Luxury Hotels: With the introduction of the "Boutique Hotel" concept, the hospitality industry was forever changed. The name behind the revolutionizing concept was Morgans, the hotel on Madison Avenue in New York City that forever changed our expectations for hotels in 1984.
Since then, 25 years have passed, and with them Morgans Hotel Group has grown by leaps and bounds. Expanding their reach to hotspot destinations across the US (and two exclusive locations in London), the brand brings its signature "home-away-from-home" ambiance and personalized service to discerning travelers seeking a one-of-a-kind, Morgans' aesthetic experience.
The design impact of a Morgans hotel is breathtaking: each hotel has taken interior design to a new level, setting each location far apart from other, cookie-cutter hotel companies. No two are the same, each with unique influences, original artwork and elements, and some of the world's best designers dying to put their hands to the task of working on a Morgans hotel.
Morgans, the location in New York that started it all, was initially concocted by legendary designer Andrée Putman. Then, she came back in 2008 to reinterpret the hotel's space, propelling the location headfirst into the 21st century. The bold addition of an art installation by French design collective Trafik gives the lobby a nearly tangible pulse: autonomous programming projects random patterns and colors onto the ceiling during the day. In the evening, guests make their own light-art experience in real time, allowing for a distinct and interactive experience.
From the original hotel on Madison Avenue, Morgans expands its New York destinations with two others, each as distinctive and sophisticated as the last. The Royalton, the first property designed by Philippe Starck and then redesigned by New York based designers, Roman and Williams, exudes sex appeal and luxury with thick, leather walls, rich suede upholstery and hide-covered chairs. The dark, sultry ambiance is highlighted by a mammoth floor-to-ceiling hand forged cast-bronze fireplace and a twenty-foot screen that was once part of the façade of building in France. The warm, exclusive feel of the Royalton is counter played by the exuberant and daring design of the Hudson, the ultimate lifestyle hotel for the 21st century.
The Hudson is where Morgans shows how truly fearless it is as an icon for design and impeccable execution of concept. Its location in midtown, just steps from Central Park, Columbus Circle and the theater district, allows the hotel to put its finger on the pulse of the city and welcome its guest into its boldly diverse atmosphere. A small door leads into a neutral, low-slung foyer, which contains Hudson's iconic and unforgettable piece: a thirty-foot tunnel of vivid chartreuse-colored glass that houses an escalator, transporting you to the hotel's lobby. At the top of the escalator, the mood shifts completely and you are seemingly in a different world: one with forty-foot ceilings and rampant climbing ivy, taking you far from the busy New York streets below.
On the opposite coast, Morgans' West Hollywood hotspot, Mondrian, was recently rejuvenated by famed Benjamin Noriega Ortiz. The property shows the playfulness of the Southern California lifestyle with motifs inspired by the Pacific sunset, a Lucite indoor swing, and a mushroom-inspired concierge center.
But as the only two Morgans hotels outside the US, both destinations in London have high standards to live up to when representing the brand overseas. Both St. Martins Lane and the Sanderson were conceived at the brilliant hands of Philippe Starck, renowned designer, who created unforgettable concepts for the London locations, decking them out with iconic elements like the yellow-glass revolving doors at St. Martins Lane or the integration of Salvador Dali's curvaceous red lips sofa into your surroundings at Sanderson.
For a quarter of a century, Morgans Hotel Group has worked nonstop to alter the way we look at the hotel experience, and they have overwhelmingly succeeded, whether they are doing it from their exclusive US locations, or their two lavish hotels in London. Until the next large innovation in the hospitality industry, Morgans will be the group to beat with the creation of the "boutique hotel" concept that has allowed them to provide unique and unforgettable travel experiences for their discerning and elite guests.