WASHINGTON—The opening this past week of the Trump International Hotel, formerly DC’s iconic Old Post Office, is showcasing the design work of Hirsch Bedner Associates (HBA).
Working alongside Ivanka Trump, EVP/development and acquisitions for The Trump Organization, HBA Associate Betsy Hughes and her team restored the building, creating a 263-room, luxury hotel.
“The grandeur of this classic European-style hotel is unmistakable and working on a project of this magnitude with this marque was an honor and career highlight; I cannot overstate the importance of this building,” said Hughes. “This project was deeply personal for the owners, spearheaded by Ivanka Trump and managed by VP/interior design Gia Sullivan, every decision was weighed carefully and every opinion was considered. It was a much more thoughtful way to explore a design than I had ever experienced and a tremendous investment of time and resources to perfect the aesthetic and restoration worthy of a building of this stature.”
Located between the Capitol Building and The White House, the 118-year-old property features a clock tower, columns, archways and historic metal truss-work that spans the lobby. Granite arches sit a half-floor above street level, leading to an open space with high ceilings, broad corridors and a structured interior in the center of the property. The lobby, which faces the clock tower, reception and bar, opens to a nine-story atrium with glass skylights.
Of the 263 guestrooms, seven were created within attic space that features large skylights. The former postmaster’s offices were converted into four luxury suites, with the largest featuring restored wood-stained paneling, a fireplace and a reading nook in a turret. One suite is in the clock tower and features a large arched window that HBA designers created a mezzanine around to keep from blocking the window. The Trump Townhouse suite features multiple stories and a private entrance from Pennsylvania Ave.
The European-style suites feature a color palette of creams, silvers and soft blues, with pops of red and signature gold-leaf trim along with crystal chandeliers and a canopy bed.
Each guestroom features a layout with distinct features: arched windows on the upper floors offer views of the Capitol Building and Washington Monument, while historic columns were found, restored and incorporated. Turrets, eaves, dormer windows and skylights are showcased within several guestrooms.
Canvas Art Consultants, the art consultancy division of HBA, worked in tandem with the HBA interior design team and The Trump Organization to develop a guestroom and corridor art program that makes reference to various aspects of Washington and the Old Post Office.
Two function rooms with high ceilings, original millwork and stained-wood floors are found in the main building. In the Lincoln Library, velvet drapes and Empire-style bronze pendants are featured, while the second space features painted millwork, cream silk draperies and crystal chandeliers.
Illuminate Lighting Design, the architectural lighting firm of HBA, provided lighting design for the public areas, including the Congressional Bells Museum and hotel restaurant BLT Prime by David Burke.