Hotel group spends £200k on refrigeration for iconic site

Williams Mondrian Sea Containers

Morgans Hotel Group’s newest property on the banks of the River Thames features more than £200,000 worth of refrigeration, it has been revealed.

The Mondrian London at Sea Containers has been tipped to become one of the capital’s iconic hotels, with the brasserie-style restaurant, also called Sea Containers, serving food from 6am to midnight.

“Catering equipment gets a pounding, it has to be very hard wearing,” said executive chef, Luke Rayment, who confirmed that the site’s open kitchen can serve up to 700 covers a day.

Rayment insists that with a menu based on fresh, locally-sourced ingredients, refrigeration was an important component of the kitchen design as it has to be reliable, functional and adaptable. The hotel group opted for a range of kit from Williams Refrigeration as part of the project, which was designed by Tricon and managed by Vision Commercial Kitchens.

“The equipment was built around what we do,” he said. “Some refrigeration can look great, but is complicated to use.  The Williams kit works very well, it’s functional and easy to clean.”

Williams supplied a wide variety of equipment, including upright cabinets, ‘biscuit top’ under counters, cold rooms and blast chillers, as well as refrigeration systems for two temperature controlled prep rooms, for fish and general produce.

“Inevitably things can go wrong with catering equipment – especially in a busy environment.  We only work with companies who can provide the best service,” said Rayment. “The benefit of this approach was apparent during the installation, when it emerged that the coldrooms opened onto main fire escape corridors, so Williams replaced the original doors with PIR fire retardant ones. I’d never seen these types of doors on a coldroom. Williams created a special lock for them, too, with an interior release mechanism and reinforced handles.”

The Williams refrigeration at the hotel has a variety of ‘green’ features, with all the standard counters and cabinets running on hydrocarbon.

This refrigerant, which has low GWP and zero ODP, has excellent thermodynamic properties, maximising energy efficiency, and all the units are below the 150g charge of hydrocarbon threshold, ensuring safety and removing the need for site inspections.

Additional energy saving features range from high performance insulation to CoolSmart intelligent controllers.  These minimise a cabinet’s energy consumption, through processes such as fan and heater pulsing, intelligent defrost and independent management of evaporator and condenser fans.

The seven coldrooms at the hotel were constructed using Williams’ roof and wall panels with camlocks, which are securely foamed into tongue and groove joints for a tight-locking, stable structure.  These eliminate the risk of ice build-up in joints and ensure the ‘thermal envelope’ is 100%, thereby reducing energy consumption. The panels use 90mm, zero ODP foam insulation for optimum efficiency.

The coldrooms include a beverage room, dairy, meat, general purpose and two freezers.  The units are fitted with bumper rails to prevent damage from trolleys used to transport the food, and viewing panels.  The doors are also fitted with curtains to help prevent temperature loss while open.

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