Barry Sternlicht’s SH Group Unveils 1 Hotel Central Park

The Second Property For 1 Hotels Celebrates Nature in its Eco Conscious Design, Culture and Services

SH Group, the hotel brand management arm of the Starwood Capital Group, announced today the opening of 1 Hotel Central Park, the second property for the recently launched 1 Hotels, and the first in New York City.  Known for his innovations in hospitality services throughout his career, SH group CEO and Chairman Barry Sternlicht developed the brand with goals of truly upending the world of hospitality through a socially and environmentally conscious platform in celebration of the beauty and preservation of nature.  1 Hotels is endeavoring to transform the typical experience of luxury hospitality into something meaningful and impactful that leaves guests feeling good. A true homage to internationally-renown Central Park with its ivy-covered facade, the hotel offers quiet respite from busy New York life for visitors and the community. (Rates begin at $499 and reservations may be

1 Hotel Central Park logo (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

1 Hotel Central Park logo (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

made at 1hotels.com or by calling 1.877.288.1111.)

After over 20 years in the hospitality business, said Sternlicht, “I have come to realize that true luxury is not derived from extravagance, but from recognizing the simple, abundant natural beauty that surrounds us. The thrill of watching ocean waves, the taste of a shared picnic lunch, a deep and restful sleep- powerful gestures that anchor us to what’s real, and that honor our relationship with the world and each other. I wanted to capture the beauty of nature in a hotel and in doing so, commit to safeguarding it as best I can, a responsibility that I believe we all share. It’s 1 world. 1 Hotels [is] not a brand, we are a cause. A cause built off a simple idea: the world around us is beautiful and we want to keep it that way. We’ve designed our hotel and products to highlight the startling beauty of nature, fusing luxury with responsibility to create refreshing experiences. At 1, you’ll find open spaces bathed in natural light, food made with the freshest organic ingredients, and recycled and reclaimed wood and materials.”

In staying true to Sternlicht’s vision, 1 Hotels took great care to assemble a team of professionals and partners that share the brand’s natural ethos. Led by internal design team of Kemper Hyers, SH Group tapped popular New York-based AvroKO to design the hotel and restaurant, Damian Harris of Harrison Green for landscape design, AgroSci to create the hotel’s three-story exterior green wall, and Sprout Home provides green touches throughout the hotel, including Brooklyn Glass terrariums in guest rooms. Chef Jonathan Waxman is at the helm of the signature restaurant, Jams, as well as room service and on-site catering.

He continued, “By focusing on simple things that make life better, we’re introducing a new way to experience luxury living. But 1 is more than a hotel – it’s a philosophy and a platform for change. We’re focused on minimizing our footprint and supporting organizations who care about the same things we do – sustainability, the environment, and local communities. We’re learning as we go because this is a journey and we know we don’t have all the answers. We’re starting by asking the right questions and posing our solutions. Thank you for joining us on this journey. Be joyful. Be inspired. Be bold. And most of all, be at 1 with yourself. I believe this hotel fills a void in the market and offers guests simply something they haven’t seen before. I’m proud to debut this mission-driven brand in New York City with 1 Hotel Central Park and look forward to delivering guests the best design, service, and amenities just 100 steps south of Central Park

A natural haven in the middle of Manhattan, 1 Hotel Central Park stands one block south from New York City’s largest green space, at the corner of 58th Street and Sixth Avenue. Set in an 18-story building, the hotel offers 229 guest rooms and suites; Jams, a 100-seat restaurant and bar from Chef Jonathan Waxman; communal work/meeting/private dining space; a 24-hour fitness center; and a three-story exterior living green wall, among additional features.

At 1 Hotel Central Park, ingredients come first. Celebrated chef Jonathan Waxman helms the hotel’s signature restaurant Jams, a modern recreation of the restaurant that first made his mark on the New York culinary scene. An open kitchen drives the energy of the room for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. Set to open in late August, the 100-seat restaurant and bar offers local and seasonal cuisine featuring market-fresh, local and organic ingredients and purveyors. Napa-style paned windows overlook the bustling Sixth Avenue and quieter 58th street. The design highlights exposed brick, exposed mechanicals in the ceiling, natural light, reclaimed oak, a quarry stone bar floor, and a soap stone bar top, all of which are accented by a plum-colored palette.

Doors made of 16,000 fallen twigs welcome guests to 1 Hotel Central Park. Photo Credit Eric Laignel (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

Doors made of 16,000 fallen twigs welcome guests to 1 Hotel Central Park. Photo Credit Eric Laignel (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

Using the building’s original industrial architecture as a reference point, the design brings the outside in to feature the raw beauty and imperfections of natural materials. Source origin materials including woods, bricks, marble, stone and glass from local suppliers are blended with original riveted steel beams and concrete ceilings.

16,000 fallen twigs artfully embedded into two large steel doors welcome guests to the hotel, greeting them with nature from the moment they arrive. On every floor, unique artistic renditions of the floor numbers are revealed as the elevator doors open; each number is represented in a different design using re-purposed materials, such as penny nails or acorns. Preserved moss fills hallway niches.

1 Hotel Central Park City King Room. Photo Credit Eric Laignel. (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

1 Hotel Central Park City King Room. Photo Credit Eric Laignel. (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

Guest rooms boast striking furniture made by local craftsmen, offset by a color palette of warm, neutral colors and accents of blues and creams.  Select rooms feature reclaimed wooden timbers and window seats that extend from the building, allowing guests to perch above Manhattan streets, creating cozy corners for reading and daydreaming.  Bathrooms are beautifully rendered in tactile natural materials such as Breccia Capraia marble, mushroom wood, concrete tiles and reclaimed brick with rustic copper fixtures and glass-enclosed Napa-style paned walk-in showers reminiscent of indoor greenhouses. Furnishings and infrastructure elements will adhere to green building and LEED standards.

1 Hotel Central Park, Park King Room. Photo Credit Eric Laignel. (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

1 Hotel Central Park, Park King Room. Photo Credit Eric Laignel. (PRNewsFoto/SH Group)

Landscape design by Damien Harrison‘s Harrison Green creates lush “green moments” thoughtfully placed around the hotel while AgroSci and its forward-thinking technology maintain the three-story living wall on the building’s exterior made of individually potted English Ivy plants. Brooklyn-based Sprout Home creates terrariums for each guest room, housed within uniquely shaped recycled studio glass from Brooklyn Glass.
The hotel
‘s 229 guest room portfolio includes 206 rooms (Alc0ve King. Alcove Queen, Park King, Studio King, City King and City Two Beds), 22 suites (Park Suite, Alcove Jr. Suite, City Suite) and 1 Greenhouse Suite. Each room is equipped with Triple Clear Water filters in all taps, sinks and showers; state-of-the-art, energy-efficient heating and cooling systems; natural Keetsa hemp-blend mattresses; natural cotton towels, robes, socks, and linens; yoga mats for use with in-room programming; custom 1 Hotels products featuring naturally-derived ingredients with crisp, fresh scents of nature; and Eco-friendly cleaning solvents. In addition, guests are provided with a Goodie Bag on arrival filled with seasonally inspired snacks curated by Chef Jonathan Waxman.

A paperless approach to the guest experience includes electronic check-in, bedside chalkboards in lieu of notepads, and an in-room Nexus device pre-loaded with newspapers, magazines, and the  1 Guide, the 1 Hotels app to control all aspects of the room, from television to communications and temperature. Complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi is provided along with concierge services, 24-hour in-room dining, access to a Tesla premium electric vehicle rides within a 15-block radius, complimentary valet for all electric vehicles for overnight guests, and complimentary bicycle valet parking.

A communal space on the second floor is available for guests to work or relax and enjoy a drink from Jams. Five private rooms are available for more formalized gatherings, meetings or private dining, accommodating groups of nine to 130. These rooms feature floor-to-ceiling windows showcasing natural light, millwork décor, individual sound systems, 55″ TVs, the latest technology for business needs, and interactive surfaces. Three of the rooms may be combined to form one large 600-square-foot space called the Great Lawn. Guests also have access to The Hive, a business area featuring two e-kiosks equipped with an iPad and printer.

Guest will have 24-hour access to the Field House, a fitness center on the second floor featuring the latest fitness accessories and equipment with modern technology and self-powered machines such as Peloton Cycles, resistance treadmills and rowers, kettlebells, weighted exercise balls and more. The Field House overlooks 58th Street, is flooded with natural light and highlights a floor reclaimed from the University of Wisconsin basketball court. Guests will be able to schedule personal training sessions in Central Park with the hotel’s partners at Spartan Fitness, tapping into their innovative approach to health and wellness.

It is sometimes said that ‘green’ design and luxury cannot co-exist. We were excited to take on that stereotype and attempt to disrupt the thinking about environmentally-conscious venues [at 1 Hotel Central Park],” said Greg Bradshaw, one of the principals at AvroKO.  “The natural and local materials emerged as the heart of the design allowing us to celebrate and enhance their inherent richness with minimal touches including a warm color palette and atmospheric lighting.  Our goal was to leave the space feeling somewhat unadorned so the materials and core of the space could speak for itself.

1 Hotel Central Park follows the March 2015 opening of 1 Hotel South Beach and will soon be joined by 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge Park in 2016.

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“MATANA ROBERTS: I CALL AMERICA” AT THE WHITNEY MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART

As part of The Whitney Museum of American Art‘s Performance Program, Chicago–born, New York City–based sound experimentalist Matana Roberts is currently engaging in a series of open-ended public explorations within the Whitney’s galleries and performance spaces, now through August 9th, as part of an extended research residency. These actions will culminate in the creation of a large-scale project that, for her, questions the perplexities of what it means to be American in the twenty-first century. She has titled this series of research-based sound excavations: i call america, building off of the Whitney’s inaugural exhibition America Is Hard to See.

Matana Roberts, 2014. Photograph © Paula Court

Matana Roberts, 2014. Photograph © Paula Court

Beginning with a live improvisation on June 4, which engaged No Title (1969) by Eva Hesse as part of the 99 Objects series, Roberts revisited the Whitney’s galleries on July 19 for three focused, improvisatory happenings. Over the course of a five-day open studio residency in the theater, Roberts will explore and experiment with new material combining sound, video, and visual scores that culminate in a final project this winter.

An internationally renowned composer, band leader, saxophonist, sound experimentalist and

2013 photo by Jason Fulford

2013 photo by Jason Fulford

mixed-media practitioner; the New York City- based Roberts holds two degrees in music performance and works in many contexts and mediums, including improvisation, dance, poetry, and theater. Her innovative work has forged new conceptual approaches to considering narrativity, history, and political expression within improvisatory structures. past member of the BRC: Black Rock Coalition and the AACM: Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians.

Born in Chicago, Illinois, Roberts was raised on the city’s South Side and studied classical clarinet during her youth. She formed a trio, Sticks and Stones, with bassist Josh Abrams and drummer Chad Taylor, with whom she regularly performed at the Velvet Lounge. In 2002, Roberts moved to New York, initially busking in subways and publishing a zine, Fat Ragged, about her experiences.

Roberts is the composer of Coin Coin, a multi-chapter musical work-in-progress (now three chapters in) exploring themes of history, memory and ancestry. Roberts has also performed at the London Jazz Festival in 2007 and through Central Control, released The Chicago Project in 2008. The album, produced by Vijay Iyer, includes performances by members of Prefuse 73 and Tortoise along with AACM saxophonist Fred Anderson.

In January 2010, Roberts was the guest curator at The Stone (a not-for-profit experimental music performance space, founded in April 2005 by John Zorn who serves as its artistic director, located in the Alphabet City neighborhood in New York City). Roberts has been chosen by Jeff Mangum of Neutral Milk Hotel to perform at the All Tomorrow’s Parties festival that he curated in March 2012 in Minehead, England. Roberts received a 2013 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award. In addition, Roberts was a recipient of both the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts and the Doris Duke Impact Award in 2014.

She will be taking her highly acclaimed Coin Coin Chapter Three: river run thee project (listen to sample here) to European venues in solo performance this October 6-20, with stops in London, Madrid, Budapest, Vienna, Berlin, Copenhagen, Malmo (SE), Aarhus (DK) and Barreiro (PT). Roberts will combine voice, saxophone, field recordings, sampling and effects – along with archival video montage of her own creation – to convey her self-described “fever dream” of Coin Coin Chapter Three.

Say Roberts,”Coin Coin Chapter Three: river run thee signals yet another highly adventurous and socially engaged definition of what Jazz can mean in this day and age, and a fascinating extension of the Coin Coin cycle, where rather than surfacing and reactivating through the group dynamics of a musical ensemble, history is inhaled and exhaled through a solitary practice seeking to evoke and echo its tangled thicket of febrile strands.” At once intimate, raw, abstract, historiographic, literal, poetic and profoundly human, these performances defy genre and are not to be missed.

Pitchfork magazine wrote: “Something of a one-woman opera, these 12 tracks plow through harsh noise passages and spring into sudden refrains, drift through halcyon field recordings and float through harrowing spoken-word passages… Late into ‘river run thee’, during one of the album’s more placid moments, Roberts declares, “I like to tell stories.” The admission might suggest an easy key to the world that Roberts is building with COIN COIN. But it seems too reductive, really, not unlike calling her a mere musician. She collects stories, analyzes them, and then transmogrifies them, aggregating bits of material until anecdotes become open-ended, elliptical histories. Roberts knows that any story, just like jazz, is only an initial approach to something much more broad and important. Three albums into COIN COIN, it’s now clear that Roberts isn’t just a storyteller, musician, ethnographer, historian, bandleader, arranger, improviser, or activist. She plays all of those roles, yes; collectively, they power one of the most provocative ongoing bodies of work by any American musician.

Matana Roberts: i call america is organized by Jay Sanders, Curator and Curator of Performance, and Greta Hartenstein, Curatorial Assistant. Visitors are welcome during Museum hours. Walk-ins are welcome. Please note: On Saturday, August 8, the galleries close at 6 pm for Member Night; members are welcome after 6 pm. (Major support for the Whitney’s Performance Program is provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Generous support is also provided by the Performance Committee of the Whitney Museum of American Art.)