Claridge House Chicago opens after a multi-million-dollar renovation which included the transformation of all spaces…
Design firm The Gettys Group has turned a classical building, constructed in 1923 by native Chicago architect Walter Ahlschlager, into a fresh and modern oasis. Exemplifying a “full circle” motif, the design group’s vision for Claridge House Chicago utilises rings, spheres, and other circular imagery to represent the hotel coming full circle – returning to its roots as a residential hotel, as it was when the property was known as Claridge Hotel until 2005.
“Everything from the wall artwork to the lighting to the original sculptures draws on the “full circle” design inspiration,” says Ali Bacon, project designer at The Gettys Group. “The round, inviting imagery creates an environment that feels less like a hotel and more like home.”
In the ground-floor lobby, this circle motif is seen in the lighting above a communal table for relaxing, working, and gathering. Hanging above the space and adjacent to a long, marble fireplace is a custom chandelier comprised of silk-wrapped rings. The lobby bar and lounge are lit by globe pendants ornamented with brass and copper accent rings. Circular mélange sconces designed by Kelly Wearstler contribute to the residential, home-like atmosphere.
Similar to a living room at home, one lobby wall is decorated with real travel photos. The photos, most of which were taken on smart phones, include personal memories from trips taken by those connected with the hotel, from designers to the hotel’s on-property team, offering a personal touch for guests to peruse and enjoy.
“If the lobby of the hotel is the living room of the house, then the guestrooms at Claridge House are true bedrooms, allowing visitors to work, relax, or get a good night’s sleep in an airy, calm space,” says Bacon.
The guestrooms, inspired by a pied-à-terre, offer a city apartment feel, each being unique to the next, adorned with urban, yet homey artwork. Above the work station is a black-and-white photo of Chicago’s John Hancock Center skyscraper, while above the bed and in the bathroom hangs images of quaint row houses and vintage cars in London – calling back to the origins of the name Claridge.