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Krause Sawyer has taken the wraps off its recent revamp of W Seattle. The New York-based boutique design studio recently redesigned the 424-key Marriott Intl. lifestyle hotel’s guest rooms, corridors, elevator lobbies and reception and concierge areas, channeling an urban lodge aesthetic that the designers say reflects the progressive-minded, Pacific Northwest city.

“This is our fifth time collaborating with W Hotels, and we absolutely love the depth to storytelling with this brand,” says Krause Sawyer principal Kajsa Krause.

“[But] it’s our first project in the northwest pacific part of the U.S.,” adds principal Tracey Sawyer. “It was an exciting opportunity for us to draw inspiration from the richness of Seattle’s urban fabric and street culture, which is so beautifully surrounded by breathtaking nature, while also weaving in the core brand elements that have become signature to all W properties.”

The design team juxtaposed references to Seattle’s music scene/street life and the 1990s grunge movement with sleek details and materials that take cues from the local tech and aviation industries. The result cabin feel that blends nods to local industry with the region’s outdoorsy vibe, the designers say.

Guest rooms feature an entry hallway with a custom wall print based on a pattern from a Pendleton blanket that’s been reinterpreted in silver and gray tones. The carpet features overlapping layers of patterns from sonic pulses and equalizer meters, echoing the feel of an airport runway. The headboards, rendered in a photo-realistic image of wood planks that stretches across the wall, is mounted in front of the same image, which is printed across a real wood veneer creating a three-dimensional illusion.

Up-lighting on the headboards illuminate the wood look, while custom graphics on the pillows and throws recall the world of aviation. Custom lighting fixtures reinforce the throwback industrial feel with chrome and black finishes. Sculptural desk chairs are clad with a gray metal vinyl with airplane rivet details, which are offset by a colorful interior. An asymmetrical sectional sofa complemented by a footstool completes the look.

Meanwhile, the EWOW (short for Extremely WOW) suite ramps up the lodge, aviation and grunge design narrative with a built-in ledge decked out with a faux-fur seat and pillows that’s set against a distressed, texture-clad tile wall. Using a timber frame structure, the installation frames an image that depicts a crack in the wall through which a flame emerges, recalling the hotel’s outdoor fireplaces in an abstract manner. The suite’s bar draws inspiration from turntables and guitar cases, with trunks set on a built-in ledge. A large communal table and asymmetrical coffee tables also speak to the refined yet rugged urban landscape with metallic details and organic patterns, parlayed against roughly woven and textured upholstery fabrics crowning the seating areas.

The suite’s headboard references the reclining beds in first-class airplane cabins, with a cocoon-like feel and fold-like angles. The entry showcases a neon light that reads “Buckle Up.” The expansive suite is also home to a large walk-in closet designed as a dressing room, with retail-like components and movable mirrors.

Krause Sawyer finished off W Seattle’s corridors with a patterned carpet designed to reflect sound waves, expressed in a web of lines that meander through the hallways. The reception area’s materials speak to the room design, with full-wall graphics flanking a newly created custom desk.


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