Included in the redesign were five duplex suites, each with two-story windows. Part of the upgrade was to motorize the upper windows, which were treated with layered sheers under new, blackout-lined draperies. The goal for the suites' new window treatments was to eliminate long cords, add new prestige and luxury to the rooms in keeping with the hotel's image, yet keep the whole system simple enough for anyone to operate.
In keeping with the Swiss˘tel's worldly presence, a unique European color palette and interior design was created by Alexandra Champalimaud & Associates, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The project's general contractor was R.G. Construction, Chicago, IL.
To find a source for new draperies, the hotel headed west to Phoenix Draperies, International, Los Angeles, CA. All specifications were written to insure a quality installation, and included the Kirsch Ripplefold« system for all rooms included in the redesign and SM Automatic direct drive motors for the suites.
Ken Rose, co-owner of Phoenix Draperies and project manager, said he was particularly pleased with the specifications because of the ease of installation and compatibility of the products. "I've worked with SM Automatic long enough to be able to install its system with complete confidence," he said. "The Series 300 drapery motor literally plugs right into the end of a 94001 Kirsch Architrac« making it a very straight forward installation," Rose added.
The actual window treatment installation was complex, however, from the standpoint of creating a fully functional system to meet the design requirements and remain easy to use. The two upper windows in each suite were treated with center-draw draperies. Therefore, each window required four tracks and four motors -- two tracks and motors for the sheer undertreatment, and two tracks and motors for the layered draperies.
To make the entire system user-friendly, a complete set of wall switches was installed in each suite. The switches were located around a corner out of direct view, but within sight of the windows. Each switch plate controls a window with one set of switches for the sheers and one for the draperies. To further facilitate use, each switch was clearly marked: "Open," "Close" and "Stop."