Sneak Peek: Hotel E in Santa Rosa

The first new hotel to open in the Santa Rosa since the 2017 North Bay Fires has started to take reservations: Hotel E.


Located in downtown Santa Rosa, the 71-room boutique hotel is split between two buildings: the historic Empire Building, which is on the National Register of Historic Buildings and was built in 1910, and 19 Old Courthouse Square.

Owned by Greystone Hotels, the lead interior designer is Jacqueline McGee of Ealain Studio. While we've only seen a sneak peek of the rooms (click the gallery above to check the room decor), the look is sleek and clean, with furnishing that appear traditionally inspired and bespoke touches like photographs showcasing the region and artisan made pillows. The rooms will have tablets for room service and information, free WiFi and nightly turndown service.

Rooms are split between the two buildings: 39 rooms at the Empire Building, which will open in July and 30 rooms at 19 Old Courthouse Square, which open in early 2020. The buildings are split between a public courtyard.

We're particularly stoked about a few additions to the property, specifically a rooftop deck atop 19 Old Courthouse Square with a café overlooking the Square. The world can always use another rooftop lounge.

Aside from the café, Hotel E will have two additional dining options: a wine bar and a three meal restaurant. The wine bar, The Enology Lounge, will be adjacent to the hotel lobby in the Empire Building. Perry's, the iconic San Francisco restaurant and bar, will offer all day dining and weekend brunch at 19 Old Courthouse Square. There's also going to be a Starbucks, so do what you will with that.

As for the name, Hotel E, it's inspired by a few things: Sonoma County's enology heritage, the Empire Building, and Greystone's brand motto: Experience Exceptional Service. We look forward to seeing that in action as downtown continues to evolve Santa Rosa into one of the North Bay's hot spots.


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Article from Inspire Design


Joie de Vivre Hotels’ The Marker in San Francisco has completed a multimillion-dollar renovation. The sophisticated redesign of the lobby, meeting and event spaces and living room draws inspiration from the Beaux-Arts period by mixing unexpected scale and theatrical elements of its Union Square neighborhood while reflecting the city’s expressive culture through memorable and bold art.

Housed in a historic 1910 building originally opened as the opulent Hotel Bellevue, the newly renovated Marker pays homage to its location while delighting guests with playful spaces, bold expressions of color and a design full of personality. The sophisticated yet playful design was created by Perkins+Will. The architectural details of the hotel feature a simplified color scheme of soft whites and pale grays to create a canvas for colorful furniture, layered patterns and dramatically placed art and lighting.


“It’s always fun to work on a project with a strong sense of place and that’s definitely the case with The Marker,” said Jacqueline McGee, project lead formerly with Perkins+Will and now with Ealain Studio. “We strove to enhance the guest experience by highlighting design features and adding playful elements reminiscent of the Beaux-Arts period and famed novel The Maltese Falcon set in the neighborhood. From the dramatic grand staircase to the literary narrative in the Living Room and the larger than life birdcage and 12-ft. lavender glass chandelier in the lobby, guests enjoy bold design features that connect them to the destination.”


Hanging over the entry, Murano-inspired chandeliers each span more than 7-ft. in diameter. Also greeting guests at the entry is a theatrical bird cage, reaching 12-ft. high, created by Shawn Man Roland and inspired by The Maltese Falcon. The central historic fireplace is highlighted by new bookshelves adorned with a colorful collection, including The Maltese Falcon. The grand staircase is now in a bold blue, and at the bottom, an expansive tufted turquoise banquette made by local furniture maker Composition. The new floor is a patterned black and white tile that complements the original historic stone flooring.


“The purpose of The Marker’s new design decor is to highlight some of its iconic features, including the two timeless fireplaces and the grand staircase, neither of which have changed since the hotel originally opened in 1910,” said Benjamin Duverge, general manager of The Marker. “The use of a simplified color scheme of soft white and pale gray creates a canvas for the colorful furniture, layered patterns, locally curated art and the dramatic lavender chandeliers, reflective of the playfulness for which Joie de Vivre hotels are famous. The fresh design, along with ample, flexible meeting space, provides a unique and ideal setting for urban weddings and corporate meetings alike.”

Living Room

Directly off the lobby, is the new living room, which offers lively urban street views. The literary narrative, inspired by The Maltese Falcon, continues in this space with metallic wall coverings of printed books created by Aztek. New wood floors, custom patterned rugs from Surya and custom furniture throughout reflect the bold design narrative.


Artists Gallery

An expressive collection of rotating artwork from local artists sets the scene for the Union Square neighborhood and showcases the area’s rich history. The current collection was curated by Jacqueline McGee along with SFMOMA Artists Gallery, which represents and supports Northern California artists at all stages of their careers.


Meeting and Event Spaces

The Marker offers more than 12,000 sq. ft. of meeting spaces and ballrooms across 18 rooms with elegant charm; a clean, sophisticated atmosphere and historic detailing. Spaces can welcome as many as 300 guests for larger celebrations or 12 or fewer for intimate gatherings.


Portland’s Heathman Hotel Has a New Look

The historic lodging gets a brighter and more contemporary update, with nods to Portland’s heritage.


THIS PAST SEPTEMBER, DOWNTOWN PORTLAND’S HISTORIC HEATHMAN HOTEL UNVEILED A $13 MILLION RENOVATION. The update, helmed by Chicago-based architecture firm Perkins + Will, included an overhaul of the hotel’s 151 guest rooms and created a more prominent, expanded home for its immense collection of more than 3,000 books, each signed by their authors.

The result is a brighter, more contemporary aesthetic for the formerly dark and traditional Heathman, which first opened in 1927. “The central salon has been a place for high teas and social gatherings since Heathman’s inception,” says Jacqueline McGee, who was the design lead at Perkins + Will. “Taking a cue from its past, a new social salon was created that would become the perfect home for the Heathman Library. This renowned collection is housed in volumetric bookcases that soar through the double-height space and juxtapose with the distinctive original paneling.”


That original paneling was then mimicked in each of the guest rooms, but in white. The room’s all-white surrounds are contrasted with patterned Surya rugs, modern furnishings in shades of blue and camel, and new gray-stained wood floors.

Portland-inspired art abounds throughout the hotel’s public spaces. In the lobby, two large columns were clad in acrylic and adorned with original Portland pennies, which McGee notes takes inspiration from Portland’s origin story, in which its two founders (one hailing from Portland, Maine, and one from Boston) flipped a coin to determine if their new frontier would be called—you guessed it—Portland or Boston. Behind the front desk, is a three-dimensional map of the city, crafted in brass and dark bronze glass. Other local artists featured include illustrator and photographer Katie Jeanne Reim; painter and ceramicist Barry D. Kaine; artist Tony Thomas; painter Hilary Winfield; and map artist and painter Rachel Ann Austin. 

With this extensive renovation, McGee says she hopes guests feel “a sense of intrigue” over the art installations and “amazement and awe” at how the social salon and library have been transformed.

Heathman Hotel, 1001 SW Broadway, Portland;

By: Lauren Mang


Article from Inspire Design


San Francisco-based Greystone Hotels recently completed a renovation of the King George Hotel, a 153-room boutique hotel located on Mason St. in the heart of Union Square. The $5.5-million top-to-bottom remodel has set the stage for a new level of comfort and style to the lobby, guestrooms, corridors and bathrooms.

The centerpiece of the King George Hotel is the newly introduced Mason Social Club, which unites the lobby, bar, hotel living room, technology center, and new games room into one cohesive, multifunctional space that is reminiscent of an English inn.

Designed by Jacqueline McGee, principal of Ealain Studio and formerly of Perkins + Will, the 5,600-sq. ft. space combines English charm with 21st century technology and features distinct areas for relaxation, productivity, socializing, and entertainment.

In a Q&A with InspireDesign, McGee talks about the inspiration behind the redesign.

What was the inspiration behind the newly revamped spaces?

The King George Hotel, a boutique property in the heart of San Francisco’s Union Square, seemed to demand a mix of metropolitan style and the charm of a classic English inn. We built out our storyboard to focus on the lobby’s central bar—the real heart of any British gathering—and ultimately exposed an open, multifunctional lounge concept from there. The hotel team wanted to create spaces for relaxing, socializing, working, and playing, so we were able to have a bit of fun weaving together our ideas of British traditions, sports, pubs, and more.

How do you go about curating pieces for the hotel’s spaces?

We wanted to retain the British influence within the hotel and were drawn to the classic English derby hat for our initial inspiration. A collection of these bowler hats was retrofitted into a custom light fixture above the lobby’s community table, so finding—or creating—unique pieces for each space is central to our philosophy. We worked with Grand Image consultants in Seattle to curate some of the new artwork, and while the King George needed to remain clean, classic, and functional, we also added a bit of whimsy with the super-scaled throne and red phone booth in hopes of encouraging guests to truly interact with the space and decor around them.


What story did you want to tell in terms of the new look?

The purpose of the Mason Social Club is to welcome visitors and offer a little something for everyone. The oiled wood floor, bronze fixtures, and blackened steel details were designed to create a simple armature for the many games and activities of the space, while the custom rugs, decorative pillows, and plush seating reinforce the comfortable and relaxed ambiance of the lobby. I hope that the story we tell is one of personalization, entertainment, and accommodation.



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LaSalle Hotel Properties’ Heathman Hotel’s 151 guestrooms and public spaces were updated to showcase a bright and modern design from Jackie McGee, formerly of Perkins + Will, rooted in the building’s history dating back to 1927.

The lobby was transformed to mirror that of a living room at the hotel, which is managed by Provenance Hotels. A 3D map named 200 X 200 hangs behind the front desk, highlighting the city’s 200 ft. long city blocks. Focal points of the lobby are columns surrounded by hundreds of floating black discs that represent the “Portland Penny,” referencing the coin Portland founders Francis Pettygrove and Asa Lovejoy flipped to name the bend in the Willamette River that eventually blossomed into the city.

The new two-story Heathman Library is the The heart of the property, managed by Provenance Hotels,  is the new two-story Heathman Library which is housed in the former Tea Court Lounge, and offers more than 3,000 volumes of works signed by the authors. A massive bookcase takes up the full height of the room, and all guests have access to the collection. A warm palette of colors dresses the space, and a fireplace adorned with white handcrafted tile along with herringbone wood floors help to root the room’s residential feel.

Guestrooms make use of natural materials, reclaimed items and local art. Whitewashed wood-paneled walls frame wood flooring adorned with a blue area rug, caramel furniture, and gray accents amid a neutral color palette. A handblown glass credenza becomes a focal point of the room, while art from Portland artists round out the design. Katie Jeanne Reim’s “Rose City” pairs the patterns of topographical maps with natural images. Barry D. Kaine’s “St. John’s Bridge,” Tony Thomas’ vibrant “Sellwood,” the abstract “Dimension 9” by Hilary Winfield, and Rachel Ann Austin’s “Poppies” are all works that can be found throughout the rooms.

Photo: Courtesy of Provenance Hotels