The Ritz-Carlton, Philadelphia, a storied hotel on the Avenue of the Arts, has unveiled a yearlong, multi-million-dollar renewal project. Helmed by architect and interior designer, Wimberly Interiors, the updates to the hotel include all new guestrooms and meeting spaces, a refreshed lobby experience and public spaces along with a new restaurant, bar and lounge by Richard Sandoval.
The iconic hotel, steeped in history, was originally built as a reproduction of the Pantheon when it opened in 1908 as The Girard Trust Company office building. The property-wide enhancements focus on the building and pays tribute to its rich past. The new design brings a fresh and sophisticated feel to the hotel while also telling a story through neutral colours, textures and materials inspired by money and currency, with pops of metallic, bronze and emerald green. Artwork and guest amenities reflect a distinct sense of place in the heart of Philadelphia.
The new guestroom design features luxurious fabrics and furniture finishes in a neutral colour palette. Punctuations of green and blue along with notes of bronze and nickel layer a contemporary polish. The new guestrooms offer a distinct space for work and relaxation with a cohesive unit encompassing the desk and TV console which work together to create a flexible work and dining space for guests.
The 2415 square metres of meeting spaces have been updated to reflect a seamless transition of neutral colours through each function room, with a nod to history through historic motifs from the building in the furniture details, with an updated clean aesthetic. The second and third levels of the hotel are pre-function rooms including 13 meeting rooms that can accommodate groups from 20 to 400 people. Even the original bank vault now serves as a function room. With a variety of layout options and room sizes, The Ritz-Carlton, Philadelphia has flexibility to host everything from small C-level board meetings to cocktail fundraisers and holiday parties. The hotel features two ballrooms: a 285-square-metre petite ballroom and the 566-square-metre Grand Ballroom, located on the concourse level, which is the centrepiece of the hotel and can hold up to 600 people. The sky can be admired through the ballroom’s large crystal chandelier as guests look up into the ceiling, into the oculus and through the top of the rotunda in the lobby.
Upon entering the building a large lounge area with comfortable seating is surrounded with two large crystal walls that fill the space with light. The original oculus, which used to host the bank tellers as they would pull the money through the center of the oculus from the vault directly below is still intact and covered by a glass wall which is now surrounded by a high-top bar.
Located in the property’s iconic marble lobby is celebrity chef and restaurateur Richard Sandoval’s newest endeavor, Aqimero. Hailed for his mastery of authentic Mexican cuisine and inspired restaurant concepts, Aqimero is the newest in a collection of critically acclaimed restaurants and will be heating up the food scene this year in the City of Brotherly Love. The wood-burning grill is the centrepiece of the new restaurant, with a menu focusing on sustainable seafood, steaks, ribs and poultry. Multiple sections for seating through the bar, lounge and main dining area offer comfortable places for large and small groups, and guests can catch a glimpse of the chefs in action preparing meals through the kitchen’s show window.