Kate Towill and her husband, Ben, are the founders of Basic Projects, a lifestyle-driven design and development company operating out of Charleston, SC. Together the duo have developed everything from a pub in Cornwall, England to an apartment hotel just down the street from our Savannah HQ! Their most recent venture? A dreamy new hotel and restaurant in their home city.
Tell us a little about yourself?
My family and I live in Charleston, SC, out on the beach in a little town called Isle of Palms. We have a design and development company called Basic Projects, where we own and run most of our hospitality projects.
Much like our founders, you left NYC and flew south. What brought you and your husband to pick up and move to Charleston?
We were both ready for a little change. We had both been in NYC for 10 years and were ready for a bit more space, and we both are drawn to the ocean and open spaces! We wanted to get married/have kids, and having both grown up in the country, we knew we wanted the same for our kids.
The Weezie team is no stranger to a Basic Projects hotel! (Our team stays at the Windrose whenever we are all in Savannah and LOVE it!) But your newest project, Post House Inn, might just be our favorite one yet! What can you tell us about the Inn?
Post House was a dream project to create. We wanted to make a place for the neighborhood and that felt quaint for tourists. We took inspiration from some of the best English pubs with rooms above - Ben has always loved this idea of the restaurant being the heart of the village and the rooms are a bonus above, instead of making a hotel with a restaurant.
The location has a long-standing history as the neighborhood hub. And by long, we’re talking more than 100 years. What can you tell us about the history of the building?
Yes, the building is from 1896 and has been an inn since the ‘70s. Before that, it was a general store and a few other things. We like to take inspiration from the age of the building by matching the original beadboard on the walls of the restaurant and using wallpaper in the bedrooms from William Morris, a British pattern designer from the late 1800s :)
We are dreaming of a getaway to Post House. We want to know from a local– what’s a perfect day spent in CHS?
Stay with us at Post House, then head downtown for brunch at Basic Kitchen. After eating, take a walk to the Battery and all around the gorgeous old homes. If you’re hungry, grab homemade baguette sandwiches and a bottle of wine at Goat Sheep Cow to enjoy in White Point Gardens on the water, then walk all the way down to The Ordinary on Upper King for oyster sliders and pink G&T’s at the bar.Then continue walking to Leon’s for an early supper of fried chicken and delish beer. Finally, rent some bikes and bike home over the bridge to Post House for dessert…our Basque-style cheesecake :)
We figure after a long day of exploring the city, we will be ready to retreat to one of your gorgeous rooms. Do you have a favorite bedroom at the Inn?
Yes, I love room 5. The paint color in 5 is so cozy and gorgeous - Castle Gray by Farrow & Ball. It highlights our rattan beds from Serena & Lily so wonderfully. We have some custom made club chairs with rich crimson linen that pops beautifully next to the thick painted walls. The view from this room is so lovely, you can see the harbor at the end of the street.
When designing the Inn, where were you turning for inspo?
We took inspiration from so many places and even pieces! Mostly some great seaside pubs in the UK, like The Pig, or wonderful eclectic designers here, like Tom Scheerer. We did a big trip to Brimfield Antique Market in Massachusetts to source so many pieces you see, and lots of vintage Turkish rugs… it gives that eclectic feeling mixed with modern creature comforts, like our Serena & Lily rattan beds and modern frames.
You two have the most adorable son! After a long day of play at the Inn, what does your bath time routine with Oscar look like?
We looove story time. We get different books each month shipped to us, and we ship them back through this cool company called Literati - it's a BIG day when we see the green box at the mailbox!
How does your family #enjoythestay?
We take a walk to the beach as a family most evenings and mornings, sometimes for the sunrise, or when it’s dark at night! We listen for owls and take head torches to spot animals or other things you notice when all is quiet… Oscar calls these our 'Nature Walks'.
- Favorite bedtime book for Oscar:
- Favorite interior designers to follow right now:
- When it’s safe to travel again, where are you two dreaming of going?! South West France, Basque coast! But first, we have to go back to England and see Ben’s family and so many friends! It’s been almost a year :(
- For you: White Piped Long Robe with Sullivan Embroidery in Grey
- For Oscar: Light Blue Gingham Lil Robe with Sullivan Embroidery in Navy