Lighting the Hyatt Centric Philadelphia hotel

Jan. 4, 2024
Illumination considerations included highlighting the hotel's unique interior and variety of wood tones.

Challenge: Transforming a 1960s parking garage into an upscale hotel is a feat in and of itself, but the new Hyatt Centric Philadelphia’s interior infuses local history and minimalist design. Inspired by the area’s Shaker community, which preferred a simple, clean aesthetic, the predominantly wood interior is beautifully finished and exhibits restrained elegance through muted tones and handcrafted details. Creating a design that expressed a boutique feel while remaining affordable was another aspect of the project.

“In hospitality, we are trying to create something that’s unique and different, full of memorable visual moments, while also balancing a budget,” says A. Pomme Lee, LEED AP, project manager, The Lighting Practice.

Influence: Working closely with interior designer CRÈME Architecture and Design and project architect DAS Architects, the Lighting Practice used discreet light sources — concealed in the architectural details and incorporated into millwork — to highlight the natural materials, wrought iron details, and artwork on display.

Solution: Decorative pendants suspended above seating areas utilize LED replacement lamps to provide an incandescent aesthetic with fewer maintenance concerns. The restaurant and lounge spaces feature layers of light from recessed downlights, wall sconces, and tabletop task lighting.

Concealed LED luminaires and tape lights highlight the modern spindle staircase as it opens up into the lobby, which includes the restaurant, bar, and lounge and functions as the hotel's main casual meeting space.

The design team specified a warm correlated color temperature of 2700K for all guest-facing interior light fixtures to create comfortable and inviting environments in the open and modestly decorated hospitality spaces. Designed to LEED Silver standards, the hotel’s lighting system uses only 0.49W/sq. ft., better than the ASHRAE 90.1- 2007 requirements.

The design team also tested all LED lighting fixtures for dimming capabilities, ensuring they met the desired low dimming levels to create an intimate atmosphere in the hotel.

“On Hyatt Centric, we did our due diligence, coordinating with multiple lighting vendors to make sure the specified fixtures were appropriately priced, met performance expectations, and achieved the design vision of simple yet elegant design,” says Lee.

This article appeared in the March 2022 issue of Architectural SSL magazine.

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About the Author

Architectural SSL staff

In January 2024, Architectural SSL evolved to LightSPEC. While the name changed, the editorial focus -- writing and developing audience-first content about architectural lighting in the built environment for architects, interior designers, lighting designers and manufacturers, and specifiers of commercial and residential lighting and controls -- remains the same.

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