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Seating Collection

The Art of Converging Design and Function


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AN INTRODUCTION TO POLTRONA FRAU CONTRACT DIVISION THE BEGINNING Welcome to Poltrona Frau Contract Division, innovators of exquisite traditional and state-of-the-art seating. This portfolio features select Poltrona Frau seating projects which we feel best highlights the company’s distinctive style, craftsmanship and quality. Since 1912, the name “Poltrona Frau” has advanced a legacy in Italianquality seating. The reputation and legacy of Poltrona Frau has left its mark on history - enjoyed by past generations, but living-on forever as it advances onward with new innovations to be enjoyed by generations to come. It all started over 100 years ago, in 1912, when a young man in Turin, Italy, Renzo Frau, started a workshop dedicating himself to his craft of creating quality furniture. Once he registered the name Poltrona Frau with the local Chamber of Commerce, the legacy ignited. Renzo’s workshop was the beginning of Poltrona Frau’s philosophy, to design and build only the finest quality furniture with the most exceptional materials in the world. Renzo’s philosophy was a proven immortal success, one that remains a company standard today. Early in his career, Renzo found his specialty in high-quality seating, when in 1919, he created an iconic armchair line still sold today, as well as many other award-winning seating designs. Prior to Renzo’s untimely death in 1926, he earned awards and honors for many of his seating and furniture designs, including the honor of having been appointed as the official furniture supplier of the Royal household.

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Poltrona Frau headquarters in Tolentino, Italy. Resting amongst the gentle hills of the Marche, in the very heart of central Italy, Poltrona Frau draws on and gives back the beauty of the territory. Inspired by the culture for the harmony continually searching for excellence and a high standard of living. 2

Poltrona Frau’s creations have transcended an entire century, earning the reputation as the greatest seating company in the world. It has achieved the title of “legend,” having marked important moments in history around the world.


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In the early 1930s, the company entered a new market when it was commissioned to design, build and install seating and furnishings for the legendary ocean liner Rex, marking Poltrona Frau’s introduction to maritime furniture. Poltrona Frau’s luxury maritime furnishings and designs are still commissioned today and can be found in world-class custom yachts and ocean liners around the world. This is one of many diverse niche markets for which the company has come to be known today. In 1962, the company excelled in new directions when president and visionary, Franco Moschini, joined Poltrona Frau. This event in the company started a new era. Poltrona Frau’s reputation as an industry leader was greatly bolstered by Mr. Moschini’s work ethic and command for excellence. The company soared in reputation and growth, its work was commissioned by many new burgeoning high-profile projects. It was Mr. Moschini’s vision to create and manufacture fixed theater seating which propelled Poltrona Frau to new innovative heights. In 1984, Poltrona Frau prevailed as the largest and greatest seating manufacturer in the world, with its work commissioned in theaters, concert halls, airplanes, ocean liners, palaces, embassies, luxury hotels, as well as many other public and private venues. The company also began to receive recognition for its special custom work, including accolades by luxury automobile makers such as Maserati and Ferrari, which featured Poltrona Frau custom interiors in the marketing of their luxury automobiles.

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The Rex, 1932 was the only Italian ocean liner to ever win the Blue Riband and one of the best looking cruise ships to ever wear the colors of the Italian Line and makes a beautiful ocean liner model. Poltrona Frau debuted contract business by providing interiors for the first-class section of this legendary ocean liner. 4

The great room/lounge of the ocean liner Rex furnished with Poltrona Frau pieces.


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POLTRONA FRAU CONTRACT TODAY The rich tradition of Poltrona Frau is the force that drives its continuing devotion to quality materials, expert craftsmanship and comfort. The application of technology, innovative materials and contemporary design’s, preserves Poltrona Frau’s place as today’s industry leader. Poltrona Frau’s work can be found in the semicircle of the European Parliament in Strasbourg, the Piccolo Teatro in Milan, the Getty Center in Los Angeles, the Parco Della Musica Rome, El Palau de les Arts Valencia, and Oslo Opera House, to name only a few. At the same time, the company continues to design new lines for domestic furnishings and private seating designs for offices, yachts and more; as well as automobiles through its car division. Poltrona Frau’s work has been commissioned by some of the most important architects in history, including Gio Ponti, Tito Agnoli, Enzo Mari, Renzo Piano, Norman Foster, Richard Meier, Frank O. Gehry, Herzog & de Meuron, Santiago Calatrava, I.M. Pei, Oscar Niemeyer, Jean Nouvel, and many other greats. Today, any concept or idea can be brought to life by Poltrona Frau’s experienced and innovative visionary team. It is a welcome challenge to Poltrona Frau’s team to bring to life the vision of any special project. Though rooted in strong traditions and business values, Poltrona Frau continues to grow and innovate with an eye to future trends and cutting-edge technology.

The Getty Museum by Richard Meier coined, “the commission of the century” and was completed in 1997 with the mandate to advance knowledge and nurture critical seeing through the growth and presentation of its collections and by advancing the understanding and preservation of the world’s artistic heritage. Poltrona Frau created a bespoke auditorium chair called “West Coast” designed exclusively for the Getty Museum project by Richard Meier. 6

European Parliament in Strasbourg by AS.Architecture Studio inaugurated in 1999. Poltrona Frau created for the amphitheater and conference rooms. The desks are linear elements that combine with the geometry of the building. The deputies’ “Monsieur Pol” armchairs represent a search for a “third way” or a hybrid product between the comfort of a desk chair and the warmth of a club chair - a haute couture item that is both functional and seducing. This armchair was created in several versions.


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Poltrona Frau offers a wide variety of seating types and classifications; there is no project impossible and no type of seating design inconceivable. In addition to the range of seating options in style, design and materials, Poltrona Frau supplies a vast variety of seating classification options such as: bespoke, retractable risers, theater seating, automotive, aviation, maritime, lounge, auditorium, and much more. Poltrona Frau’s work can be found in the most celebrated and unique structures around the world, contributing to its impeccable reputation in the international architectural community. Poltrona Frau takes the guess-work out of conceiving seating projects. The company uses a “big picture” approach to create the ideal seating solutions, with the end goal to enhance the architecture and natural features of the space, in addition to maintaining the function and auditory integrity. Poltrona Frau consummates every last detail of the project, each phase is punctuated with impeccable quality control and customer service. POLTRONA FRAU’S SERVICES INCLUDE: An engineering consultation service. Engineers, along with Poltrona Frau’s research and development team, with ISO certified testing laboratories, test the space for strength, structural integrity, acoustic analysis, and heating and cooling capacity. This stage is performed to ensure safety, and to adopt the ideal acoustic quality. Design specialists create a layout of the space, integrating the specifications made by the engineering team to achieve the ideal archetype for the seating symmetry and proportion. Engineers and design specialists create shop drawings for production of the custom seating, or will produce a structural prototype based on the project’s specifications. Each of our state-of-the-art products meets the highest quality demands for design, comfort, stability, acoustics and fire protection. In addition to the technical requirements, all designs meet ergonomic standards. Manufacturing of the seating is perfected according to the design drawings or prototype. Professional installation of the seating final product is performed according to the blueprint layout. An “after sales service and maintenance program” is offered to preserve the integrity of the seating and meet the highest quality demands. With offices around the world, Poltrona Frau has proven to be a diverse and successful innovator able to accommodate even the most prominent international projects or specialty orders.

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Inaugurated in 2005 in Valencia, El Palau de les Arts by Santiago Calatrava is considered one of the masterpieces of the modern architecture. Poltrona Frau realized bespoke chairs with the sides in opaque crystal: thanks to a particular electroluminescent lamp and a sophisticated control software magnificent light effects can be created during the performance.


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as. architecture studio

ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE 2011. Athens 26

bennetts associates

ROYAL SHAKESPEARE THEATRE 2010. Stratford-upon-Avon 34

chaix & morel et associés

LA BANQUE POSTALE 2011. Paris 42

foster + partners

CATHAY PACIFIC CABIN LOUNGE

2011. Hong Kong 50

gehry partners

NEW WORLD SYMPHONY 2011. Miami 60

handel architects

DREAM HOTEL DOWNTOWN 2011. New York 68

steven holl

VANKE CENTER 2010. Shenzhen 76

odbc - odile decq benoît cornette

L’OPERA RESTAURANT 2011. Paris 80

odbc - odile decq benoît cornette

MACRO MUSEUM 2010. Rome 88

fulvio de simoni

PERSHING YACHT 108

2011. Pershing Shipyard Mondolfo 98

renzo piano building workshop

ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM 2011. Boston 106

poltrona frau r&d

NAPLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT 2011. Naples 114

taniguchi associates

ASIA SOCIETY TEXAS CENTER 2011. Texas 122

tihany design

DINNER BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL 2011. London 130

keith williams architects

MARLOWE THEATRE 2011. Canterbury


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ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE as. architecture studio

2011. Athens

The Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens, Greece, is a state-of-the-art visual arts facility and performance center. The aspiration behind the new cultural center was to promote Greek artists and to encourage the development of modern Greek culture within Greece, as well as the international community. The Onassis Cultural Center, funded exclusively by the Alexander S Onassis Public Benefit Foundation, was specifically founded to celebrate Greek culture and Greek artists primarily in the form of orchestra, opera, theater and dance performances. The Onassis Foundation held an international competition to find the ideal architect for the project. After considering sixty-six proposals by architects from around the world, French architecture firm As. Architecture Studio was selected to bring the cultural center’s design to life. The Onassis Cultural Centre is an icon of the city of Athens and has revitalized the city. The interior of the center was just as important as the exterior, particularly concerning the two state-of-the-art auditoria. The main auditorium seats 880 guests, the smaller auditorium seats 220 guests for smaller, more intimate performances or lectures. Both auditoria are equipped with the latest in modern technology to ensure the highest quality of all performances. Mark Foley, of the UK-based architectural firm Burrell Foley Fischer, was assigned to the architectural redesign of both amphitheatres, with acoustics designed by Xu Acoustique of Paris.

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The Onassis Foundation is located in the heart of Athens, between Piraeus and the Acropolis. A metal mesh surrounds the white marble facade with an ever-changing pattern of light and shade. Abstract, hieratic yet dynamic, the shell-like outer enclosure surrounds the core structure consisting of two auditoria.


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Beyond the façades, a precious and surprising object brings the two auditoria together that crosses the entire construction.

The intimate 300-seat theatre was designed for smaller musical, theatre or dance performances, lectures, special audiovisual projections and conferences.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE For the Onassis Cultural Centre, Poltrona Frau’s team collaborated with the designers and architects to create and install exquisite custom theater seating for the two auditoria, all made to order according to the design specifications. Poltrona Frau’s team customized one of its iconic chairs for the auditoria. The wooden sides and backrests distinguish the version of its Pitagora, but custom-made for the Onassis Foundation. The chairs are upholstered in the exclusive Pelle Frau® leather, and is complete with a built-in writing tablets and air diffusers within the metal support for air conditioning. The result is a chair that combines the finest materials with meticulous craftsmanship and carefully engineered state-of-the art technology.


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The multiplicity of potential stage and lighting configurations make it possible to use the auditorium for a range of large-scale events, from theatrical and dance performances, concerts and cinema screenings to lectures and concerts.

Both auditorium interiors were designed by Marc Foley.


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AS. ARCHITECTURE STUDIO AS. ARCHITECTURE STUDIO PROFILE AS. Architecture Studio defines architecture as “an art committed with society, the construction of the surroundings of mankind.” Founded in Paris in 1973, Architecture Studio’s team consists of over one hundred employees and more than twelve partners. Its team is composed of architects, urban planners, designers and interior designers from over twenty-five different countries. Some of Architecture Studio’s projects include, The European Parliament in Strasburg, the Arab World Institute (Equerre d’Argent and Aga Khan Prize), Notre Dame de l’Arche d’Alliance church in Paris and many more high-profile projects around the world. Architecture Studio has won numerous competitions, including for the restructuring of Maison de Radio France in Paris, the rehabilitation of Jussieu campus in Paris, the 2010 World Exhibition in Shanghai, the Onassis Foundation House of Letters and Fine Arts in Athens, le Quai Theatre in Angiers, Rotana Hotel tower in Amman, Muscat Cultural Centre in the Sultanate of Oman, Bahrain National Theatre, Makka’s King Abdul Aziz Road in Saudi Arabia and the headquarters of Wison Chemical in Shanghai. The international presence of Architecture Studio is prominent in China, with two permanent subsidiaries in Shanghai and Beijing. Architecture Studio China employs approximately 50 architects carrying out projects in that region, combining the mindset and skills of two cultures, French and Chinese. Along with its international reputation for architectural greatness, Architecture Studio has been developing its interior design department, AS Design Studio, focusing on renovations and high quality interior design projects such as the renovation of Palazzo Santa Maria Nova in Venice, the design of the Bali Barret shop in Tokyo and the development of luxury villas in Dubai.

AS. ARCHITECTURE STUDIO PHILOSOPHY FOR ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE The white marble, layered and diaphanous façade of the building appears ethereal, as if the building is floating and translucent. The heart and soul of the Onassis Cultural Centre is the stages upon which the performances are executed, within its two auditoria. The exterior marble bands around the rectangular shell of the building not only adds architectural interest, but acts to give the building a sense of mystery. During the day it gives the impression of a gentle wave, and at night, when artificially lit, the images inside shine through the exterior layers. The Main Stage is the larger of the two auditoria, with 880 seats. Curved balconies, wood floors, brass and ambient lighting make this auditorium an aesthetic delight. However, the functionality of the auditorium is of equal importance, boasting the latest in state-of-the art acoustical design and equipment. The Upper Stage is the smaller of the two auditoria, with 220 seats. This single tiered theater hosts more intimate gatherings. The rich shades of red and dark wood in this theater are highlighted by over-head track lighting and spotlights. It too boasts the same state-of-the art acoustical design and equipment as applied in the Main Stage theater.


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ROYAL SHAKESPEARE THEATRE bennetts associates 2010. Stratford-upon-Avon

The site of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, on England’s western bank of the River Avon, is a celebration of the work of playwright William Shakespeare and is located near where he was born. The original theater, built in 1879, having been damaged in a fire in 1926, was rebuilt yet again before the Royal Shakespeare Company resolved to entirely renovate the historic theater in 2007, dubbing the renovation, The Royal Shakespeare Theatre Transformation Project. The theater was reopened in November 2010, after the four year, £112.8 million transformation completed, with the help of an endowment from the lottery as well as public and private donors from countries around the world. The Transformation Project was a multi-part collaborative effort from thousands of engineers, designers and other professionals. The architect chosen to lead the redesign was Bennetts Associates. The new theater retains the best of its art deco and Victorian elements, but adds bold new architectural elements. In celebrating the work of William Shakespeare, the new theater brings actors and audiences closer with the creation of the new 1040-seat thrust stage auditorium at the heart of the project. The three dimensional and panoramic qualities of the traditional thrust stage provide a different experience for each member of the audience. The new theater was to be a place to see “the best place for performing Shakespeare in the world,” said Royal Shakespeare Theatre’s Artistic Director, Michael Boyd. However, another area of acute interest for the Transformation Project was to provide a venue meant to be enjoyed by the public. Multiple entrances, public common spaces, gardens, rooftop restaurant and bar, a Shakespeare exhibit area and public tours all help to contribute to a sense of public participation to celebrate theater and Shakespeare’s work.

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The Royal Shakespeare Theatre (RST) in the Stratford-uponAvon has once again undergone a dramatic transformation. The design has sensitively incorporated the most significant remains of the earlier theatres which stood on the site and retained their character. 2 next page

The core of the RST is now an intimate auditorium; a 1040 seat thrust stage performance space inspired by Elizabethan, Jacobean and contemporary theatre design.

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The new auditorium built around a thrust stage dramatically reduces the distance between the actors and their audience.

The decor is understated, with wood flooring, and simple wood-and-steel balcony fronts.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR ROYAL SHAKESPEARE THEATRE Poltrona Frau is proud to have provided a custom made auditorium seating for the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. The auditorium of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre was developed in collaboration with theater consultants, Charcoalblue. The seating was custom designed by experts of Poltrona Frau to address the geometric complexities of the auditorium, such as the curved rows, and seat widths in an auditorium where no one in the audience is more than 15 meters from the center of the thrust stage. Poltrona Frau engineered various prototypes for the seating designs in the auditorium; the goal was to combine comfort within the tight space constraints. The final construction of the chair combines laser-cut steel leg frames, plywood seat and back panels, and finished with deep red toned upholstered cushions and arms. It proved to be the perfect solution for the auditorium of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.


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BENNETTS ASSOCIATES BENNETTS ASSOCIATES PROFILE Bennetts Associates, with offices in London and Edinburgh, is one of UK’s leading architectural practices, with a reputation for design, delivery and sustainability across a wide range of sectors and architectural classifications. A strong team ethic and methodical approach to design has earned the firm over 100 awards for many design works across Europe, including the Mint Hotels in London and Amsterdam, The Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theaters Transformation, The Suttie Centre for Teaching and Learning in Healthcare, Elizabeth II Court, Potterrow Development at the University of Edinburgh, New Street Square London, Jubilee Library in Brighton and many more. The firm was founded by Rab Bennetts and his partner Denise Bennetts in 1987. Rab Bennetts takes a personal, hands-on approach and collaborative spirit with each project, playing an active role in the firm’s multitude of design projects and construction. Rab was awarded the OBE for services to architecture in 2003. He is a Board member of the UK Green Building Council, a Trustee of the Design Council and a director of Sadler’s Wells Theatre. The director for the Royal Shakespeare Theatre Transformation project was Simon Erridge who joined Bennetts Associates in 1992 and became a director in 2005. He has a broad range of experience in projects ranging from arts buildings to infrastructure, commercial offices, historic buildings and masterplanning. Simon has been personally responsible for leading the Transformation Project for the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon. Among his other clients are Network Rail, the Royal College of Pathologists and British Land. Simon is a regular speaker at events and conferences on subjects such as construction, sustainability and theatre design.

BENNETTS ASSOCIATES PHILOSOPHY FOR ROYAL SHAKESPEARE THEATRE At the heart and soul of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre Transformation project, was the modernization and engineering of the new auditorium. The auditorium was completely re-thought to create a space suited to the performance of Shakespeare. The new auditorium fits within the original scarred outer brick walls of the now demolished auditorium, leaving a triple-height void on three sides for much-needed orientation space and a potent reminder of the scale of the old theatre where, despite its shortcomings, so many great performances took place. Bennetts associates along with its director Simon Erridge were under pressure to create the best stage for performing Shakespeare in the world, for Shakespeare’s legacy and for discerning Shakespeare enthusiasts from around the world. The stage decided upon was a traditional thrust stage, a stage that extends into the audience’s portion of a theater with three sides, similar to an arena. The thrust stage allows performers more intimacy with the audience. The thrust stage concept was generally out of use for centuries, and was resurrected in 1953 during a Shakespeare festival in Canada. It is now a regarded stage for authentic Shakespeare plays. “You can hear a whisper on stage from the back of the auditorium,” Erridge has said with pride when speaking of the new auditorium. Though outfitted with the best technology found today, including a new stage basement to enable actors, scenery and props to rise from beneath the stage and a 15-meter flying zone created over the stage, it stays authentic to the kind of theater Shakespeare would have chosen more than 400 years ago. Complete with rafters, brass trims, wood slat balconies, overhead tract lighting, rich wood paneling, exposed original brick back framework wall, exquisite red seating and wood stage, the auditorium and stage are truly a marvel and an updated twist on the glory of a traditional thrust stage.


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LA BANQUE POSTALE chaix & morel et associés

2011. Paris

La Banque Postale is located within a building complex in the sixth subdistrict of Paris, at the corner of the historic streets of Rue de Sevres, Saint-Romain and Saint-Jean-Baptiste de la Salle. This French bank is the only bank to have been authorized to provide banking services under the 2008 French law to modernize the country’s economy. La Banque Postale has also been modernized by a renovation executed by architects Chaix & Morel. La Banque Postale is part of a building complex that includes buildings from different historical periods, including the Hotel de Choiseul-Praslin, built in 1732. Architects, Chaix & Morel, were the winners of a competition to merge together the eclectic set of buildings in the complex as well as the renovation of the building headquarters of La Banque Postale. The building on Rue de Sevres, the headquarters of La Banque Postale, was dramatically altered in appearance as part of the renovation. The building’s exterior is now suited with a distinctive double-skin glass and glazed façade that curves and wraps around the entire building in a shapely upward tiered figure. The exterior look is modern and sleek and adds architectural interest to this Paris district. The new exterior is also functional as it advances energy efficiency and has received a high environmental rating (HQE). The renovated building includes a roof terrace permitting views of the Notre Dame, Eiffel Tower and similar breathtaking views of Paris. The courtyard that links the buildings together in the complex features a prestigious reception room and lounges that are sophisticated but with historical inspiration; some areas were restored to their original condition. A glass roof atrium and other modern, sleek elements were added to make use of natural light in addition to linking the eclectic set of buildings through this indoor courtyard.

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Located on the corner of Rue de Sevres, the new headquarters of La Banque Postale has a new double-skin glass and glazed façade surrounding the building.


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The 13m long table has a wooden structure, base, top and feet and its visible parts are finished with maple veneer plaques for aesthetic and structural purposes.

All lateral panels of the table are removable for the maintenance of audio, video and IT equipment built in 22 metal boxes in mat varnished aluminum.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR LA BANQUE POSTALE Poltrona Frau proved to be the perfect partner to bring to life La Banque Postale’s auditorium with exquisitely crafted seating for the project. Poltrona Frau supplied and installed its personalized “West Coast” seat, upholstered in Pelle Frau material in the color of Siena. The folding seats, framed in maple wood veneer, were designed with an important acoustic treatment for the best sound possible in the auditorium. Acoustic wall panels in American maple wood veneers were also installed for acoustic integrity as well as aesthetic uniformity. Poltrona Frau also developed a special custom 34-seat conference table and seating for La Banque Postale’s boardroom. The conference table has a sturdy wood structure, and all lateral panels are removable for the maintenance of built-in audio, video and IT equipment. Poltrona Frau has also installed 34 microphones and 17” monitor screens inside the table. The conference table seating is Poltrona Frau’s “Chancellor” chair with Pelle Frau material in the color of Siena.


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In the basement of the La Banque Postale building, the architects created a new single-tiered, 200-seat auditorium.

The auditorium seats were originally designed by Richard Meier for the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.


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CHAIX & MOREL ET ASSOCIÉS CHAIX & MOREL ET ASSOCIÉS PROFILE Born in 1949, Philippe Chaix became an architectural graduate in Paris in 1972. After studying in Finland for a year, and five years of special projects, Chaix founded his own practice in 1976. Thereafter, he won a design competition for the renovation of the City of Rennes’ central food market. Founded in 1983, the studio currently has a team of nine members, eight architects and an executive assistant: Philippe Chaix, Jean-Paul Morel, Remy Van Nieuwenhove, Walter Grasmug, Anabel Sergent, Denis Germond, Benoit Sigros, Rémi Lichnerowicz and Henriette Martenot. In 1984, Philippe Chaix and Jean-Paul Morel created the Zénith in Paris for the Ministry of Culture, followed by Zéniths of Montpellier in 1986, Orleans in 1996, Dijon in 2005 and Nantes in 2006. In 1996, Chaix & Morel ventured into museum design with projects such as the Saint-Romain-en-Gal archaeological museum, consultation for the Musée des Arts Premiers Quai Branly, the renovation of the Petit Palais Museum, and construction of the Petit Palais. In 2011, Chaix & Morel obtained further awards for the design of Thyssen Krups headquarters in Essen (Germany) and for the renovation and extension of the La Banque Postale’s headquarters in Paris. Besides architecture, the internal design studio has developed several furniture designs and furniture lines. A line designed for the Mobilier National is currently used in several national palaces. Currently, several projects are under construction, including the renovation and expansion of the Noisy-le-Grand town hall and the events hall in Mâcon. The studio has just won the competition for the new European Commission in Luxembourg (200,000 sqm of real estate) and an office tower in Lyon’s new Part Dieu Sud district.

CHAIX & MOREL ET ASSOCIÉS PHILOSOPHY FOR LA BANQUE POSTALE Architects Chaix & Morel rose to the challenge to renovate a site such as the La Banque Portale. Mixing historic architecture with a sleek, modern design is a delicate balancing act. The architects were keenly aware of corresponding the new design for the La Banque Postale building with the existing architectural surroundings. Chaix & Morel addressed the project with environmental awareness in mind, as evidenced by the photovoltaic roof panels and the energy efficient new double-skin glass and glazed façade surrounding the La Banque Postale building. Chaix & Morel admit that the new façade is what distinguished them as architects and visionaries for the project, asserting, “We won the competition in 2006 because of our proposal for a new façade on the street, we were offering at the same time a new image to La Banque Postale.” The new façade also allowed the architects to keep the original height of the structure, a clear advantage over demolishing and rebuilding, as restricted under the current height ordinances. The architects had additional challenges in building the indoor courtyard linking the buildings in the complex. The now glorious glass roof courtyard proved to be of some difficulty to design originally as it needed to accommodate access to each of the buildings, all of which had different styles and floor heights. In the basement of the La Banque Postale building, the architects created a new single-tiered, 200-seat auditorium with American hard maple paneling and exclusive maple wood folding theater seating.


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CATHAY PACIFIC CABIN LOUNGE foster + partners

2011. Hong Kong

Cathay Pacific Airlines “The Cabin,” located within Hong Kong International Airport, is a hub of relaxation as well as productivity for Cathay Pacific’s weary or busy first-class and business-class customers. The Cabin is a place for Cathay Pacific passengers to rejuvenate with its range of hospitality facilities, with several options from which to choose. The Cabin is ultra-modern in design and introduces some brand new seating and dining concepts. A red carpet links the various sections within. It is bordered on one side by floor-to-ceiling windows and on the other by signature white marble and warming wood walls. The high gloss ceilings reflect a variety of stylish custom designed furniture. The array of materials used is a combination of marble, leather upholstery and bamboo. Architects Foster + Partners designed The Cabin with high quality in mind, to enhance Cathay Pacific customer’s travel experience and to help them rediscover a little of the glamour of travel.

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The Cathay Pacific Cabin Lounges, combining the highest quality materials with a new seating system designed by Foster + Partners, transforms the experience for passengers using Hong Kong’s flag carrier.

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Solus Chair’s hourglass form rises from a circular base to create a private space for individual travelers.

The chair’s soft leather upholstery is enclosed by a solid lacquered shell with integrated power sockets and tablets.

Contemporary, refreshing, and dynamic, The Cabin is ultra modern in design and introduces some brand new seating and dining concepts.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR CATHAY PACIFIC CABIN LOUNGE Poltrona Frau has realized “The Cathay Solus Chair” for the Cabin Lounge, having proved, once again, that there is no custom project impossible for Poltrona Frau. Foster + Partners designed the interior spaces as well as the majority of the furniture for The Cabin. Poltrona Frau has engineered and manufactured the Cathay Solus Chair according to the design specifications. The Cabin is equipped with 45 of the Cathay Solus Chairs. The Solus Chair is a seating system designed to function as a secluded space to eat, work or relax. Its distinctive curved outer shell helps the design function like a private mini suite. The outer shell has a solid lacquered finish and acts like a protective wall around the chair’s exterior. The inside upholstered seat is wide and comfortable and integrates a power supply and a table, which can be used as a modified desk. The inside wall is also upholstered for comfort and durability.


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FOSTER + PARTNERS FOSTER + PARTNERS PROFILE Foster + Partners is one of the leading London-based architectural firms in Europe, founded by chairman Norman Foster. Established by Norman Foster as Foster Associates in 1967, the firm was renamed to Foster + Partners in the 1990s to more accurately reflect the influence of the other lead architects. Foster + Partners boasts a lengthy résumé of important projects, including bridges, government offices, cultural centers, sports stadiums, airline terminals and rail terminals, office buildings, hospitality, mixed use and master planning. Some of its projects include, London City Call, Winspear Opera House, Faculty of Law Cambridge, Wembley Stadium reconstruction, Hong Kong International Airport, Hearst Tower in New York, Hermitage Plaza La Défense in Paris, and many more. Foster + Partners is also an award winning architectural firm, some of its awards include, RIBA Stirling Prize for Imperial War Museum, MIPIM AR Future Projects Award, Grand Prix for Swiss Re, RIBA Stirling Prize for Swiss Re, RIBA European Award for Dresden Station Redevelopment RIBA International Award for Hearst Tower, Aga Khan Award for Architecture for University of Technology Petronas, LEAF Award for Beijing Airport Terminal 3, RIBA European Award for Zenith and RIBA International Award for Beijing Airport Terminal 3. Foster + Partners is guided by a belief that the quality of one’s surroundings has a direct influence on the quality of one’s lives. The firm carefully considers several guiding principles when designing a building or space; including, the character of a building or surroundings, the services that allow it to function, the ecology, the quality of natural light, the symbolism of the form, the relationship of the building to the skyline or the streetscape, how one interacts within the space, and its ability to lift the spirits.

FOSTER + PARTNERS PHILOSOPHY FOR CATHAY PACIFIC CABIN LOUNGE As the first in a series of lounges for Cathay Pacific, Foster + Partners’ challenge was to create The Cabin, an interior space, for the airport building that it had designed and completed ten years prior. The Cabin for Cathay Pacific consists of several hospitality features, all of their own design and function: The IT Zone is located just past the entrance of The Cabin to the right and offers a fast paced lounge, with Wi-Fi internet, 11 PCs, 6 iMacs and a video conference suite for the busy business traveler or for travelers who want to stay in touch. One can also access one of 20 Wi-Fi enabled iPads, pre-loaded with the latest apps including newspapers, magazines and games. The Deli, also located within The Cabin, is a restaurant venue offering passengers a range of made-to-order hot sandwiches, Italian antipasti and a variety of fresh salads. The Health Bar, at The Cabin, is a place where one can select a variety of different beverages, with healthy options. As well as promoting healthful juices, blended smoothies, morning shakes and herbals teas, passengers can also enjoy traditional cocktails and soft drinks. The “Cathay Solus Chair” for The Cabin is an innovation in design, a seating option fashioned to allow one to eat, work, read or simply relax. The chair is designed as a modified personal cubicle for privacy, complete with a desk top area to use for a variety of functions.


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NEW WORLD SYMPHONY gehry partners

2011. Miami

Michael Tilson Thomas and Ted Arison founded the New World Symphony in 1987 with the aim of giving America much more than its only full-time orchestral academy. They re-invented the meaning of virtuosity for the 21st century. With an environment and curriculum that go far beyond those of traditional conservatories, NWS produces musicians who are leaders in the fullest sense of the word. The fellows leave Lincoln Road as accomplished, compelling instrumentalists who are ready to take ownership of the orchestral enterprise’s future. It has become increasingly clear that the remarkable success of the New World Symphony far eclipses the physical capacity of its home since 1989, the Art Deco-era Lincoln Theatre. For all its vintage charm, the building has acoustical limitations. These challenges, coupled with a sheer lack of space, kept NWS from pursuing the next steps in orchestral innovation - whether in new performance formats, expanded educational programs, distance learning, or community outreach. Gehry’s confident expansion for the New World Symphony is marking a new era for the orchestra as it embarks on a monumental mission to stimulate fresh interest in an area of the musical spectrum so often overlooked by young minds. Externally, the dazzlingly white structure is one of Gehry’s quieter compositions; its smooth milky frame punctuated by an 80 ft high wall of glass, through which Miami’s abundance of natural light can penetrate.

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The atrium is full of Gehry’s architecture characteristics: overlapping curving shapes, which house practice rooms and rehearsal spaces for fellows of the orchestral academy.


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The main facade of the building includes a 7,000-square foot projection wall, where audiences in the adjacent park can watch live “wallcasts”of what’s happening inside.

The focal point of the symphony’s new home is of course, the 756-seat performance hall, surrounded by acoustic panels that double up as projection screens, paving the way for increased collaborations between artists and composers during installation.

The concert hall is one of the most flexible in the world with round seating, satellite stages, interchangeable main stage with 10 movable lifts and platforms to change configuration, and acoustic panels or sails that receive projection.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR NEW WORLD SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Poltrona Frau’s has a decade-long legendary reputation for fine theater seating in venues around the world. Its experienced and innovative team offers the finest in a wide variety of seating types and classifications. Design specialists create a layout of the space, integrating the specifications made by the engineering team to achieve the ideal archetype for the seating symmetry and proportion, ensuring the optimum acoustic integrity. Poltrona Frau supplied and installed customized Frank Gehry Chairs as well as benches with polished aluminum legs and fabric upholstery for the orchestra zone. The chair was modified in order to be movable and retractable thus giving more flexibility to the auditorium. The armchairs are made of fabrics designed by Gehry in the tones of blue with light colored wooden arms and backrests.


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The chairs are made of fabrics designed by Gehry in the tones of blue with light colored wooden arms and backrests.

The chair was modified in order to be movable and retractable thus giving more flexibility to the auditorium.


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GEHRY PARTNERS GEHRY PARTNERS PROFILE Gehry Partners, LLP is a full service firm with broad international experience in academic, commercial, museum, performance, and residential projects. Frank Gehry established his practice in Los Angeles, California in 1962. The Gehry partnership, Gehry Partners, LLP, was formed in 2001 and currently supports a staff of over 120 people. Gehry Partners employs a large number of senior architects who have extensive experience in the technical development of building systems and construction documents, and who are highly qualified in the management of complex projects. Every project undertaken by Gehry Partners is designed personally and directly by Frank Gehry. All of the resources of the firm and the extensive experience of the firm’s partners are available to assist in the design effort and to carry this effort forward through technical development and construction administration. The firm relies on the use of Digital Project, a sophisticated 3D computer modeling program originally created for use by the aerospace industry, to thoroughly document designs and to rationalize the bidding, fabrication, and construction processes. The partners in Gehry Partners, LLP are: Frank Gehry, Brian Aamoth, John Bowers, Anand Devarajan, Jennifer Ehrman, Berta Gehry, Meaghan Lloyd, Tensho Takemori, Laurence Tighe and Craig Webb.

GEHRY PARTNERS PHILOSOPHY FOR NEW WORLD SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA The voluminous entrance hall, Gehry’s trademark style is sung from the rafters. A grand staircase weaves its way between white abstract rehearsal spaces as a generous, illuminated glass bar and campus box office skims the polished concrete floors. These pure white shapes are fused to a 756-seat concert hall where the traditional essence of classical music is celebrated in the embrace of state of the art digital technology. A tactic enlisted by many expanding performance venues is to encourage audience members to interact with the live music on an intimate level by arranging fixed seating in close correlation to the professional musicians onstage. Gehry has incorporated this method into the design of the concert hall, positioning the seating in a “vineyard pattern” to ensure that no seat is more than 13 rows from the stage. Continuing with the theme of accessibility, seats are separated into groups and steeply raked, bringing each audience member closer to the musicians.


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DREAM HOTEL DOWNTOWN handel architects

2011. New York

The Dream Hotel in downtown Chelsea, New York City, is an ultramodern, hospitality destination for the urban sophisticate. The Dream Hotel is a luxury hotel destination with twelve-stories, 316 guestrooms, two restaurants, rooftop and VIP lounges, outdoor pool and pool bar, a gym, event space, and ground floor retail shops. The original site of the Dream Hotel was once one of the annexes of the National Maritime Union of America headquarters, along with the now nautical themed Maritime Hotel. In 2006, Handel Architects was engaged to convert the main annex into the now Dream Downtown Hotel after the sale of the two buildings. Today, the Dream Hotel retains some of the charming characteristics of its former glory as a headquarters for the Maritime Union, complete with portal-style windows and themed hole designs throughout, suggestive of perhaps bubbles. However, the mood of the hotel now evokes a sleek lounge style. The stainless steel hole-punched faรงade of the hotel slopes around the entrance and throughout the hotel, in some areas the hole design in the faรงade change in size. The front entrance of the hotel boasts massive wood doors, also designed with hole punch-outs in keeping with the themed hole design.

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The new hotel faรงade is constructed of two perforated stainless steel layers, its top sheet of holes a replication of the 17th Street punched-window design and the inner sheet a regular perforation pattern.

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Above the lobby, the skylight is actually the clear bottom of the swimming pool upstairs, offers a view of guests doing laps.

In the lobby the guests can relax on a number of Chester sofas from the new circular line.

The elegant Marble Lane restaurant, features plush leather banquettes and a striking collection of handblown-glass light bulbs.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR DREAM HOTEL DOWNTOWN Poltrona Frau’s custom seating creations have been perfected in its 100 year history, earning it a reputation as the greatest seating company in the world. Any seating concept or idea can be brought to life by Poltrona Frau’s experienced and innovative team, offering a wide variety of seating types and classifications; there is no project impossible. For the Dream Hotel, Poltrona Frau’s team collaborated with the designers and architects to create and install exquisite custom seating for the lobby and restaurant of the Dream Hotel, all made to order according to the design specifications. The materials, craftsmanship, innovation and installation quality are all elements that make Poltrona Frau simply the best in the world.


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HANDEL ARCHITECTS FRANK FUSARO HANDEL ARCHITECTS PROFILE Handel Architects LLP is an architecture, interior design, and planning firm founded in New York City in 1994. Founder, Gary Handel, has grown the firm into a worldwide practice, combining the creativity of its talented staff with the reliability of a major architecture firm. Today, Handel Architects employs more than 80 architects, interior designers, planners and support staff in New York City, San Francisco, Hong Kong and Abu Dhabi. The firm has gained international recognition for work such as the Ritz-Carlton in Washington, D.C., and the World Trade Center Memorial in Lower Manhattan, along with many other projects. Handel Architects has won numerous design awards and is regularly featured in architectural journals and design publications. Handel Architect’s clients range from private developers to publicly funded organizations to institutional and not-for-profit groups.

HANDEL ARCHITECTS PHILOSOPHY FOR DREAM HOTEL DOWNTOWN Floor-to-ceiling wrap-around windows indulge guests with 360 degree views of New York City. Dim and sophisticated custom lighting and contemporary furnishings evoke a sensual mood. Two hundred hand blown glass globes float through the lobby atop luxurious custom leather seating. Steel and marble frame the windows and dark wood throughout the interior common areas. The lobby and restaurant are arguably two of the most important common areas of any hotel. Handel Architects commissioned custom seating by Poltrona Frau for the these two spaces of the Dream Hotel. The seating pieces were fashioned around the design concept for the spaces as well as for functionality, quality and style. In the lobby, the tufted upholstered chesterfields appear cloud-like, custom fit to the hotel’s entry façade. The influence of the lobby seating design was circles, in keeping with the circular theme throughout the hotel’s decor. The curved, silver upholstered leather Chesterfields are paired with circular ottomans and quarter-round benches. The restaurant seating was also a valuable design element of the hotel theme. The dark, tufted leather circular booths are made of exquisite leather and custom made for the restaurant. As for the asymmetrical tufting of the seating, it is a spin on the traditional tufting of the capitone style.


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VANKE CENTER steven holl

2010. Shenzhen

The new Vanke headquarters known as Vanke Center and nicknamed the Horizontal Skyscraper as it is longer than the Empire State Building is tall. Vanke is China’s largest residential developer and a company committed to sustainable architectural designs, working to reduce China’s carbon footprint on the planet. The new 1.14-million-square-foot Vanke headquarters is suspended 50 feet above the ground by translucent lighted glass support structures. The space beneath the building is used as a public park with many varieties of tropical plants and gardens amidst restaurants, pools and walkways. The rooftop of the building consists of planters as well as 15,000 square feet of photovoltaic panels which converts solar radiation to direct current electricity. The building site replaces the amount of green space used by the building structure. In furtherance of the company’s commitment to create an environmentally sound design, the complex also features a lagoon that is connected to adjacent creeks which filters water pollution; in addition, the building has many other pollution mitigating design elements. In addition to the headquarter offices, the complex includes condos, a hotel, and a conference center.

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Hovering over a tropical garden, this ‘horizontal skyscraper’ - as long as the Empire State Building is tall - is a hybrid building including apartments, a hotel, and offices for the headquarters of China Vanke Co. ltd. 2 next page

The Vanke headquarters building combines different functions in the massive complex, including an 86,000 square-foot conference center located underground.

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The three-tiered conference center features Poltrona Frau’s custom Pitagora folding chairs, framed in bamboo with lightcolored wooden veneers and upholstered in green mohair fabric.

The custom square-edge design of the chair’s seat and backrest is also equipped with aisle lights for function and safety.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR VANKE CENTER Poltrona Frau was proud to be a part of the Vanke Center, and proved to be the perfect partner to provide the seating for the conference center of this sustainable structure. Poltrona Frau’s custom seating, made and installed for the Vanke Center conference center, was an ideal design for ergonomic seating and made with sustainable materials. The three-tiered conference center features Poltrona Frau’s custom Pitagora folding chair, framed in bamboo with light-colored wooden veneers and upholstered in green mohair fabric. The custom square-edge design of the chair’s seat and backrest is equipped with aisle lights for function and safety.


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STEVEN HOLL STEVEN HOLL PROFILE Steven Holl is an award-winning American architect born in 1947 in Bremerton, Washington. He graduated from the University of Washington before pursuing architecture studies in Rome in 1970. In 1976, he attended graduate school at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London, and thereafter founded Steven Holl Architects in New York City. Steven Holl specializes in projects with particular cultural and historic importance, as well as the use of light in a design. Among many other projects, some of Steven Holl Architects’ work includes the School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa (Iowa City), Higgins Hall Center Section at the Pratt Institute School of Architecture (Brooklyn, New York), Hangzhou Music Museum (Hangzhou, China), The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Kansas City, United States), Museum of Natural History (Los Angeles, United States), and Cranbrook Institute of Science (Michigan, United States). Some of Steven Holl’s awards include prestigious architectural awards, such as: The American Institute of Architect’s Medal of Honor, the Alvar Aalto Medal, and the Smithsonian Institution’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award, as well as many others. Steven Holl is a Professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture and Planning since 1981.

STEVEN HOLL PHILOSOPHY FOR VANKE CENTER The Vanke Center is one of the first sustainable buildings in the region with the prestigious LEED platinum rating. The moist, humid sub-tropical weather in the region called for certain design elements to moderate the temperature, which was achieved by installing high-performance glass that allows light but not heat to enter the interior, a customdesigned system of perforated aluminum louvers, and window positioning to avoid the full impact of the afternoon sun. Because of the height restrictions driven by tsunami threats, the massive building is one large skyscraper laid in its side, a design that seems to defy gravity with the appearance that it is floating. The floating design element, in part, was to create views over the South China Sea, mountains and nearby lake as well as to take advantage of the sea breeze. It also was designed to create gardens and vegetation to replace the structure space, and to provide a community common area in the space provided beneath the “floating” building. As admitted by architect Steven Holl says, “The landscaping is really a machine for cleaning the water and tempering the climate.” This is evidenced by the lagoon water filtration system and shade provided by the lush vegetation. The interior of the building features doors, floors and furniture made from environmentally abundant bamboo, and the carpets are made from recycled materials.


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L’OPERA RESTAURANT

odbc - odile decq benoît cornette 2011. Paris

The Palais Garnier is the thirteenth theater to house the Paris Opera since it was founded by Louis XIV in 1669. It was built on the orders of Napoleon III as part of the great Parisian reconstruction project carried out by Baron Haussmann. The design for the opera house was put to competition and was won by Charles Garnier, a then unknown 35-yearold architect. The grand building designed by Charles Garnier in the Neo-Baroque, or “Baroque Revival” style was and is regarded as one of the architectural masterpieces of its time. Many years later, in the same glorious location, comes the first ever restaurant to be housed in the Opera Garnier, the Opera Restaurant. It took three attempts and 136 years for the world to finally have the chance to dine within Charles Garnier’s opera house, as he declared many years earlier for a “restaurant worthy of my Opera”. Opened in July 2011, and designed by French architect Odile Decq, Phantom Restaurant is the Opera Garnier’s first ever restaurant. The 1400 square foot, 350 seat restaurant features an upper mezzanine, a terrace and a lounge. According to the architect, it is a restaurant designed as a place to enjoy a good meal in the company of friends, surrounded by interesting interior design. And an interesting design it is. Such as the mask in Phantom of the Opera, the overhead curvaceous mezzanine levels steals the attention once you enter, the shape reminiscent of the mask in Phantom of the Opera. The curved mezzanine levels are additional restaurant seating areas that can accommodate 90 guests, offering them a unique dining experience in the presence of fantastic old architecture blended with contemporary shapes and colors and modern interior design. From the street, the wavy glass doors with steel and brass accents invite one to peer inside to witness the towering, ornate ceilings, the red carpeted stairways and red rugs over black slab floors. White laminate tables and red upholstered seating give the space a high level of design sophistication. The sheer volume of space surrounding the street-level dining area is a marvel. The soft curves of the mezzanine level float above the dinner guests, covering the space with a surface that bends and undulates.

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The project for the Opéra Garnier’s restaurant is slid beneath the ‘Rotonde des Abonnés’, inside the space that was originally the covered entrance for the privileged opera amateurs arriving by horse and carriage.


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The need for extra surface area has initiated the creation of the mezzanine floor, which then has taken place progressively over the central area.

The concept is based on the literal translation of the essential and unalterable constraint that nothing of the existing structure should be changed or even touched, as the project has to remain completely reversible.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR L’OPERA RESTAURANT One of the stand out features of Opera Restaurant is the bold and dramatic red seating, which works as a bold accent the overall design concept of the restaurant. These custom seating creations were the work of world famous seating designers Poltrona Frau. The striking red Poltrona Frau seats produce a theatrical character reminiscent of the Phantom of the Opera, a theatrical classic once performed in the building’s auditorium. Poltrona Frau made the perfect design partner with architects for the

Opera Restaurant in Paris, resulting in the custom seating and other design furnishings for the restaurant. Any seating concept or idea can be brought to life by Poltrona Frau’s experienced and innovative team, offering a wide variety of seating types and classifications; there is no project impossible. Poltrona Frau has a century-long reputation for fine seating, combining the finest materials known with meticulous craftsmanship and carefully engineered state-of-the art technology.


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MACRO MUSEUM odbc - odile decq benoît cornette

2010. Rome

The Museo d’Arte Contemporanea di Roma (MACRO), established in 1883, is the forerunner of contemporary art museums in Italy. Art works, including talent by Italy’s foremost post-WWII artists, are exhibited in this museum. MACRO exhibits collections by abstract artists such as Achille Perilli, as well as 1960s Pop Art by Tano Festa, artists from the Nuova Scuola Romana, sculpture collections of Leoncillo and Ettore Colla, as well as some exhibits showcasing emerging artists. MACRO has undergone a transformation by way of a new redevelopment and expansion project awarded to critically acclaimed French architect Odile Decq. Decq’s redesign of the building is bold and not meant to blend with the former architecture but to distinctly converge old and new dynamics. The building’s new architectural design creates a dynamic modern element to the museum as well as to the district, becoming an attraction in the city, almost as its own exhibit. The new expansion retains much of the building’s original structure but is enhanced by a dynamic exterior steel-and-glass façade. From the street, the museum addition appears as a glass box suspended. Inside, open metal stairs and zig-zagging walkways across the foyer administer paths to the various exhibition halls and other areas of the museum. The new expansion project bestows museum visitors with new exhibition areas, a large terrace, more parking, a library, café, and other common spaces.

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In the middle of the atrium, a polygon houses a small auditorium. With its lacqueredwood envelope cut into large facets and a red entry ramp extended like a tongue, this structure within a structure has a kinetic quality that animates the entire project.

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The color of blood, the auditorium is the pulsing heart of the building.

For the cafe of the new museum expansion Decq designed bespoke chairs.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR MACRO MUSEUM Among the “stand out” features of MACRO is the bold and dramatic red and diamond-shaped structure that holds an auditorium in its core. Poltrona Frau collaborated with Odile Decq, who was not coincidentally also the seating and furniture designer of the MACRO, to create a custom seating creation that worked for MACRO’s auditorium. The striking red upholstered Poltrona Frau seating features folding seat and arm rests which makes it an extraordinary auditorium chair. Poltrona Frau also created and installed the freestanding seating and other furniture for MACRO’s new Art Café. Any seating concept or idea can be brought to life by Poltrona Frau’s experienced and innovative team, offering a wide variety of seating types and classifications. Poltrona Frau has a century-long reputation for fine seating, combining the finest materials known with meticulous craftsmanship and carefully engineered state-of-the art technology.


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The auditorium chairs are covered in Divina fabric by Kvadrat.

The recessed writing tablet in the chair was made with a bright led lacquer finish.


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ODBC - ODILE DECQ BENOÎT CORNETTE PHILOSOPHY FOR L’OPERA RESTAURANT The Opera Restaurant design came with many limitations and challenges to overcome. The existing architecture of the exterior and interior of the opera house was to be left untouched, and all the modifications had to be reversible. The National Commission of Historic Monuments’ strict regulations found a formidable opponent in French architect Odile Decq who took on the challenge of completely leaving the building’s antique stone untouched.

ODBC ODILE DECQ BENOÎT CORNETTE ODBC - ODILE DECQ BENOÎT CORNETTE PROFILE The architect for the Opera Restaurant is Odile Decq. Odile Decq is a graduate of Master of Planning and Development at the Institute of Political Studies in Paris. In 1980, she founded the Paris architect agency, ODBC, with partner Benoît Cornette. After several architectural interior projects, urban studies and some architectural projects in the west of France, in 1990 the firm was commissioned to design two buildings for the “Banque Populaire de l’Ouest“ in Rennes, of which they won the commission after a national competition held in 1988. Some of Odile Decq prestigious projects include construction of the People’s Bank of the West and Brittany in Rennes, in collaboration with Peter Rice to the front, earning an immediate international recognition, rewarded by a dozen national and international awards. Other projects include the viaduct of Highway A14 in Nanterre, France, along with the construction of the Highway Managerial Center suspended underneath the viaduct. In 1996 their firm received the Golden Lion from the Venice Architecture Biennale, and in 2001 Odile Decq was selected for the extension of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Rome. Odile Decq is currently a visiting professor at the School of Architecture of Grenoble in 1991. She is also doing other teaching activities including the Special School of Architecture (ESA) since 1992, the Bartlett (London) in 2000, Columbia (New York) in 2001 and 2003 at the Kunst Akademie in Vienna in 2003, and the Kunst Akademie in Düsseldorf in 2004 and 2005. In April 2007 Odile Decq was elected to the direction of the Special School of Architecture in 2011 and re-elected for another term.

The piers, mezzanines and equipment were integrated into the interior site without touching the stones, a strict prerequisite to executing the architecture to the interior space. The result is an illusion that the mezzanine structures floats above the ground. The contemporary additions of the restaurant compliments the classical details of the vaulted stone ceiling without altering the historical integrity of the classic space. The refined, sophisticated and interesting architectural designs of curved shapes trimmed with bold colors, give this space supreme interest. As there is no visible structure, the restaurant seems to hover above the ground, like a “phantom,” the soft protean curves of the mezzanine float above the space covering it with a surface that bends and undulates. The design for this project brilliantly highlights the restaurant’s truly contemporary character inside the Opera Garnier, but respects the historic integrity. ODBC - ODILE DECQ BENOÎT CORNETTE PHILOSOPHY FOR MACRO MUSEUM Odile Decq was faced with the challenge of reconstructing and creating an addition for a contemporary-style museum in an aging mixed-use industrial building. The 108,000-square-foot addition includes a gallery of rooms featuring a café, exhibit rooms and common areas. Decq retained some of the industrial charm of the museum, once used as a brewery, by using exposed concrete beams in the new galleries to show a link to the past, yet other design elements are strongly suggestive of moving forward to a modern generation. The modern features of the reconstruction and expansion cannot be denied. Steel ramps and walk-ways, illuminated staircases, bamboo garden, roof terraces, the central volume of running water over the center of the atrium and projected red stripes running through the foyer, all impress the museum’s visitors that this building is firmly in the present and approaching the future. One of the most interesting design elements is located In the middle of the atrium, suspended above the ground level, a bright red solid structure encasing a small auditorium. Because this auditorium is located in the heart of the building, and is also a free-standing building, its design is exceedingly unique. Once inside the red solid diamondshaped structure, one will enjoy an auditorium with red reflective walls and red upholstered seating. Decq has said of the auditorium, “The color of blood, the auditorium is the pulsing heart of the building.”


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PERSHING YACHT 108 fulvio de simoni

2011. Pershing Shipyard Mondolfo

Pershing has been designing, producing and marketing luxury “open” motor yachts for over 25 years, and now boasts a firmly established position as one of the leading names in the “Made in Italy” fiberglass open yacht sector. With over a quarter-century of experience in the water craft business, Pershing has won prestigious awards such as the Best Performance Superyacht. Pershing’s reputation for its personal yachts reaches beyond the quality of luxury invested in each vessel. Its yachts are known for the best in superior performance, style, top quality materials, comfort, and powerful engines. Its high-performance engines are world-class, with custom surface propellers, hydrojets and gas turbines used to give Pershing yachts a distinct advantage to reach speeds of up to 52 knots. Pershing’s yachts are versatile, functional, luxurious, state-of-the-art and innovative, making its yachts the foremost choice for personal water craft buyers. The latest of the Pershing yacht model is the Pershing 108 model. This yacht model is the breakthrough in cutting-edge design and technology. With state-of-the-art on-board technology, high-performance yet low fuel consumption motorization and luxury interior, it is truly an industry leader.

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Beautiful 33 meter motor yacht Pershing 108 is the first three-engine model focusing on ecology whilst still maintaining high performance built by the Italian shipyard Pershing. 2 next page

Whether speeding to catch the sunset at the next anchorage or simply enjoying the scenery, the Pershing 108 emphasizes luxury living inside and out.


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There’s particularly striking use of leather in the master bedroom and for the headboard that rises up and continues overhead.

The bridge consists of three comfortable adjustable central pilot seats. The steering console is designed with the latest navigation and communications technology.

One of the nicest features is the indoor-outdoor flexibility of the saloon. The glass partition between the aft deck and the saloon is divided into an opening door and a drop-down window.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR PERSHING YACHT 108 Since the 1930s, Poltrona Frau has been rooted in the ocean liner and yacht industry, preparing the company to manufacture and install such exquisite yacht furnishings as provided in the interior of Pershing yachts. Poltrona Frau understands water travel, and is experienced in the design elements as well as the ideal materials needed to ensure comfort, versatility and durability in this unique setting. Poltrona Frau has custom made and installed furniture and fixtures for more than 85 Pershing yachts. Poltrona Frau collaborated with the client and designer to approach the ideal interior and exterior spaces of the Pershing 108. The bridge features three comfortable adjustable central pilot seats built and installed

by Poltrona Frau. The deck furnishings and built-ins were custom made by Poltrona Frau’s expert teams. The living spaces are impeccably designed to ideally optimize all living areas and common areas. The interior style is sleek, sophisticated and modern. Poltrona Frau’s exceptional materials, such as its Pelle Frau® leather, is used to create the cabin’s bed frames and other furniture. The entire interior creation of the yacht is custom made and installed in collaboration with the design specifications in conjunction with Poltrona Frau’s knowledge of maritime laws, marine environment specifications, regulations and recommendations.


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FULVIO DE SIMONI FULVIO DE SIMONI PROFILE Fulvio De Simoni is an Italian yacht designer of international fame. He started his career in the early 1970s as a naval architect in Milan in the studio of Alberto Mercati. In 1977, he founded Yankee Delta in collaboration with Massimo Gregori with whom he collaborated until the end of 1983. Thereafter, he founded Italprojects, a company specializing in developing highly upscale and technological solutions in the ship industry. In his long career, De Simoni has designed more than 2500 boats for the most important shipyards in Italy and abroad, and has received international awards for some of his designs, for quality and originality. Some of De Simoni’s most noteworthy projects include collaborations with Pershing, Antago, Mochi Craft, Ilver, Gianetti, Raffaelli, Inace, Gallart, Trojan, Simonneau Marine and the most recently with Abacus Marine, Aicon, Astondoa, Austin Parker, Evomarine, Filippetti Yacht, Menorquin, Rodman, Sea Share, and Wider.

FULVIO DE SIMONI PHILOSOPHY FOR PERSHING YACHT 108 Fulvio De Simoni’s long and illustrious career in the yacht and ship industry has enriched him with the knowledge of the exact requirements needed for life aboard a yacht. De Simoni’s creations are built on the foundation of his conventional experience combined with his pulsating innovative spirit. The excellence of Pershing 108 is an example of De Simoni’s versatility and experience as a designer. The Pershing 108 is 32.90 meters or 108 feet long. The interior’s configuration comes equipped with four guest cabins and three crew cabins, though is customized by the personalized discretion of the client to choose various layouts and details. The interior also comes with a spacious VIP cabin at the bow, a guest cabin, a TV or family room and a full beam master cabin amidships. The sleek exterior of the yacht features an enormous sun deck at the bow with incredible custom and versatile built-in furnishings and retractable shades. The exquisite and versatile interior is evidenced by the use of natural and ambient lighting, the highest quality materials and construction of the furnishings and fixtures, and the innovative use of space and comfort, which all contribute to the best quality of life in yacht living. Fulvio De Simoni is proud of his part in the creation of the Pershing 108, explaining, “Architecture, volumes and design, from stem to stern, confirm the great care taken in this project to make this model a benchmark in the nautical world.” The result of the work and craftsmanship put into the Pershing 108 is a quality watercraft with a worthy interior and exterior that is both exciting and opulent, a certain majestic force in the open water.


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ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM

renzo piano building workshop

2011. Boston

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Massachusetts is home to an intimate collection of fine art, as well as an interactive venue for innovative and contemporary artists, musicians and scholars. Isabella Stewart Gardner, born in 1840, founded the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in 1903 to share her passion of the arts. During her lifetime, she bestowed her beloved art pieces to a public museum to share it with the world. The museum was operated by Ms. Gardner where she then lived on the fourth floor of the museum; the original structure was designed by the architect Willard T. Sears in 1903. At that time, the museum building was designed to resemble a 15thcentury Venetian palazzo, with multiple rooms showcasing more than 2,500 paintings, sculptures, tapestries, furniture, manuscripts, rare books and decorative arts featuring works of art by Titian, Rembrandt, Michelangelo, Raphael, Botticelli, Manet, Degas, Whistler and Sargent. In 2012, a new 70,000 square-foot wing of the museum was added, designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect, Renzo Piano. The addition was designed to not only restore some stress on the aging building, but to add additional space for concerts, exhibitions, classes, and additional visitor amenities. The design of the museum’s new wing incorporates walls made of stories-high windows and skylights to introduce natural light, creating an open and welcoming entrance, as well as to provide uninterrupted views of the historic building and gardens. The walk-

way from the museum to the new wing resembles a greenhouse, perhaps to celebrate its sustainable design elements, complete with a geothermal well system, daylight harvesting, water efficient landscaping techniques, and the use of local and regional materials. Inside the new wing is a special exhibitions gallery, performance hall, a new restaurant, a gift shop, a landscape classroom, expanded outdoor garden spaces, two artist apartments, conservation labs, and a hands on art workshop. The inner open-slat staircases in glass are supported with stainless steel poles giving the impression that the staircase is floating.

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Evening exterior view of the façade of the new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. 2 next page

A cross-sectional view of the new central grand staircase in the new wing of the Museum.


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Key features include a 300-seat performance hall, an adjustable height special exhibition gallery, a new restaurant, gift shop, landscape classroom, expanded outdoor garden spaces, two artist apartments, conservation labs and a hands on art workshop.

A stage level view of Calderwood Hall.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM Poltrona Frau custom tailored two seating for the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s Calderwood Hall, according to the specifications of Renzo Piano’s design. The final construction of the seat combines a fine, ergonomically advanced seating designed to optimize acoustic absorption. Poltrona Frau custom manufactured two bespoke seating specifically made for this project: the first was the RP02, a fixed theatre seat which is perfect for the three balcony areas; the second was the Movie Chair, a light stackable chair which is ideal for the ground floor where the seating had to be more flexible to allow for the different configurations required by the various types of performances held.

Both models were customised to fit the requirements of Calderwood Hall, and designed in close co-operation with the Renzo Piano Building Workshop staff and the acoustician, Yasuhisa Toyota. RP02 is a theatre seat that had previously been designed by Renzo Piano for the Padre Pio Auditorium in S. Giovanni Rotondo in association with Poltrona Frau Contract. The version adapted for Calderwood Hall had a special C-shaped metal structure attached to allow the seating to be installed on metallic bars in a square-shaped arrangement around the central performance area. The design is minimalist. The soft, ample cushioning is upholstered in woolen fabric and the armrests are in oak. The seats are fitted with elastic straps and have a gravity lift mechanism on noise-free nylon joints; the seat bottom is covered by an acoustic wooden panel.


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RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP PHILOSOPHY FOR ISABELLA STEWART GARDEN MUSEUM Renzo Piano is more certain now than ever before that the museum’s Venetian design captures the beauty of Venice, the light, the magic, the atmosphere. Though he was a bit reluctant of the idea of a Venetian palace in Boston, he changed his mind when arriving through the threshold, describing it as, “like a new dimension that is timeless...”

RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP PROFILE Renzo Piano, from Genoa, Italy, is the award-winning architect behind the new wing of Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. He is the recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, AIA Gold Medal, Kyoto Prize and the Sonning Prize. He was a graduate of Politecnico di Milano, where he eventually also taught. After graduating from the university in 1964, he began working with experimental lightweight structures and basic shelters. In 1971, he founded Piano & Rogers Architects with partner Richard Rogers. The firm won the competition for the Centre Pompidou in Paris. From the early 1970s to the 1990s, Piano collaborated with engineer Peter Rice, founding Atelier Piano & Rice in 1977. In 1981, he established the Renzo Piano Building Workshop, with offices today in Genoa, Paris and New York. Renzo Piano’s awards include prestigious honors such as: the Pritzker Prize; RIBA Royal Gold Medal; Medaille d’Or, UIA; Erasmus Prize; and, recently, the Gold Medal of the AIA. Some of Renzo Piano’s most recently notable projects include Beyeler Foundation Museum, High Museum Expansion, Jean-Marie Tjiaou Expansion, Kansai International Airport Expansion, Padre Pio Pilgrimage Church, Potsdamer Platz, and many more. In addition to the firm’s many architectural projects, Renzo Piano Workshop’s apprentice program was also started in the early 1990s as an educational workshop for up and coming youths. By 2001, with the help of Harvard University, the workshop sponsors six-month work experience programs for young apprentices from twelve universities around the world for the experience to work in design, architecture and construction.

The new wing, created by Renzo Piano, was to provide a venue upon which performance, music, exhibition and education could be celebrated. To do that, it was evident that a new building was needed to work in concert with the existing Venetian palace museum. The distance between the buildings creates a dialogue between the two, connected by a greenhouse where one enters through a garden. At the heart and soul of the new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is Calderwood Hall, the museum’s new performance hall. At 6,000 square feet, it is the largest space in the new wing. The performance hall was designed in collaboration with Yasuhisa Toyota of Nagata Acoustics. With 300 seats, configured in balcony levels in a cube-like rectangular shape surrounding the central performing area on all four sides, the hall promotes an intimidate experience between the performer and the audience. Due to the construction of the Calderwood Hall, the Tapestry Room has been restored to its original purpose after its use as the temporary concert hall for many years. The Gardner’s celebrated music program will relocate to Calderwood Hall and offer expanded programming in chamber music, new music, and jazz. Architect Renzo Piano said of Calderwood Hall, “the idea of the performance hall is like a wood harmonic chamber, in which people enjoy sound, but they also enjoy looking in the eyes of the man or the lady in front of them. It’s a kind of participation where you enjoy music, together with other people enjoying the same music. This sense of belonging is great and beautiful. As soon as you get in that space, it’s about music, but it’s something magical as well.” Featuring superb acoustics, Calderwood Hall is a visually striking performance venue. Staying true to Renzo Piano’s vision of light and transparency, large sky lights give muted light to the multi-story balconies overlooking the wooden stage, as well as small spot lights. Alaskan cedar wood floors, wood-panelled walls and rails, and warmtoned theater seating make this venue a warm and intimate setting.


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NAPLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT poltrona frau r&d

2011. Naples

Aeroporto Internazionale di Napoli, or Naples International Airport, is an important focus of international travel in Italy. It is the first privatized airport in Italy, with approximately 5.8 million passengers a year. The airport, through GESAC - the Airport Management Company, has enhanced its infrastructure to provide for even better efficiency for increased travel volume in this Italian region. Naples International Airport has added two new VIP travel lounges, Alitalia and Gesac, dedicated to major airline companies. Both VIP lounges are designed to accommodate both the weary traveler or busy traveler with state-of-the-art technology communication functions as well as comfort and durability. In addition to the VIP lounges, Naples International Airport also commissioned the renovation and extension of the departure terminal, designating a new interior design for the departure lounge. The Naples International Airport sought to introduce a more refined contemporary architectural expression for the interior of the terminal. The new modern interior strongly celebrates air travel, as interpreted through the use of two large adjoining sky lights, accentuating the movement of the sky above. Poltrona Frau is proud to have exclusively created the interiors of both VIP lounges, as well as the re-design of the departure lounge, in their entirely from Poltrona Frau’s internal team of experts.

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The exterior view of the newly restructured terminal 1 of Naples International Airport; GESAC is fully responsible for managing the airport and co-ordinating the activities of all the private operators present in the airport.

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The Gesac lounge interiors are furnished with timeless classic pieces complementing the architecture of terminal 1.

The interiors of the new departure lounge have been thought with the utmost comfort in mind.

The lounge areas were enhanced by dramatic lighting fixtures and flower pots rearranged on wooden floors.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR NAPLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Airline travel can be filled with either anticipation or delay. Poltrona Frau understands that public travel seating, particularly in a lounge setting, is a delicate balancing act. Making travelers comfortable while still adhering to style and durability is the key to an ideal airport lounge design. Poltrona Frau’s designs for the Naples International Airport VIP lounges and departure lounge was a celebration for the company as it was able to use its internal teams’ years of design experience with ideally matched materials to achieve greatness. It was Poltrona Frau’s independent approach to the lounges that made this project special. The result was the best and finest minds and creators from Poltrona Frau, using the finest materials known, to the exact specifications that the teams deemed exemplary.


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POLTRONA FRAU R&D POLTRONA FRAU R&D PROFILE Poltrona Frau has an experienced in-house architecture and design team who commonly collaborate with external architects on seating projects for various venues around the world. However, Poltrona Frau’s architects and designers are absolutely qualified to perform as primary agents for clients on any design project if an external architect is not arranged by the client. In the case of Naples International Airport, Poltrona Frau’s internal design team prepared the blueprints, design, archetypes and layout plans for both the VIP lounges and the departure lounge and executed the entire seating project using Poltrona Frau’s experts in manufacturing and installation.

POLTRONA FRAU R&D PHILOSOPHY FOR NAPLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT The design and seating for the Naples International Airport VIP lounges and departure lounge had to be both functional and durable. Poltrona Frau understands the demands placed on public seating and accordingly determined the type of seating needed for the airport lounges. Poltrona Frau’s internal architectural team evaluated the interior spaces to develop highly functional lay out designs for the seating and then worked with Poltrona Frau’s internal designers to combine style with the ideal layouts to bring the spaces to life. Ultimately, the Poltrona Frau team of professionals collaborated together to create the ideal sofas and armchairs for the VIP lounges and departure lounge from its best collection of lounge furnishings. The idea was to bring both sophistication and comfort to the interior spaces.


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ASIA SOCIETY TEXAS CENTER taniguchi associates

2011. Texas

In the heart of Houston’s museum district lies the cultural institution Asia Society Texas Center, a center working to increase knowledge and promote ideas between the American and Asian cultures. The Asia Society is a nonprofit organization founded by John D. Rockefeller III in 1956 with several locations, and now has proudly added a physical location in Houston, Texas. The center hosts a wide variety of public programs, from lectures to music concerts, as well as family activities. The building, designed by Harvard-educated architect Yoshio Taniguchi, is contemporary yet with the essence of Asian tradition. Within the 39,000 square feet building, one will find interesting architectural details, such as free standing staircases, a 273-seat performing arts center, and a room with movable walls to allow the space to be divided into as many as three classrooms. Taniguchi was careful to make certain that the building did not compete with the surrounding residential properties. Therefore, he designed the building with a low-profile approach, including a basement to keep the scale of the building to within 2 stories. From the street, the clean lines of the exterior architecture are confident, yet simple. Materials such as: limestone, American cherry wood, an Italian volcanic stone called basaltina, glass and Appalachian white oak, help to bring the building to life. The use of extraordinary, highly finished, textured materials is a Taniguchi trademark.

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The Asia Society Texas Center has moved into the neighborhood with its just-completed, sumptuous new home designed by Tokyo-based Yoshio Taniguchi. Limestone, basaltina stone, and cherry wood clad the Great Hall.

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The second-floor lounge looks out on a raised reflecting pool (with fog) towards downtown Houston.

Rose-colored light reflects off the facade’s Jura limestone and slender, channel-glass-like windows with aluminum mullions.

The Brown Foundation Performing Arts Theater; this single-tiered theater is Houston’s finest medium-sized performance space for music, dance, theater, film, and lectures.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR ASIA SOCIETY TEXAS CENTER Poltrona Frau’s team installed one of its most iconic chairs for the Brown Foundation Performing Arts Theater, its Pitagora seat. The Pitagora is contemporary and elegant, a perfect choice for the Asia Society Texas Center. The Pitagora has a wooden structure and includes ergonomic lower back support. As safety is a priority of Poltrona Frau, the seat comes standard with non-deformable fireproof polyurethane padding. With noise-dampening nylon joints, the seat may be reclined by a gravity mechanism. The result is a chair that combines the finest materials known with meticulous craftsmanship and carefully engineered state-of-the art technology.


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TANIGUCHI ASSOCIATES TANIGUCHI ASSOCIATES PROFILE Yoshio Taniguchi is an award-winning Japanese architect. He studied engineering at Keio University, and studied architecture at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, graduating in 1964. Taniguchi worked for the firm of famed architect Kenzo Tange from 1964 to 1972, acquiring skills in Japanese modernist architecture. After, Taniguchi collaborated on several projects. In 1975, Taniguchi started his own architectural firm in Japan beginning his solo career on projects such as schools, libraries, and other public-use buildings throughout Japan. In the 1980s he emerged as one of Japan’s leading museum architects. Taniguchi is known to restrict the number of projects he accepts so that he might better personally oversee the details of each job. Some of Taniguchi’s projects include museums such as: Nagano Prefectural Museum, Marugame Genichiro Inokuma Museum of Contemporary Art, Toyota Municipal Museum of Art, Koyoto National Museum and the Gallery of the Horyu-ji Treasures at the Tokyo National Museum. In 1997, Taniguchi won a competition to redesign the Museum of Modern Art in New York, beating out ten other internationally renowned architects. Subsequently, Taniguchi designed the Texas branch of the Asia Society Center in Houston, Texas.

TANIGUCHI ASSOCIATES PHILOSOPHY FOR ASIA SOCIETY TEXAS CENTER Taniguchi had several obstacles to overcome in completing the design of the Asia Society Texas Center building. His first goal was to design an environment that is quiet and inviting. He was careful to stay in tradition with the neighboring structures, especially the residential structures. Due to aging residences bordering the building, Taniguchi rotated the building to the north to take advantage of the best position and views toward the downtown skyline. Taniguchi was instrumental in almost every aspect of the design and building of the structure, including the landscaping. He personally supervised the placement of the front lawn’s heritage oaks as well as many of the seemingly small details of the interior rooms. Taniguchi explains, “I don’t design very many buildings and I design very carefully.” Many of the design details of the building can be explained by Taniguchi’s philosophies and traditions, such as the small entry way, a tradition in Japan to bow to the owner as well as to have the interior appear larger. The building features a grand hall, galleries, an education center, a garden terrace and café. In the “dog-leg” area of the building is a performing arts center called the Brown Foundation Performing Arts Theater. This single-tiered theater is Houston’s finest medium-sized performance space for music, dance, theater, film, and lectures. The theater’s acoustics, lighting and digital projection is state-of-the-art. The stage is made of Appalachian white oak, the grooved wall panels are in cherry wood; the recessed lighting and Italian crafted, fine upholstered seating make this theater an elegant addition to the building. Critics agree that the building’s quality level, design and elegance are all something very unique.


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DINNER BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL tihany design

2011. London

The London restaurant, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, is a contemporary British brasserie located within the 5-star Mandarin Oriental Hotel in London’s famed Hyde Park. The Times of London calls it, “The best new restaurant in the whole wide world.” Celebrity chef, Heston Blumenthal, not one to back down from risks, wows culinary food critics, chefs and customers with his take on historic dishes dating as far back as the Royal Courts of King Henry VIII. With his executive chef, Ashley Palmer-Watts, the pair took years to research and modernize the historic dishes and cooking methods that inspired the menu for this fashionable and critically-acclaimed restaurant. Like the bespoke dishes incorporated in the menu, the restaurant’s design commanded the highest quality vision along with astute awareness to capture the essence of such an inspirational project. Preeminent hospitality architect and designer, Adam D. Tihany, was commissioned to design the restaurant. Tihany’s design concept for Dinner by Heston Blumenthal sought to convey both modern sophistication and English tradition.

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The finished design is a subtle and elegant portraiture of Blumenthal and the philosophy behind his new culinary concept of a modern British Brasserie featuring a contemporary take, usually, on 16th century British cookery. Contemporary and innovative, yet mindful of tradition. 2 next page

The restaurant design fully encapsulates the focus on revival of tradition and values.

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Guests are ensconced in the comfort of dark chocolate brown leather and smoky grey vintageinspired velvet seating with plush saffron coloured pillows.

The private dining room seats up to 10 guests with the option of overlooking the restaurant or remaining completely private.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR DINNER BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL Poltrona Frau made the perfect design partner with architect Adam D. Tihany resulting in the custom seating and other design furnishings for the restaurant, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. Any seating concept or idea can be brought to life by Poltrona Frau’s experienced and innovative team, offering a wide variety of seating types and classifications; nothing is impossible. Poltrona Frau has a century-long reputation for fine seating, combining the finest materials known with meticulous craftsmanship and carefully engineered state-of-the art technology. For Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, Poltrona Frau’s team developed Tihany custom design seating and dining tables for the main area as well the special fittings for the 10-seat, Tudor-influenced private dining room.


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TIHANY DESIGN TIHANY DESIGN PROFILE Adam D. Tihany, born in Romania and having grown up in Israel, is widely regarded as the world’s preeminent hospitality designer. His sophisticated, often groundbreaking, designs are the result, in part, of his unique global perspective. Upon graduating from Italy’s Politecnico di Milano, School of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tihany apprenticed with several design firms in Europe before moving to New York City. Shortly thereafter, in 1976, Tihany established his own multidisciplinary studio, called Tihany Design, encompassing all aspects of design, from commercial and residential interiors to furniture, products, exhibitions, and graphics. In 1981, his studio began specializing in hospitality designs, including the world famous New York restaurant Le Cirque, as well as La Coupole, the first grand café in New York City. Since then, he has earned a reputation for his signature restaurant designs, many for celebrity chefs such as Heston Blumenthal, Thomas Keller, Daniel Boulud, Charlie Palmer, Pierre Gagnaire and Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Sirio Maccioni. His hotel designs include the One&Only Cape Town resort in South Africa, the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas, the Westin Chosun in Seoul, Korea, The Joule in Dallas and many more. Over the last thirty years, Tihany Design has become the leading expert in creating luxurious and innovative spaces in the vibrant world of hospitality. Tihany is an educator and frequent lecturer in conferences and universities around the world. In 2011, he was appointed Art Director of the Culinary Institute of America, taking the lead on modernizing its New York Hyde Park campus. He has also become a frequent contributor for international lifestyle, design and travel magazines. Tihany’s experience in his field led him to curate major exhibitions for the international Milan Furniture Fair, among other such projects. His outstanding contribution to the world of design has been recognized with numerous honors and awards, including an Honorary Doctorate from the New York School of Interior Design. He was named Bon Appetit’s Designer of the Year in 2001, Who’s Who in Food and Beverage in the United States by The James Beard Foundation in 1997, and he was inducted into the Interior Design Hall of Fame in 1991. His monograph, Tihany Design, was published by Monacelli Press in 1999 and his second book, Tihany Style, was published by Mondadori Electa in May 2004.

TIHANY DESIGN PHILOSOPHY FOR DINNER BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL Tihany’s approach is always to individualize a design according to the ideals behind the project and the vision of the client. In the case of Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, the restaurant’s notable menu was the inspiration for Tihany’s interpretation behind the design, which conveys an updated twist on historic sophistication. Tihany artfully captured the restaurant’s thoroughly modern fare inspired by dishes hundred of years old, requiring an interior design with a flair for innovation. Tihany chose rich, natural materials such as wood, leather and wrought iron - historical elements at the root of 16th century British style - but utilized in modern ways. In the 120-seat main dining room, floor to ceiling glass walls provide guests with a full view of the chefs in action in their spectacular kitchen. Modern lighting fixtures, including sleek curved chandeliers above the bar, create a warm ambiance as well as a sophisticated design element. The deep tones of tan and walnut are offset by the surrounding picture windows, white trim and mirrors. Comfort and refinement influenced the choice of dark chocolate brown leather and smoky grey vintage-inspired velvet seating. The chairs were designed by Tihany for the restaurant in collaboration with seating engineers and manufacturer, Poltrona Frau.


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MARLOWE THEATRE

keith williams architects

2011. Canterbury

The Marlowe Theatre is located in the picturesque cathedral city of Canterbury, England. Opened in October 2011, the theatre bears the name of Elizabethan tragedian playwright Christopher Marlowe who was born in Canterbury in 1564. A leading contemporary of William Shakespeare, he remains an admired and influential artist and one of the most significant playwright’s of his era. The new 4,850 square metre Marlowe Theatre is located on the banks of the River Stour, adjacent Canterbury Cathedral. It contains 2 major auditoria of 1200 seats and 150 seats and is the most significant new insertion of contemporary architecture within the historic city centre. Built on the site of a 1933 Odeon Cinema, itself converted in the 1980s to house the old Marlowe, the new Marlowe Theatre was completed in 2011. Opening to great public celebration, the new Theatre has already redefined the cultural life of the city and will also contribute to its economic revitalization. In architectural terms, the project may be seen as a complex pavilion wrapped by a colonnaded foyer, whose external columns construct from white cast Dolomite stone give a stripped classicism to the composition. The second auditorium is raised 5 metres above the entrance level, so that the foyer passes beneath, allowing considerable degrees of openness and transparency. At night, the foyer’s external glazed skin seems to literally disappear so that both activity in the foyer and in the new square seem to merge completely with one another. The large volume of the flytower has been encased in a stainless steel mesh, which captures the shimmer of sunlight and extends to a pinnacle form from the structure of the building, adding silhouette to the city’s skyline.

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This outstanding new cultural building for Canterbury City Council has been created by Keith Williams Architects in the ancient city’s historic heart.


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The wooden flooring and walls are made with black American walnut, and the rails are in stainless steel.

The stunning main auditorium is set over three levels with an orchestra pit that can accommodate up to 80 musicians, enabling The Marlowe to stage worldclass music, theatre and dance performances.

The foyer connects all main spaces to the principal auditorium. Lined in black American walnut with seating in red/orange leather, it can accommodate an audience of 1,200 on 3 levels.

POLTRONA FRAU FOR MARLOWE THEATRE Poltrona Frau custom tailored its Ascolto seat from its Stage Collection to the specifications of The Marlowe Theatre auditorium. The final construction of the seat combines a backrest made from curved beech plywood, the sides and seat itself are supported by a steel structure, with a custom-made steel flank and a leather upholstered top armrest. The seat and backrest are covered in Pelle FrauŽ leather and an under-seat perforation has been specifically developed to optimize acoustic absorption. Working with the Keith Williams’ office, Poltrona Frau custom manufactured the bespoke bright coral orange leather exclusively for this project.


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KEITH WILLIAMS ARCHITECTS KEITH WILLIAMS ARCHITECTS PROFILE Keith Williams is the founder and design director of London-based Keith Williams Architects. Founded in 2001, the firm has received 25 major design awards and was twice winner of the prestigious BD Public Building Architect of the Year Award in 2006 & 2008, in addition to accolades in other architecture competitions. The firm operates internationally across a broad range of sectors for public and private clients and is a leading specialist designer of museums, galleries, libraries, and civic and performing arts buildings. The firm’s broader portfolio includes commercial development, residential projects, high rise towers, urban design and masterplanning studies. Major projects, in addition to The Marlowe Theatre, include Chichester Museum, UK 2007-2011, Wexford Opera House, Ireland 2005-2008, Clones Library & County HQ, Ireland 2004-2008, and Athlone Civic Centre, Ireland 2001-2004. Further noted works include the Unicorn Theatre, London 2005, The Long House, London, 2006, as well as the firm’s new Art Gallery in Athlone, Ireland currently under construction. Keith Williams is a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects, the Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland, he is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and sits on the National Design Review panel at Design Council CABE and the Civic Trust Awards. He has judged numerous major award schemes, lectured widely on architecture, and in 2010 was made Honorary Visiting Professor of Architecture at Zhengzhou University, China.

KEITH WILLIAMS ARCHITECTS DESIGN PHILOSOPHY FOR MARLOWE THEATRE Keith Williams understood that the design of The Marlowe Theatre required a moderation of the impact of the new building on the surrounding cityscape. The surrounding historic buildings nearest The Marlowe site were generally two or three storeys high, therefore Williams created the idea of the colonnade at the appropriate scale to mediate with the larger size of the new building. He designed The Marlowe Theatre to ascend in layers. The 1200-seat auditorium and flytower are large structures - The Marlowe’s flytower is the second tallest structure in Canterbury, after Bell Harry, Canterbury Cathedral’s central tower. By setting The Marlowe Theatre back from the street edge, with a new public square, the new building compliments, instead of competes with, the city’s existing architecture. The Marlowe Theatre was designed to celebrate the work of Christopher Marlowe, but above all else the function is to celebrate performing arts and theatre. At the core of this project is the theatre’s auditorium. The auditorium is remarkably sleek in appearance, with classic multitiered and multi-level seating sections. The wood flooring and walls are lined with black American walnut, and the rails are in stainless steel. The fiery coral-toned leather seating adds elegance and refinement to the space, giving a hue of colour when the auditorium is dimmed. Architect Keith Williams felt that the seating should be seen as a contrasting arc of colour slicing through the darkness. The auditorium accommodates an audience of 1,200 on 3 levels. The contemporary design of the exterior of the building is balanced beautifully with the warm, yet sophisticated, features of the interior. “A modern orthodoxy in architecture suggests that from the outside you know what you’re going to get on the inside: the outside must somehow grow directly from the interior and vice versa,” says architect Keith Williams when describing the contrast of the interior and exterior of his building where the richness of the auditorium is only finally revealed once deep inside the building.


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PHOTO CREDITS

ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE nikos danilidis

ROYAL SHAKESPEARE THEATRE peter cook

LA BANQUE POSTALE vincent fillon

CATHAY PACIFIC CABIN LOUNGE nigel young & foster + partners, courtesy of cathay pacific

NEW WORLD SYMPHONY claudia uribe, jason okutake

DREAM HOTEL DOWNTOWN bruce damonte

VANKE CENTER christian richters

L’OPERA RESTAURANT roland halbe, markus deutschmann

MACRO MUSEUM roland halbe

PERSHING YACHT 108 courtesy of pershing yacht, ferretti spa

ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM nic lehoux

NAPLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT fabio falcioni

ASIA SOCIETY TEXAS CENTER paul hester

DINNER BY HESTON BLUMENTHAL fabrice trombert, courtesy of tihany design eric laignel & george apostolidis, courtesy of tihany design

MARLOWE THEATRE courtesy of keith williams architects


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Abu Dhabi

Hong Kong

Frau Bologna Strada Maggiore, 27 I-40125 Bologna (BO) Italy Tel: +39 (0) 51 27 24 80

Frau USA 151, Wooster Street New York, NY 10012 USA Tel: +1 917 374 1661

PF Emirates Interiors LLC P.O. Box 106953 Abu Dhabi, UAE Tel: +971 2 667 95 88

Cassina Pacific 21st floor, 32 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong Tel: +852 93179761

Breda

São Paulo

Kuwait City

Mumbai

PFG Contract Benelux Neerloopweg 15 4814 RS Breda Netherlands Tel: +31 (0) 76 513 80 04

PFG Contract Brazil Rua Miguel Tierno, 55 São Paulo, Brazil Tel +55 11 7035 6585

PF Middle East Al Soor Street, Soor Tower, 24’th Floor, P.O. Box 5110, Safat 13052, Kuwait Tel: +965 668 39539

Casa Décor Private Ltd 1/50 Kamal Mansion (4th floor) Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba Mumbai 400005 India Tel: +91 22 6615 3300

Granada PFG Contract Spain Pantiane España sl Calle Torre de los 7 Suelos, 9 Local 2 18008 Granada Tel : +34 958 129195

London Frau UK 150 St.John Street London, EC1V4UD Tel: +44 (0) 774 833 8177

Meda Cassina S.p.A. Via Busnelli, 1 I-20821 Meda (MB) Italy Tel: +39 (0) 362 3721

Munich PFG Contract Germany Xmobil GmbH Miesbacher Straße 3 D-83703 Gmund Tel: +49 8022 66540

Paris Frau France 29 rue du Bac 75007 Paris Tel: +33 (0) 6 21 04 00 05

Tolentino Poltrona Frau S.p.A S.S. 77 KM 74,500 62029 Tolentino (MC) Italy Tel: +39 (0) 733 9091

Doha PF Qatar Office No.3, First Floor, Bldg. A, Salwa Showrooms, Al-Waab City P.O. Box 19687 Doha, Qatar Tel: +974 4491 6953


Poltrona Frau Stadium Seating collection