Award-Winning Interior Design Firm Proves That Sustainable Design Can Be Luxurious

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Industry organizations recently honored Slifer Designs for excellence in sustainable design.

For several years, Slifer Designs of Vail, Colorado, has promoted the use of sustainable materials in luxurious interior design for high-end resort properties. And now, industry experts are taking note.

The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) recently awarded Slifer Designs with a coveted Gold Award for its interior design excellence for Truckee’s Old Greenwood Resort, a property that adheres to very strict environmental guidelines in construction and design. In addition, the American Society of Interior Design (ASID) Colorado Chapter recently honored Slifer Designs for excellence in sustainable design for the same property.

According to Rebecca Hollister, a designer for Slifer Designs and head of the company’s green design efforts, successful sustainable design requires more skills and training than many people might think.

“Environmentally responsible design depends on the entire team -- contractors, designers, engineers, and owners -- being committed and knowledgeable about the process and intricacies involved,” said Hollister. “The end result is a healthier interior and elevated light and air quality which lead to a better environment and increased efficiency for property owners and users.”

Slifer Designs is highly committed to developing expertise in sustainable design and encouraging clients to incorporate these practices into their homes and commercial properties.

“The building industry uses more energy than any other industry in the world, and has the most impact on the environment,” said Hollister. “It is important to Slifer Designs that we use our resources wisely and responsibly. By doing so, we are actually able to create more pleasing and healthy indoor spaces as sustainable design promotes overall health and well-being.”

Hollister suggests the following steps for going green:

  • Organize a Green Project Team: When selecting members of your build team, ask about their knowledge about sustainable design and prior experience. Using people that are certified and experienced in the processes will help assure a smoother and more successful project. Ask designers, builders and even engineers about certifications/accreditations they’ve earned in this critical area.
  • Outline the Project Goals: Is your main focus on light quality, the building's energy performance, reclaimed or renewable materials, nontoxic finishes, or all of the above and more? The United States Green Building Council's (USGBC) LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) ratings program provides standards for sustainable building, and an opportunity for certification of your building. Other guideline programs and third-party certifications also exist.
  • Do Your Homework: Research plays a crucial role in a successful sustainable building project. Many new products and resources have come onto the market in recent years, some more widely available than others. It is important to invest this extra time in the initial planning stages to see the maximum benefit upon completion of the project.

Slifer Designs’ commitment to sustainable design is a large part of the company’s culture and overall practice. To date, 18 employees serve on what is called the Slifer Designs “Green Team”. Several members of this team are working to earn accreditation from the USGBC's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program. In addition, they co-host public meetings on green building topics, and manage a database of green products which is a valuable resource for the company’s more than 25 full-time designers and architects. They also prepare and distribute press releases on newly-available green products.

Slifer Designs is currently creating sustainable designs for the Jackson Hole Golf and Tennis Club which is scheduled to open in 2006. For this project, they will be part of a team charged with tearing down an existing structure and reusing appropriate materials in the design and construction of the new facility, all in an effort to create a healthy, beautiful building while responsibly preserving resources and environmental interests.

About Slifer Designs:

Slifer Designs offers full-service interior design for residential and commercial properties throughout the U.S. Started in 1984 by Beth Slifer, the company has been ranked among the top three national interior design firms for the past seven years and consistently receives top industry awards for innovative design excellence. Beyond excellence in interior design services, the company provides interior architectural services and a retail showroom featuring furnishings and accessories from leading brands including Ralph Lauren, Mitchell Gold, Milling Road, Henredon, Drexel Heritage, and more. For more information or to view a portfolio, visit or call 970.926.8200.

Photo caption:

Slifer Designs of Vail, Colorado created sustainable interior design for Old Greenwood Pavilion and Pro Shop in Truckee, California which won numerous industry and peer awards. For a complete portfolio, visit

Photo courtesy of Slifer Designs; credit, Albert Lewis.


Carol Johnson



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Carol Johnson