Some recent notable projects from V Starr include the Tennis Lounge for the new Midtown Athletic Club facilities in Chicago. The firm also designed a suite at the adjoining hotel. The Curio conversion of the Waterstone hotel in Boca Raton, Fla., is another major venture for the firm, in which the design group provided art, accessories, and lighting for the lobby and guestrooms.
“One of the projects the V Starr Interiors team and I are most proud of is the SETLC [Southeast Tennis & Learning Center] in Washington, D.C.,” Williams noted. “The facility was constructed for after-school programs in an underserved community. We were so excited to change these kids’ lives and give them a great place to go. [It] is doing so much for young people in the area. It is such a great model that can be repeated over and over again. [We were] involved in a design that can shape young people’s lives. Kids will walk down those hallways and that’s going to be part of their childhood, creating memories for them as they grow up. I visit the Learning Center every so often. I surprise [the kids] and hit some balls or do a reading. It’s very exciting.”
Of the current “resimercial” design trend, Haffey said V Starr’s heavy hospitality portfolio reflects the blended market of today. “A consistent topic [in hospitality] over the last few years is bringing defining elements of a location and a ‘home vibe’ into hotels. If I go on a trip to India, for example, I want to walk into a hotel that feels like I am in India. We think about how we can make guests feel they are part of the community, and how to make the community feel part of that space. The original meaning of hospitality is inviting people in and being hospitable toward them. You always have to consider that; when you’re in a hotel you want to be comfortable—you should want to stay there.”