There’s No Place Like Home
New Randolph Tower City Apartments Melds History with Modern Day for Unique Design
Chicago, IL (April 2012) – Picture a classic building forged in the 20’s and now resurrected in 2012. This unique merging of two distinct eras is the theme Randolph Tower Development Company, LLC (“RTDC”) wanted to express when working with its architect and design team on the restoration of the historic landmark building at Randolph and Wells in Chicago’s Loop. Originally designed and constructed in 1929 under architect Karl Vitzhum, this terra cotta clad, Gothic Revival-style skyscraper on the National Register of Historic Places is being newly unveiled as the city’s premier luxury residential building, Randolph Tower City Apartments, with more than 300 residential units.
RTDC has employed a team of top design, architectural, and engineering consultants, led by Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture and Wiss, Janney, and Elstner Associates to preserve the building’s historic façade’s dramatic exterior while transforming the interior into a modern, urban, stylish home for city dwellers.
An iconic building in Chicago’s Loop for more than 80 years, the Gothic Revival-style skyscraper is undergoing a massive rehabilitation to achieve the new look, including the largest terra cotta restoration in the state. Of the building’s 95,000 terra cotta units, 80% were refurbished and reused, and over 14,000 new handmade pieces from Gladding McBean in California (one of three terra cotta manufacturers in the world) were incorporated.
Other unique design elements are also painstakingly being preserved during the restoration including the 45-story building’s prominent vertical silhouette, white terra cotta sheathing, fenestration, profusion of detailed Gothic ornament, polygonal top floor and pointed cap roof from the original 1920’s construction.
An Urban Sanctuary Replete with Modern Amenities
Inside the historic Randolph Tower lies a modern day domicile complete with state-of-the art finishes and luxury amenities. By using an eclectic variety of textures, patterns and bright colors in its interior design, RTDC’s design team maintains the historic flavor of the building while incorporating a sharp modern contrast.
“The design is in response to the developer’s desire to contrast new against old – to reinterpret the rich history of the building and juxtapose with a modern perspective,” explains architect Paul Alessandro.
The building’s boutique hotel-style lobby perfectly illustrates this concept. Using wallpaper depicting a photo mural of the Chicago skyline circa-1920, the lobby’s walls showcase the building’s past while a custom TV mounted on the wall broadcasts today’s news. Leading to the second floor is a glass staircase with famous buildings and their architects of the 1920’s etched into each step, furthering the nostalgic meets present day feel. To evoke a modern, layered finish, the lobby is furnished with a stark white Baroque-style sofa, playful yellow chairs, a salvaged wood coffee table, fireplace and white and black tiled columns to reflect the building’s original window patterns. Even grabbing coffee in the lobby at Randolph Tower is a one-of-a-kind experience with a snakeskin-clad coffee lounge with an upholstered cow hide wall.
The heart of the building is home to the residents of Randolph Tower with 312 apartments including nearly 40 custom floors plans and 26 spectacular penthouse units. Modern elevators in the high-rise building reveal a glimpse of 1920’s era Chicago with custom backdrops depicting the building’s original murals. All units boast premium finishes including hardwood floors, expansive 9-12 foot ceilings, granite countertops, granite portable islands, washers and dryers in unit, oversized walk-through closets and spacious baths complete with soaking tubs and rain showers.
Magnificent common areas continue the modern meets vintage vibe of the building including the refurbished grand ballroom with two-story floor to ceiling windows and restored terrazzo floors now transformed into a state-of-the-art, 24-hour fitness center. The building’s revered past is alluded to via framed artwork in the ballroom featuring the room’s original, intricate ceiling mural. Venture to the indoor swimming pool nearly 300 feet above street level; it’s surmounted by a skylight with adjacent outdoor terrace and hot tub complete with spa-like lounge furniture.
The newly designed Sky Club houses deluxe, state-of-the-art entertainment offerings for residents while maintaining the nod to the building’s history. Formerly home to the Steuben Club, the “see and be seen” private club of the roaring 20’s, the Sky Club delivers five-star amenities including a gourmet kitchen and bar area, private movie theater, gaming space and gas fireplaces.
Modern, edgy furnishings are resplendent in these leisure areas; the club room evokes a Gothic vibe replete with a custom black table with ball and claw foot and edged in leather with nail head, Queen Anne chairs in monochromatic tones, a reconstituted wood harvest table with matching stools and benches and salvaged marble counter tops from the building’s original lobby.
Randolph Tower began residential occupancy on March 2nd, 2012 and will continue delivery through November 2012, with the completion of the Sky Club and penthouse units (24th floor historic ballroom will be complete in July). For more information, visit RandolphTowerCityApartments.com.