christina sgambelluri

christina sgambelluri

Waterbury, CT, US


The Menagerie Infill Hotel

Located within downtown Middletown, an urban infill project provides a prime location to develop a new boutique hotel within a vacant lot approximately 40 feet wide and 170 feet deep. This infill project serves a unique programmatic pair:  a Balinese shadow puppet theatre for children and a boutique hotel. Main Street is characterized by its historic buildings and mixed-use occupancies and the Menagerie Hotel provides a cultural icon within the diverse neighborhood.

An aesthetic decision towards a contemporary interpretation of the historical neighborhood context yielded a building with an angled mass embracing Main Street clad in a modern modularized patina paneling. The hotel occupies the 3rd and 4th levels while the two lower levels create a public zone with lobbies, Balinese puppet theatre for children and a bar restaurant. Due to the buildings adjacent the hotel, careful placement of hotel rooms and public spaces to the front and rear sides was required to access sunlight. To yield additional sunlight access, just beyond the  two story lobby the building pulls away from the adjacent building opening up a sunlit facade to the interior of the site and a landscaped courtyard alley. On the second level of the hotel is a public bar which overlooks the lobby and opens up to the landscaped alley and terrace.

The building is intended to be iconic, as is its program.  Acknowledging the context of the infill site, the building addresses the scale and visual datum established by adjacent buildings through the panelized   fenestration and exterior cladding.  The rest of the building is clad in concrete panels.

The identity and secondary entrance of the shadow puppet theatre is most distinctive through the use of a perforated panel system one encounters throughout the confines of this structure. The hotel interior is elegant with high end furnishings, finishes and lighting with a clean modern aesthetic integrated with traditional Balinese textile patterns.  Bright hues of teal and green are softened and contrasted by the lustrous travertine floors throughout the building.  A clean modern interpretation of the context is expressed throughout the design while embracing an exotic-cultural flare unique to the area.  expressed throughout the design while embracing an exotic cultural flare unique to the area.

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Status: School Project
Location: middletown ct