- 2022 HONOREE
Partner, Wilson Ishihara
Partner, Wilson Ishihara
Larry Rawson, Superintendent, Reliance Construction Company
Rocky Goldman, Reliance Construction Company
Neo Studio, Architect of Record
Carpentry Associates, Millworker
Melinda Morrison, Lighting Designer
Corey Mercy, Soho, Art Consultant
Cory Arker, HKD Design, Kitchen Consultant
Colorado Stone Quarries
Tristone & Tiles
Oregon Lumber Co.
Banker + Wire
Design & Direct Source
Moore & Giles
Crump & Kwash
About the Project
The Hythe, meaning haven in Old English, is a refuge of rarity, designed to celebrate all aspects of Vail’s storied history. Located just steps from the base of Vail Mountain, The Hythe, A Luxury Collection Hotel, design revamped the arrival and lobby experience and four brand-new culinary concepts. It is inspired by the origin of Vail, those who built it in the 1960’s, and the beautiful surrounding nature that drove people to the destination.
The spaces reimagine the founder’s pioneering spirit, optimism, camaraderie, and their mutual love of skiing, which can be felt in each design element. Adorned with custom furniture, lighting, and art pieces, the arrival experience brings guests into majestic and serene Rocky Mountain scenery. Punctuated with glamorous 60’s touches and historic ski references, the space brings guests a sense of revelry.
Working with the contrasting high and low existing ceiling zones, the team transformed the approach and relationship of the spaces entirely. Upon entry, the guests are welcomed by the dramatic central hearth lobby anchored by a whiskey bar featuring a local distillery and bespoke seating groups bringing warmth and vibrancy. The registration and concierge were relocated to low ceiling spaces for more intimate personalized guest experiences. The powerful presence of the staircase in the lobby draws the guests view to multiple venues providing visual clarity and sense of connections.
The key materiality and design details include local Colorado Calacatta marble quarried from the Rocky Mountains, hand-carved wood feature art inspired by the local shepherding tradition of Arborglyphs, marble flooring textured to evoke snow fall on the landscape, carved black stone walls, undyed natural wool custom rugs, and douglas fir siding wood panels inspired by an alpine chalet.
A Crafted Solution to a Two Story Space
How to maximize the possibilities of an existing two story skylight well in the restaurant presented a unique challenge for the designers.
The restaurant venue at The Hythe draws inspiration from an Alpine Chalet, historically known for its simplistic construction of stacked timbers. Oftentimes animals were housed in the same structure, with production area attached, such as dairies or mills.
The custom wooden screens pay homage to the tradition of textile common in the Alpine region; and in particular reference vintage mill spools. The goal was to create a permeable separation between the bar and the dining space while providing a dramatic focal point for both venues. The design is constructed of blackened steel rods, solid walnut, and oak.
The custom chandelier speaks to the incredible ingenuity of Vail’s first ski lift, an engineering feet that was completed in just a year. It was designed to bridge the two ceiling heights and gracefully engage with the volume.
The design was studied three-dimensionally in multiple iterations while collaborating with the millworker and lighting fabricator.