The city of Santa Monica describes herself as a diverse, progressive beach community. That said; what better place for a hotel that is progressive in its use of stainless steel in surpassing Silver LEED certification and approaching Gold status. This sustainable, boutique hotel is located where the ocean meets the city on famed Ocean Avenue in the heart of Santa Monica.
The vision of Shore Hotel blends the local natural landscape and vibrant urban life while taking in the beauty of the sea and embracing the pedestrian activities of the area. Just blocks from the Santa Monica Pier, located on the ocean front and with a strong retail presence at the back of the hotel, the Shore Hotel boasts an urban parlor and garden with a large trellis and distinct water feature that enhances what Santa Monica offers. The proximity of the ocean creates a natural foil for the new hotel.
The story begins with a worn Travelodge and the faded Pacific Sands and what evolved is Shore Hotel. The hotels are owned by a family business led by Jon Farzam and his partners who explained that Shore Hotel has been seven years in the making. Farzam and his associates led feasibility studies, participated in city planning and gained city council approval—all before breaking ground in January 2010; top out occurred February 11, 2011. Gensler, Santa Monica was selected as the lead architect for the luxury hotel.
The Farzam family saw this as an opportunity to embrace sustainability and after considering zinc and aluminum (requires upkeep which interrupts service when costly maintenance is required) stainless steel was selected. It was the obvious choice because of the availability of the marine grade, it acts as a radiant heat barrier (reduces heating and cooling costs) and requires minimal maintenance.
Shore Hotel used Contrarian Metal Resources’ InvariMatte® stainless steel for the envelope to form a handsome reflective façade that changes with the weather from the azure of the ocean to the gunmetal of grey skies. The InvariMatte shingles are 1 x 3 ft. and form an interlocking pattern that was installed on a 30 degree angle. The system requires tie-ins from the vertical wall to the soffit. No fasteners are exposed, offering a sleek hemlock system. “The simple use of InvariMatte stainless steel as a cladding element has created a permanent upscale appearance at a relatively reasonable cost,” explained Jim Halliday, President of Contrarian Metal Resources. Shore Hotel used 28,000 sq. ft. of panels to complete the roof/wall/etc.
The hotel style is California Modern; there is a continuous flow of the environment from the ocean to the hotel, with the urban living room overlooking the Pacific. LED lighting is used to illuminate the space; the walls are sandstone, a clean wavy grey color that mirrors sand to reflect the beach environment. This stunning use of space with the ocean as a foil was recognized as the Best Architectural Hospitality Building under construction for 2011 by the Los Angeles Business Council.
The other building of Shore Hotel faces Second Street and the two hotel areas are separated by a small narrow street. Both areas are minutes away from the Santa Monica Pier. Design placement of the entrances that link the two are opposite one another to ease flow from one building to the other. In addition there is a three-level sky walk connecting the two buildings.