in the Northern Design Awards 2020.

Her designs on the refurbished boutique hotel The Bike & Boot, which opened last summer, included the design and fit-out of 65 bedrooms and the creation of eye-catching common areas such as the hybrid Bareca (bar, restaurant, cafe), residents’ lounge, film club and restaurant.

A 'Creating memories' theme permeates the hotel designs and appealed to a panel of judges which featured internationally renowned designer, George Bond, the influential designer, Linda Barker, Wayne Hemingway and Nick Munro.

"This award marks many years of hard work and investment in business development including staff, skills, services and training," said Rachel, whose company, now based near Pickering, has been a Northern Design Awards finalist four times previously. She leads a close-knit company team of specialist designers experienced in concept design, design detailing and space planning for the hotel, residential, retail and leisure industries; and operational experts in logistics, purchasing and finance.

"This award not only gives us greater credibility and shows confidence in the work of the Rachel McLane team, it affirms that our designs are of the highest calibre and that we 'know what we're doing'.

"In what has been a very difficult year, winning the award also shows we have the business systems and people in place to enable us to push on and accomplish a challenging project.

"It takes years of experience to get this far and I think it's no accident that the core of the Rachel Mclane Ltd team have been together for the last decade so this award is a testimony for all of our work. We've all pulled together to realise the design vision for the Bike & Boot alongside the hotel owners who worked closely with us and who believed in us.

"Thanks to the panel of NDA judges and special thanks to my team at Rachel McLane and our project partners – all of whom had a part in pulling this off under extraordinary circumstances."

The Bike & Boot's distinctive style of Scarborough-led artwork includes local photographs for bedroom doors, the creation of graphic blinds using original railway poster designs and producing wall mounts featuring bicycle seats and handlebars instead of the traditional taxidermy heads.

A Georgian inspired colour palette was used to paint over the old anaglypta wallpaper giving the rooms a new identity and feel, and the team also designed and commissioned wallpaper based on activity maps of the area and recreated posters of original postcards of Scarborough from its heyday as a fashionable spa resort.

The majority of the hotel's unique one-off design props were either made or commissioned by the Rachel McLane team and contribute to building the 'Bike & Boot experience'. Bespoke items in the hotel on Cliff Bridge Terrace include clocks made of brightly coloured bicycle bells and flip flops. Bespoke lighting was created from old bike wheels and crates, and a bespoke handle for the residents’ lounge is based on the ampersand between the 'Bike' & 'Boot'.

The company 'kept it local' with a conscious effort to use local craftsmen and suppliers, a mindset that helped matters when Covid-19 came along in March 2020 - pushing back the hotel's opening date from May to July, 2020.