Exclusive Hotels & Venues – now Exclusive Collection, is a luxury hospitality group founded in 1981 with six hotels, two spas, golf club, cookery school and a 12th century pub.

Our brief was to create and identity for the group and its properties that better resonates with the brand proposition – Creating happiness in Amazing Places – and evolves the heraldry of the existing brand. To shake off the pomposity associated with exclusivity we had to inject a sense of modernity that steps away from traditional ‘Country Luxury’ and into ‘Modern Luxury’ with an ‘exclusivity for everyone’ purpose.

The new purpose identified the business as a collection of places where experiences happen rather than just a group of hotels – a luxury brand that operates from the estates of six country hotels. So we asked ourselves; what is modern luxury?

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The design brief asked us to modernise the heraldic aspect of the existing identity. Undertaking a three day design sprint allowed us to develop ideas, styles and an understanding of just how difficult it is to put together a piece of contemporary heraldry.

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From heraldry, shields and crests we went towards luxury marks and something more emblematic.

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The identity for Exclusive Collection properties are now centred around emblems that are identifiable to each property.

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Each hotel has embraced an animal that is native to the local area, the property or is representative of the location – Pennyhill Park takes a Fallow Stag, South Lodge a South Downs sheep, Lainston House have their house owl, The Manor House takes a (stone) lion from its gardens, Royal Berkshire adopts a race horse from neighbouring Royal Ascot and Fanhams Hall has a pair of love birds.

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Applications across the group benefit from the brand architecture without the endless repetition of the property name and logo whilst on property making Exclusive Collection to look at how the brand is pulled through the hotels in different ways rather than via the logo appearing hundreds of times.

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