The cost of repurposing casegoods not always as effective as going new

With environmental conservation a hot-button topic, hotels may find themselves interested in repurposing older case goods, updating them for future use. However, Patricia Miller, VP, managing director and corporate director of hospitality at Leo A Daly, recommends being selective when it comes to casegoods repurposing, as not all casegoods are created equal.

“We do little repurposing as it isn’t cost effective when pieces are too old,” Miller said. “Sometimes when a property isn’t doing well and it needs to purchase new nightstands, they won’t be able to due to the expense and fears of not being able to recover from the purchase. When we hear that, we will bring a refinisher in and compare the costs of updating old pieces to buying new ones. Sometimes it works out, but sometimes a new piece is needed.”

These increased costs most often come from the large amount of changes needed to properly update a piece, often including changes to the structure of the piece itself and new materials. “Sometimes, cost isn’t the problem,” Miller said. “When a piece calls for a replacement, it means replace it.”

Michael Suomi, principal and VP, interior design, at Stonehill & Taylor, recommends focusing on the main areas where casegoods might encounter wear and tear to keep them from needing repurposing in the long run. The major areas that suffer damage are legs, edges and countertops. “Designers have to be more innovative in protecting these areas,” Suomi said. “Sometimes it’s best to use durable materials such as metals, leather or stone in these areas.”

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