The J House hotel in Greenwich, Conn. is a perfect example of “designing local,” a theme I&S has championed over the past year.
“I really wanted it to have an eclectic mix, be more residential than staged hotel lobby, so we just started thinking about it in that way,” says David Ashen, owner of New York City-based dash design, who worked with Brenwood Hospitality Group and the Greenwich-based cb5 Restaurant Group to revamp this former Howard Johnson hotel. “I wanted it to be comfortable for Greenwich.”
Working mainly on the public spaces, Ashen commissioned the framed art in the lobby lounge area from a local gallery and selected quirky decorative artifacts from flea markets and various stores that somehow all blend together. “The concrete structure was all exposed, so we wanted to warm it up with a lot of texture through the fabrics and with the shapes of these pieces.” It also comes together cohesively thanks to a tamed color scheme. “The neutral palette holds it all together,” he explains.
The hotel’s best example of color can be found at check-in, just above the entrance to The Chocolate Lab café. A projected video-art installation by Spanish artist Daniel Canogar has the ability to mesmerize visitors as they start to recognize movement patterns of the people featured.
More Greenwich markers can be found in the restaurant seating. Eleven14 Kitchen’s tufted sofa banquettes are accompanied by wooden chairs backed in cable-knit sweater covers from the Andrew Morgan Collection®. Custom-made chandeliers twinkle above bar patrons and diners, who can also enjoy an outdoor sitting area featuring a fireplace and cascading waterfall, as well as a system of trellises that protect it and allow the space to stay open for a better portion of the year.
“It’s amazing to see how all the funky little details David has placed throughout the
public spaces blend seamlessly, and I love to see an example of local design played out so perfectly, especially in a town where you’d least expect it. Stuffy Greenwich was just forced to undo a shirt button!”