How to make a splash in Manhattan? It’s a question that has vexed more than a few. For Novotel, the hotelier well known to travelers throughout Europe and Asia, it was especially important. The company wanted to make a big impression with their new Times Square flagship—and to capture the spirit and uniqueness of the location—without leaning on tired interpretations, so that was one of the key questions posed to four architecture firms competing for the commission.
Entries in Manhattan (3)
Doing a lot with a little. For architects tasked with remodeling small New York apartments, that’s the battle cry. And it’s the approach Asifa Tirmizi, of Tirmizi Campbell, took when she set out to revamp a couple’s pied a terre in an historic Manhattan building. The residents wanted something clean and contemporary—with a few rustic touches in a nod to the wife’s equestrian bent—and were referred on to Tirmizi’s firm, which had completed renovations for several other residents.
“They had a wish list,” says Tirmizi. “They wanted an open kitchen, a renovated bathroom and exposed brick,” to name a few requests, although a wholesale reconfiguration wasn’t possible. For the kitchen, Tirmizi and her team dramatically rethought the layout, pulling out a low wall so that it now flows into the main lower level living space. Counter space, always at a premium in these apartments, has been expanded, in part because the architects opted for an under-counter refrigerator. For additional storage, custom teak cabinets now line the wall beneath the stair.
“We wanted to take the word design out of it,” Siobhan Barry, a partner at ICRAVE, a design and branding studio, says of The General, a new restaurant in the Bowery. It’s a provocative thing for a designer to say but one that makes sense when you consider that the spot is a contemporary riff on the classic Chinese restaurants that used to dot this stretch of Manhattan.