BOISE, IDAHO—Officials of The Cornerstone Collective recently announced a record year of growth as it continues to expand further into the hospitality space. This year’s highlights include two completed hotel openings, two completed hotel renovations, as well as providing design and procurement services for an additional four hotels. While multiple hotel development projects were delayed, Cornerstone also signed six new design projects. Additionally, Cornerstone launched new initiatives and rebranded itself to meet the demands of the industry in the pandemic.
“To say 2020 brought with it a number of surprises and challenges likely is the understatement of a lifetime,” said Suzie Hall, founder and president, The Cornerstone Collective. “However, we have been able to work with hoteliers throughout the pandemic, resulting in both completed projects and often a new way of approaching our business in light of guest health and safety concerns. While COVID-19 has impacted the way people travel, it also has provided the industry with a brief ‘time out’ to review processes and procedures to make sure owner and guest demands are being met. We have streamlined our services to complete projects as quickly and cost-effectively as possible under the circumstances.”
Cornerstone opened the 111-room Residence Inn Scottsdale Salt River at 5351 N. Pima Road in Arizona in February of this year. The firm was tasked by ownership, Salt River Devco, to enhance the Salt River Pima – Maricopa Indian Community’s assets with the ground-up development hotel. The Residence Inn features many custom design elements and FF&E throughout the property, including a custom “bird” ceiling treatment that mirrors a similar installation in the owner’s sister Courtyard by Marriott hotel next door. A river motif was designed as a symbol of the Salt River, flowing between the two hotels. A dynamic, geometric wallcovering adds just the right touch throughout the guestroom corridors. Following completion of the project, Cornerstone hosted a unique, virtual media tour to show off the asset.
The Collective also opened the 142-room AC Marriott Santa Rosa, Calif. Located at 300 Davis St., the modular project features a site-built ground floor with retail space and a restaurant. Cornerstone was contracted by Guerdon, LLC, to provide guestroom design and oversee procurement.
The 102-room Hilton Garden Inn – Seattle North/Everett, located at 8401 Paine Field Blvd. in Mukilteo, Wash., underwent a complete interior design, FF&E selections, and procurement for the public spaces. Cornerstone also provided interior renovation, interior design, and construction management for the 74-room Sleep Inn – Billings at 4904 Southgate Dr. in Montana.
Design and Procurement Services
Cornerstone provided design and procurement services for the following in 2020: the Gordon Hotel at 555 Oak St. in Eugene, Ore., received FF&E procurement and is expected to open in Q1 2021, and Cornerstone also oversaw the procurement of FF&E for the Gordon Lofts at 500 Pearl St. in Eugene, Ore., which opened in Q4 2020; the Home2 Suites in Daly City, Calif., a project by OTO Development, is currently is on-hold while ownership waits for the travel market to return; Rolling Hills Urban Wine Tasting in Idaho utilized Cornerstone for its design and procurement needs; and Cornerstone specified, detailed, and procured many custom design and FF&E elements throughout the Residence Inn Scottsdale Salt River in Arizona.
New Design Projects
Cornerstone currently is completing the interior design for five Hilton Garden Inn renovations in California. All of the properties are owned by Arbor Lodging. The Collective also almost has completed the design for the renovation of the Courtyard by Marriott Salt River in Arizona.
In direct response to the pandemic, Cornerstone launched the Nexus Project, a comprehensive, streamlined program for hotel brands, owners, and operators with detailed recommendations to design their properties safely, intelligently, and prudently. Utilizing criteria pulled from across the full spectrum of expert sources, including the CDC, EPA, WELL, LEED, IBC, Fitwel, Mindful Materials, and medical specialists, the proprietary program provides non-biased, research-based solutions.
“With the world on the cusp of a vaccination, it remains vitally important for hotel owners and operators to respond to the very real health and safety concerns of guests,” Hall added. “Implementing meaningful precautions will help usher back the return of travel as guests regain a sense of safe travel. Signs point to massive pent-up demand, and the hotels with proper safety protocols and clear explanations will be among the first to rebound. From the hotel’s perspective, the Nexus Standards also provide cost-savings of 15 to 40 percent under less rigidly vetted options.”
The company’s pipeline remains full and is in early negotiations with five ground-up developments and four renovations. “As the vaccine makes its way into society, one of the first things people will want to do is travel again, whether that’s to see sorely missed family or simply get out of the house after so many months of sheltering-in-place. Already, we are experiencing a development and construction thaw from the earlier pandemic freeze, and we expect 2021 to be one of our busiest years yet.”