Salvaged Bricks, Last-Minute Bargains at New Berkeley Hotel

July 28, 2009 at 9:28 am | Posted in News | Leave a comment

OAK_SHAT-exter-1For reasons relating to one of our day jobs, we took a guided tour last week of Downtown Berkeley’s brand-new Hotel Shattuck Plaza, which is outfitted with eye-poppingly cool design elements and green technology.

To update a National Historical Landmark edifice that has housed guests since 1910, Kevin Davis of San Francisco’s Ziv Davis Interior & Architecture Studio chose black, white, and candy-apple red as the ground floor’s signal colors. The latter captivates in exuberant glass chandeliers that make you want simultaneously to laugh, love them, and bite off chunks to

Black and white seize your attention the second you step through the front door, as the foyer’s marble floor tiles bear the shape of a peace sign four feet across. (The peace theme, a nod to Berkeley being Berkeley, is echoed in the hotel’s do-not-disturb signs, which say not Do Not Disturb but Peace, Please.) Black-and-white wallpaper in a bold postmodern-lace pattern graces the hotel’s organic restaurant-bar, Five, whose patrons eat three meals a day (selected from a menu that includes watermelon beer) under the 1910 structure’s original — and enormous — crystal chandelier.

Inserted into a slot just inside the door to each guestroom, that room’s key-card activates the LED overhead light, bedside lights, air conditioning, speaker phone, iHome, and flat-screen swivel-mounted TV. Remove the card and it all powers down: It’s an energy-saving strategy that is currently popular in Asian hotels but just catching on in the States, front-desk supervisor Matt Swenson told us. As for scavenging …. hundreds of bricks salvaged from the original structure during the two-year remodel will go into construction of the hotel’s new outdoor plaza.

It’s a very nice place and no Motel 6, which means that of course it’s not cheap. But Swenson told us that for a very limited time, bargain hunters can reserve double rooms at the Shattuck Plaza for only $98, which is about $40 off the regular price. You can only get the deal if you say you “saw it on Twitter,” and you can probably only get the deal through July.

Planning a visit to the Bay Area?

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