New York-based designer Mark Zeff and his team are leading interior design efforts for Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants’ hotly anticipated property – Hotel Van Zandt in Austin, Texas.
The project, which will include both hotel and restaurant design, is Zeff’s first in the Lone Star State. The hotel’s name is loosely drawn from its historic Texas muse, Isaac Van Zandt, The Republic of Texas Ambassador to the U.S., as well as his third great-grandson, Townes Van Zandt, who left his mark on Texas music history with his emotionally charged songs that have inspired a generation of musicians.
Hotel Van Zandt is situated in city’s Rainey Street Historic District and slated to open late summer 2015. The hotel intends to make its mark on the city’s acclaimed art and design scene with highly stylized and customized décor and furnishings. The hotel will embody Kimpton’s mission to deliver a localized experience overlaid with their signature bold, contemporary style. Zeff and his team are committed to delivering a dynamic mix between elegance and edginess which will take inspiration from Austin’s world renowned music scene. Music and artistic expression are the heartbeat of Austin and Hotel Van Zandt will most definitely reflect this ethos with hopes to serve as a muse in and of itself.
Tapping into their many reconnaissance trips Austin and its surroundings, Zeff’s team have been working diligently in capturing the essence of Texas culture. Zeff describes the inspiration of the hotel as more than just “urban cowboys,” but rather a culture with “a great history of elegance and Texas gentry,” all the while keeping a refreshingly honest and edgy grittiness that’s synonymous with the state capital. Design efforts steer away from kitschy and stereotypical state details, instead opting for classic and high-quality materials and taking inspiration from the surrounding Texas Hill Country, including specially handpicked items found at some of the area’s best antiques vendors. Collectively, these items bring to life a Texas journey clothed in understated comfort and patina within Hotel Van Zandt.
Art is an integral part of Austin and equally important to the creative free-spirit of the hotel. The property will feature thoughtfully curated pieces including installations of birds made out of vintage records and specially-commissioned works in collaboration with the Van Zandt family. Townes Van Zandt’s son, JT, will be contributing a special piece to the hotel.
Mark Zeff blends interior and environmental design with brand development to create experiences that inspire and stimulate the senses. Zeff’s hotel design projects include: the upcoming Virgin Hotel in Nashville, The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Aquila Resort in Guanacaste, Costa Rica, as well as other Kimpton properties such as The Commoner restaurant at Hotel Monaco in Pittsburgh and upcoming projects in Grand Cayman.