Miami Fusion

Michael Wolk’s design for the Trump International Beach Resort brings his trademark Neo-Modern style to Miami Beach

Neomi’s, located on the second floor, also features Wolk’s furniture, including a white leather serpentine banquette that he designed just for the space.

“Neomi’s was a breakfast and lunch restaurant at the time we did it,” he says. “The hotel package includes that breakfast and the restaurant is more family-oriented and casual. It looks out at the beach, there’s a back outdoor deck, and they serve a Sunday morning buffet, so the whole atmosphere and the whole program of what each restaurant was called for a totally different environment. With Neomi’s, we used the palette of a sandy beach and blue sky. We used reclaimed wood tabletops and we have some big pieces of reclaimed wood, back-to-back banquettes, as a central access piece.”

Bringing ideas from the past into a project like this resort leads to what Wolk calls “the age-old conversation about what’s new. I guess the best answer is it’s a new way of doing something that you’ve seen before. But for most artists, that’s the least interesting thing to do if you’ve done it already, so you always want to try something fresh and experiment it out.” He references the Fusion arch as an example. “There’s a building in Paris that I love that’s basically a big picture frame, and it reminds me of the arch,” he says. “An arch is pretty primal, too; it’s a passageway into another space. So it was new for me because it’s the first big arch that I designed.”

Hotel projects do come with strict parameters for designers— whether it’s because of budgets, deadlines, ongoing foot traffic, or the need for practicality and functionality—but Wolk feels he was still able to tap into his imagination on the project. “It’s a little tough to get that kind of motion going in the ballrooms and meeting rooms,” he says, “but they can be done tastefully and they are well lit and the materials are correct. With the lobbies and restaurants, there are moments when you get to fly and do the stuff that gets you excited.”

At the Trump International Beach Resort, those moments presented themselves with Fusion, in particular. “With the arch and back wall, we anchored the whole space to make you feel that you were in a contained area, with this crenulated wall with light features in it,” he says. “That was in a sketchbook of mine. It was a sketch in which I envisioned a folded screen, kind of an origami thing of folded paper. I expanded it into the wall, with lights in it, and it worked beautifully. I saw this screen, I drew it, and I had it in my sketchbook for five or six years.”

“I didn’t want a flat wall. I wanted a little more movement and dynamic action in the restaurant, and we were able to do that. Those are fun things for me.”

Trump International Beach Resort
18001 Collins Avenue
Sunny Isles Beach, FL 33160
(305) 692-5600

Michael Wolk Design Associates
31 Northeast 28th Street
Miami, FL 33137
(305) 576-2898


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