The Watergate Hotel
Design of Public Areas
Client: Euro Capital Properties NYC
Executive Architect: BBG BBGM
Originally built by the Italian Architect Luigi Moretti between 1960-65, the Watergate Hotel is a major component in an mixed-use self-contained complex which include apartment buildings, offices, extensive commercial facilities, and the hotel itself. It is the only example of Moretti’s work in the US, and is listed as a national monument. The complex was made famous following the ‘Watergate’ political scandal, which led to the resignation of US President Richard Nixon in 1974, and lent the suffix ‘-Gate’ to numerous scandals since.
The public spaces designed by the studio are arranged over the ground and lower ground floors, and encompass the entrance foyer and hotel lobby, a reimagining of the whisky bar, casual and fine dining restaurants and hotel bar, main elevator lobby, and external dining terrace.
The design balances Moretti’s original sensibilities, and adds a rich palette of patinated metals to the existing marble and plaster. Sinuous motifs are expressed continuously through innovative use of bent metal, layered woodwork and subtle texturing of stone surfaces, and complemented by custom-designed furniture, upholstery and rugs. The Studio is also in charge of the hotel’s typography and signage design.