Hostmark of Schaumberg, IL names J/Brice Design International for Amalfi Hotel - Chicago Makeover

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The Amalfi is the latest of several Hostmark contracts awarded to design firm founded by Jeffrey Ornstein in Boston over 20 years ago. The bold and inventive style J/Brice is creating is beginning to set the benchmark for future developments it is working on in Qatar, Bahrain, The Saudi Kingdom and the region's newest hot spot, Zanzibar. Says Ornstein, "To reinforce the Amalfi experience branding, we put the guest at center stage. This gives the space pizzazz - energy and excitement. It's akin to the high energy of a fashion show by a leading New York or Paris couturier."

J/Brice Design International will draw from the themes and colors Italy's famed Amalfi Coast resort to create new interiors for the luxurious Amalfi Hotel-Chicago, managed by Hostmark Hospitality Group headquartered in Schaumburg, IL.

Hostmark (http://www.hostmark.com) created the Amalfi Hotel brand in the heart of Chicago to deliver attitude, style and a sense of confidence to every guest, and to fill a void as the contemporary luxury boutique property. According to Hostmark, J/Brice was selected for the Amalfi project because of the firm's substantial international experience with five-star-plus resort and urban hotels, its ability to source unique custom materials and furnishings globally and its reputation for creating spaces that exceed the expectations of the most discriminating guest.

The Amalfi is the latest of several contracts Hostmark has awarded to Boston-based J/Brice Design to renovate properties under its management. In addition to the Amalfi, Hostmark selected J/Brice to renovate Chicago's Holiday Inn Mart Plaza, Wyndham Boston Andover Hotel, Doubletree Tampa and significant portions of the interiors of the RMS Queen Mary, permanently berthed in Long Beach, CA and easily the most romantic "hotel" in North America.

Mediterranean Impressions J/Brice Design (http://www.jbricedesign.com) founder and CEO Jeffrey Ornstein notes, "Our goal is to reinforce the Amalfi brand by drawing inspiration from the deep blue Mediterranean waters of Italy's in resort. Our lobby treatment, for example, will feature a wavy wall in a metallic taupe color that will that will complement the bright orange and red hues that are integral to Amalfi brand's graphic identity. The new lobby will also feature a water wall inset into acobalt blue Venetian plaster backdrop to reinforce the Mediterranean resort theme and serve as a focal point in the space. The foyer floor will be completed in cobalt blue Bisazza stone to underscore the impression of an Amalfi coast oasis in the heart of Chicago."

To foster a relationship experience for its guests, Hostmark has eliminated the formidable high front desks, that are about as welcoming as a judge's bench. The renovation will include remaking the front desks - which are at normal seating height - with top surfaces in cream colored stone imbedded with luminescent mother-of-pearl-chips. The front surfaces of the desks will be completed in white frosted glass with chrome reveals.

Plans also call for a backlit etched-glass frieze of the Amalfi Coast in the lobby corridor. Fabrics will include Bergamo textiles with a wave pattern punctuated with metallic blue leathers. Custom fixtures are by LBL Lighting imported from Italy. J/Brice will redesign and renovate the business center with generous seating, granite countertops and other contemporary elements as well.

The 215 guestrooms and suites will also get a makeover that includes plush new club chairs, plus decorative pillows and throws on beds, sofas and lounges. Fabrics by Panaz with an octagon motif will be featured.

The Amalfi Experience Hostmark has focused on experience in its branding of Amalfi and strives to deliver "an experience that will forever change the very idea of what a hotel should be." To underscore its positioning as a different kind of hotel, Hostmark renamed traditional service roles. The doormen are Impressionists and the concierge is referred to as the experience designer, who not only finds hard-to-get tickets but also develops a relationship with guests by anticipating their needs.

According to Robert Cataldo, President and COO of Hostmark, "We intentionally created the Amalfi brand to serve an exacting market niche of discerning travelers who expect a higher level of service, amenities and accommodations. Our target markets are top-level business executives visiting Chicago, as well as weekend pleasure travelers seeking a sophisticated urban getaway."

He adds. "We look to J/Brice to enhance the synergy that already exists between the Amalfi Hotel and The River North location with its gourmet restaurants, abundant nightlife, art galleries and trendy boutiques."

Says Ornstein, "To reinforce the Amalfi experience branding, we put the guest at center stage. This gives the space pizzazz - energy and excitement. It's akin to the high energy of a fashion show by a leading New York or Paris couturier.

"When completed, the space will excite all the senses - sight, by infusing it with unexpected yet harmonious hues, hearing, with the sound of the water wall,taste and smell with the aroma of gourmet food and perfect cocktails, touch with the textures of distinctive fabrics, stone, glass and leather. When you add in the beat of Chicago's business and social life, the environment supports the staff's goal of delivering an experience that remains in the heart of with every guest and brings them back to the Amalfi."

J/Brice Design International, Inc., Boston, MA (http://www.jbricedesign.com) was founded 20 years ago by Jeffrey Brice Ornstein CEO. J/Brice Design is a Certified Interior Design and Architectural Giant, and one of the top ten fastest growing design firms nationwide. Its award-winning, designers have over 200 hotel and restaurant projects to its credit, as well as a diverse portfolio of corporate and residential interiors. Its international experience lends diversity to its design with respect to regional, cultural, operational and budgetary parameters.

J/Brice Design is a preferred design group for Hilton/Doubletree Hotels including its Full-Service, Corporate and Franchise properties, Marriott International/Renaissance Hotels, Intercontinental Hotel Group, and Starwood - Including Sheraton, Westin, W, and 4-Points. In addition to contracts with FAEC in Saudi Arabia and Hotel Khalifa, in Doha, Qatar, international credentials include TAJ Hotels headquartered In Mumbai and the Al Khaleej Palace and Admiral Plaza in Dubai, UAE. The bold and inventive style J/Brice is creating is beginning to set the benchmark for future developments it is working on in Qatar, Bahrain, The Saudi Kingdom and the region's newest hot spot, Zanzibar.

Hostmark Hospitality Group (http://www.hostmark.com) is a leading hospitality management firm operating upscale full-service hotels, resorts and focused service hotels worldwide. Hostmark Hospitality Group is an award-winning operator of Marriott, Hilton, Intercontinental Hotels Group, Starwood and Wyndham Hotels. Under consistent leadership spanning more than four decades, Hostmark Hospitality Group launched its own boutique concept Amalfi (http://www.amalfihotelchicago.com), as well as other luxury independent hotels and resorts. Hostmark Hospitality Group has a proven long-standing reputation for performance-driven results through superior operating and asset management.

Hostmark Hospitality Group Contact: BrianTkac, Vice President 847-517-9100 btkac@hostmark.com

Editorial Contact: Dick Pirozzolo at 781-235-9911

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