GREC Architects and Stonehill Taylor evoke Hyde Park history in Sophy design

According to Greg Randall, a principal of GREC Architects, the design of the upcoming Sophy Hyde Park in Chicago will pay respect to the history and diversity of architecture in the Hyde Park neighborhood, while celebrating new technologies and innovations.

The property is currently under constructio, and is scheduled to open later this year. Developed by The Olympia Companies and Smart Hotels, the property will be managed by Olympia Hotel Management. GREC Architects is overseeing the exterior of the hotel, while the interior design is by Stonehill Taylor.

Brick masonry will be a common design theme throughout the hotel and and will be seen in the Sophy’s facade, which will be clad in Norman brick, similar to the elongated masonry module employed by Wright on the Robie House. The punched windows of dark metal and glass pay homage to Chicago’s industrial era.

A lobby lounge and bar are designed to anchor the restaurant.

Meanwhile, according to Michael Suomi, principal at Stonehill Taylor, the property will use upscale materials with sinuous forms to achieve an elegant aesthetic throughout. The goal for the interior design is to create luxurious yet intimate spaces reminiscent of the neighborhood’s residential interiors.

The reception lobby will have a half-ton swirling chandelier inspired by Hyde Park’s musical legacy, and will overlook a 15-foot double sided fireplace that connects and separates it from the lounge. The lounge will connect to the bar, which will be inspired by the scientific discoveries that Hyde Park has witnessed over the last century, manifested in metals, geometric motifs and orbital light fixtures.

Local 20th century literary figures will influence the decor of the restaurant, with bookshelves carved into columns to partition seating areas. Walls will have a gallery of book covers and original pieces by local artists inspired by the literature of Hyde Park.

The property will have 98 rooms, including standard rooms and larger suites. Each room will be anchored by an eight-foot abstract painting by local artist Joey Korom, rendered in fabric, and is finished with books, ornaments and a record player with a selection of local musicians on vinyl. The rooms will also have hardwood floors, area rugs, custom lighting and a seating area.

The property will be located near the site of the future Barack Obama Presidential Library, University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Medical Center. It is engineered to achieve LEED Silver certification. Sophy is already a member of the Preferred Hotels & Resorts Lifestyle Collection.

Photo credit: Sophy Hyde Park