Sawyer & Company Unveils the Queens-Inspired Design for the New York LaGuardia Airport Marriott
October 17, 2018
SoHo, New York-based luxury hospitality design firm Sawyer & Company is pleased to unveil the inspiration behind an eagerly anticipated major transportation and hospitality project – the New York LaGuardia Airport Marriott, located near the historic airfield. Situated adjacent to LaGuardia Airport, the Marriott LaGuardia explores the different layers of art, food and iconography integrated within the greater Queens community: the numerous nationalities, cuisine, and panoramic cultural inspiration. The Marriott is home to 443 newly renovated rooms including 4 suites, and is highlighted by 10,000 square feet of meeting space and 19,000 square feet of inspiring public spaces.
LaGuardia Airport, one of America's first cosmopolitan air fields, is in the midst of a renaissance, and Sawyer & Company is proud to contribute to the historic rebirth of the surrounding area and nearby amenities for travelers. A monumental accomplishment for the time, LaGuardia became the busiest airport in the world in its first few months, featuring a mural by renowned artist James Brook in the Art Deco Pan American Airways terminal, a Skywalk observation deck for airport visitors, and later on, a rooftop deck which ran along the entirety of the building's summit. Now, the almost 80-year-old airport is again on the cusp of a reinvention, with numerous initiatives planned to bring LGA into the future. A crown jewel of the Golden Age of Travel, LaGuardia is home to a national monument in the historic Marine Air Terminal, though the new look will feature a modern reinterpretation intended to improve access to the facility. The renovation of the airport will be accompanied by general improvements to the area, including a rejuvenation of an existing hotel, designed by the team at Sawyer & Company.
“We were thrilled to work in a location so rich in diversity, so we wanted to ensure we expressed and celebrated that throughout the space,” says Tracey Sawyer of Sawyer & Company. “The design features patterns, textures and crafts of so many locally-represented cultures – really there is endless inspiration. Additionally, because the site is located at the airport, the design inspiration also reflects the desire for travel, exploration and the celebration of cultures coming together.”
The design will highlight the unparalleled diversity of Queens, which is home to over 120 nationalities and a plethora of dynamic communities. The inspiration behind the Marriott LaGuardia captures the multi-cultural kaleidoscope that is Queens, home to LaGuardia Airport. Focusing on global, distinct, and diverse inspiration, the Sawyer & Company team referenced the people, languages, and food found throughout “the World’s Borough”.
The design concept for the public spaces mimics traditional craft of the many nationalities, using mixed textures and touches of a vibrant color palette. Communal areas feature supple leather chairs, along with intriguing metal work, fiber and textile art and rugs, whose juxtaposed textures, patterns, and touch create an interesting amalgamation of global aesthetics. The reception space is grounded in the fluting of Ionic columns, set aside decorative metal greeting desks, highlighted by hand carved boxes and metal work reminiscent of India. Live-edge wooden benches reflect the site’s location at the edge of the water, and Chinese-inspired light fixtures compliment stacked neutral-toned tiles – a nod to global patterns, traditional hand-painted tile work, and Chinese lanterns.
The Great Room and Marriott’s exclusive MClub follow the reception area. Architectural elements include butcher block end cut wood tiles used in a modern appropriation, and juxtapose custom-made hand carved metal screens, suggestive of metal work throughout the ages. An art wall features a hand knotted screen made of woven fibers, a craft that pre-dates recorded histories and was created on site. Textile art lines the walls which are lit through hand-made terracotta light fixtures marching in line above the contemporary, clean-lined bar made of eco terrazzo stone slabs – an intrinsic reference to the many influences becoming whole.
The MClub is home to a large-scale feature wall along the window that has custom tile representative of a globally sourced library focused on art, architecture, and craft. The piece is highlighted by a ceramic sculpture, sitting amidst graphic patterns in African mud cloth and indigenous textiles, with Indian hand-carved and –painted printing blocks lining the walls of the bar. The custom window seat lining serves as a welcoming refuge atop the in-laid terrazzo flooring inspired by modern Africa, and hand-woven baskets are mounted on the walls in a celebration of the art of weaving.
The meeting spaces are adorned with patterned carpets, evocative of lacework and embroidery, and translated in scale. The metal light fixtures recall handcrafted metals and fine jewelry, and fiber arts line the walls.
The guestrooms offer a respite from the hectic, controlled chaos of the airport experience. Natural tones dominate thoughtful interiors, rendered with eye-catching textiles that contrast with smooth, organic wood touches. The muted palette in the guestrooms reflects Sawyer & Company’s signature organic luxury approach, and appeal to the needs of busy travelers.
Sawyer & Company is pleased to be a part of this historic revival. Through references to the groundbreaking original facility, the cultural panorama of the borough, and a vast trove of global influences, the team's forthcoming hospitality offering will accompany and elevate LaGuardia's storied past.
More Sawyer & Company design work be found in the Sawyer & Company portfolio, here.
For more information on Sawyer & Company and the team’s design philosophy, please visit SawyerCo.Design.