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Duff on Design: Staying In Budget

We all know the importance of appearance and design in the hospitality industry.  We also know the importance and priority of saving money. Garvey Schubert Barer's client, V*Starr Interiors, founded and led by another inspirational client Venus Williams, was kind enough to put together a guest blog post on staying in budget through re-purposing.  V*Starr Interiors' experience ranges throughout the US, and the team’s portfolio includes hospitality, educational facilities, public/amenity spaces, clubhouses and fitness centers.  Their hospitality portfolio includes a full renovation of the presidential suites, executive suites, and club lounge at Intercontinental Hotel- Downtown Miami, Florida.  Today’s post is from V*Starr Project Designer, Ariana Ranieri. We look forward to several more design-oriented posts from V*Starr in the months ahead. – Greg

B u d g e t    |     WAYS TO STAY IN BUDGET THROUGH RE-PURPOSING THE STAGNANT ELEMENTS Working within a budget is something that ultimately controls a project. However, approaching the design in a more resourceful manner can enable the dollar to go further. When deciding which elements to maintain or re-purpose, think about the space from multiple perspectives. Here are some important aspects to consider:

1)      Versatility | Look at the atmosphere and determine which style are you aiming to achieve. If you want to move from a traditional setting to a contemporary setting, assess your current surroundings and see what you can salvage. Can the room’s trim work be painted or re-finished? Then look at the furniture in the room. When it comes to furnishings be sure to carefully examine each piece. You may find a style that is classic throughout time and could possibly be re-upholstered or re-finished. You may also find furniture with a neutral shade that will marry into any color palette. For example:  An old sofa with great form will look much livelier once it is paired up with new pillows.  Save money by taking note of the current paint color as some neutral shades can be spruced up with the addition of an accent wall.

Before and After designs.

2)      Condition | How is the condition of the current components in the room? Think about legs, arms, finish, and filling. Also, how long has the piece been in the space and does it stand the test of time? How durable is the piece within a short period of time? If there is a component that seems to be problematic you’ll want to make sure that any reworking will not compromise the item. Let’s say you have a historic Dining Buffet with a great body but worn legs. Changing out the legs and hardware may give it a fresher look at half the cost of a new Dining Buffet. Lastly, inspect the existing plumbing fixtures and appliances and determine if there’s another fixture that could be more cost effective.

3)      Value | Furnishings hold different levels of value, both monetary and sentimental. Guests remember the space for certain design elements and feel a sense of nostalgia upon their return. If the element has sentimental value to the space this is an important consideration. On the other hand, if the feature only holds monetary value you may consider selling it for additional funds. Or is it worth keeping in storage for later use?

4)      Scale | Scale should be considered for re-purposing a piece to a new design. Does the piece blend well with the sizes of newly proposed items? If not, could it be re-purposed to another location, or modified to fit? Another element where scale plays a major role is with lighting. How does the scale of the existing fixture work with the new design? Could the shade size be modified or be re-specified to fit the scale? Before jumping into modifications, always be cautious and contact the manufacturer to be certain it doesn't compromise the attributes of the light.

Tips for re-purposing:

  • Think about these tips early on so changes may be incorporated into the design.
  • Consider costs associated with re-purposing and identify multiple sources to compare pricing. Also, when comparing pricing, see if any subcontractors can re-purpose on site to eliminate additional shipping costs.
  • Maintaining elements and re-purposing should be considered with care and always stay mindful of the end goal.
  • Remember to consult your designer for advice.

Showcase design progression over time: Consider this timeline of design as an art piece. Everyone loves a glimpse of history and it could be interesting to see it on the wall or in a flip book. If space allows, making a 3D timeline with the design elements could be of interest. Please feel free to contact Ariana if you have any questions and be sure to visit the V*Starr Interiors website for more design inspiration and photography.

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    Greg Duff founded and chairs the firm’s national Hospitality, Travel and Tourism group. Greg’s practice is directed at the variety of operations-oriented matters faced by hospitality and travel industry members, including ...

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Greg Duff, Editor
Greg Duff founded and chairs GSB’s national Hospitality, Travel & Tourism group. His practice largely focuses on operations-oriented matters faced by hospitality industry members, including sales and marketing, distribution and e-commerce, procurement and technology. Greg also serves as counsel and legal advisor to many of the hospitality industry’s associations and trade groups, including AH&LA, HFTP and HSMAI.

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