Boutique Design - July/August 2009 - (Page 26)

THE INN @ ST. BOTOLPH ’ Celeste Cooper Creates a New ‘Comfort’ Inn BY KELLY HUSHIN A new Boston boutique has quite effortlessly overcome the stigma of lackluster, institutional design that’s often associated with extendedstay properties. The Inn @ St. Botolph, or “The Inn,” which opened at the end of 2008 in Boston’s Back Bay area, proves that with insight into a guest’s needs and desires, an aesthetically appealing room with the functionality for an extended stay is attainable — even on a tight budget. Boston-based interior designer Celeste Cooper conceived the design for The Inn’s interiors and all its 16 suite-rooms, each suited for a stay of two nights or 20. Drawing inspiration from The Inn’s sister property, the luxury XV Beacon Hotel (also in Boston), Cooper curated a selection of soft and hard goods that help make each suite a nod to luxury, without the pomp and circumstance. “It’s what I call the anti-Four Seasons,” said Cooper of her approach to designing the new inn. “I find those properties gaudy and frumpy and full of received wisdom. In other words, the same old, same old and everything we’re used to. It’s part of the Martha Stewartization or Ralph Lauren-ization of our country. We’re looking for something fresh, something that has juxtaposition.” Top right: Celeste Cooper wanted The Inn to maintain Boston’s historic sentiment which is felt throughout all its pedestrian-friendly streets. Below: The sitting area in a one-bedroom suite In order to achieve an unpretentious, modern sensibility (which has become a defining characteristic of her design approach), Cooper made sure each detail at The Inn contributed to the hotel’s overall visual narrative — one which transports guests into life in Boston rather than Boston tourism. She knew that people traveling to Boston’s storied Back Bay neighborhood would not be looking for tourist traps or flashy, contemporary designs, but rather interior interpretations of the area’s rich history. The Back Bay is, after all, a neighborhood with lots of it. More than 150 years ago, the area was built around ideas of the Haussmann Renovations in Paris which took place in the mid-19th century. In designing The Inn, Cooper did not want to lose any of the area’s antique appeal and Colonial vibe because she knew the guests wouldn’t want to either. “We felt that the traveler’s expectation when they came to the heart of Boston was that they would also experience some history,” said Cooper. “We also didn’t want to be trendy, so we contrasted old and new so you have a mix of traditional architecture and millwork, but with more contemporary furnishings.” That’s where the juxtaposition Cooper so appreciates comes in. She chose pieces with hard, defined lines and combined them with softer, more muted accents. The end result is a boutique hotel suitable for extended stays, which feels sophisticated and luxurious without the outlandish price tag luxe spots often carry. 26 • boutique DESIGN july/august 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Boutique Design - July/August 2009

Boutique Design - July/August 2009
Boutique Buzz
Photos from YLH Las Vegas
Snaps from the Boutique 18 Bash
Hotel Designers, Owners and Operators Speak to International Design and Development Trends
Banyan Tree Mayakoba Fuses Cultures without Missing a Beat
Celeste Cooper Creates a New ‘Comfort’ Inn, The Inn @ St. Botolph
Business Sense
GKV Architects Design the Ultimate Bathing Experience, an In-room Spa in Istanbul
ICRAVE Takes its Experiental Design Style Global
Point of View
Wanda Jankowski Interviews WATG’s Meagan Jacobi
The Best of ICFF
The Goods
Calendar/Advertisers Index

Boutique Design - July/August 2009