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DESIGN

The Art and Design of SIXTY SoHo

DESIGN

The Art and Design of SIXTY SoHo

Exploring the essence of the revitalized boutique hotel

by David Graver
on 31 March 2015

In 2001, Thomas O’Brien laid the design foundation of what was then 60 Thompson Hotel—a stunning boutique destination that managed to be tucked quietly into the heart of NYC's SoHo neighborhood. Over the last year Jason Pomeranc, a co-owner of 60 Thompson and now a co-owner of its latest iteration SIXTY SoHo, partnered with London-based designer Tara Bernerd (of Tara Bernerd & Partners) for a revitalization that more adequately reflects the hotelier's vision and the result is an ideal balance of comfort and class. And as spacious and chic as the rooms are, a glimpse at the common areas—from a second-floor lobby to the Gordon Bar just beside it—accurately conveys the grand yet warm aesthetic.

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Set beside massive windows facing out to Thompson Street and beneath exceptionally high ceilings, the furniture ranges from comfortable, velvet-laden couches to mid-century modern gems such as Jean Prouvé's Direction armchair. There is a sense of quality and majesty, and yet coupled with the extensive natural light, it's also welcoming. Books grace tables and line bookshelves—begging to be read and enjoyed. Seating is arranged into organized pockets conducive to conversation. All of the design work harkens to a luxuriant home, rather than a hotel lobby.

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Like the furniture and books, all the artwork encourages engagement. In fact, the decor is rather art-centric. London artist Harland Miller contributed original, commissioned pieces to the rooms and lobby, but much of what can be found on the second floor comes from Pomeranc's personal art collection. A Will Cotton piece adorns the ground-floor entrance; and works from Ryan McGinley, Asher Penn, Carter Mull, Evan Gruzis, Augustus Thompson and Cary Loren are scattered about the second floor. These vary from photographs to installation art, but all fall within the contemporary genre.

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Altogether, the balance is between approachability and signature SoHo luxury—achieved by way of layers and contrast. The lighting and color palette are warm and inviting, yet tinged with a subtle playfulness. With a John McDonald's restaurant, Sessanta, set to open at SIXTY SoHo this spring, all the public spaces in the hotel add to it being a destination for tourists and locals alike.

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Whether for a sophisticated stay, or a quick coffee or cocktail, SIXTY SoHo is worth visiting. A newly designed room at SIXTY SoHo starts at $450 a night. The public spaces and bar are open to all.

Images by David Graver

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