New York, NY
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Founded in 2002 by Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch, Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors is a comprehensive design firm based in New York City.
Having worked together for almost two decades, Standefer and Alesch have forged an uncanny ability to create projects that consistently find the tension between spontaneity and rigor, refinement and rebellion, high and low, and past and future. Without boundaries or borders, Roman and Williams employs a range of ideas, materials, objects, and references - from the unexpected to the pedigreed to the mundane - and, through the lens of their own singular viewpoint, create alchemy. They explain, "We put seemingly disparate objects together and allow them to simmer to see if we can raise the temperature of a space. Our work communicates that voltage between time periods, cultures, and styles." Never limited by what they designed last, Roman and Williams aesthetic is constantly shifting and evolving, reflecting the diverse interests and profound curiosities of the firm's principals.
The result is an oeuvre of instant classics - projects that transcend architecture and interiors and rise to the level of cultural polemics. From The Breslin, a gritty interpretation of pub architecture, to the Standard's uber-glamorous 18th Floor Club, Roman and Williams' work consistently cuts a channel between history and today, weight and light, and gravity and articulation, all the while tapping into some cultural collective memory.
Among the firm's completed and current projects are: the renovation of the iconic Royalton Hotel, the Standard Hotel for hotelier Andre Balazs - including the Standard Grill and the 18th Floor Club - and the new Ace Hotel - including The Breslin restaurant and Stumptown Coffee Shop - all in New York City. 211 Elizabeth Street, the firm's first ground-up building at the corner of Prince and Elizabeth Streets in NoLiTa is a building of such weight and craftsmanship that Manhattan Magazine wrote "Most passersby will think the building has always been there. And Roman and Williams built it as if it always will be." Residential projects, which Roman and Williams undertakes with the same sense of totality and holism as it does all of its projects, remain a priority. From the architecture to the interiors to the decoration, Roman and Williams has designed major residential projects in New York and Los Angeles, many for important Hollywood celebrities. In addition, the firm recently completed the renovation and expansion of one of Frank Lloyd Wright's important Usonian houses.
New projects currently on the boards include a second new building - a hotel tower - on 57th Street, two prominent new restaurants, the firm's first retail store, which is part of the rebranding of a major American footwear brand, and several product and furniture lines.