Quirk Hotel, A Destination Hotel, has just opened in Richmond's Arts District.
The 74-room hotel, owned by husband and wife duo Ted and Katie Ukrop, is inspired by Katie's 10-year-old nearby art gallery.
Inside, the lobby restaurant Maple & Pine led by Chef David Dunlap and the rooftop terrace bar and lounge both serve as gathering spots for locals. The building is an historic Richmond landmark, originally constructed in 1916 as the city’s finest department store, J.B. Mosby & Co. The structure’s overhaul and design, led by its owners, focused on capturing the building’s original purpose by honoring its history through unique architectural elements. The Ukrops commissioned Richmond-based architectural firm 3north and Connecticut-based interior design firm Poesis Design to lead the renovation.
Details such as the lobby’s segmental arches, groin vault ceiling and ornamental ironwork staircase have been preserved throughout the structure. As an homage to the building’s historic department store days, specially-designed, larger-than-life glass cases adorn the lobby, housing museum-like objects and collections such as vintage hats, while acting as natural spacing partitions. The lobby’s focal point upon entrance is a major art installation titled “Pile,” created by local artist Susie Ganch. Comprised entirely of white coffee lids collected from Richmond’s coffee shops, this piece de resistance is a symbolic interpretation of the hotel’s pillar ethos – fostering community, honoring the old, embracing the new and finding beauty in the unexpected.
For art mavens, Quirk Gallery will offer an easily accessible entrance to the hotel once it relocates in September to an adjacent building. The gallery, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in September 2015, displays works of many local, regional and national artists and sparked the idea for an art-driven, eclectic and engaging hotel. An impeccably landscaped courtyard will separate this adjacent building from the main hotel.
The Quirk Artist in Residence program will provide artists with a studio apartment one block east of the hotel in order to support the local Richmond arts community. The hotel’s first artist in residence is Leigh Suggs, a 2015 VCU Craft Materials MFA graduate with a concentration in textiles, who will be in residence from July 1, 2015 – January 2016.
The culinary experience at Quirk Hotel is led by Chef David Dunlap (previously of The Inn at Little Washington, The Ashby Inn in North Carolina and Plume at The Jefferson, DC) and focuses on artisan cuisine, sourced locally with an emphasis on regional culinary traditions.