Burn, Baby, Burn
GoodmanCharlton's retro inferno heats up a New York hotel
Sheila Kim -- Interior Design, 2/1/2002 12:00:00 AM
When GoodmanCharlton gutted the Marcel hotel in Manhattan, the product- and interior-design firm's principal Jeffrey Goodman expected to find a typically uninspiring basement beneath the 19th-century building. But when eight coal vaults were unearthed instead, Goodman knew he'd discovered a diamond in the rough. Polished, the 1,500-square-foot space is now Coal, the hotel's trendy lounge.
GoodmanCharlton cleaned out the coal vaults to reveal brick walls, then picked up on the motif by adding brickwork elsewhere in the lounge. Three of the vaults are now furnished with granite-topped custom steel tables, silver vinyl benches that accommodate 12, and sheer curtains that pull closed. "Once we discovered the coal vaults, we went with the privacy theme," says Goodman.
Original structural beams with oval openings, which served as inspiration for custom tables with oval-cut frames, also delineate the six boothlike alcoves lining the room. These alcoves, a modern corollary to the tucked-away vaults, are outfitted with orange Ultrasuede walls and leather benches. "We used burnt orange to go with the warmth and coziness of coal and fire," explains Goodman.
A freestanding steel fireplace enameled the same shade of orange is the centerpiece of the lounge's open space. Though the vintage fireplace doesn't actually work, GoodmanCharlton added faux lit logs for a '70s rec-room feel. Still, the crowd really warms up to this retro hearth—and the Philippe Starck stools and lime-green custom sofas grouped in front of it.