A Paradigm Shift- Chicago’s Public Hotel

November 11, 2011




Travel … I always welcome change and a new perspective. Which is why I never default to the mundane and safe.  When heading to any big (or little) city,  I usually look for something a bit outside the box.  I’m always willing to take a chance and relish spending just one night in a space that  really inspires me.




I’ve done The Ace Hotel in Palm Springs….  though did not don the burlap Sherpa’s robe provided.





There are NYC’s “boutique” offerings.  Fun to ride the chartreuse escalator at The Hudson… just once.




Le Meridien Philadelphia was a visual treat.



via Remodelista


All of them just seem to be trying too hard.  So…  just came across images of Ian Scrager’s new “Public Hotel” in Chicago on Remodelista. The interiors really caught my eye.   A study in neutrals with infusions of color in small doses.  Trying…but understated.


via Remodelista


A vertical slice of brilliant yellow in back-lit shelving at the bar



via Remodelista


A splash of purple on white



via Remodelista


A horizontal plane of grass green in a sea of  textured neutrals





On Remodelista,  ”Schrager describes his new venture as a “paradigm shift”; with a focus on value without sacrificing style.” Sounds (and looks) good to me.


Tres Moderne at Le Meridien Philadelphia

November 1, 2011




What a visual treat!  I  recently had the pleasure of spending a few nights at Le Meridien in Center City, Philadelphia.



lobby, le meridien


This hotel, which opened just 2 years ago, is an adaptive reuse project of the original 1912, Horace Trumbauer-designed, Georgian revival-style building.  It was formerly a YWCA.




Blackney Hayes Architects was responsible for the redesign. The lobby is simply grand and references old tradition with its soaring arches and rich floor to ceiling paneling.




The vibe and decor, however are decidedly  hip, plush and moderne.



The rich wood-tones in the lobby are the perfect backdrop for bursts of rich red, persimmon and saffron color in the carpeting and upholstery.




It was fun exploring the hotel’s private art collection. Large, contemporary abstracts hold their own in the soaring spaces. The lighting fixtures are sublime.






In the evening, the lobby is hushed and dark with a swanky back-lit bar and flickering votives (football, too).



le meridien


On the upper floors, the color scheme is subdued gray with accents of red and orange.



sliding door, le meridien


The surprise was a large plane of color on the sliding bathroom door, in a yummy cherry red laminate.



An updated tone-on-tone medallion wallpaper graces the bath.



Woman in Blue, Henri Matisse


And for a jolt of reality, from the  lobby windows you have a great view of the tent city that is “Occupy Philadelphia”.  The hotel is just across from the magnificent City Hall.  It’s also within walking distance to the fabulous food markets and The Philadelphia Museum of Art.




And  I knew I was in the right hotel with this reading material in the lobby. I read it cover to cover.


*   *   *


Le Meridien Philadelphia…. your coffee could be warmer but you’ve got my vote~