I am excited to see another LS3P project nearing the end of construction! The other day during lunch I took a quick walk over to see the Grand Bohemian Charleston construction progress. The 50 room boutique hotel will be opening in about a month and I'm pumped to see the finished product.
Charlestonians are in for a real treat. The Kessler Collection has a long history of creating truly unique luxury hotels. And the Grand Bohemian Charleston will be no different. Some of the main amenities include a ground floor art gallery, a wine tasting room and a rooftop restaurant and lounge. Both the Spectator and Grand Bohemian will be opening around the same time. I'm thinking about organizing a Boutique Hotel Bar Crawl...Who's coming with me?!!
LS3P had a unique role with this project. As the local architects, our main responsibilities have included assistance to the owners with the re-zoning of the property to allow for a hotel use, facilitating the board of architectural review process and assistance with permitting. We enjoyed working with the Kessler Collection and the architects of record Reese Vanderbilt and Associates.
It has been a long process and with the project approaching the finish line I am very excited.
One of my new favorite things to do is to compare the construction photos of the building with the earlier computer renderings. We take a lot of pride in our graphics and renderings and we did some great ones for the Bohemian. During the Board of Architectural Review process these renderings were crucial to the projects success.
It is interesting to see how true the graphics are to the built building. And where things have deviated. Here is a quick exterior tour of the New Grand Bohemian Charleston. As seen in conceptual renderings, and in construction photographs.
View Down Wentworth Street
The Bohemian has a classically inspired facade. It will fit in very well with Charleston's historic context. The building is primarily stucco with cast stone pilasters, cornices and trim.
You will notice that the color changed from the original renderings. The building is now a taupe color. I think that was a wise choice. The stark white was very bold and almost stood out too much. The taupe will also weather well and not show dirt as easily.
View from Firehouse
This is my favorite view of the Bohemian. Most visitors will approach the building from the North on Meeting Street. And this is what they will see. The base of the building is very ornate at this corner with cast stone pilasters and cornices.
Aside from the color, this rendering is spot on. We may have taken some artistic licensure with the removal of the electrical line spaghetti.
View from Across Meeting Street
One of the unique things about this property is the ginormous live oak trees on Meeting Street.
See what I mean! Very unusual even in Charleston to have such large trees fronting a major street. The hotel was designed to work around the trees. An architect may say that the building was designed to "celebrate the trees." As you can see in our rendering we played some photoshop magic to illustrate the size of the trees while also showcasing the building's architecture.
View of Courtyard
Again...that tree is ginormous!
What you are seeing in this photo is that there are sections of the building where the stucco work is not yet complete. The black color is cmu block with a spray applied air barrier. The little circles are fasteners that are attaching the metal lathe back to the block. The stucco will get applied to the metal lathe. It will be applied in 3 coats: the scratch coat, the brown coat, and the finish coat. The result is a very durable and attractive surface.
View of Main Entrance
The main entrance to the Bohemian will be stunning. One of the nice features that not many Charleston hotels has is a covered drive-court. Here you can see the cast stone at the base of the building and all of the trim-work. In the above right you can see a roof deck for the main ballroom.
I should have asked them to remove the scaffolding for my photos. I'm sure they wouldn't have minded.
Almost there. This is the point of the job where you can see something different just about every other day. I will definitely provide an update when the Grand Bohemian is finished.
Are you a Bohemian!
Need more updates on Charleston Hotels? Check out the Spectator