Canopy by Hilton Named a Building Memphis Award Finalist

 

See full Building Memphis Awards Profile in Memphis Business Journal

The active intersection of Union Avenue and B.B. King Boulevard in downtown Memphis, Tennessee, serves as an important gateway into the urban core and its historic, world-famous attractions, the likes of which include the Beale Street entertainment district, Charlie Vergos’ Rendezvous BBQ restaurant, the Peabody Hotel, the Civil Rights Museum and AutoZone Baseball Park. Forming a distinct first impression for visitors, the last parcel of available land at this high-profile entryway to downtown was primed for redevelopment and an infusion of contemporary design to better represent Memphis as it is now.

Opened to guests in November 2020, the new 171,100 square foot Canopy by Hilton hotel, designed by nationally recognized hospitality design firm HBG Design, provides the design aesthetic and atmospheric prominence this marquee corner location has needed for years.

Hilton’s Canopy offers a boutique hotel feel designed to immerse guests in the unique characteristics of host cities and local neighborhood experiences. The Memphis property is the 24th Canopy by Hilton hotel to open in the world. True to its brand promise, the Memphis Canopy brings a fresh urbane flair to its 174 hotel guestrooms and its public spaces including the chic ‘Curfew’ indoor/outdoor restaurant and bar, and energizing, open lobby spaces. HBG Design’s Principal Architectural Designer Nathan Peak, AIA, LEED GA, and Lead Architectural Designer, Thor Harland, created a unique dichotomy for the hotel architecture. “The five-story hotel’s blocked geometry elevates over a visually open base level prominently accommodating first floor lobby, restaurant, lounge and bar amenities, while achieving maximum configuration of its guestroom floors,” states Peak.

Our design solution for the new Memphis Canopy hotel is discerningly rebellious,” says Harland. “The materials, proportions and scale are meant to evoke the characteristics of the existing network of mid-rise masonry architecture in the downtown area, while its dark charcoal gray palette, patterning and simplification of form help to distinguish the building from its context and contemporizes the visual aesthetic of the architecture.”

Simple aluminum framed windows punch with rhythmic patterning on all elevations. Combined with the understated modern facade, these well composed fenestrations balance brick, metal, wood and concrete materiality. Complementary gray metal paneling distinguishes the corner façade immediately fronting the intersection and provides a subdued backdrop for Canopy’s signature orange logo signage. Warm ribbons of vertical light illuminate this hotel massing at night, evoking a modern streetlamp of the neighborhood at its critical gateway, while signaling the feeling of reliability for locals and a sense of home for visitors.Designers established a sense of transparency through the hotel’s base level using curtainwalls of glass and aluminum along this pedestrian level. Guestrooms wrap around two central lightwells introducing natural light to the core. Glowing light from the lightwells and curtainwalls flow together to permeate this first level, enhancing the dynamic lobby and indoor/outdoor dining experience and connecting the structure directly to the art, history, culture, and distinctly authentic fabric of the city.”

“By elevating the hotel block and removing the traditional thresholds at the first level we redefine how visitors interact with the urban buildings,” adds Harland. “The transparency creates a constant interaction with the hotel’s unique public spaces and the dynamic vibrancy of downtown Memphis’ most significant intersections so that the architecture becomes less about individual expression and more about amplifying the neighborhood experience.

”Angled vertical recesses on the two main exterior elevations figuratively recall the shape of a door left ajar welcoming visitors to experience the stylized, locale-influenced interiors within. Interiors designed by Sawyer + Company were influenced by Memphis culture and history with nods to the area’s iconic music legacy and vibrant riverfront industry.


HBG Design Master Plan Envisions Memphis’ BLP Film Studios

HBG Design master plan envisions Memphis’ BLP Film Studios, proposed to be the second largest African American-owned film studio in the U.S.

Master planned by HBG Design, the proposed 85-acre, multi-building BLP Film Studios complex in the Whitehaven area of Memphis, Tennessee, is being developed by entrepreneur Jason Farmer and his team at BLP Film Studios, LLC as the future home of the second largest African American-owned film studio in the U.S.

Located near world-famous Graceland on an undeveloped intersection of Elvis Presley Boulevard and Holmes Road, the BLP Film Studios lot will accommodate a multitude of sound stages for film and television, a hotel for out-of-town production crews, an event center, administration offices, recording studios, editing and post-production suites, a mill shop, buildings for prop storage, a commissary, a gift shop and housing for production staff.

 

HBG Design team leaders, Mark Weaver, FAIA, Principal, and Carmen Fluellen, Planning and Architecture, discuss the project:

Why is this project important?
Mark Weaver: The BLP Film Studios project is the vision of entrepreneur Jason Farmer. Jason recognizes that there is a huge pent-up demand in the small film industry and the African American filmmaking community especially, for studio and production space. His son is a film student, so the challenge is close to him. With its creation, the BLP Film Studios project would give studio access to an unmet market niche across all sectors of Film/TV/Streaming and Media, including smaller budget filmmakers that help bring underrepresented films to the public. BLP will also boost Memphis economically, by bringing national businesses and production companies to our city.

How did HBG Design become involved with the BLP project?
Mark Weaver: Jason and his BLP partners have benchmarked studios across the country and have a solid vision for their Memphis located studio project. To advance his concept, Jason was seeking a planning and design team with experience designing large entertainment complexes and hotels. HBG Design was fresh from our work at Graceland, where we completed the Elvis Presley’s Memphis Entertainment Center, the Exhibition Center and The Guest House at Graceland™ Resort, which each feature several sound stages. We have designed theaters, event centers and exhibit centers and offer a nationally recognized specialization in hotel design. We are also headquartered here in Memphis with strong ties to the community. These were all major selling points for Jason and his team when selecting HBG Design.

How did HBG Design develop the master plan?
Carmen Fluellen: Mark and I worked closely to understand Jason’s project vision, and then went to work on the building massing to make the best use of the site. I modeled the solution with the proposed program elements to develop the final master plan illustration. This really helped the BLP leaders and the project team envision the program on the site, and bring the vision to life.

The hotel, event center, administration, commissary, and security buildings are placed around the main entrance, and the sound stages and production buildings sit beyond those to allow for phased expansion. The site boundaries and the overall site flow was set by the adjacent neighborhoods, the existing intersecting utilities, and naturally occurring drainage. Because of the need for water retention ponds, we master planned a landscaped lake environment with fountains and water features between the campus structures. The hotel, event center and the outdoor event space and dining are planned to overlook the lake.

Our master plan preserves all existing greenery around the site, including a 35-foot natural buffer that exists between the adjacent neighborhood and the back lot buildings such as the mill shop and stage productions.

What will the BLP project mean for the community?
Carmen Fluellen: We formed the master plan to suit BLP’s and the Whitehaven community’s needs, making an intricate site work for the large-scale studio infrastructure and buildings, while preserving landscaping that will help beautify the area.

Whitehaven is my hometown neighborhood, and Jason Farmer is also a Whitehaven alum. The BLP Film Studios, LLC project is a positive step forward for the area, and presents an opportunity for further Whitehaven redevelopment, improvements and job creation, potentially forming a locational synergy with nearby Graceland©. There is a buzz generated locally that speaks to longevity, which is exciting for all those involved in and around the project.

We look forward to the BLP Film Studios project advancing in the months to come!

The Project Team:
HBG Design – Planning & Design
The Reaves Firm – Engineering Consultant
Montgomery Martin - Contractor
NuDev - Development Consultant


HBG Design Shares Resort Designs for Changing Times in Tribal Government Gaming

https://issuu.com/globalgamingbusiness/docs/tribal_government_gaming__2021/30

Pressure eases off the brake pedal. Slowly but surely, the pandemic that shut down gaming has less force.

Operators await business beyond Covid-19. And tribal properties, like their commercial colleagues, will benefit from those who innovate ahead of the post-pandemic curve.

Casinos are already placing social distances and guest separation into their plans to gain an edge for the future. Sharp vendors serving tribal gaming interests are both anticipating and reacting to market needs.

Building Outside the Box

HBG Design has a long, storied presence in tribal gaming. Principal Dike Bacon says the company has worked with more than 40 sovereign nations across the United States, bringing their strategic visions to life through the design of award-winning casino resorts.

HBG’s SafeBet gaming pods offer social distancing and a patentpending UVC Breathing Zone that kills 99.99 percent of airborne pathogens

Along that journey, the company took a game-changing side trip in the past couple of years. Its innovative SafeBet product allows properties to continue to operate amid Covid-19. The concept of SafeBet can also spread to other industries.

“As creative people and problem-solvers, it’s in our DNA to design with the intention of making places and spaces better,” says Bacon. “That’s fueled the creation of our SafeBet slot pods, which HBG designed in 2020 and is patenting. We’re now manufacturing SafeBet through our partnership with KGM Gaming.”

The pods offer social distancing “with additional layers of comfort and personal space,” says Bacon. “SafeBet literally creates the safest seat on the gaming floor, with the only personalized ventilation system available in the market today.” Its patent-pending UVC Breathing Zone kills 99.99 percent of airborne pathogens and bacteria.

“Think of it like this: As a guest in a casino, playing at a slot machine that has the SafeBet product, you essentially have a personal ventilation cleaning system working for you and killing pathogens in the air immediately around the you while you play,” says Bacon. “It’s a win-win for owners and their guest… What we’re doing with SafeBet is providing a path for owners to maximize floor space and push revenues higher, while offering the kind of protection that provides guests with peace of mind.”

The breakthrough product was part of HBG’s multiple-faceted approach to the crippling pandemic.

“One of the biggest takeaways from Covid in our industry is the focus on making cleanliness, safety and wellness top priorities,” Bacon says. “The perception of cleanliness is paramount in bolstering a positive feeling of safety and well-being among guests, but the measures operators take have to work.”

Bacon says current design projects show better utilization of interior and exterior spaces, blurring the lines to bring the outdoors in and the indoors out. This is especially true in food and beverage, in which seating capacities can be increased with little to no new square footage. Designers are rethinking how to seat and serve guests to achieve social distancing, and compartmentalizing spaces in a natural, fluid manner.

“We’ve been analyzing and re-purposing existing space—often square footage that’s underutilized or, in some instances, unused, in the casino,” says Bacon. “We’re weaving design- and facility-planning principles with emerging technologies to develop responsive design solutions.”

Beyond safety breakthroughs, HBG retains a presence as an industry heavy-hitter, ranking among the Top 5 hospitality design firms in the country for more than a decade, according to Bacon.

“We’re one of only a handful of design firms working in the tribal sector that’s laser-focused on hospitality and entertainment design as the core of what we do, and that’s a real differentiator,” Bacon says.

Many of the firm’s Indian gaming clients continued to pursue projects during and despite Covid-19, both on the design side and in new construction. The prevailing attitude was that the calendar doesn’t stop, and lost time is lost revenue.

Two projects opened recently: the 1.2 million-square-foot Desert Diamond West Valley Resort in Glendale, Arizona, and the $180 million, 459-room, Four Diamond hotel expansion at Cache Creek Casino Resort in Brooks, California, outside Sacramento.

In addition to gaming, both projects include a diverse range of non-gaming amenities targeted to each region’s specific market and guest demographic.

Completion of the Desert Diamond West Casino in Glendale, Arizona proceeded despite the Covid 19 pandemic

 

 


Designing for the Caption brand - InspireDesign Magazine interviews the new brand's lead designer

See Full Story in InspireDesign Magazine

Hospitality design firm HBG Design is embracing the new Caption by Hyatt brand with a focus on redefining what hospitality looks like in the modern world; and it couldn’t come at a better time. The first U.S.-located Caption by Hyatt hotel, and second to open worldwide, is a beacon of hope following widespread disruption to the hospitality industry caused by the pandemic. Caption by Hyatt’s upscale, select-service lifestyle brand is targeted to conscientious locals and guests, with a focus on creating social spaces that punctuate connection and interaction with their locale. The Memphis, TN location celebrates the spirit of this iconic American city, steeped in history with many stories to tell.

Caption by Hyatt will become an integral component of downtown Memphis’ One Beale mixed-use development located at the base of Beale St. on the Mississippi River bluff, and will connect with the adjacent Hyatt Centric hotel, also designed by HBG Design, which opened to guests on April 15.

We spoke with Mark Weaver, FAIA, principal/senior architectural designer, HBG Design, who is leading both the architectural design and interior design of the project:

What inspired the hotel’s design?
When complete in 2022, the new Caption by Hyatt hotel will become an integral component of downtown Memphis, Tennessee’s One Beale mixed-use development…The new development represents a merging of vibrant live/work/play functions among downtown Memphis’ landmark structures.

Each hotel sits prominently within the One Beale development offering its own distinct interpretation of brand and Memphis history and culture. Specifically, the new Caption design will offer an inimitable contemporary boutique hotel experience while paying homage to Memphis’ historic riverfront legacy and industrial architectural vernacular.

Where and how do you seek your inspiration?
Inspiration comes from so many places for our hospitality designers—local culture and the regional landscape, branding and market influences, our clients’ project visions, storytelling, and biophilic, sustainability and wellness concepts. We design hospitality and entertainment projects all over the U.S., in both urban and more agrarian environments, and design language based on regional context and culture resonates highly with our clients and their guests.

The Caption hotel benefits from our designers’ knowledge of Memphis; this is HBG Design’s home and has been our company headquarters since 1979, even before we added our San Diego and Dallas office locations. The hotel property is situated in downtown Memphis, a hub of activity near the banks of the Mississippi River, and not far from our design studio. The city has a long industrial history with rows of ornate brick warehouse buildings lining the downtown streets. Our designers walk these streets daily and are inspired by the city’s former life and the possibilities for its current and future growth.

How did local culture, landscape and history influence the design?
Design influenced by local flavor is an important aspect of the guest experience. For example, the hotel design is being integrated into the historic architectural remains of the William C. Ellis & Sons Ironworks and Machine Shop building on Memphis’ Front St., which will house the hotel’s ground and second floors.

The Ellis company was one of the earliest, longest-running businesses in Memphis. The original blacksmith shop once made wrought-iron straps for carriages and shoes for horses and mules, and other structures on-site were used for river trade manufacturing and the repair and building of agricultural machines such as cotton compresses and railroad equipment.

Conceptually, the integration of the historic Ellis facade serves as a distinguishing artifact that will be remembered and appreciated as part of Memphis history.

The Caption’s 136-key hotel guestroom tower will then rise dramatically above the Ellis facade offering guests superb views of the river and the city skyline. The tower’s modern, darker exterior is designed to complement the light-colored Ellis building in front.

The interior design concept reflects this duality with a comfortable, refined ambiance featuring subtle references to the industrial roots of the hotel’s location highlighted with soft colored tones and metal accents. The guestrooms will reveal uniquely designed custom furniture that offer signature touches of comfort and luxury.

How do you define a design vision for the first U.S. property of a new brand?
At the heart of the Caption by Hyatt brand experience will be the F&B concept Talk Shop, which will serve as a welcome area, all-day lounge and workspace, coffee shop, eatery, grab-and-go artisanal market and cocktail bar. A patio and beer garden courtyard will be incorporated into the building’s historic Ellis facade on Front St. The unpretentious style and approachability of the space combines with locally inspired experiences, ideal for socializing and appealing to both travelers and locals.

Additionally, each Caption hotel builds on signature brand features, including marquee signs above each main entrance, local hand-drawn graphic art and animated social and F&B spaces with tech-forward features like digital check-in, digital keys and mobile-order food service.

Keeping with that, what challenges and opportunities did you face in doing so?
There are always challenges when integrating historic structural elements with new builds, but HBG Design is accustomed to this challenge through our 40-plus years of experience revitalizing other historic projects, many of which are in downtown Memphis. We are intimately familiar with these older Memphis buildings and appreciate the opportunity to reuse and integrate the long-vacant Ellis Shop on Front St., which has been adapted to hold Talk Shop lounge space and hotel meeting space. Talk Shop’s double-height lounge will be enveloped by the historic building’s original heavy timber framing, decorative brick walls, archways and clerestory windows. The historic building will also accommodate the new Foundry Ballroom and new meeting rooms with names like the Welding Shop and Pattern Shop, serving as a connecting point between the Hyatt Centric and the Caption by Hyatt properties.

Is there anything else readers should know about the hotel and its design?
Developed by Carlisle Corporation, the Memphis Caption by Hyatt hotel is currently in construction with an expected opening date of spring 2022. HBG Design has worked with Carlisle Corporation for over 15 years exploring and leading the planning and design for the One Beale mixed-use development through multiple iterations of development possibilities.


‘Talk Shop’ lounge will anchor One Beale’s boutique hotel

See full article in The Daily Memphian 

A lounge called Talk Shop will anchor the ground-floor, public space of One Beale’s boutique hotel, Caption by Hyatt.

Memphis-based architecture firm HBG Design released a rendering and new information about the 136-guestroom hotel, expected to open next spring.

The nine-story hotel at 233 S. Front is connected to a sister hotel, the Hyatt Centric, which opened April 15 at Front and Beale streets. HBG Design also designed the Hyatt Centric.

Both are part of Carlisle Corp.’s One Beale, a riverfront development also comprising apartments, restaurants and a parking structure.

The boutique hotel will be the first Caption by Hyatt in the United States and only the second in the world, behind one in Shanghai, China, according to HBG Design.

The architecture firm designed Caption to be upscale “with a focus on creating social spaces that punctuate connection and interaction with their locale,” states the firm’s release.

“The Caption by Hyatt design will offer a distinctly contemporary boutique hotel experience while paying homage to Memphis’ historic industrial riverfront legacy,” HBG Design principal Mark Weaver said in the prepared statement. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) fellow is leading the hotel’s architecture and interior design.

The Caption design incorporates the front, two-story walls of the historic William C. Ellis & Sons Ironworks and Machine Shop building on Front. The guestroom tower will rise behind the walls.

“Conceptually, the integration of the historic Ellis façade serves as a distinguishing artifact that will be remembered and appreciated as part of Memphis history,” Joshua Love, HBG Design’s lead architectural designer, said in the prepared statement. The old, front walls’ “highly detailed ornamentation complements the contemporary brick hotel tower with authentic character,” Love said.

Talk Shop will be a lounge space, which will include a patio and beer garden set behind the old machine shop wall.


HBG Design Talks Sportsbook Design in Casino Design Magazine

See full article in Casino Design Magazine. 

Sportsbooks are the new hot item in casinos, so how do you design a sportsbook that competes, but also compliments your app?

https://issuu.com/globalgamingbusiness/docs/casino_20style_20magazine_202020/34

 

 

 

 

 

 


HBG Design is the Architect of first new-build Caption by Hyatt

See full article in Memphis Business Journal

Developing a new hotel right now is extremely difficult. But, it's apparently not impossible.

Carlisle LLC CEO Chance Carlisle told the MBJ Oct. 22 he is set to close financing within two weeks and start construction by the end of November on One Beale's second hotel.

He knows that sounds risky, as the global pandemic rages on, but he's bullish on Downtown Memphis and the way a second hotel will complement the rest of One Beale.

"My confidence to start construction on the [second hotel] is a combination of my faith in our partnership with Hyatt, the strength of the [Caption by Hyatt] brand, and the belief by our partners in a resurgence in Downtown," Carlisle said. "Both our lenders and Hyatt strongly believe this will be highly successful."

Caption by Hyatt is a brand new limited-service flag that's largely targeted toward millennials. A property in Los Angeles is being converted into the first one; the Memphis location will be the first new-build property.

"[It's for] someone who appreciates good food and beverage [and] wants to be in the middle of the action, not the closest hotel off of the highway," Carlisle said. "It is a hangout hotel."

Carlisle said the new hotel's guests will benefit greatly from being next door to the full-service Centric — with its rooftop bar and abundance of meeting rooms — while paying less.

With the Centric set to open in March 2021, Carlisle is hoping the Caption will be ready by March 2022 — in time to take reservations for Memphis in May. It is set to contain almost 140 rooms on 10 floors.


See our new insights on navigating Covid-19 in Indian Gaming Magazine

See article in Indian Gaming Magazine

Insights from HBG Design Principal, Dike Bacon:

NAVIGATION: HBG Design has historically been able to navigate through industry challenges in a nimble fashion – and that hasn’t changed with COVID-19. Like many professional services firms around the country, we transitioned both our Memphis and San Diego offices to a work-from-home model in response to COVID-19. We were pro-active with this decision before local government directives required it. Our primary goal was and still is to keep our staff safe and healthy. Fortunately, we had plenty of very sophisticated technological platforms and accessible infrastructure in place to move swiftly and be fully operational in a matter of days.

Regarding our tribal clients, we have been fortunate in that much of our work has continued to progress. A number of our projects have continued through planning and design phases. It seems many clients have proactively decided to continue to advance their projects and get them ready for construction when the timing is right. We also have a number of projects that were in construction pre-COVID-19 and these have continued to progress through the pandemic. A big part of this success is attributed to construction companies that implemented numerous health and safety protocols in order to keep projects on schedule.

DRAWING CUSTOMERS: We have been studying the re-design of a number of the typical resort amenities. One of the most important has been food and beverage. We think that design solutions that respond to spacing requirements and COVID-19 restrictions should be flexible and adaptable as conditions continue to change and improve. This means more modular systems and easily modified seating arrangements that can actually create a feeling of luxury and exclusivity. The temporary re-use of existing conference and meeting space has been in recent discussions. The conference business will come back but in the interim these large spaces can creatively and temporarily be used for gaming space. Wiring, security and ingress/egress have to be addressed but it can work. In the right climates, increased outdoor activities may continue to be a very successful way to serve higher numbers of guests and keep the proper distances.


Caesars Southern Indiana's New $90 Million Casino Opens for Business

See full article at WDRB.COM

ELIZABETH, Ind. (WDRB) -- Hundreds of people streamed into the new, $90 million land-based Caesars Southern Indiana casino on Thursday, saddling up to blackjack tables, slot machines and a Las Vegas-style sports betting theater.

The new facility replaces the Glory of Rome riverboat casino that operated as Horseshoe Southern Indiana for the past two decades.

Indiana lawmakers in 2015 allowed riverboat casinos to move on land.

"That really got us thinking, is there a better way to run a business than on a riverboat?" said Caesars Southern Indiana general manager Brad Seigel.

The 110,000 square-foot complex combines entertainment, dining, shopping and gaming on one floor, whereas the riverboat casino had four floors.

"The riverboat was great for 20 years, but if you are on the fourth level of the riverboat, you might have no idea what's going on on the second. Now can see from corner to corner," Seigel said.

Indiana legalized sports betting earlier this year. The casino has an area called The Book with wagering windows, kiosks, plush seats, huge TV screens and a large bar. Guests can bet on football, basketball, baseball and other sports.

A dining area called Piazza has five restaurants including pizza, Mexican and Asian foods. There is also a 24-hour restaurant for burgers and other fare along with a home-style restaurant serving foods like fried chicken and barbecue ribs.

Several new bars and lounges are included. Volt Lounge will offer craft cocktails and live entertainment on the weekends. The Juno Bar is in the center of the gaming floor, and the Laurel Lounge and its outdoor balcony is exclusively for Caesars Rewards VIPs.

Tony Rodio, CEO of Las Vegas-based Caesars Entertainment Corp., said Thursday that the bricks-and-mortar casino should attract even customers who don't gamble.

"There was no way anyone was going to that riverboat and spending an evening if they weren't interested in gambling. You could, I think, have an enjoyable evening here without making a wager," he said.

The casino also includes High Limits gaming with private parlors and a non-smoking gaming area.

Caesars Southern Indiana has also renovated existing meeting and convention spaces to accommodate larger groups.