Charleston, South Carolina, is domestically known for its history and culture, famed restaurants, and inns. But The Ryder, a newly opened property, exudes a vision different from the traditional city scene. By Cortney Bishop Design, The Ryder’s hospitality experience is both vibrant and soft at the same time, bringing a new energy to the area. The 91 guestrooms and suites have a bohemian style, with custom furnishing, floor-to-ceiling windows, and balconies overlooking the pool deck and courtyard. Robyn Hines, complex general manager of The Ryder and Hotel Bella Grace, says, “The atmosphere of the hotel carries a fresh and playful energy throughout each space with many social areas such as our lively lobby café, vintage-inspired lounge on the mezzanine floor, and, of course, our signature poolside restaurant, Little Palm.”
As a focal point for The Ryder, Little Palm is “a genuine and inclusive experience where guests can nurture meaningful connections and embrace their fun-loving, free-spirited side.” Little Palm is essentially an intimate poolside restaurant with a cocktail program that focuses on classic drinks with tropical, breezy additions. Seasonal ingredients blend with the drinks offered at both Little Palm and Death & Co, another food and beverage outlet—both by Gin & Luck. Additionally, a lobby bar and café serves food and beverage day and night. The design of the space—while simple—packs a punch for Charleston, and Cortney Bishop, principal and owner of Cortney Bishop Designs, says, “The property radiates approachability and a design ethos founded on relaxation, ease, and an all-around good time.”
Like the minimal use of patterns in the guestrooms, Bishop says that a variety of patterns were used to “evoke a spirited and playful energy” throughout the guestrooms and public spaces. “We played with patterns in these spaces and designed the rooms to feel more organic, relaxed, and calm. It’s that yin-and-yang of energy that we want guests to feel.”
The Ryder’s vision is to bring a new sense of energy to Charleston while capturing its coastal feel. Bishop collaborated with sculptor Katie Gong to curate the headboards. “The wooden sculpture emulates our waterfront lamdscape and the vibrant sun,” Bishop says. “The sculpture also rings home The Ryder’s larger philanthropic message of water conservation.”
“Calming, coastal photography by artist Ron Royals is featured in each guestroom, while retro-bohemian photography by artist Nico Gullis is showcased throughout The Ryder’s lobby, mezzanine, and hallways,” Bishop says. This drives the juxtaposition between the vibrant social areas and the guestrooms, which offer more of an escape.
Connection to the Planet
“The Ryder’s rooms incorporate natural earth tones and hues derived from the local landscape—in both the materials and furniture. The organic color palette is highlighted by a flood of natural light in the rooms. The decision to go with both light flooring and furniture allowed even the smallest of rooms to feel more open and airy,” Bishop adds.